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2011 NFL Draft: So You're Thinking About Drafting Allen Reisner

Congratulations! You're considering making the wonderful decision to draft Allen Reisner! Like any responsible prospective selector, you're no doubt filled with questions about your potential draft pick. We here at Black Heart Gold Pants will try our best to answer any questions you might have.

Is this Allen Reisner guy any good?
"Surprisingly good" would be the words to describe Reisner. One of the last players to receive a scholarship in the 2007 recruiting class (and nearly snagged by Northern Iowa), Reisner toiled for three years in the shadow of current NFL tight ends Tony Moeaki and Brandon Myers before getting his chance to shine in 2010. But if Iowa fans expected a drop off from the Moeaki/Myers years, they were in for a pleasant surprise:

  • 2008 Brandon Myers: 10 games, 34 catches, 441 yards, 13.0 yards/catch, 4 TD
  • 2009 Tony Moeaki: 8 games, 30 catches, 387 yards, 12.9 yards/catch, 4 TD
  • 2010 Allen Resiner: 13 games, 42 catches, 460 yards, 11.3 yards/catch, 2 TD

This may just reflect the role the tight end plays in Iowa's offense: a secondary option, frequently looked for off of play-action. But Reisner made those plays work. His specialty was catching a pass for 10 yards and stretching it to 15 with subtle footwork and surprising elusiveness.

Any film on this guy?
Not too much, although he did happen to contribute this memorable play at the end of the Insight Bowl:

Is he athletic?

Compared to you or me? Yeah, he makes us look like slobs. Oh, you mean by NFL standards? Not really. His 40 time is not good (4.97 seconds), he came in last among the twelve tight ends at the combine in the 3-cone drill, the 20 yard shuttle drill, vertical leap and bench press, and his size is just decent for an NFL tight end (6'2 1/2", 248 lbs.). In college he compensated for his lack of speed with decisiveness after the catch, good vision, and slight shiftiness. None of that will help him if he can't get open on an NFL linebacker.

Is he as good as Tony Moeaki/Dallas Clark?

As mentioned above, his production was solid for the tight end role in Iowa's offense, but that said, he's not at the athletic level of Moeaki or Dallas Clark, or even Brandon Myers (Myers had .12 seconds on him in the 40 and 3 inches on him in vertical leap). His hands are so-so -- he made some tough catches and missed some easy ones, including in the Insight Bowl -- and his blocking was not out of this world. Plus he had the advantage of playing with the best 1-2 wide receiver combination in, well, ever at Iowa, and wasn't really first concern of opposing defenses.

So will Allen Reisner be awesome?
He has some serious obstacles to overcome to get near "awesome." Reisner's receiving and route skills are good, but he's not fast enough to be a pure receiving tight end. And while he has okay size, he's not exceptionally strong and has not gotten rave reviews for his blocking. This leaves him as kind of betwixt and between the two tight ends prototypes. That could be a positive, too, though, as most draft reports mention that he has the potential to play H-back or even fullback in the NFL.

Isn't he a famous beat poet?
No, you're thinking of Allen Ginsberg.

Well, then the former head of Disney?
That's Michael Eisner.

The star of that execrable, recently-canceled sitcom?
Paul Reiser.

So where is he going to go?
Most of the projections have him as a late round pick at best, with a greater likelihood of signing as a free agent. Look for him to find a spot as a special teams player or a reserve tight end or H-back somewhere in the league next year.

Anything else we should know?
Reisner's come a long way from fairly humble beginnings, which speaks to a strong work ethic, and whatever you want to say about his speed/strength/size, the guy produced for Iowa on the field.  Also, his experience in the pro-style, zone blocking system of a school that is, if not Tight End U, at least Tight End Polytechnic, should prepare him well for the NFL.