White Tight Ends

Discussion in 'NFL' started by Don Wassall, Dec 22, 2021.

  1. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    After 15 weeks of the 2021 NFL season, White tight ends are six of the top seven TEs in receiving yardage and thirteen of the top sixteen! That's remarkable, not that far off at all from the long-time Black dominance at wide receiver and running back.

    Tight end is, surprisingly enough, a position that went from Black dominance, but not thoroughly so, to overwhelming White dominance over the past 15 years. Jason Witten seemed to herald the change and it has only intensified since then.

    Tight end is the only position during the now close to 40 year-old Caste System with no end yet in sight that has seen a demographic reversal. Although the way White quarterbacks have continued to dominate in the face of a fierce longstanding all-out attempt to make the position Black-dominated, is an even more impressive achievement.

    If Whites can be fast, elusive, reliable receivers as tight ends, and also block very well as needed, and dominate the position, then why doesn't the same hold true at wide receiver and running back? The answer is obvious, but at least the tight end fortress is now very well established for the short and long haul.
     
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  3. wile

    wile Master

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    I thought Chumara might have been the ice breaker in the mid 90s but between injury and his absolutely idiotic criminal behavior he self tackled his career and legacy.
     
  4. booth

    booth Mentor

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    I always felt that Russ Francis sort of started the era of big fast athletic tight ends, just my opinion.
     
  5. Freethinker

    Freethinker Hall of Famer

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    Great thread and post Don.

    In my main friends and family FF league, 12 of the top 13 TEs based on total points are White! This is so overwhelming that even the most dense DWFs….er Americans, playing FF have to be noticing.

    In the other thread, I just highlighted that 3 White tight ends are going to hit the thousand yard mark with a decent shot at 4. We’ve had years with 3 White TEs achieving that but never 4.
     
  6. Bucky

    Bucky Hall of Famer

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    Golden Age of White TEs!
     
  7. El Gringo

    El Gringo Mentor

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  8. Carolina Speed

    Carolina Speed Hall of Famer

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    Right booth. Francis should be in the HOF. He and Dave Casper had similar stats, but Casper won a Super Bowl and Francis did not. Casper is in the HOF. There have always been great white tight ends. Several come to mind, Casper, Todd Christiansen, and HOFer Jackie Smith. Smith, I believe has the highest yard per catch average of all time at 16.5. I don't think anyone else has a higher average. However, Smith is more known for his epic dropped pass in the end zone in Super Bowl 13. I will never forget it. I was a Dallas fan and the Cowboys were in tight battle with Pittsburgh and Staubach put the ball right in Smith's hands in the end zone but Smith dropped it, probably costing Dallas the game. That one still hurts to this day.
    ...and as everyone knows Roger Staubach is my favorite QB. The first QB to win the Heisman, a Super Bowl and the Super Bowl MVP. Don't mean to change the thread, but has there been any other QB to accomplish all three?
     
  9. jacknyc

    jacknyc Master

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    Mike Ditka was a great tight end in the 1960s.
     
  10. booth

    booth Mentor

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    Carolina Speed, Jackie Smith is my favorite TE of all time. He was 6'3" 230 and ran a sub 10 100 yd dash. He would wind up with 40 tds for his career but the one he didn't catch is what he is most known for.
     
  11. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Ditka gained over 1,000 yards in his rookie season (which was 14 games then). Here's a highlights film, followed by an NFL Films production when he was named the fourth best tight end of all time.



     
  12. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    I am virtually certain Francis won at least one ring as a 49er, I know he broke into the league as a Patriot and then left and was in San Francisco when the Walsh era began.

    PS, I just read he was elected to PFRA Hall of Very Good class of 21'. I know that this distinction has been sign that a player could be a bubble player elected X years later by the veterans committee.
     
  13. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Todd Christensen went over 1,000 yards for the Raiders in '83, '84 and '86 and fell just 13 yards short in '85, which would have made it a Kelce-like four straight thousand yard seasons.

     
  14. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Mark Bavaro was a folk hero among Giants fans because of his toughness. He went over 1,000 yards in '86 but injuries cut down his effectiveness by the late '80s. Bavaro and Christensen were the last White tight ends to go over 1,000 yards in a season until Jason Witten came along and the floodgates opened.

