6-5/249 South Carolina
Pros: Has good hands, showing ability to adjust well to the ball in the air with nice body control. Secures the ball well after the catch and runs hard, ﬁghting off tackles and for extra yards. Has the speed and quickness to stretch teams vertically. Does a nice job blocking in space and can seal on the edge against defensive backs.
Cons: Might have issues with his release, as he is susceptible to the chip and jam at the line. Has a tall, lean frame and needs to get bigger and stronger, particularly in the lower body. Doesn't give you much as an inline blocker. He'll short-arm some balls in trafﬁc. Can pout at times when he's not getting the ball.
Overview: He ﬁts very well right now as an H-back, but needs work to become an inline blocker. The pouting I can understand, because I'm sure I would have been pissed if I was playing for SC last year. Started out as a 220-pound receiver and moved to tight end by the end of his freshman year. They were just a mess at QB. From Suwanee, GA. Older brother Jason is a fullback prospect in this year's draft out of Ole Miss.
NFL Forecast: His blocking is suspect, but I think he'll be able to improve enough there that no one is going to care too much. I'd compare him with Todd Heap, who was a similar player coming out of school. He can be a big factor in the passing game. His susceptibility to be jammed at the line by ends does concern me a little bit, but I don't imagine that being a major obstacle. I wouldn't say he could be the go-to threat on an offense in the way that Tony Gonzalez is, but I think he has the potential to be only a step down from that. He can be a 60-catch tight end, but as long as their is a 60-catch receiver as well. Not sure I trust him to be my primary chain mover. But he'd work very well on a team that has a capable receiver, and he's just the second option. That he can do very well and can provide big plays. I don't think he'll be an elite tight end, but could be a nice second or third tier player capable of making many Pro Bowls in his career.
ATL Forecast: Cook is deﬁnitely an upgrade in the passing game. He would ﬁt nicely taking over Peelle's role as the H-back, as long as their is a second tight end to team with him as a blocker. He should improve as a blocker, but I don't think he'll ever be a great blocker, just good enough to merit being a starter as an inline tight end. But he has time to develop there, and in the meantime can be a productive 20-30 catch guy working off the bench. Cook probably has a bit longer of a length to impact than the other top tight ends, but I expect by his third season could be an excellent second option in the passing game.
Value: Cook is a solid second round pick, that should go late on Day 1.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
BODY CONTROL: 3.5
Scouting Reports of tight ends in the 2009 NFL Draft.
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