Here’s the big question for the offense going into the 2019 season: Can Shaun Beyer (and his partner in crime, Nate Wieting) produce up to or around 85% of what Noah Fant and TJ Hockenson did last season?
If the answer is yes, then Shaun Beyer will soon go from the (lower case) goat of the Wisconsin game to one of the most important cogs in this years offense. IF these two guys - who have barely seen the field - can go and produce at a similar level as not one but two NFL first round draft picks, well, quite simply, Iowa is going to Indy.
Book your tickets now.
Shaun Beyer – RS Junior
Shellsburg, IA (Cedar Rapids Kennedy)
6’5”, 244 lbs
2019 Projection: Second Tight End (12 personnel extraordinaire)
You know what’s absolutely wild to me? Shaun Beyer came into Iowa as a wideout. I repeat, Shaun Beyer was recruited and brought onto the team as a wideout. I know, I know, Iowa knew he would eventually make the switch to tight end once he leveled up inside of “Chris Doyle’s Temple of Doom”, but it’s still crazy to me that there was a time “The Big Red Machine” thought he was going to be the next Nick Easley or Trey Stross.
But don’t undersell that either. Shaun Beyer being a stronger, more physically active/gifted player with a background as a wide receiver could turn him into a force out on the football field.
Actually, let me rephrase that. Shaun Beyer being a stronger, more physically active/gifted player with a background as a wide receiver will allow him to be one of the biggest forces of nature out on the football field this season.
To me, it’s like when a kid that played point guard his entire life hits a growth spurt after his freshman season of basketball. Sure, he may now look like a forward, but he’s got all the previous skills, touch and brains of a guard.
That’s what Beyer should be to Nate Stanley, Brian Ferentz and this entire offense: their point guard turned power forward. The footwork and head of a wide receiver and the body of tight end usually makes out for one lethal weapon in the Ferentz system.
I realize this might seem like a classic pre-season over hype (which I’m wont to do from time to time). Yes, I do realize he has zero catches as a tight end at this point in his career. But the narrative is growing around him. Everything that’s come out of camp suggests that he’s got the wheels (former track and field star), the hands and the understanding to make an NFL type leap this season.
It’s true. It’s damn true.
Look. I don’t have any direct evidence. But, what I do have is a history of former bean stalks that come in as wide receiver hopefuls who put on some weight, pay their dues, and then catch 45-passes for 600-yards and a handful of touchdowns. It’s happened year after year after year since I’ve been in school (and that’s 12-years at this point).
Can I prove it will happen. Not yet. But I look at all things like this: you’re here reading a piece on a Saturday or Sunday (most likely). That either means you really care about Iowa Athletics or love to troll. But I’ll assume you’re a big fan. As a “big fan,” do you really want to doubt a kid that played wide receiver, tight end, punter, safety and linebacker in high school? Do you really want to say “NAY” to a dude that had 43-receptions for 858 yards and 11-touchdowns as a senior? Do you want to dismiss a guy that could’ve easily gone to college as a high jumper? Do you really want to be the person around the water cooler on Monday that denies the pure athleticism of a seasoned redshirt junior who has worked his way up AT THE TIGHT END POSITION AT THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA... ALSO KNOWN AS TIGHT END U?
I didn’t think so.
The Big Red Machine is ready to be your next favorite pass catcher. Take it to the bank.