There isn’t a ton of certainty at the Ravens tight end position. I’ve got a funny feeling, that Nick Boyle will change that.
Nick Boyle has some advantages in the tight end competition. He is one of the Ravens youngest options. On the other side of the age coin, Ben Watson is 36. Boyle also has a less checkered injury history than Crockett Gillmore and Maxx Williams.
The biggest thing he has going for him though, is that he is the most similar to Dennis Pitta. Pitta caught over 80 passes last year, as Joe Flacco’s most trusted target. It wasn’t flashy production; Pitta just gave the Ravens reliable hands over the middle of the field.
When you look at Nick Boyle, there really isn’t a ton of flash. He’s just a guy with a thick 6’4″ fame who can go get the football. Watson and Gillmore are faster options in the passing game. Boyle isn’t flashy, but he fits the mold for the purple and black.
There has been talk of using Boyle to be an H-back/fullback to help replace Kyle Juszczyk. Baltimore has other options, including Lorenzo Taliaferro. Boyle staying at tight end has its advantages. He is the Ravens best blocking tight end. Boyle is ultimately the classic tight end.
It won’t be hard for Boyle to eclipse career numbers. He’s been with the Ravens for two seasons prior to this and he only has 24 receptions recorded. It makes you wonder what he could have done without the 10 game suspension last season.
As is the case for Gillmore and Williams, Boyle’s potential is completely theoretical. The sample size is pretty small, but the potential jumps out at you. Boyle can be a better blocking version of Pitta. That upside is his big advantage. It should make it easier for Flacco to develop a connection with him.
The Bottom Line:
Boyle could have a breakout year. When you look at the Ravens tight end situation, Boyle has things going for him. He’s young, healthy, a good blocker and similar to Pitta. If I’m betting on one player in the tight end group, it’s Boyle.