2022 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Cade Otton, TE, Washington
Coming out of Washington, Cade Otton is another good tight end with the ability to pose a real threat in the passing game. Though willing to make an impact in the running game, he requires help from offensive linemen to do so. He is on the way to becoming a solid two-way tight end and would be a great fit for a spread-style offense.
Combine/Pro Day Results
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Otton was a three-star tight end coming out of high school and was redshirted in his first year in Washington. During his second year, he started 10 games before taking over the starting role in his third year. In the 2020 season, he led the team in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. This earned him 1st Team All-Pac 12 honors. In his final season in Washington, Otton fell short of expectations due to COVID, injuries, and a lackluster offense.
He has demonstrated that he can run routes naturally, posing problems to defenses on short, medium and long passing plays. With his acceleration, he can quickly break out of routes to create separation and has shown good hands while running at top speed. He has the ability to make tough catches, quickly securing the ball out of the air. As a ball carrier, he has the elusiveness to make defenders miss, leading to big, explosive plays. In the run game, he displays good toughness with his strike and a willingness to put his body on the line.
He needs to improve his strength if he is going to handle the bigger and faster competition of the NFL. In college, he could be overpowered, his blocking ending in stalemate too often. He will likely struggle to handle edge rushers if he does not get help from other players. In the passing game, he tended to be affected when the defender pressed him at the line of scrimmage. He also struggled when defenders initiated contact while running his route and in contested jump-ball situations. Otton doesn't have an obvious draw. Rather than excelling in one area, he is good in every aspect. Instead of appreciating his obvious talents in all situations, he is sometimes being overlooked by flashier prospects.
Trait Based Projection
Otton is a good prospect with above-average speed and average strength. He would likely benefit from a spread-style offense in the NFL. His receiving skills must be respected by defenses, though his above-average blocking skills require further development. He is on the verge of being a solid two-way tight end but will need some work before he can be a consistent and solid inline tight end. At present, Otton will most likely thrive as being a receiving tight end, occasionally used in pass protection and in the run game. In heavier offensive packages, he will probably be subbed out for better blocking tight ends.