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Prospect Profiles: James Hanna


TRIANGLE NUMBERS: 6-4, 252, 4.49



Possesses average size for the postion, but can coil up into his stance, keep his pad level down and fire off the football. Exhibits solid first step quickness down the seam and good speed. Tends to gear down when asked to get out of his breaks, but can be a sharper route runner in time. Possesses good range when asked to go get the football, but at times will struggle to pluck off his frame. Looks natural running down the seam and making plays on the throw.

Is a coordinated run/pass blocker. Understands angles, extends his arms well and showcases the ability to bend and keep his pad level under him. Slides his feet well through the play and routinely can seal defensive ends from the football and stay engaged.

Impression: Has some talent, isn’t dynamic in any area of the game, but has a shot to fight for a reserve job in the NFL.


Hanna is a thick tight end who is much more of a crafty receiving threat than he is a blocker, and has been consistent throughout his two years as a starter at Oklahoma. He is a good catcher and can adjust well to poorly thrown balls, even with a man draped over him. Hanna is a straight-line runner who isn’t very good at maneuvering in his routes, but his speed is deceptive and he just possesses the “it” factor when it comes to making a catch at the top of his routes. He is a limited prospect who could be taken in the late rounds of the draft, but will come in, compete and potentially make a team based off his willingness to play special teams and ability as a pass-catching tight end. He only had two catches for 18 yards against Iowa in the Insight Bowl, which wasn’t far off his average and about what type of player he is: Reliable to make a few tough catches, but not going to have any sort of “Rob Gronkowski-type production” from the position anytime soon.

FF Toolbox:

Hanna is an adequately sized tight end prospect that measured well at the combine and has some upside as a late round choice in the 2012 NFL Draft.

In spite of running a very fast 4.49 40-yard dash and having a successful combine, Hanna doesn’t play up to his speed. He doesn’t block very well and can really only seal the edge. Wouldn’t be able to block consistently against NFL talent one-on-one.

He must learn to become a better route runner. Being more crisp and not “rounding the corners” will create more separation and improve his short-area agility. His speed will be useful if he can show a willingness to play special teams. As it stands, he lacks the bulk to be an effective in-line blocker. Hanna’s ability to make difficult catches is his best attribute. He has good body control and can catch the ball away from his body.

Hanna could play a strong role in the red zone. He does well to go up and catch the ball at its highest point. Seven of his 18 receptions in 2011 went for a touchdown.



GiantsGab Thoughts:

James Hanna is an undersized tight end prospect. Blew up the combine. Ran in the high 4.4s. A little small to be a traditional tight end and looks to be more of a H-Back at the next level. Doesn’t play to timed speed. Not really a good blocker. Not a physical guy, and is not good in traffic. He’s a straight line guy who will have to be matched up against slower linebackers to be effective, and against man coverage. Could be a special teams star if he is willing to play more physical. A 4th, 5th round guy who has some tools, but needs to be schemed to be effective. Biggest impact will come on special teams, perhaps the red zone as well.




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