Prospects

Prospects
Photo of Tony Fiammetta
Tony Fiammetta (FB)
Height: 6'0"
Weight: 245
College: Syracuse
Conference: ACC
Hometown: Walkersville, MD
High School: Walkersville
Featured Prospects
Selected by: Carolina Panthers
Round: 4
Pick (Overall): 28 (128)
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Pick Analysis: Fiammetta was the best fullback in the draft. He is an excellent blocker yet he has rushing skills, as he was a running back coming out of high school. He also has excellent receiving skills. His blocking is not to be dismissed, though, and he really beefs up an already-powerful Panthers rushing attack.
  1. Overview
  2. Analysis
Overview

The team's starting fullback his last two years, Fiammetta did not get many opportunities to touch the ball, but the team captain developed into one of the Orange's few bright spots. He also proved to be a capable receiver coming out of the backfield, as the Athletic Director's Honor Roll member pulled down 28 combined passes as a junior and senior.


Fiammetta was rated the 25th-best overall prospect in the Mid-Atlantic region by Super Prep during his senior year at Walkersville High School, but missed most of season after he suffered a left leg fracture in the season opener. He rushed for 144 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries in that game before being sidelined.


Fiammetta added All-East Region accolades from Prep Star as the team captain during his junior year. In four seasons with the football team, he gained 499 yards on 60 carries 8.32 avg) and posted 12 touchdowns. He lettered on the wrestling team as a junior, competing in the 215-pound weight class. He also lettered four times as a midfielder for the school's lacrosse team.


Fiammetta enrolled at Syracuse in 2004, performing on the scout team. In 2005, he saw action with the special teams in 10 contests, recording one solo tackle in the season finale vs. Louisville. He played in every game as a reserve fullback in 2006, gaining just 15 yards on eight carries, but also returned three kickoffs for 32 yards (10.7 avg).


As a junior, Fiammetta earned eight starting assignments in 11 games, sitting out the Buffalo game as a precaution after suffering a concussion vs. Rutgers. He only carried three times for 8 yards, coming up with 12 receptions for 75 yards (6.2 avg) while registered four touchdown-resulting blocks and 39 knockdowns.


In 2008, Fiammetta started 12 contests, missing the South Florida clash due to a left leg contusion. He made the most of his five rushing attempts, generating 66 yards (13.2 avg) and also pulled down 16 passes for 127 yards (7.9 avg) and his only touchdown for his career. He continued to excel on special teams, causing two fumbles while making four tackles (3 solos).


High School

Attended Walkersville (Md.) High School, playing football for head coach Hal Grau...Rated the 25th-best overall prospect in the Mid-Atlantic region by Super Prep during his senior year, but missed most of season after he suffered a left leg fracture in the season opener...Rushed for 144 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries in that game before being sidelined...Added All-East Region accolades from Prep Star as the team captain during his junior year...In four seasons with the football team, he gained 499 yards on 60 carries 8.32 avg) and posted 12 touchdowns...Lettered on the wrestling team as a junior, competing in the 215-pound weight class...Also lettered four times as a midfielder for the school's lacrosse team.


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Analysis

Positives: Very solid build in the upper and lower bodies with long arms. Lines up with his hand down on the line, as well as in motion and in the backfield. Quick to get to the edge when in motion. Takes outs the linebackers and safeties in the hole with a nice pop. Sustains his blocks through the whistle by locking on and moving his feet. Good hands, and can adjust to low throws or those behind him. Runs through cut blocks in the open field. Quick set in pass protection; able to handle oncoming blitzers. Sorts through trash to neutralize the middle linebacker, and has the strength to put him to the ground.


Negatives: Not the wide-chested thumper some teams prefer. A bit slow getting into his routes as a receiver. Gives good effort blocking on the line, but gets ripped off too often. Will be more effective in an H-back or true fullback position because of his lack of height. Whiffs too much as a cut blocker. Lacks flexibility and lateral quickness, which allows defenders to run around or get off his blocks in space.


Compares To: LAWRENCE VICKERS, Cleveland -- Fullback is becoming an endangered species in the NFL, and while some teams might look to convert Fiammetta to an H-Back, his route running just isn't up to snuff to handle those duties. He is better served on dump-offs as a receiver and has proven that he is incapable of carrying the ball. He is an efficient lead blocker thanks to quick feet and impressive strength, but must be conscious of playing at a low pad level to prevent defenders from neutralizing him and using him to clog the rush lane.


Injury Report

2003: Missed all but the season opener of his high school senior year due to a left leg fracture.


2007: Sat out the Buffalo game (10/20) due to a concussion.


2008: Did not play vs. South Florida (10/18) due to a left leg contusion.


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