Scouting Report-Gronskowski is a physical marvel on par with fellow tight end Jermaine Gresham. He's got that same beefed up long body with giant hands and long arms. His football skills set is also very similar. Gronkowski has a great knack for being able to find voids in the zone, and does an excellent job catching with his hands. In man coverage he's a matchup nightmare. He's way too fast and athletic for most linebackers or even safetys. And he's so physically overwhelming for cornerbacks, you just throw it up and he goes and gets it. No doubt Gronskowski is the prototypical NFL tight end, who can work the middle of the field in the short and intermediate, and stretch the field in the deep passing game. Also like his position-mate Gresham, Gronskowski is coming off a season ending injury, his a back injury, and even though it should be something he'll make a full recovery from, his draft status will be impacted by how he checks out medically.
Draft Status-If Gronkowski had been able to play this year, I suspect the numbers he'd have put up would have made him a mid first round pick. He really is that good. But with questions about his back, along with other talented tight ends like Gresham and Florida's Aaron Hernandez in the draft, he's almost certain to tumble into the 2nd round. That would be a huge gift for some team. Gronkowski may not be as high profile as Gresham or Hernandez but all you need to do is watch him from 2008 and you see why NFL teams are going to want him on their team.
Final Analysis-Everyone knows what a huge Sooner homer I am. Having said that, if Gronkowski had been healthy this year, I'd have rated him ahead of Gresham. He's got all the physical tools you look for, aside from needing to work more on what he does with the ball after the catch, and although he's not as good an inline blocker I like how he works the middle of the field and can move the chains better than Gresham. Both players could end up elite players in this league, assuming they are able to stay healthy.
Reminds me of: Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys-Like I compared Gresham to Antonio Gates, I think Gronkowski can have the kind of impact on a team Witten has had on the Cowboys. He can lead a team in catches, and be a quarterback's no. 1 target. Witten isn't the greatest blocker and has become much better after the catch and I expect Gronkowski to follow a similar path.
Scouting Report written by Curt Popejoy