No. 204: TE Virgil Green, Nevada

Virgil Green

GREEN: ... will college, Combine numbers translate to pros?

Height: 6-03.3
Weight: 245 pounds
School: Nevada
40 Time: 4.52 seconds
Bench Press Reps: 24

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – Too much is often made of workout numbers. But a Combine-record vertical jump of 42.5 inches and a 4.52-second 40-yard dash for a 245-pounder is too notable to ignore. When those were combined with actual game numbers and production — 515 yards and five touchdowns on 35 receptions as a senior — Virgil Green became too tempting to resist, especially after he unexpectedly dropped into the seventh round.

Green arrived at Nevada as a wide receiver but converted to tight end, adding 30 pounds to his frame over his years there. He eventually learned to embrace the position, but was unsure at first.

“In the pistol offense we run the ball 50, 60 times a game,” Green said at the Combine. “Going into it, I was like ‘Man, I don’t know about this run blocking thing,’ but after you get accustomed to how the practices worked, as hard-nosed, tough, grinding, you start to enjoy blocking and manhandling people.

“It’s something I’ve grown to love.”

Green said that Broncos tight ends coach Clancy Barone worked him out personally. Barone made a similar trip west to work out fourth-round pick Julius Thomas.

Both Green and Thomas fit into the mold of tight ends John Fox targeted when he was coaching the Carolina Panthers: raw and athletic. Their three primary tight ends since 2008 were selected in consecutive fifth rounds from 2006-08: Jeff King, Dante Rosario and Gary Barnidge. King, like Thomas, played basketball in college, although football was his primary sport.

Fox and the Broncos will expect their tight ends to move around. In Carolina, the tight ends lined up in the backfield, in a traditional tight end position outside the tackle and in the slot. Green’s speed means that he’s likely to spend more time lining up outside than Thomas, but the frequency of his snaps will be determined by how he grows as a blocker.

Good thing he loves it.

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About Andrew Mason

Andrew Mason has covered the NFL since 1999, when he worked as an editor on NFL.com when the site was managed by ESPN.com. He worked six seasons (2002-07) covering the Broncos on their official website and two (2008-09) on the Panthers' site. He began MaxDenver.com in 2010 and now contributes to CBSSports.com, The Sporting News and The New York Times.

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