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Eric Ebron (born April 10, 1993) is an American football tight end for the Indianapolis Colts of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at North Carolina, and was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Eric Ebron
refer to caption
Ebron in 2018
No. 85 – Indianapolis Colts
Position:Tight end
Personal information
Born: (1993-04-10) April 10, 1993 (age 26)
Newark, New Jersey
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:253 lb (115 kg)
Career information
High school:Ben L. Smith
(Greensboro, North Carolina)
College:North Carolina
NFL Draft:2014 / Round: 1 / Pick: 10
Career history
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 10, 2019
Receptions:275
Receiving yards:3,124
Receiving touchdowns:27
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Early yearsEdit

Ebron first attended North Providence High School in Rhode Island.[1] He played football for the North Providence Jets. He later moved to North Carolina, where he attended Ben L. Smith High School in Greensboro. He played both tight end and defensive end while at Ben L. Smith High School.[2] He had 28 receptions for 682 yards and 10 touchdowns on offense and 68 tackles and 13.5 sacks on defense.[3]

Considered a three-star recruit by Rivals.com, Ebron was rated as the 21st best tight end prospect of his class.[4]

US college sports recruiting information for high school athletes
Name Hometown High school / college Height Weight 40 Commit date
Eric Ebron
TE
North Providence, RI North Providence HS/Ben L Smith HS 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 253 lb (115 kg) 4.67 Mar 18, 2010 
Recruiting star ratings: Scout:    Rivals:    247SportsN/A    ESPN grade: 80
Overall recruiting rankings: Scout: 20 (TE)   Rivals: 21 (TE), Not Ranked (National), 18 (NC)
  • ‡ Refers to 40 yard dash
  • Note: In many cases, Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN may conflict in their listings of height, weight and 40 time.
  • In these cases, the average was taken. ESPN grades are on a 100-point scale.

Sources:

  • "North Carolina Commit List for 2011". Rivals.com. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  • "Scout.com Football Recruiting: North Carolina". Scout.com. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  • "RecruitTracker 2011: North Carolina". ESPN.com. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  • "Scout.com Team Recruiting Rankings". Scout.com. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  • "2011 Team Ranking". Rivals.com. Retrieved February 17, 2011.

College careerEdit

 
Ebron playing for the Tar Heels in 2013.

Ebron attended the University of North Carolina from 2011 to 2013.[5] As a true freshman in 2011, Ebron played in 10 games, recording 10 receptions for 207 yards and a touchdown. As a sophomore in 2012, he started in all 11 games, recording 40 receptions for 625 yards and four touchdowns. The receptions and receiving yards were a North Carolina record for tight ends.[6] As a junior in 2013, Ebron caught 62 passes for 973 yards and three touchdowns, and was a first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) selection.[7] He was also chosen as a finalist for the John Mackey Award, given to the nation's top tight end.[8]

On November 25, 2013, Ebron announced his intentions to forgo his remaining eligibility and enter the 2014 NFL Draft.[9]

Collegiate statisticsEdit

Eric Ebron
Year School Conf Class Pos G Rec Yds Avg TD
2011 North Carolina ACC FR TE 10 10 207 20.7 1
2012 North Carolina ACC SO TE 11 40 625 15.6 4
2013 North Carolina ACC JR TE 13 62 973 15.7 3
Career North Carolina 112 1,805 16.1 8

Professional careerEdit

On November 25, 2013, it was announced through Ebron had decided to forgo his remaining eligibility and enter the 2014 NFL Draft.[10] Ebron attended the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis and completed the majority of drills, but opted to skip the short shuttle and three-cone drill after sustaining a minor injury. He ran the second fastest time in the 40-yard dash among all tight ends participating at the NFL Combine, finishing only behind Tennessee State tight end A. C. Leonard (4.50s).[11]

External video
  Eric Ebron’s NFL Combine Workout
  Eric Ebron runs the 40-yard dash

On March 25, 2014, Ebron participated at North Carolina’s pro day, but elected to stand on his combine numbers and only performed the short shuttle, three-cone drill, and positional drills. During positional drills, Ebron dropped three passes from quarterback Bryn Renner. Multiple NFL draft experts stated Ebron looked poor in his positional drills and highlighted the drops as a cause for concern.[12][13] Ebron attended pre-draft visits with multiple teams, including the Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Detroit Lions, and Carolina Panthers.[14] At the conclusion of the pre-draft process, Ebron was projected to be among the first 20 players selected by NFL draft experts and scouts. He was ranked as the top tight end prospect in the draft by DraftScout.com, NFL analyst Bucky Brooks, NFL analyst Mike Mayock, and Sports Illustrated.[15][16]

