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Troy Niklas | Tight End

Team: Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Ht / Wt:  6'7' / 270

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Cardinals selected Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas with the No. 52 overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft.
Niklas (6-foot-6 1/2, 270) is a gargantuan tight end following in the Notre Dame footsteps of Anthony Fasano, John Carlson, Kyle Rudolph, and Tyler Eifert. He profiles most similarly to Fasano as a heavy-footed possession receiver who'll spend most of his NFL snaps in an in-line stance. Niklas caught 32 passes for 498 yards (15.6 YPR) and five touchdowns in 2013, before recording a 32-inch vertical, 9-foot-6 broad jump, and 27 bench reps at the Combine. At the Combine, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians discussed the importance of blocking for tight ends in his scheme. Niklas fits this better than anyone. May 9 - 8:40 PM

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Buffalo hosted Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas and Indiana WR Cody Latimer for pre-draft visits on Tuesday.

WGR 550 Buffalo's Joe Buscaglia believes Niklas, the nephew of Hall of Fame offensive lineman Bruce Matthews, could be a fit for the Bills in the second round. Niklas (6-foot-6 1/2 and 270 pounds) is a jumbo prospect who generates movement in the running game. Latimer, meanwhile, has been gaining steam in recent weeks. Buffalo might have to pull the trigger in the third round if it truly wants the Hoosier.
Apr 1 - 10:09 PM

Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas has a chance to be a "top NFL tight end," according to NFL Films' Greg Cosell.

"I think he has a chance down the road to be a top NFL tight end," Cosell said. "He needs a lot of experience, he needs a lot of refinement, even as a blocker, although he's a huge kid. ... He's very intriguing because of that size, athleticism, movement dynamic. There aren't a lot of guys that have that. He's somewhat similar to Austin Seferian-Jenkins in that regard." Niklas (6-foot-6 and a 1/2 and 270 pounds), who declared early for the NFL Draft, is a jumbo prospect who generates movement in the running game. Cosell disagrees with experts that call Niklas "stiff."
Mar 19 - 6:52 PM

Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas measured in at 6 foot 6 and a 1/2 and 270 pounds at the NFL Combine.

The "buzz is building" around Niklas as more are getting to study his tape, according to NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah. Our own Josh Norris recently ranked Niklas as the No. 34 overall prospect. Notre Dame frequently kept Niklas in to block, since that is one area he excels in, but the chiseled tight end did flash receiving ability when given the opportunity.
Feb 20 - 12:07 PM

NFL Media draft analyst and NBC Notre Dame football broadcaster Mike Mayock believes Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas "could be the best blocking tight end in the NFL in two or three years."

"He's a better receiver than people think," Mayock said. "He's not Tyler Eifert. He's not a 4.5 guy, but he's probably a 4.75, 4.8 kind of guy. He can catch the ball short and intermediate. He's got really good hands. He understands how to use his body to position it." Mayock ranks Niklas, who collected 32 receptions for 498 yards and five touchdowns in 2013, fourth amongst TEs. "I don't think he’s getting out of the second round because I think there's a dropoff after him," Mayock said.
Feb 19 - 2:49 PM

ESPN's Mel Kiper believes Notre Dame's Troy Niklas can challenge for the No. 2 TE spot in the 2014 class.

"Niklas has solidified his status as a potential first-round pick and even a potential challenger to be the second tight end taken," Kiper writes. "His blocking ability is ahead of Ebron's and Amaro's, but I think he's athletic enough to be split out or work in the slot consistently." Niklas currently sits as Kiper's No. 3 tight end. He was asked to frequently stay in as a pass protector, but Niklas can be freed as a receiver at the next level.
Source: ESPN
Feb 17 - 10:46 AM

Notre Dame junior TE Troy Niklas will enter the 2014 NFL Draft, according to SI's Brian Hamilton.

The news is surprising and comes straight from Niklas' father. "He's going to the NFL," Don Niklas told Hamilton. "Lifelong dream to play in the NFL, that was part of it. He thought he was physically developed enough to make it happen." Add Niklas to the list of possible top-50 tight ends, along with Jace Amaro, Eric Ebron, and Austin Seferian-Jenkins.
Jan 9 - 10:21 PM

Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly told the media that he requested a draft evaluation for junior TE Troy Niklas.

"Definitely some key takeaways, what they think I need to improve in my game," Niklas said of the evaluation process. "Definitely some good things to work on in the off-season. Just having a little bit of information at the next level so you're not going into it next year kind of clueless." Niklas, a Mackey Award semifinalist, caught 28 passes for 422 yards and five touchdowns this season. At 6-foot-7, 270 pounds, he's the type of huge athlete that the NFL now covets. "I'm pretty sure I'm coming back," Niklas said. "Unless there's a really good reason for me not to."
Tue, Dec 24, 2013 02:00:00 PM