Note: This is the first in a series of recruiting profiles that I’ll be starting. They’ll be coming out periodically as recruits of interest make their way into the news. I’ll be posting them to a UWDP Recruiting Notebook stream that will be coming out shortly and that you can follow to stay up to date.
Brock Bowers (TE, 6’4” 220, Napa HS, CA)
A receiving or “move” TE/H-Back, Bowers has the size/speed combination and natural running ability to be a big play threat every time he touches the ball. Similar to Hunter Bryant, Bowers is not a prototypical in-line Y-TE in the mold of Otton, Dissly, or most of the other standout TEs that have played on Montlake. Instead, Bowers brings even more raw athleticism than Bryant to the TE/H-Back/jumbo-WR role. Having posted a verified 4.55s 40 and a 40-inch vertical at The Opening Regional last year, Bowers is in elite athletic company (for comparison, Bryant’s HS 40 was 4.86s). That athleticism translates to the field as a yards-after-catch (YAC) monster. While Bryant was a dynamic receiver for us, he was more likely to run through smaller defenders than to make defenders miss after the catch. Not Bowers. He seamlessly transitions from receiver to open field runner where he can put his wiggle and open field shiftiness to be use. He was even used as a RB and option pitch man for his HS team. Bryant is a good UW comp, but an even better comparison for Bowers might be former Oregon TE Colt Lyerla.
The biggest question mark for Bowers is if he can develop enough as a blocker to be more than a jumbo WR. This was a concern at times for Bryant as well, and I suspect that it was one of the factors that contributed to him going undrafted. Bowers’ last independently verified measurements at The Opening put him at 6-3 215 lbs, and although I think he’s somewhere between the 247 Sports measurements (6-3, 225) and his Hudl measurements (6-4, 220) these days, he’s still quite a bit behind Bryant’s 6-2, 239 freshman listing or Caden Jumper’s 6-2, 250 listing. That’s not to diminish the handful of solid and physical blocking reps that I could find, and he certainly has the frame to add more weight, but he’ll have to navigate adding 20-25 lbs without significantly hampering his signature athleticism before he can take on the blocking assignments that are expected out of our TEs.
An interesting note that I made when watching tape was how he and Jumper played with the ball in their hands. Both are skilled runners rather than just receivers, and they can generate their own yards as play makers either breaking tackles or evading defenders. Whatever “move” TE/H-Back/FB/Utility role we are recruiting for in Donovan’s offense, I can see it being a featured play making position.