At a time when the trend is for tight ends to look like and be used like oversized wide receivers, Lynch not only can catch the ball but also brings the ability to help the running game with his blocking.
It’s that balance that helped Lynch in 2013 earn first-team honors in the best conference in college football, the SEC, despite catching a modest 30 passes on the season.
“I think I do a number of things fairly well,” Lynch said Saturday after the Dolphins made him the 155th overall selection with their first of two second-round picks. “That’s one thing that a tight end is asked to do is not just catch, not just block but really understand the game of football and be able to do things well all across the table. That’s something I was asked to do at Georgia and I think that I’ll be able to translate to the next level.”
Fittingly, when Lynch was asked what NFL tight end his game most resembles, he mentioned Zach Miller and Heath Miller instead of pass-catching specialists like Jimmy Graham or Jordan Cameron.
“Zach Miller and Heath Miller are two guys that I’ve always looked up to, tried to model my game after,” Lynch said. “That kind of complete tight end is a dying ... maybe not a dying breed, but maybe overvalued considering what it used to be valued as. When you see these guys that are out there always flexed out as a receiver and catch all these balls ... those guys really are the traditional tight ends, the guys can do it both. Three facets — special teams and blocking and catching. That’s kind of what I bring to the table and hopefully I’ll be able to continue to do it in Miami.”
Along with his well-rounded game, Lynch will bring leadership qualities to the Dolphins.
As was the case with the Dolphins’ first three picks in the 2014 NFL draft — Ja’Wuan James, Jarvis Landry and Billy Turner — Lynch was a captain in college.
He says leadership is huge when it comes to football.
“It means everything,” he said. “The game of football, for me especially, has been monumental in my growth as a person and my growth as a leader. To be a good football player, you have to obtain and have many leadership qualities that you might not have or might not be able to acquire if you didn’t play the game of football. It teaches a lot of things about life and because of that I’ve been able to do some things well on and off the field.
“You need to be a good leader on the football field in order to have success. That’s why my teammates elected me a captain at the University of Georgia and why they did in high school as well. I have those qualities and I’ll continue to display those qualities as a Miami Dolphin.”
Lynch was a two-year starter at Georgia, catching 30 passes for 459 yards and five touchdowns in 2013 and closed out his collegiate career with a career-high six catches in the TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl against Nebraska.
This marks the third year in a row the Dolphins have selected a tight end — they took
Lynch was taken 12 years after the Dolphins selected another tight end from Georgia, Randy McMichael.