The views and opinions expressed in this article do not reflect the opinion of the team.
With Super Bowl LV capping off the 2020 season, it is time to look ahead to the 2021 campaign.
Over the next two weeks, Washingtonfootball.com will break down every position group and lay out who the team could potentially add via free agency and the draft. These are the positions that have been covered so far:
Next up are the tight ends:
The Washington Football Team's top offensive plays from the 2020 season.
On The Roster
Give tight ends coach Pete Hoener credit: he was the main advocate for Logan Thomas, a 29-year-old quarterback-turned-tight end who never caught more than 16 passes in any of his first seven NFL seasons. That led to Washington signing Thomas during free agency, and in his first season as a No. 1 tight end, he delivered one of the most productive seasons at his position in franchise history.
"When you looked at him and the small body of work he had coming into the season, you saw it all there," offensive coordinator Scott Turner said of Thomas in December. "You saw the size, you saw the speed, you saw the physicality. The more he's played, the better he's gotten. I thought he was capable of doing this, maybe not to this extent. But it's good. ...He's definitely growing and expanding his role."
Thomas concluded his breakout campaign with 72 receptions for 670 yards and six touchdowns, all of which were top 10 among NFL tight ends. He was a security blanket for whoever played quarterback, a willing blocker and a valued veteran presence on a young team. And having completed just his fourth full season at the position, he knows there's plenty of room for growth.
"There are definitely a couple things that I really want to work on this offseason," Thomas said. "There are one or two things in the pass game that I think will help me and help the team in the long run. And then in the run game, I think there's always room for improvement there, and a lot of it comes from understanding."
Aside from Thomas, the future of the position seems uncertain. Jeremy Sprinkle, who played in all 16 games last season but made just one catch, is set to become a free agent, while Temarrick Hemingway and Marcus Baugh combined for two receptions for 12 yards.
Undrafted rookie Thaddeus Moss, the son of Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss. was placed on Injured Reserve before the season. Washington also signed Dylan Cantrell to a reserve/future contract.
The most-expensive tight ends set to become free agents are Rob Gronkowski and Hunter Henry. Gronkowski, who came out of retirement to join Tom Brady in Tampa Bay, amassed 623 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. Henry, who played on a franchise tag in 2020 with the Los Angeles Chargers, caught a career-high 60 passes for 613 yards and four touchdowns.
Other quality options include Green Bay Packers' Robert Tonyan (586 yards, 11 touchdowns), Tennessee Titans' Jonnu Smith (448, eight) and New Orleans Saints' Jared Cook (504, seven).
Check out a list of all the impending free agent tight ends, HERE.
Florida standout Kyle Pitts will likely be gone when Washington picks 19th in the 2021 NFL Draft, but if the team chooses to add a tight end on Day 2, it could select Pat Freiermuth (Penn State), Brevin Jordan (Miami (Fla.)), Tommy Tremble (Notre Dame) or Hunter Long (Boston College).
Later-round prospects include Tre' McKitty (Georgia), Cary Angeline (NC State), Kenny Yeboah (Ole Miss), Nick Eubanks (Michigan) and Tony Poljan (Virginia).
Check out a list of all the tight end prospects, HERE.