He’s not Rob Gronkowski. He’s not Jimmy Graham. And he’s not Jermichael Finley.
But to be fair, North Carolina State tight end George Bryan is an athlete.
A former three-sport star in high school, Bryan, who is 6’5” and 265 pounds, opted for football in college instead of basketball or baseball. North Carolina State will tell you it's glad he did.
In 2011, the huge target caught 33 passes for 331 yards and four touchdowns. But despite his “world class hands,” as described by CBSSports.com, the receiving game isn’t necessarily his biggest area of strength.
Rather, Bryan is a strong blocker who also happens to catch well. The problem is that he’s slow.
While he’s good at finding the open spots and can utilize the seam on passing routes, Bryan isn’t going to burn anybody after the catch.
CBSSports.com calls him a “traditional block-first tight end [who] has good technique and bend as a blocker and some power in his hands.” Those hands are also described as “hands of glue.”
With so much value placed on speed and freakish athleticism at pre-draft events, players like Bryan are easy to overlook. But make no mistake about it: He’ll contribute in the NFL.
Having a player with Bryan’s blocking ability is essentially like having an extra offensive lineman. In addition, he utilizes his big frame to get position in the passing game and has the demonstrated skills to haul in the hardest of throws.
That kind of player is especially valuable in the red zone.
Ultimately, Bryan is a good blocking tight end with good size and great hands. However, he’s slower than molasses, as he ran a 5.05 40-yard dash at his pro day.
He won’t be asked to separate from coverage in the slot. Instead, he’ll offer situational advantages in the passing game and assist in opening up holes in the running game.
Now a Dallas Cowboy, Bryan will have a chance to learn from one of the game's best pass-catching tight ends in Jason Witten. So even though he didn't hear his name called on draft day, he has fallen into a good position and will look to make the most of his opportunity to compete for a roster spot.