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt Arm length Hand size 40-yard dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert jump Broad BP Wonderlic
6 ft 4 38 in
(1.94 m)
250 lb
(113 kg)
33 14 in
(0.84 m)
10 in
(0.25 m)
4.60 s 1.63 s 2.71 s 4.45 s 7.49 s 32 in
(0.81 m)
10 ft 0 in
(3.05 m)
24 reps x
All values from NFL Combine/North Carolina’s Pro Day[17]

Detroit LionsEdit

The Detroit Lions selected Ebron in the first round (10th overall) of the 2014 NFL Draft.[18] Ebron was the first tight end drafted and became the eighth highest selection from North Carolina in school history.[19] He also became the highest tight end to be drafted by the Detroit Lions in franchise history, surpassing David Lewis (20th overall, 1985) and Brandon Pettigrew (20th overall, 2009), although he has since been supplanted by T. J. Hockenson (8th overall, 2019)[20]

External video
  Detroit Lions draft Eric Ebron 10th overall
  First Draft: North Carolina TE Eric Ebron

2014Edit

On June 13, 2014, the Detroit Lions signed Ebron to a fully guaranteed four-year, $12.49 million contract that includes a signing bonus of $7.22 million.[21]

Throughout training camp, Ebron competed to be a starting tight end against Brandon Pettigrew and Joseph Fauria.[22][23] Head coach Jim Caldwell named Ebron the third tight end on the depth chart, behind Pettigrew and Fauria, to begin the regular season.[24]

External video
  Eric Ebron scores his first NFL touchdown

He made his professional regular season debut in the Detroit Lions’ season-opening 35–14 victory against the New York Giants. In Week 2, he caught three passes for a season-high 38 yards during a 24–7 loss against the Carolina Panthers. On September 28, 2014, Ebron made three receptions for 34-yards and caught his first career touchdown during a 24–17 win at the New York Jets in Week 4. Ebron caught his first career touchdown on a 16-yard pass from quarterback Matthew Stafford during the second quarter.[25] Ebron was sidelined for three games (Weeks 7–9) due to a hamstring injury.[26] He finished his rookie season in 2014 with 25 receptions for 248 receiving yards and one touchdown in 13 games and seven starts.[27]

2015Edit

He entered training camp in 2015 as the No. 2 tight end on the depth chart.[28] Head coach Jim Caldwell retained Ebron as the backup tight end to Brandon Pettigrew to start the regular season.[29] On September 20, 2015, Ebron caught a season-high five passes for 43-yards and a touchdown during a 26–16 loss at the Minnesota Vikings in a Week 2. Ebron sustained a hamstring injury during a Week 4 loss at the Seattle Seahawks and was inactive for the next two games (Weeks 5–6).[30] In Week 7, Ebron recorded five receptions for a season-high 89 receiving yards and one touchdown during a 28–19 loss against the Minnesota Vikings.[31] On October 26, 2015, the Detroit Lions fired offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi.[32] He finished the 2015 NFL season with 47 receptions for 537 receiving yards and five touchdowns in 14 games and eight starts.[27]

2016Edit

Ebron entered the regular season as the No. 1 tight end on the Lions depth chart. He replaced Brandon Pettigrew who was placed on the physically unable to perform list after tearing his ACL the previous season.[33] In Week 4, Ebron suffered injuries to his knee and ankle during a 17–14 loss at the Chicago Bears and was subsequently sidelined for the next three games (Weeks 5–7).[34] On November 20, 2016, Ebron made three catches for 70-yards and scored his first career rushing touchdown on a one-yard carry during the fourth quarter of a 26–19 win against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11.[35] In Week 16, he made a season-high eight receptions for 93-yards as the Lions lost 42–21 at the Dallas Cowboys.[36] Ebron finished the 2016 NFL season with 61 receptions for 711 receiving yards and one touchdown in 13 games and 13 starts.[27]

On January 7, 2017, Ebron started in his first career playoff game in the Wild Card Round, catching 2 passes for 23 yards as the Lions lost to the Seattle Seahawks by 26-6.

2017Edit

External video
  Matt Stafford finds Eric Ebron for 61-yard gain

On May 2, 2017, the Detroit Lions exercised the fifth-year option on Ebron’s rookie contract. The $8.25 million option kept Ebron under contract throughout the 2018 NFL season.[37] Head coach Jim Caldwell retained Ebron as the No. 1 tight end after the departure of Brandon Pettigrew.[38] On December 10, 2017, Ebron caught a season-high ten passes for 94-yards during a 24–21 victory at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 14. He finished the season with 53 receptions for 574 receiving yards and four touchdowns in 16 games and nine starts.[27]

2018Edit

On January 1, 2018, the Detroit Lions announced their decision to fire head coach Jim Caldwell after they finished the 2017 NFL season with a 9–7 record and did not qualify for the playoffs.[39] On March 14, 2018, the Detroit Lions released Ebron.[40]

