Shows decent speed and quickness and is a decent route-runner. Does a nice job finding soft spots in the zone. Gets a decent release whether he's working in the slot or on the line. Has solid hands and does a good job adjusting to the throw. Tracks the ball well in the air and has good body control, willing to lay out for the pass and coming up with the catch. Shows enough running skills that he is an effective receiver after the catch. Best as a blocker working as an H-back. Able to seal the edge and get the kick out block in space. Does a nice job pulling across the line and working as a lead blocker for the back.
Lacks the size and strength as an inline blocker. Needs to improve his hand use and struggles to get good position. Will whiff on some blocks on the second level. Needs to give more consistent effort as a blocker.Is not a smooth athlete and lacks great speed and burst.
Kendricks continues to the steady trend of solid NFL tight ends hailing from Wisconsin. He worked predominantly at H-back last year in tandem with Garrett Graham. Will have to see if he moves more to an inline position with Graham gone. He was a superior receiver to Graham. He fits best as an H-back in the pros where he can be a factor in the passing game. While he contributes to Badgers ground game, at this point it doesn't project well to the pros as an inline blocker. But as a receiver, he is a very reliable target and can be a productive starter for a team much like Owen Daniels is in Houston.
WHAT I WANT TO SEE IN 2010:
I'll be interested to see if he inherit's Graham's role as the team's inline blocker. Wisconsin runs two-tight end sets almost every down, so it's not like he'll get more playing time if he does move, but it would allow me to see if he can improve as an inline blocker. I'd also like to see him a bit bigger and stronger. Unless he plays in an NFL offense that will use a lot of twin sets and uses a pure H-back, he's going to probably need to be around 250 pounds on the next level, so you'd like to see him get his weight up into the 240s this season. But the main thing is I want to see how much he blossoms as a receiver. He had 29 catches last year, and in recent years guys like Garrett Graham and Travis Beckum have been able to snag 50-75 catches in a season. I'd like to see that sort of production out of him since I know he's capable of it.
I don't see Kendricks being a first round pick simply because I don't expect him to pull a 4.5 40 out of his butt like Dustin Keller, nor do I think he has the size and potential as an inline blocker that Brandon Pettigrew and Jermaine Gresham have. So at best, Kendricks is probably going to have to wait until the second round. But unless he can run a fast 40, bulks up and improves his inline blocking skills, and produces at a high level this season, he's probably more likely to get picked in the third in 2011. Good tight ends have slipped into the middle rounds in each of the past two years, although it doesn't appear that the 2011 class will be as deep as the past two classes, so that could help him.
2008- 8 games, 0 starts; 6 catches, 141 yards (23.5 avg), 0 TDs
2009- 13 games, 9 starts; 29 catches, 356 yards (12.3 avg), 3 TDs
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.