*Zach Ertz        Stanford           This TEA has good size despite short arms. Ertz aligns in multiple positions in several formations (2×1, 3×1 inside, slot, X, wing, inside 2×2, inside in trips open, inline). A short stepper in movement, he does have natural body balance and control to contort and adjust body in the air, competing at highest point with receiving skills to catch outside his frame with snatch and one-hand pluck. Can avoid defender out of stance, and is smooth in routes with awareness and FBI (football Instincts); creates separation with good route running and cutting ability. Runs nice route tree (post, out, checkdown, seam, dig, skinny post). I did see a few concentration drops, despite his possessing soft hands to catch outside frame with diving effort. Is tough and competes as an inline blocker with step collision; UOH to grab and steer with pop and drive finish. In short-yardage blocking, Ertz will launch and whiff out of stance. The temperament and competitiveness is in place for next level for this competitive and tough receiver, who produces in the red zone and in traffic. Softli – First-round talent, second-round pick.

 

ZACHARY ADAM ERTZ

Tight End

Stanford University Cardinal

#86

6:05.0-249

Alamo, California

Monte Vista High School

 

OVERVIEW

While Notre Dame has become a “factory” producing National Football League caliber tight ends over the last four decades (23 played in the league since 1970), Stanford has been the recent “must stop” destination for teams looking for an upgrade at this position.

Since the Cardinal began utilizing tight ends in their offense back in the 1960s, they have seen ten of there athletes at that position drafted by an NFL team, beginning with George Buehler, selected by Oakland in the second round of the 1969 draft.

 

Beuhler would eventually convert to offensive guard with the “Silver & Black,” and in the thirty years since he was selected, just five other Stanford tight ends were drafted by the league. Since the turn of the century (2000), the Cardinal have had Alex Smith (third round of the 2005 draft by Tampa Bay), Jim Dray (seventh round by Arizona in 2010) and Coby Fleener (second round by Indianapolis in 2011) hear their names called on draft day.

 

Smith is presently with the Cleveland Browns, joining the organization as a free agent. Among the six Cardinal tight ends presently in the NFL during the 2012 season were undrafted talents, Eric Lorig (Tampa Bay), Evan Moore (Cleveland) and Konrad Reuland (San Francisco). None of the above mentioned players were first round selections, but based on his one season as a starter in 2012, Zach Ertz could be the university’s first tight end to be selected within the 2013 draft’s opening round.

 

In the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision ranks, the Cardinal junior tied Austin Seferian-Jenkin of Washington for the national title among tight ends with 69 receptions. Ertz totaled 898 receiving yards, the most by a tight end in the FBS ranks. The only other tight ends at the NCAA level (all divisions) with better numbers than Ertz in 2012 were Josh Hill of Football Championship Subdivision Idaho State (70 catches) and Division II Colorado School of Mines standout David Pawelek (85 for 1,042 yards).

 

Ertz compensates for a lack of ideal arm length (31 ¾-inches) with excellent overall speed and balance, noticeable by the suddenness he shows getting into his routes and the acceleration he displays running those patterns. He uses his upper body strength well to get a clean release vs. press coverage and is a savvy runner with a nice array of head fakes and stop-&-go action to freeze his coverage assignments at the top of the route.

 

Ertz has large, soft hands and does a nice job catching outside his frame, rarely forcing the ball into his body. He is alert to pocket pressure, showing good urgency working back to the quarterback. He is not the type that will consistently high point the ball, thanks to just adequate leaping ability, but he knows where to find the soft areas on the field to settle under the throws and is the type that can smoothly catch and maintain his stride.

 

Ertz is physical combating for the ball in a crowd. He has excellent ball concentration skills and demonstrates good courage and physicality to take on second level defenders when fighting for extra yards after the catch. When Coby Fleener was part of the lineup in 2011, the Cardinal staff took advantage of Ertz’ quickness, often lining him wide, knowing he had the speed and ability to stretch the field.

 

The Cardinal also comes from a sports-oriented family environment. His father, Douglas, played football at Lehigh University from 1981-84. Zach’s uncle, David, played baseball at the University of Vermont from 1970-72.

 

Prior to joining the Stanford Cardinal program, Ertz attended Monte Vista High School, located nearby Palo Alto in Danville, California. Utilized mostly as a wide receiver for head coach Craig Bergman, a former Santa Clara University quarterback, Ertz would still be listed as the fourth-best tight end prospect in the nation by Scout.com, seventh by both CSTV/Tom Lemming and Super Prep Magazine and tenth by Rivals.com during his senior season.

