Evan Rodriguez to Chicago Bears: Video Highlights, Scouting Report and Analysis
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Given the versatility on display in the first video, you won’t be surprised to find Temple product Evan Rodriguez listed in the fullback or tight end section of most draft breakdowns—or both. He was even invited to the combine as a halfback.
The video is long, but illustrates his strengths and contributions, while also revealing some weaknesses.
The most obvious comparisons will be to the Patriots’ Aaron Hernandez. There is even a coaching connection since Temple head coach Steve Addazio was the offensive coordinator when Hernandez was still at Florida.
Rodriguez's professional strengths will probably be on special teams. While not landing in the top five in most scouting tight end rankings, he was always either the first or second fullback listed.
National Football Post's Wes Bunting weighed in:
When breaking down the game of Temple’s “do-it-all” full back/H-back/tight end Evan Rodriguez, I couldn’t help but think this is the kind of full back prospect that NFL teams wouldn’t mind using a later round pick on.
Rodriguez runs the 40 anywhere from 4.58-4.67 (depending on the day and the timer) and jumps 36 inches straight up.
He has considerable natural talent as a receiver and makes good moves in short yardage. His excellent vision and field awareness, combined with the ability to catch easily from either shoulder, make him look smooth in the receiving TE designation. He’s tough and focused while possessing the soft hands of an instinctive receiver. He was clearly a go-to guy at Temple.
He works hard as a blocker and looks for contact. His versatility is his strongest positive trait: Rodriguez has played fullback as both a blocker and a ball carrier.
As an added bonus, Rodriguez provides excellent kick coverage on special teams.
While at 6’2”, 239-247 pounds (depending on who's doing the weighing), Rodriguez will not be making anyone forget Rob Gronkowski’s size and power. He does not always beat the linebackers and safeties assigned to cover him once he gets to the open field.
There are some rumblings about his lack of strength and muscle definition.
While Rodriguez can function well in the short game, he doesn’t have Barry Sanders’ ankles and sudden moves. And, despite his good hands, he tends to “body catch.”
Some analysts aren’t sure he can consistently open the lane as a fullback—going back to the general strength issue as well as a tendency to miss the best angle.
The biggest knock is that some have called Rodriguez an underachiever. That is a bad trait when it comes to the professional level.
As a senior, he played in the East/West Shrine Game. Rodriguez was a 2010 and 2011 first-team All-MAC honoree and College Football Poll TE of the Week (October 2011).
With 12 starts as a senior, Rodriquez was Temple’s top wide receiver with 35 receptions for 479 yards and two TDs. During three seasons with Temple, he missed only two games.
In high school he received regional honors at quarterback and safety.
Rodriguez can make an immediate impact in the NFL. But his football IQ, willingness to be physical and ability to stay focused should get him into the offense. As a flexible player capable of helping out in both the running and passing games, he could get some action with the Bears offense.
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