|USC tight end Randall Telfer will return for his senior season after being limited to six receptions because of injuries.|
USC tight end Randall Telfer announced Wednesday he would return for his senior season, giving new head coach Steve Sarkisian some much needed depth at the position.
One more year! I'll see you guys next fall! Merry Christmas Trojan Family! #fightonâ Randall Telfer (@RandallTelfer) December 25, 2013
Telfer had just six receptions for 78 yards and one touchdown in 11 games during a season limited by a series of injuries. But the 6-foot-4, 250-pound redshirt junior from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., caught nine touchdowns in the previous two seasons, proving to be a fine option in the red zone.
With Telfer, redshirt junior Xavier Grimble, and sophomore Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick all dealing with injuries, the Trojans essentially were forced to abandon the tight end position during the second half of the season, instead turning to walk-ons and converted defensive players for depth and special teams contributions.
Sarkisian's offense at Washington featured the tight end extensively, with Austin Seferian-Jenkins winning the John Mackey Award as the top tight end in the nation.
Having previously used Seferian-Jenkins in the slot and out wide, Sarkisian could feature the more athletic and nimble Telfer in that role, with Grimble as the in-line blocker and running pass patterns down the seam. However they are deployed, both Telfer and Grimble could see their draft stock rise markedly in their final season at USC.
Follow Dan Greenspan on Twitter @DanGreenspan.