 

Ertz lettered three times on the gridiron and was a two-time All-Metro selection by the San Francisco Chronicle. He also received Contra Costa Times All-East Bay accolades twice and was a first-team All-East Bay Athletic League choice as a senior. During his junior season, he was having a banner campaign, as he had 38 receptions for 382 yards and six touchdowns in seven games before fracturing his right wrist and missing the remainder of the season.

 

Ertz hauled in 56 passes for 756 yards and 14 touchdowns as a senior. That performance earned him 2008 Cal-Hi Sports North Coast Section Scholar Athlete of the Year honors. He also lettered in basketball. Before he even stepped on the football field in 2008, he had already signed his national letter-of-intent to attend Stanford University. He would spend the 2009 campaign performing with the Cardinal scout team, retaining four years of college eligibility.

 

In 2010, Ertz appeared in thirteen games as a reserve tight end, but he did earn one starting assignment vs. Arizona. He finished eighth on the team with sixteen receptions for 190 yards (11.88 ypc) and five touchdowns. He had multiple catches in five games, including in each of his final three appearances, adding a solo tackle vs. Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl.

 

Ertz joined Coby Fleener and Levine Toilolo in giving the Cardinal perhaps the deepest and most talented tight end unit in college football during the 2011 schedule. The trio would combine for 86 receptions, good for 1,356 yards (15.77 ypc), as that unit accounted for twenty of the 37 touchdown passes thrown by quarterback Andrew Luck.

 

Ertz appeared in ten games during the 2010 campaign, starting three times. His red-shirt sophomore season was sidetracked when he suffered a right knee sprain while blocking on the opening kickoff of the Southern California clash. He missed the next three games and made a minimal impact in the regular season finale vs. Notre Dame.

 

Ertz finished the season fifth on the team with 27 receptions for 346 yards (12.81 ypc) and four touchdowns. He was finally recovered from knee woes by the time Stanford played vs. Oklahoma State in the Fiesta Bowl, where he chipped in with 38 yards on four catches that included a 16-yard touchdown in a hard-fought 41-38 overtime loss.

 

After seriously considering whether he should leave school early and enter the 2012 draft, Ertz decided to return to school for at least one more season. His 69 receptions rank sixth on the school season-record chart, as he also paced the team with 898 yards receiving (13.01 ypc), finding the end zone six times.

 

That decision to return to school and put together a standout season would see him become just the third Cardinal tight end to ever receive first-team All-American honors.

The only other Stanford tight ends to receive first-team national accolades are Chris Burford in 1959, a season where he tied the then NCAA season record with 61 receptions and led the nation with 757 receiving yards that season. Burford would go on to play professionally for the Kansas City Chiefs and was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1995.

 

The other Cardinal tight end was Coby Fleener, a first-team choice by Sporting News in 2011 after hauling in 34 passes for 667 yards and a team-high ten touchdowns as a senior.

He averaged 19.6 yards per catch that season, which ranked tied for seventh on Stanford’s all-time single-season list. Much like Ertz, Fleener is known as a hybrid tight end whose speed and athleticism allowed him to stretch the field.

 

A few days after Ertz guided the Cardinal to a January 1st Rose Bowl victory over Wisconsin, catching three balls for 61 yards, the tight end announced that he was leaving the university and had declared for the 2013 NFL Draft. “It has been a dream of mine to play in the NFL for as long as I can remember, and I would not be in this position without my coaches, professors and everyone associated with the University … I will certainly be cheering loudest when we win the national championship next year,” Ertz said in a statement.

 

CAREER NOTES

Ertz appeared in 37 games at Stanford, starting nine contests…Finished with 112 receptions for 1,434 yards (12.80 ypc) and fifteen touchdowns, as he scored 92 points and recorded a solo tackle…His fifteen touchdowns rank 15th on the school all-time record list and is the second-best career total by a Cardinal tight end, topped by just Coby Fleener (18; 2008-11).

