football Edit

Rivals Rankings Week: Who should be the No. 1 tight end?

With it being rankings week for the 2020 class, there were numerous discussions and debates on where players should be ranked this cycle. One of the biggest debates was about the No. 1 tight end. Darnell Washington was the top tight end heading into the week, but five-star Arik Gilbert made the move from athlete to tight end, so he makes a strong case for that top spot as well.

Rivals Rankings Week

Monday: Top 10 revealed | Who could break into final top 10?

Tuesday: Updated Rivals100 revealed

Wednesday: Updated Rivals250 revealed

Thursday: New offensive position rankings revealed

Friday: New defensive position rankings revealed

Saturday: Team rankings breakdown

Sunday: New state rankings revealed


CHAD SIMMONS: Arik Gilbert

Gilbert is a freak athlete that was scoring touchdowns and sacking the quarterback the last couple of seasons, but as a senior, he is going to focus more on offense at tight end. That is the position he is expected to play on the next level, so we have moved him over from 'athlete' and he deserves to be No. 1.

There just aren’t jumbo-athletes like Gilbert. He is 6-feet, 5-inches tall, he is around 260 pounds and he can run, catch, block, create mismatches and get down the field vertically. Gilbert is a true top 10 talent in just about any cycle. The tight end position does not hold as much value as other positions when it comes to the NFL Draft, but Gilbert is different and it is not hard to look ahead and see him in three or four years being a first-round pick at this position. He checks about every box there is to check for elite tight ends.

ADAM GORNEY: Darnell Washington

I want to go on record saying I think Gilbert is a phenomenal talent and he’s a special player who absolutely deserves to be a five-star in this recruiting class. He’s huge, he has great playmaking ability and he’s going to be special wherever he ends up, probably at Georgia.

I just think Washington is almost a once-in-a-lifetime kind of player who at 6-foot-7 and 260 pounds is so big and so athletic and so physical that it’s almost impossible for linebackers or defensive backs to have any chance defending him. Washington can stretch the field, he has awesome hands, he can win with athleticism or pure size and I’ve never seen a situation where he didn’t dominate when the ball was thrown his way.

A big portion of this job has to do with projection and if Washington ends up in the right hands where he can be developed, there is no one in this class or any class I can remember with the physical tools he brings to the football field.