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Media Roundup: Highlights from TE Interviews

INDIANAPOLIS — It was the tight ends' turn to face the bright lights Friday afternoon.

Pass catchers and run blockers all in one, tight ends saddled up to podiums at the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine.

Some talked about their play on the field or their college careers. Others revealed information about their personal backgrounds.

Here are highlights from the tight ends at the combine:

Hayden Hurst, South Carolina

Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 1, Brooks 2

On his baseball background:"In high school I was lucky enough to be drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 17th round of the Major League Baseball Draft. Drafted as a pitcher, played three years in their system. Struggled through a lot of things, developed the yips, kind of lost my fastball. I battled with that for three years, tried a lot of things to right that. Ended up calling one of my good buddies from back home. He ended up getting me in contact with Steve Spurrier, Jr., which helped me walk on at South Carolina. Having the ability to be drafted in one sport and now in a couple months, my second sport, I'm just humbled and blessed to be in this situation."

On his best football traits: "I think it's my sure-handedness. I dropped one pass in three years at South Carolina. My speed — I hope to run in the 4.5s tomorrow. That's what I've been training at. And just my physicality. My run blocking can obviously be better; I think you can say that about a lot of things, but I think my physicality and my want-to in the blocking game also separates me."

Dallas Goedert, South Dakota State

Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 2, Brooks 1

On getting injured at the Senior Bowl:"Going out there for my first couple reps, I was able to win the reps. I was really excited to be out there … and I think I would have had a really great week out there, so it was really upsetting [that I got hurt]. I'm still kind of upset, but it happened, and you have to roll with the punches and keep going."

On his versatility on the field:"I'm going to be a three-down tight end in the league, so I'm going to have to be able to block. I didn't do a ton of blocking at South Dakota State, but when I did, I put my head in there. I have to work on it a little bit." 

Mark Andrews, Oklahoma

Pre-combine draft rankings: Brooks 3, Mayock 4

On Oklahoma's up-tempo offense:"Playing in that type of offense was an incredible experience. That fast-tempo, spread offense. It did a lot of good things to prepare for this next level. The way the game is kind of changing, that West Coast offense, a lot of fast-paced things going on. I think that is a lot of the way the game is changing to try and get defenses off balance. There was a lot of things that we did in the Oklahoma offense that is going to translate really well in the next level."

On being diagnosed with diabetes:"I got diagnosed at the age of 9. My dad is a doctor and has helped me out tremendously with the whole process. I have turned having diabetes into a positive. I have been able to do so many things with it. I have been able to help kids. On the flip side of it, I treat my body like a temple. I eat the right things, and most kids my age don't do that. I had to mature at a really, really young age. It's something that I think has helped me along the way to help me with where I am right now. Without it, I don't know if I would have this passion and edge that I have for everything in life. Nothing is given to you. You have to earn it, and same thing with my diabetes."

Mike Gesicki, Penn State

Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 3, Brooks 4

On playing at Penn State:"I think we averaged 108,000 (fans) a game when the stadium holds 107,000. I don't know, I think we need to get security checked out there. It's been an incredible ride at Penn State, and I'm so thankful to have those memories."

View images from the first day of player workouts Friday at the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine.

Troy Fumagalli, Wisconsin

Pre-combine draft rankings: Brooks 5, Unranked by Mayock

Explanations for having a finger amputated days after birth: "Woodshop class, I guess, was my best one. But no, I'm pretty serious about it. I just tell people it happened at birth. Serious events like this, I don't mess around with."

On his blocking prowess: "Yeah, I think that's one of the things I do well is blocking, so I'm going to try to showcase that as best I can. No matter what it is, no matter what, I'm going to just try to showcase what I do best. If that's what I do best I'm going to try to show that the most I can."

Will Dissly, Washington

Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 5, Unranked by Brooks

On moving to tight end from the defensive line: "I think I was messing around in bowl practice my sophomore year. Coach saw me catch a pass and I had a conversation and he said, 'Hey, you want to have a package for the bowl game?' I had a few plays, did well, and then in the offseason (the coaches) approached me and was like 'Hey, would you like to try this full-time in spring ball?' I was trying to get on the field a little bit more, trying to help the team win, so I said 'Yeah, let's try it.' And here we are today."

On whether the Montana native would point people to Yellowstone or Glacier National Park: "That's a good question. I would send people to Glacier. I don't want them to go there because it's a beautiful place and I want less people there, but I think Glacier's a beautiful place. Definitely would visit both. Recommend both for sure."

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