 

2012 SEASON

A finalist for the coveted Mackey Award, given to the nation’s best tight end, Ertz became the third first-team All-American tight end in school history and the first Cardinal tight end to be a unanimous selection. He is also the first tight end in college to be named a unanimous choice since Virginia’s Heath Miller in 2004…Ertz also became only the seventh player in school annals to garner unanimous All-American recognition, joining

David DeCastro (2011), Toby Gerhart (2009), John Elway (1982), Ken Margerum (1980), Bill McColl (1951) and Bobby Grayson (1935)…Those teams that Ertz was named to are the

American Football Coaches Association, Associated Press, Sporting News and Walter Camp Football Foundation…All-Pac 12 Conference first-team pick and Academic All-Pac 12 honorable mention, receiving a 3.4 grade point average while majoring in Management Science & Engineering…Shared the team’s Outstanding Senior Award, along with Alex Debniak…Played in every game, starting vs. Southern California, Notre Dame, Colorado, Oregon State and Oregon…Led the team and tied with Austin Seferin-Jenkin for the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision to lead the nation’s tight ends with a career-high 69 catches, as his 898 receiving yards (13.01 ypc) was the most for any FBS tight end in 2012, turning six of those grabs into touchdowns…His 69 receptions established the school season-record for tight ends, and placed sixth on the school’s overall annual chart behind Troy Walters (86 in 1997; 74 in 1999), Brad Muster (78 in 1985), DeRonnie Pitts (77 in 2000; 74 in 1998) and Gene Washington (71 in 1968)…Paced the Cardinal in receiving in seven of the fourteen games he played in…Teamed with fellow tight end Levin Toiliolo to combine for a total of 93 receptions for 1,291 yards (13.88 ypc) and ten touchdowns for a team that struggled with their aerial attack, as Stanford ranked tenth in the conference and 93rd among 120 major colleges in passing, averaging 200.14 yards per game, as their tight end tandem averaged 92.21 of those yards…Ertz had 106 passes targeted to him (caught 65.09%), as 43 of his grabs produced first downs, including converting thirteen third-down tosses and another on a fourth-down play…37 of his receptions gained at least ten yards (53.62%), including thirteen for 20 yards or longer (18.84%)…In addition to his six scoring catches, he had key receptions that led to eleven other Stanford touchdown drives and one five possessions that resulted in field goals…Caught eight of his balls inside the red zone, two coming on goal-line snaps…Finished with 106 yards and a career-high eleven catches at then top-ranked Oregon, the last of which was good for a 10-yard touchdown to tie the game at 14-14 and force overtime. Quarterback Kevin Hogan tossed up a fade into the back of the end zone and gave Ertz the space and ball location needed to use his height as an advantage. The tight end got both hands on the ball, but Ekpre-Olomu had slipped his hand between them and he ripped the ball free as the Stanford tight end tried to pull it into his frame. The ball hung for a split-second in the air before Ertz snatched it back as he rolled to the turf and out of the back of the end zone. He was initially ruled out of bounds. Replay, however, appeared to show his right shoulder hit the ground before he rolled out and therefore the play was overturned for a Cardinal touchdown. The fourth-year junior demonstrated great body control and ball skills throughout this contest. Hogan consistently went to Ertz in critical situations and Oregon, despite playing man to man coverage often, was rarely able to stick with him…His eleven receptions are the second-highest total by a Stanford tight end in a game, topped by Jim Price (fourteen vs. Notre Dame in 1989)…The Cardinal offense looked great on its first two possessions vs. San Jose State, using the power running game to good effect in scoring two early touchdowns. But it was Ertz who brought the crowd to its feet after he made a remarkable one-handed catch in the fourth quarter that was originally ruled incomplete but was changed to a completion after review. He had four catches for 26 yards for the day…Named the John Mackey Tight End of the Week by the Nassau County Sports Commission as the Cardinal caught three passes for 71 yards in a 21-14 victory over Southern California. Ertz also scored the game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter, a 37-yard catch-and run that finished with a dive into the end zone. With the lead in Stanford’s favor for the first time all game, Ertz also was instrumental run-blocking on the subsequent drive that sealed victory and ate six minutes of fourth-quarter game clock…Added ten catches, as his 106 receiving yards matched his then career-best (vs. Oregon in 2012) in a 17-13 loss to Washington… Playing its archrival helped Stanford solve its road problems, as the Cardinal rolled to a 21-3 victory over California in the Big Game, as Ertz made six catches for a career-high 134 yards…Stanford had a new starting quarterback, but that didn’t stop Ertz from tallying nine receptions for 75 yards and a touchdown in the Cardinal’s 27-23 win over Oregon State.

