Rob Housler wowed scouts despite playing at a relatively small Florida Atlantic program, and certainly won over the Arizona Cardinals at pick No. 69. Housler tallied 39 catches for 629 yards and four touchdowns in his senior year down in Boca Raton, Fla.
The tight end's large frame dominated secondaries and linebackers of the Sun Belt conference, but doubts remain over how pro-ready his competition allowed him to be. Good hands and dangerous ability to stretch defenses somewhat from tight end position. Reminiscent of 2010-draftee Aaron Hernandez in down-field speed and ability to catch away from the body, but also with weaknesses in pass-blocking and zone-reading.
Housler should serve as distinctly a receiving tight end, as emphasized in USA Today's NFL Draft Preview special edition.
Housler is the size (6'5", 248 lbs.) that NFL teams are looking for in a receiving tight end. He has a quick release from the line of scrimmage and the speed to make it into the hole in zone coverage. He isn't big enough to be an inside blocker for most teams.
After addressing secondary needs in the first round with cornerback Patrick Peterson and what is perceived as more a value pick with running back Ryan Williams in the second, the Cardinals grab a prospect who can contribute immediately and draw coverage away from Larry Fitzgerald.
Housler gives Arizona the tight end weapon it hasn't possessed in recent memory. This will come in handy if the Cardinals ever get around to developing or acquiring a quarterback that is remotely competent.