oregon sports

2012 Oregon Ducks’ tight end season preview

Questions at WR & QB not TE

The Hillsboro born, Oregon native, Colt Lyerla is a 6’5″ 238 lb sophomore tight end for the Oregon Ducks.

Yes, I just said six foot five and 238 pounds.

He is the next big potential, highly talented TE that is projected to be the starter this fall.  He saw limited action last year as a freshman. However, he still caught 5 TD’s. Coming into Oregon he was a 5 star recruit by rivals.com and played both sides of the football at Hillsboro High School.

Colt Lyerla will look to be the next great Oregon tight end. Photo: GoDucks.com

Colt has huge shoes to fill this year.  Oregon has always utilized the TE in the passing game as far back as I can remember. With the names of Tim Day, Dante Rosario, George Wrighster, Ed Dickson, and David Paulson just to name a few.

Rosario currently plays for the San Diego Chargers while Paulson is on the Steelers roster.

Last year David Paulson was the team’s third-leading receiver with 31 catches, 438 yards and six touchdowns.  That was all done on the run first offense that we all know about.  Paulson has made huge plays in big games that will be missed in this offense.

None bigger than the circus catch he made in the national championship game.

The TE position is one place that Oregon can not afford any major injury this year.  The depth chart is something that is seriously lacking experience yet holds a ton of potential.

Right now the depth chart at TE is as follows:   Colt Lyerla, So.; Evan Baylis, Fr.; Brian Teague, Jr.; Jennings Stewart, Sr.; Koa Ka’ai, RFr.; T.J. Daniel, Fr.; Pharaoh Brown, Fr.

Baylis is a freshman with good reviews early, listed at 6″6″ 232 lbs.  He played in the spring game with a pair of catches.

Last year Teague appeared in 7 games. Stewart is a senior that lacks big game experience, followed by 3 more freshman with who of course have no experience.

However, reading Stewarts bio I get the feeling he’s a guy that just needs a chance on the field to play and prove himself.

At 6’3″  and 225 lbs with track and field experience and recorded tackles for loss and a fumble recovery, he may be a name to keep an eye on.

There is no question that Lyerla is expected to win the starting job  and be the next big TE star on this high powered Oregon offense.

So much focus is on the QB battle and many are waiting to see if a young star will emerge at WR that the question mark at tight end has not been talked about much.

Take a look at this you tube video of Paulson’s 2011 highlights in Chip Kelly’s offense. You will see how important of a weapon the TE is and it’s not all just the read option that Oregon has pounded into opposing defenses.

So many question on offense this year remain to be answered when fall camp kicks off, yet Oregon is still favored to win the Pac-12 north.


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About Travis Koehler

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