During the 2019 season, the Baltimore Ravens targeted tight ends on 42.5% of their passing attempts, which led the NFL. That translated into success as the Ravens led the NFL with 33.2 points per game. Mark Andrews led the entire team with 98 targets, while Nick Boyle and Hayden Hurst received 43 and 39 targets each respectively. Last season, the Ravens’ tight end group collectively received only 109 targets, as opposed to 180 targets in 2019. Boyle’s injury factored into that; he played in only nine games. However, the biggest difference was the loss of Hurst, who was traded to the Falcons in the offseason. Finding another tight end in the draft would be ideal. So, let’s take a quick look at one option, Quintin Morris of Bowling Green.
Morris actually began his college career as a wide receiver. In his first three seasons, he had 105 receptions for 1,281 yards and 12 touchdowns in 28 games. He was officially listed as a tight end before his senior season, and he gained 23 pounds. Bowling Green played five games last season. As a tight end, Morris led the team in receptions (20) and receiving yards (248). I understand that those numbers are not eye-popping, but Bowling Green’s quarterback play needs to be noted. In those five games, their quarterbacks had a combined completion percentage of 43.2% and threw for one touchdown and seven interceptions.
Morris was invited to the Senior Bowl. During the practices, he ran some excellent routes:
Ok???? Quintin Morris with the filthy route here. Was a little inconsistent on Day one and it’s good to see him maybe putting it together a bit. pic.twitter.com/pUp439eGF9— Ben Glassmire (@BenGlassmireNFL) January 29, 2021
In the game, he caught three passes for 52 yards and had this impressive hurdle:
What a hurdle by Quintin Morris! pic.twitter.com/GohipueBR8— Jakob Ashlin (@JakobAshlin) January 30, 2021
Making plays in the open field is one of his biggest strengths. This highlight from a Bowling Green scrimmage displays that.
Going to take a deeper dive into #BowlingGreen TE Quintin Morris’ game tomorrow. His numbers are deceiving and not a true assessment of his talent.— Devin Jackson (@RealD_Jackson) January 10, 2021
Check out this scrimmage video. His ability in the open field intrigues me. He’s worth the deep dive.
As a former wide receiver, he also has good hands and projects to be a reliable target at the next level. Morris’s true ceiling is a versatile, tight end that can be a matchup nightmare. He lined up all over the field in college, including occasionally in the backfield. Morris recently echoed that sentiment in an interview with Justin Melo of the Draft Network:
I’m the jack of all trades. You can put me in the slot, you can put me outside or you can even put me in the backfield. You can move me all over the field. I’m a chess piece for the offense.
He certainly has the athleticism to become that in the NFL. At his Pro Day, he ran a 4.60-second 40-yard dash, which is tied for the fourth-fastest time among tight ends in this class. In addition, his 22 bench reps are tied with Kyle Pitts and Luke Farrell for the fifth-most among tight ends in the class.
Now, let’s look at his weaknesses. Morris is still developing as a blocker, but he did occasionally provide some strong run blocking. That should improve with time, as he continues to develop as a tight end. Additionally, the Ravens do not need Morris to be an elite blocker. He would ideally take over Hurst’s former role, which requires him to primarily work as a pass-catcher, while Boyle and Pat Ricard would continue to take on a larger responsibility as run blockers.
As a route runner, Morris was better at creating separation on deep routes than intermediate routes. He did show improvement at the Senior Bowl, though.
Finally, he has played a limited amount of games at tight end, and he played in the Mid-American Conference. So, we are working with a smaller sample size. His biggest test came against #9 Notre Dame in 2019. He finished that game with 10 receptions for 92 yards.
On Day 3, he is an intriguing developmental prospect. He has the upside to be a potential steal and an ideal fit in the Ravens’ offense.