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Cameron Brate could hold onto Tampa Bay starting job

ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 18: Cameron Brate #84 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers celebrates after catching a touchdown pass from Jameis Winston #3 during the third quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on December 18, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

  • A recent article by Pewter Report has suggested that Tampa Bay Buccaneers fourth-year tight end Cameron Brate could retain his starting role to start the 2017 season, beating out 19th overall pick O.J. Howard. The report said that Brate and quarterback Jameis Winston's “chemistry is going to be tough to dethrone,” and “it might be more difficult than we thought to see (Howard) as a solidified first-team player.”
  • Brate has spent three seasons in the league, and saw a breakout year in 2016, in which his overall grade of 82.8 ranked him seventh of 63 tight ends. He found the end zone eight times, tying him for the most among tight ends with Chargers TE Hunter Henry.
  • Howard was taken with the 19th overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft, and had the highest grade among tight ends in the 2016 college season (82.9), including the top run-blocking grade (81.5).
  • Brate and Winston’s chemistry certainly showed itself during the 2016 season. Winston had a well-above-average passer rating when throwing to Brate on eight of the nine different routes he ran. Overall, Winston had a passer rating of 132.4 when throwing to Brate, the fourth-highest mark among tight ends with at least 15 targets. He accumulated 377 yards when lined up in the slot, ranking him seventh of 32 tight ends. He dropped just two of 59 catchable passes, giving him the fifth-best drop rate of 3.39.

Cameron Brate

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