Tight end T.J. Hockenson heard his name called as the No. 8 pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. He’ll now join Matt Patricia’s Detroit Lions as they look to continue building for the future.
Some even believe he has major talent at the position similar to an all-time great. Others are hesitant to go there just yet.
Who is T.J. Hockenson? Lions’ No. 8 pick
T.J. Hockenson was a tight end for the Iowa Hawkeyes football team in college. The 6-foot-5, 250-pound sophomore racked up 49 receptions for 760 yards and six touchdowns for Iowa this past season.
The redshirt sophomore hails from Chariton, Iowa. He was amongst the key players in his team’s Outback Bowl victory after this past season.
Hockenson ran a 4.7 in the 40-yard dash ahead of being drafted. He also was amongst several early draft entries from his school. The other players included Noah Fans, Amani Hooker, and Anthony Nelson.
— Rivals (@Rivals) April 26, 2019
It’s believed that Hockenson will compete for a starting role with the Detroit Lions based on his skills. He’ll be paired with veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford and could provide Detroit another receiving threat.
Some have compared Hockenson to none other than recently retired New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski.
Is T.J. Hockenson the next Gronk?
There have been some Rob Gronkowski comparisons already, but those are premature. Rivals’ Adam Gorney suggested that Gronk is a “one in a million.”
However, he mentions Hockenson is able to block and “can be a huge asset in the passing game.”
— Iowa On BTN (@IowaOnBTN) April 26, 2019
Gorney gave him a grade of A-, while his Rivals colleague Mike Farrell disagrees, giving the pick a C-. Farrell suggested that the eighth pick was a bit too high for Detroit to go after a tight end.
Time will tell if T.J. Hockenson proves Farrell and other doubters wrong. Matt Patricia, Matthew Stafford, and the rest of the Detroit Lions are hoping for the best.