 

2011 SEASON

Ertz was part of a talented tight end trio which included Coby Fleener and Levine Toilolo, as they combined to produce 86 receptions for 1,356 yards (15.77 ypc) and record twenty of the 37 touchdowns thrown by quarterback Andrew Luck…Ertz appeared in ten games, starting vs. Washington State, Colorado and Arizona…Missed the Oregon State, Oregon and California games after sustaining a knee injury on the opening kickoff of the Southern California clash…Returned to action for the final regular season game vs. Notre Dame in a limited role before recovering in time to face Oklahoma State in the Fiesta Bowl…Finished with 27 receptions for 343 yards (12.81 ypc) and four touchdowns, including recording scoring grabs in each of the first three games vs. San Jose State, Duke and Arizona, running his consecutive game streak with a touchdown reception to six…Ertz was ranked as Stanford’s third-leading receiver with 22 receptions for 308 yards and seven touch-downs through seven games before sustaining his knee…Caught at least four passes in three games vs. Arizona (4-58), Colorado (4-78) and Washington State (5-52)…Also had four receptions of 20 yards or more, including a 26-yarder from QB Andrew Luck vs. Colorado…Snared four passes for 38 yards and a touchdown vs. Oklahoma State in the Fiesta Bowl, and was on the receiving end of an 18-yard scoring strike from Luck at the 8:22 mark of the third quarter that gave Stanford a 28-21 lead.

 

2010 SEASON

Ertz played in thirteen games to earn his first varsity letter, starting vs. Arizona…Was the team’s eighth-leading receiver with sixteen grabs for 190 yards (11.88 ypc) and five touch-downs, coming up with a scoring reception in each of his final three games…Had four catches for 16 yards through the first seven games of the season, but caught 12 passes for 174 yards and four touchdowns over the last six contests…Caught his first career touchdown in the season opener vs. Sacramento State, hauling in a five-yard reception from Andrew Luck at the 8:38 mark of the second quarter…Added three receptions for 20 yards and a touchdown in Stanford’s 41-0 victory at Washington, as he caught his second touchdown of the season on a three-yard pass from Luck as time expired in the third quarter…Made two catches in the Big Game at California, including a 13-yard touchdown pass from Luck that gave Stanford a 24-0 lead at the 2:47 mark of the second quarter. He also pulled down a season long 32-yarder vs. Cal…Hauled in a season-high four passes for 65 yards and a touchdown in Stanford’s 38-0 victory over Oregon State, as he caught a 21-yard scoring pass from Luck at the 9:38 mark of the first quarter to open the scoring…Also pulled down two passes in Stanford’s Orange Bowl victory over Virginia Tech, including a 25-yard touchdown at the 6:32 mark of the second quarter that gave the Cardinal a 13-9 lead.

 

2009 SEASON

Red-shirted as a freshman.

 

INJURY REPORT

2007 Season…Missed most of the second half of his high school junior season after suffering a right wrist fracture.

2011 Season…Ertz sat out the Oregon State, Oregon and California games after he suffered a knee sprain blocking on the opening kickoff vs. Southern California (10/29).

 

AGILITY TESTS

4.76 in the 40-yard dash…1.64 10-yard dash…2.68 20-yard dash…4.47 20-yard shuttle…

11.92 60-yard shuttle…7.08 three-cone drill…30 ½-inch vertical jump…9’3” broad jump… Bench pressed 225 pounds 24 times…31 ¾-inch arm length…9 ¾-inch hands…76inch wingspan.

 

HIGH SCHOOL

Ertz attended Monte Vista (Danville, Cal.) High School, where he mostly played as a wide receiver for head coach Craig Bergman, a former Santa Clara University quarterback…

Was listed as the fourth-best tight end prospect in the nation by Scout.com, seventh by both CSTV/Tom Lemming and Super Prep Magazine and tenth by Rivals.com during his senior season…Lettered three times on the gridiron and was a two-time All-Metro pick by the San Francisco Chronicle…Also received Contra Costa Times All-East Bay accolades twice and was a first-team All-East Bay Athletic League choice as a senior…During his junior season, he was having a banner campaign, as he had 38 receptions for 382 yards and six touchdowns in seven games before fracturing his right wrist and missing the remainder of the season…Hauled in 56 passes for 756 yards and 14 touchdowns as a senior…That performance earned him 2008 Cal-Hi Sports North Coast Section Scholar Athlete of the Year honors…Also lettered in basketball.

 

PERSONAL

Majoring Management Science and Engineering, earning 2012 Academic All-Pac 12 Conference honorable mention with a 3.4 grade point average…Son of Lisa and Douglas Ertz…Oldest of four children…Father played football at Lehigh University from 1981-84 and his uncle, David, played baseball at the University of Vermont from 1970-72…Born Zachary Adam Ertz on 11/10/90 in Orange, California…Resides in Alamo, California.

