Expected to add at least 20 undrafted free agents, the St. Louis Rams have been busy this morning getting deals done. The list includes linemen, defensive backs and other positions you would expect. One position you would not expect the Rams to add is tight end; you would be wrong.
The Rams signed a very intriguing tight end prospect this morning, Northern Iowa's Schuylar Oordt, a prospect that several draft pundits are very high on, even giving him a chance to make the final roster. Wow. The Rams, in case you haven't noticed, are loaded at tight end, with second-round pick Lance Kendricks and Michael Hoomanawanui on top of the depth chart.
So who is this Oordt kid? He's 6'5" 261 lbs. According to this scouting report from SI.com, he could have been a 4th round pick. What happened? He didn't get much playing time at a small school that was already deep at the TE position. However, he is a tremendous athlete who could have a bright NFL future. He struggles with blocking and needs to refine his technique, hence the developmental prospect label. Here's the SI.com report:
Tall, athletic tight end prospect with a large amount of upside. Fluid releasing off the line, plays with good knee bend, and easily moves about the field. Shows a lot of quickness in his overall game, runs solid routes, and easily adjusts or gets vertical to make the reception. Runs laterally with speed, consistently gets into the secondary creating mismatches, and easily makes the reception in stride. Finds the open spot in the defense and extends his hands to offer the quarterback a target. Displays soft hands.
Here's a couple reactions via Twitter today. From small school scouting guru Josh Buchanan:
He has a real shot to make that team. He needs to bulk up and get stronger but is a good pass catching threat.
Here's NE Patriots Draft:
Hearing Schuylar Oordt (TE, Northern Iowa) to the #Rams - could make the 53 or PSquad
I doubt that Oordt is the deciding factor, but it looks more and more like the Rams will not re-sign TE Daniel Fells. Oordt will be competing directly with Fendi Onobun, last year's developmental tight end pick. Having some talented developmental TEs like Oordt on the practice squad would be helpful should injuries hit. Three tight ends seems like the most probably scenario for the Rams, which makes it a crowded battle for a single spot. Should be one of the most interesting stories to watch in camp.