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NFL Draft

2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: TE Luke Farrell

  • The Draft Network
  • January 29, 2021
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PROSPECT SUMMARY – LUKE FARRELL

Ohio State tight end Luke Farrell is a low-ceiling pass-catching threat, but he’s been steadily groomed throughout the course of his career at Ohio State to be braced for an NFL role as a secondary option in an NFL tight end room. Farrell has flashed reliable hands as a pass-catcher, but his ability to command targets is marginal and his ability to separate from the opposition is even less impressive. Farrell will make an active roster for his blocking skills, so his limited ceiling as a pass-catcher won’t temper down his role. He’s tough and physical and the Buckeyes offense allowed him to thrive against defensive ends and linebackers to help set the edge for one of the most consistent rushing offenses in all of college football. Farrell may make the most of targets in short-yardage and in the red zone when he’s a “forgotten” target. 

Ideal Role: Traditional “Y” TE to play with his hand in the dirt.

Scheme Fit: Multi-TE sets with heavy focus on inside zone rushing concepts.

FILM EVALUATION

Written by: Kyle Crabbs

Games watched: Michigan (2019), Wisconsin (2019), Clemson (2019), Penn State (2020), Clemson (2020)

Best Game Studied: Wisconsin (2019)

Worst Game Studied: Clemson (2019)

Hands: Farrell shows reliable hands on passes within his catch radius—he will extend and greet the football as needed to expedite the catch process. Strength in the hands to squeeze the ball at the catch point will allow him to sustain catches when contacted as the ball arrives. 

Route Running: Farrell was used in a secondary role in the passing game at Ohio State, but he was the primary blocker amid the tight end group behind Jeremy Ruckert. He’s rigid at the top of routes and will find most of his success sitting into soft spaces or leaking out of the set to detach defenders’ eyes off him early in the rep. 

Versatility: Farrell is exclusively a hand-in-the-dirt blocker whose lack of athleticism and receiving prowess will handcuff his ceiling as a modern-day tight end. That said, two-TE sets and short-yardage packages will find usage for him. 

Competitive Toughness: Functional strength is effective to handle linebackers trying to fill or step down off the edge. Farrell is sufficient in blocking down on inside shade defensive ends and shows good effort with finding and sustaining his fits in the run game. He can be found down the field attempting to pick up extra work. 

Ball Skills: Farrell doesn’t really stand out for better or for worse here. His targets are most often uncovered in the middle of the field or in the flats against soft zones. He’ll need to continue to become more effective here to win versus man coverage in the NFL. 

Football IQ: He’s a well-seasoned player who shows good fundamentals with his blocking fits. His framing in the box will allow him to win positioning at first contact and he shows a good feel for flow and scraping defenders. As a pass-catcher, his limitations are rooted in athletic ability, not in poor awareness or lack of refinement. 

RAC Ability: Farrell did show physical toughness to run through lazy tackle challenges and if he’s given a little room to build momentum with the football in his hands, he can rumble over smaller tacklers. He’s got major build-up speed however and lacks wiggle and imagination as a ball carrier. 

Pass Protection: Farrell has the frame and blocking experience to serve a viable role here. His ability to anchor against free runners is helpful for maintaining the pocket. 

Big-Play Ability: Farrell should not be given priority targets in the passing game. His role is heavily skewed toward running downs and serving as a tendency breaker. 

Prospect Comparison: Jake Stoneburner (2013 NFL Draft, UDFA)

SCOUT GRADES

TDN Consensus: To Be Determined

Kyle Crabbs: 65/100

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