 

PLAYER STATISTICS

RECEIVING STATISTICS…R/PG indicates receptions per game…GM/AVG indicates average yards gained per game.
STATS GP GS NO YARDS AVG TD LONG R/PG GM/AVG
2010 13 01   16     0190 11.88  05    32  1.23      14.62
2011 10 03   27     0346 12.81  04    26  2.70      34.60
2012 14 05   69     0898 13.01  06    68  4.93      64.14
TOTAL 37 09 112     1434 12.80  15    68  3.03      38.76

 

 

ERTZ GAME BY GAME LOG

2012 Season

Date

Opponent

Score

Played

Receiving

Pts

Tackles

No

Yds

TD

TTL
TDs

Ast

Solo

Asst
Loss

Solo
Loss

Loss
Yds

San Jose St. 08/31/12 San Jose St. 20-17

Yes

4

26

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Duke 09/08/12 Duke 50-13

Yes

2

49

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Southern California 09/15/12 Southern California 21-14

Yes

3

71

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Washington 09/27/12 at Washington 13-17

Yes

6

106

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Arizona 10/06/12 Arizona 54-48

Yes

6

64

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Notre Dame 10/13/12 at Notre Dame 13-20

Yes

4

55

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

California 10/20/12 at California 21-3

Yes

6

134

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Washington St. 10/27/12 Washington St. 24-17

Yes

1

20

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Colorado 11/03/12 at Colorado 48-0

Yes

6

41

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon St. 11/10/12 Oregon St. 27-23

Yes

9

75

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon 11/17/12 at Oregon 17-14

Yes

11

106

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

UCLA 11/24/12 at UCLA 35-17

Yes

5

71

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

UCLA 11/30/12 UCLA 27-24

Yes

3

19

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Wisconsin 01/01/13 Wisconsin 20-14

Yes

3

61

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Season Totals

69

898

6

6

36

0

0

0

0

0

 

2011 Season

Date

Opponent

Score

Played

Receiving

Pts

Tackles

No

Yds

TD

TTL
TDs

Ast

Solo

Asst
Loss

Solo
Loss

Loss
Yds

San Jose St. 09/03/11 San Jose St. 57-3

Yes

2

25

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Duke 09/10/11 at Duke 44-14

Yes

3

44

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Arizona 09/17/11 at Arizona 37-10

Yes

4

58

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

UCLA 10/01/11 UCLA 45-19

Yes

2

22

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Colorado 10/08/11 Colorado 48-7

Yes

4

78

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Washington St. 10/15/11 at Washington St. 44-14

Yes

5

52

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Washington 10/22/11 Washington 65-21

Yes

2

29

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Southern California 10/29/11 at Southern California 56-48

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon St. 11/05/11 at Oregon St. 38-13

No

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon 11/12/11 Oregon 30-53

No

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

California 11/19/11 California 31-28

No

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Notre Dame 11/26/11 Notre Dame 28-14

Yes

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Oklahoma St. 01/02/12 Oklahoma St. 38-41

Yes

4

38

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Season Totals

27

346

4

4

24

0

0

0

0

0

 

2010 Season

Date

Opponent

Score

Played

Receiving

Pts

Tackles

No

Yds

TD

TTL
TDs

Ast

Solo

Asst
Loss

Solo
Loss

Loss
Yds

Sacramento St. 09/04/10 Sacramento St. 52-17

Yes

2

8

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

UCLA 09/11/10 at UCLA 35-0

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Wake Forest 09/18/10 Wake Forest 68-24

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Notre Dame 09/25/10 at Notre Dame 37-14

Yes

1

5

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon 10/02/10 at Oregon 31-52

Yes

1

3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Southern California 10/09/10 Southern California 37-35

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Washington St. 10/23/10 Washington St. 38-28

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Washington 10/30/10 at Washington 41-0

Yes

3

20

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Arizona 11/06/10 Arizona 42-17

Yes

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Arizona St. 11/13/10 at Arizona St. 17-13

Yes

1

5

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

California 11/20/10 at California 48-14

Yes

2

45

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Oregon St. 11/27/10 Oregon St. 38-0

Yes

4

65

1

1

6

0

0

0

0

0

Virginia Tech 01/03/11 Virginia Tech 40-12

Yes

2

39

1

1

6

0

1

0

0

0

Season Totals

16

190

5

5

30

0

1

0

0

0

 

Data provided by Dave-Te Thomas, Publisher of The NFL Draft Reports for TonySoftli.com; Tony Softli Draft Board