The third day of the NFL Draft is where teams hope to come away with under-the-radar prospects who'll eventually overperform as a pro, and Washington started that mission on Saturday by choosing Boise State tight end John Bates.
Bates, who goes down as a fourth-round selection at pick No. 124, didn't have a ton of production in school; in 46 games, he hauled in 47 passes and only two touchdowns.
His best season came in 2019, when he caught 22 balls for 273 yards and a score for Boise State.
Bates, however, has a track and field background — he was a hurdling and javelin state champion in high school — and ESPN's Todd McShay said after the choice that he believes Bates has ball skills that are as good as anyone at the position other than Kyle Pitts in this year's class. (This is a big deal endorsement!)
So, that would indicate that the best may be yet to come for Bates, and Washington tight ends coach Pete Hoener has the experience and wisdom to pull all the potential out of him.
With the Burgundy and Gold, Bates joins Logan Thomas, Marcus Baugh and Sammis Reyes. Should Bates pan out, he'll add some much-needed depth to the tight ends room.
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