Iowa Hawkeyes have the most yards returning in 2022 by a Power 5 tight end

The Iowa Hawkeyes. The University of Iowa. Tight End University.

All of those are really just synonyms for each other that get us to the same end point. The Iowa Hawkeyes football team. They are “TEU” and show no signs of that ship slowing down.

Sam LaPorta has already been tabbed as ESPN’s No. 2 tight end prospect for the 2023 NFL draft by Mel Kiper and was named to Pro Football Focus’ 2023 NFL draft watchlist throughout the 2022 college football season.

LaPorta likely could have been a late Day 2 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft if he declared after a big junior campaign with 53 receptions for 670 yards. He returned to up his stock even more, as the athletic 6-foot-4, 249-pounder has an all-around projectable NFL game. – Michael Renner, Pro Football Focus.

This time, LaPorta is recognized as the top tight end in the entire country with the most yards over the last two seasons that is returning.

LaPorta was Iowa’s leading receiver in 2021 with 53 receptions, 670 yards, and three touchdowns. Iowa’s tight end averaged 12.6 yards per catch and it was evident by how often he was targeted that he was a first down machine.

Iowa will undoubtedly look to build their passing game with Sam LaPorta as a key component of it, if not the main piece. With the added experience of playing with Spencer Petras and another year in Iowa’s program, LaPorta has all of the ingredients to take his status to the next level this season and join the Hawkeyes’ lineage of tight end greats.


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Story originally appeared on Hawkeyes Wire