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Ask 5: What's best NFL comp for Alabama TE O.J. Howard?


MOBILE, Ala. -- Entering the Reese's Senior Bowl this week, I had Alabama TE O.J. Howard rated as my No. 18 player in the 2017 NFL Draft. After one day of practice, I have a feeling I might be a little low on him. He was outstanding. He made one-handed grabs, ran away from defenders and also did a respectable job in the run game.

Watch the Reese's Senior Bowl live on NFL Network at 2:30 p.m. ET on Saturday.

While I'm down here in Mobile for the game, I reached out to five NFL executives and asked them for a comparison for Howard. Here are their answers:

Date: Saturday, Jan. 28
Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network

2017 Reese's Senior Bowl coverage:


Executive 1: Shannon Sharpe
"He's a taller version of Shannon Sharpe. You can't cover him, he has reliable hands and he's an adequate blocker."

Executive 2: Jimmy Graham
"He's a similar athlete and body type to Jimmy Graham. I think Howard is a better blocker."

Executive 3: Tyler Eifert
"Best one I could come up with is Tyler Eifert. They have similar games."

Executive 4: Eric Ebron
"Tough one. I would say he is a better version of Eric Ebron because he's further ahead as a run blocker while having better hands and vertical speed."

Executive 5: Jimmy Graham
"I've been struggling with trying to find a comparison all year. Jimmy Graham is the closest I can think of."

Summary: That's two votes for Graham and one apiece for Sharpe, Eifert and Ebron.

Conclusion: This is pretty good company for Howard. Personally, I've compared him to Panthers TE Greg Olsen. Both guys have the speed to stretch the field and are more than capable in the run game. Howard could end up being a top-10 pick at the end of the draft process.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter @MoveTheSticks.



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