    1985: The last year a White RB went over 1,000 yards until Peyton Hillis in 2010
    1986: The last year a White WR went over 1,000 yards until Ed McCaffrey in 1998 (after serving a ridiculously long racial apprenticeship)
    1986: The last year a White TE went over 1,000 yards until Jason Witten in 2007

    The mid-1980s is when the Caste System went hardcore, which is when the decline of White defensive players also accelerated.

     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2021
  15. Carolina Speed

    Carolina Speed Hall of Famer

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    I stand corrected. I totally forgot he came out of retirement to play for the 49ers. Yes, he did win a Super Bowl. He made 5 receptions for 60 yards. There's no doubt he should be in the HOF. His stats are almost identical to HOF Dave Casper. Actually, it looks like Francis had more receptions and more yards although Casper had more TD's.
     
  16. BeyondFedUp

    BeyondFedUp Master

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    As far as I'm concerned Mark Bavaro was and is the greatest Tight End of all time.

    Being a Cowboys fan I loved Witten but I have to admit Bavaro, prime against prime in their respective eras was better, tougher and more of a threat. In the 80's as the Cowboys were going downward Bavaro and Simms would destroy us all the time and the rest of the NFC as well. He was not only a Cowboy killer but if there are any Niners fans on here you know he broke your hearts along with their bones time and time again. He was totally tough and could be counted on time and time again. What an absolute beast, and a Christian to boot.
     
  17. jacknyc

    jacknyc Master

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    Mark Bavaro was great.
    However, he seems to be forgotten. He's not in any of the many top TEs lists of all-time.
     
  18. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Bavaro only had two strong seasons, '86 and '87, after that injuries slowed him down and his stats took a nosedive.
     
  19. BeyondFedUp

    BeyondFedUp Master

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    True enough. I suppose my nostalgia even towards a rival may be taking over...
    All I remember were those high points. He was a monster while he was healthy.
     
  20. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    He was Gronk before Gronk but it was over in a poof. I remember the SI cover of the Living End during the Giants SB run where they destroyed the Broncos in the second half of the game.
     
  21. Leonardfan

    Leonardfan Hall of Famer

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    I think Jeremy Shockey is the forefather of the modern TE we see today. I do wish more White players had his brashness and outward display of confidence.

     
  22. El Gringo

    El Gringo Mentor

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    Wow! He may have been on the same level or close to it after the catch as gronk. Thanks for the share Leonardfan.
     
  23. Freethinker

    Freethinker Hall of Famer

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    Yes, I remember him well as a Giants fan. When he came on the scene as a rookie in 2002, he had all the makings of a superstar and really took NYC by storm. 894 yards and a certain air of confidence that NYers love when you are performing. Sadly, he never built on that and only had one other year that matched (2005) his rookie production. Perhaps if he played now with everything geared up for passing, he would have notched a few thousand yard seasons. As LeonardFans video showed, Shockey was often upset that he wasn’t featured more as a receiver and complained in media when he was used extensively as a blocker.

    I’d definitely say Gronk and Kelse are products of Shockey due to their athleticism and brashness.
     
  24. AboveAverage

    AboveAverage Guru

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    It has been great to see the resurgence of white tight ends- it seems like the TE is finally fighting back against the caste system.

    Take George Kittle for example. George Kittle was a 3 star recruit ranked outside the top 1500 and was the 199th best player in his position. He had a total of four D1 offers and out of those offers he would end up going to Iowa out of Airforce, Navy and Weber State. In his true Freshman season in 2012 he would redshirt and in the next 2 seasons he was a backup TE. Once 2015 came as a redshirt junior his role expanded and he was a starting TE and in that season he had 20 receptions for 290 yards and 6 TD. In his final year as a Hawkeye in 2016 in 9 games played he had 314 receiving yards and 4 TD through the air. He ended his career as a Hawkeye with 48 receptions for 737 yards, averaging 15 yards per reception and 10 TD. In the 2017 NFL draft he was taken by the 49ers in the 5th round.
     

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