LA Chargers hidden gem number two: Jared Rice, tight end
We’ve written at length about the LA Chargers’ need for an upgrade of depth at the tight end position. Everyone is talking about the former XFL standout Donald Parham being that guy, but I’m pumping the breaks on that one.
Jared Rice, formerly out of Fresno State is honestly more intriguing to me. At the very least, I think he’s got the potential to be more well rounded. People are pegging Parham as the next Ladarius Green but people forget the Green was a lousy blocker and we didn’t see a whole lot of success in that regard for Parham in the XFL.
Now, I’m not saying Rice is going to be an elite blocker but he showed he is at least a willing blocker. Rice isn’t the athlete Parham is, he doesn’t have the size either. But he was listed at six foot five and 243 pounds at Fresno State this past season, so he’s no slouch.
What he does he appear to have is more skill and savviness. I love the way Rice uses technique to get open, which probably comes from his days as a wideout in high school.
Fresno State had a down year in general last season, but they were a great Mountain West team in 2018 and Rice was one of their best players. That year he was fourth among all FBS tight ends in catches and sixth in receiving yards. He totaled 55 catches for 664 yards and three touchdowns for the Bulldogs.
I’m not saying he’s a shoo-in to make the roster, but his ability as a technician is intriguing to me.