Hello and welcome to the inaugural edition of the 2023 NFL Draft Focus. In this series, we will look at the incoming prospects hoping their names will be heard on draft night. Be sure to check often as we will produce content until the event’s start.
Michael Mayer is a 6’4″ tight end prospect out of the state of Kentucky. In his senior season, he caught 49 passes for 970 yards and 15 TDs. Rivals ranked him the 36th overall prospect in his class and the 3rd best TE overall. He was named the Gatorade Kentucky Football Player of the Year.
As a freshman, Mayer started four games and played 12 games. He caught 42 passes for 450 yards for two TDs. The Notre Dame TE got his break as a sophomore when he started all 12 games and caught 71 passes for 840 yards and seven TDs. This led him to a Third-Team All-American.
2022-2023 COLLEGE CAREER
Michael Mayer had a lot of expectations after his breakout sophomore campaign. In 12 games, he had three games where he caught over 100+ passing yards. He had 11 catches, 118 yards, and two TDs in the Week 5 matchup against BYU. This was his best game for the season. His ability to receive and block made him a popular discussion late in the first round. He was awarded a Consensus All-American to close the year.
Michael is a talented TE prospect who can catch and block. He has a very high floor, especially with how TEs are used in today’s NFL. His smoothness and quickness will give defenders nightmares on how to defend him. His impressive pass-catching ability make him a day 1 starter in the NFL.
For a player this talented, it was very difficult to find a weakness in his game. One weakness that experts mostly talked about was his lack of athleticism. Other TEs will be able to do more athletically than him and that could be valued by other coaches and teams.
PLAYER COMPARISON: Jason Witten
TEAMS WHO COULD DRAFT HIM
Multiple mock drafts have Mayer in the middle to late 1st round. A TE as talented as him in the pass-catching and run-game is a weapon in today’s NFL. Personally, I like the fit with Green Bay at 15 as he can form a dangerous combo with Christian Watson. It gives Aaron Rodgers or Jordan Love another weapon to use. He could be a sleeper pick for teams ahead of Green Bay if he can show to be on the same level as the WRs available.