Cowboys draft 2023 scouting report: Iowa tight finish Sam LaPorta

Cowboys draft prospects scouting studies for the 2023 NFL Draft.

Title: Sam LaPorta
Place: TE
Top: 6’4”
Weight: 249 kilos

Sam LaPorta Profession Stats, courtesy of Sports activities Reference

Sam LaPorta is hardly the primary tight finish popping out of Iowa to catch NFL scouts’ consideration. Among the names which have preceded him embody Dallas Clark, Scott Chandler, T.J. Hockenson, Noah Fant, and George Kittle. That’s fairly the record.

With that in thoughts, then, it’s wildly spectacular to assume that LaPorta completed his faculty profession with extra receptions and yards than some other Iowa tight finish in historical past. After breaking down his movie, it’s simple to see how he was capable of accomplish such a feat.

LaPorta is a extremely spectacular participant who simply so occurs to be in a really loaded tight finish class this 12 months. That complicates his draft inventory, with most projections at the moment having him as a second- or third-round prospect. However his expertise is certain to make him seem like a steal.

Receiving Potential: That is LaPorta’s calling card. He’s a harmful menace as a receiver, as evidenced by his record-setting manufacturing in an offense that struggled mightily within the move recreation. He was third amongst all tight ends in yards after the catch this previous 12 months, and led all tight ends in damaged tackles with 20; in reality, that determine ranks fifth amongst all tight ends during the last decade. LaPorta is a good receiving tight finish who can thrive each as a catch-and-run machine or as a menace down the seam of a protection.

Fingers: The factor that separates LaPorta most from the highest tight ends on this class are his palms, that are simply common. Drops are an issue, and he dropped 9.4% of his targets this previous 12 months, the fourth highest charge amongst tight ends. That’s regarding, however the silver lining is that he was nonetheless capable of dominate with that difficulty. If he can change into extra constant on the catch level, consider how harmful he can change into.

Route Working: LaPorta is an skilled, nuanced route runner. He’s very exact in the best way he runs his routes, and does an ideal job of breaking with such suddenness that he loses his defender. Simply 37.5% of LaPorta’s receptions final 12 months have been contested; solely three tight ends had a decrease charge than that, a testomony to his skill to get open.

Blocking: He has a large enough body to operate as a enough blocker, and he performs with a willingness to take action as nicely. That lands his blocking skill in “adequate” territory, which groups can reside with when there’s as a lot receiving manufacturing as LaPorta gives. Nonetheless, greater defenders can overpower him simply, and higher blocking strategies might assist him evolve considerably on this regard.

Athleticism: LaPorta is a strong athlete, however not a lot that he’ll blow anybody away together with his athletic testing. He’s probably within the above common space when it comes to athleticism for a decent finish, and it clearly didn’t have an effect on his skill to rack up yards after the catch.

Dimension: LaPorta has good dimension and a very good body for the place, although he’s not large enough to qualify as a dimension mismatch. He makes use of his dimension nicely within the passing lanes, although, and as a runner after the catch. Some tight ends battle to make the most of their dimension, however that’s not a priority for him.

Intangibles: LaPorta is a mannequin teammate within the locker room. Iowa gave him the Workforce Hustle award in 2021 earlier than naming him their Offensive MVP in 2022. He was additionally named a crew captain this previous 12 months, on high of an extended record of educational honors. He comes with 4 full years of expertise and led the crew in receptions three of these years. His mixture of management and veteran savvy was noticeable this previous 12 months.

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