Dallas Cowboys Draft: TE Tucker Kraft Profile (the lottery ticket)

Fcs Quarterfinal 001
Fcs Quarterfinal 001 /

The Dallas Cowboys will very likely be in the market for a tight end come-what draft day. Dalton Schultz is expected to leave in free agency, leaving a giant hole in the depth chart.

While second-year man Jake Ferguson seems up to the task of TE1, the Dallas Cowboys use a lot of multiple tight end sets, meaning a contributor is still needed, even if Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot continue to progress.

Tucker Kraft is one of the biggest wild cards in the 2023 NFL Draft class and could be a key weapon for the Dallas Cowboys.

At 6-foot-5, 255-pounds, Tucker Kraft looks the part at tight end. The South Dakota State prospect looks to be the next Dallas Goedert (also a SDS product). An ankle injury kept Kraft to just 29 receptions in 2022, but his ’21 campaign he posted 65 receptions for 780 yards and six touchdowns.

Kraft is athletic and big, perfectly able to compete at the highest level in football. He’s from a small school but is highly regarded in the class. He’s a strong blocker who overpowers opponents and shows a willingness to get dirty.

Kraft has good hands and can be a beast to tackle. Good runner who knows how to avoid and break tackles. According to TDN, he’s not a great route runner and needs to get the ball on short and quick routes. How would this work in Dallas?

The Dallas Cowboys are moving in a West Coast Offense direction. They need strong players who can catch the ball off quick passes. Sounds like Kraft would be a good match.

Currently, CeeDee Lamb is the top contested catch man in Dallas. Michael Gallup mailed in some situations last season and didn’t show the same competitiveness he has in the past. Perhaps another year removed from surgery will fix that or perhaps the Cowboys just use him differently and find a new player to hand the short passes. A player like Tucker Kraft.

Kraft can play in the slot or in-line. He can do it all but probably needs coaching/seasoning to be a reliable weapon deeper downfield. At the end of the day, Kraft could be a top TE from this class. He has a bit of risk, but his upside is significant.

Projected Draft Spot: Both Dane Brugler and TDN have Kraft at 49 on their boards so he’s a possible option if he slides to the Dallas Cowboys in the second.

The Dallas Cowboys could afford to gamble and/or swing big at TE because they have Ferguson and Hendershot on staff.