Ebron met with the Indianapolis Colts and Carolina Panthers during free agency.[41]

Indianapolis ColtsEdit

2018Edit

On March 19, 2018, the Indianapolis Colts signed Ebron to a two-year, $13 million contract that includes $6.50 million guaranteed.[42] Head coach Frank Reich named Ebron and Jack Doyle the starting tight ends to begin the regular season.[43]

External video
  Andrew Luck goes deep to Eric Ebron
  See Eric Ebron sneak his way into the end zone
  Eric Ebron adds to huge day with late TD catch

On October 10, 2018, Ebron recorded nine receptions for a career-high 105 receiving yards and two receiving touchdowns during a 38–24 loss at the New England Patriots in a Week 5.[44] On November 11, 2018, Ebron caught three passes for 69-yards and two touchdown receptions and also had a two-yard rushing touchdown during a 29–26 victory against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11.[45][46] In Week 12, Ebron caught five passes for 45 receiving yards and two touchdowns as the Colts defeated the Miami Dolphins 27–24.[47] On December 2, 2018, he made a season-high ten receptions for 81-yards during a 6–0 loss at the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 13. On December 18, 2018, it was announced that Ebron was selected to play in the 2019 Pro Bowl, marking the first Pro Bowl selection of his career.[48] He finished his first season with the Indianapolis Colts in 2018 with 66 receptions for 750 receiving yards and 13 touchdown receptions in 16 games and eight starts.[27] Ebron recorded career highs in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns in 2018 and led all tight ends with 13 touchdown receptions. His 13 touchdown receptions tied Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams as the second most among all players, behind Pittsburgh Steelers’ Antonio Brown (15 touchdowns).[49] He received an overall grade of 68.7 from Pro Football Focus, which ranked 23rd among all qualifying tight ends in 2018.[50]

External video
  Top Plays from Ebron’s 105-yard game vs. Pats
  Breadkdown: Eric Ebron’s phenomenal year

The Indianapolis Colts finished second in the AFC South with a 10–6 record and earned a Wild Card Round berth.[51] On January 5, 2019, Ebron started in his first playoff game for the Colts and caught three passes for 26 yards and scored one touchdown in the 21–7 win over the Houston Texans in the AFC Wildcard Game.[52]

2019Edit

In week 4 against the Oakland Raiders, Ebron caught 1 pass for a 48 yard touchdown in the 31-24 loss. [53]

Career statisticsEdit

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team Games Receiving Rushing Fumbles
GP GS Rec Yds Avg Lng TD Att Yds Avg Lng TD FUM Lost
2014 DET 13 7 25 248 9.9 22 1
2015 DET 14 8 47 537 11.4 55 5
2016 DET 13 13 61 711 11.7 61 1 1 1 1.0 1T 1
2017 DET 16 9 53 574 10.8 44 4 1 1
2018 IND 16 8 66 750 11.4 53T 13 3 −8 −2.7 2T 1 1 1
Career 72 45 252 2,820 11.2 61 24 4 -7 -1.8 2 2 2 2

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Dubois, Paul. "Former NP Jet is 10th pick in the NFL draft". The Valley Breeze. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
  2. ^ Thompson, Mark. "Eric Ebron: The day he came of age". Greensboro News and Record. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
  3. ^ "Ebron says he's 'zombified' right now". 247sports.com. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  4. ^ "Rivals.com". sports.yahoo.com.
  5. ^ "Eric Ebron College Stats". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
  6. ^ Beard, Aaron. "UNC coach Larry Fedora wants Eric Ebron to soar". News-Record.
  7. ^ "2013 All-ACC Teams Announced". TheACC.com. December 2, 2013.
  8. ^ "Ebron Named A Mackey Award Finalist". GoHeels.com. November 25, 2013.
  9. ^ Dinich, Heather. "UNC's Ebron, top TE prospect, to enter draft". ESPN.com.
  10. ^ "Eric Ebron leaving UNC early for 2014 NFL Draft". sbnation.com. November 25, 2013. Retrieved November 11, 2018.
  11. ^ "Eric Ebron clocks second-best 40 time among tight ends". NFL.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  12. ^ Stites, Adam (March 25, 2014). "NFL pro day results: Eric Ebron struggles for UNC". SBNation.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  13. ^ Chiari, Mike (March 25, 2014). "Eric Ebron: Breaking Down UNC Tight End's Pro Day Workout". bleacherreport.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  14. ^ "Ex-NFL scout: Eric Ebron could be better than Jimmy Graham". NFL.com. March 22, 2014. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  15. ^ Mayock, Mike (April 28, 2014). "Mike Mayock's position rankings for 2014 NFL Draft". NFL.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  16. ^ "Top 100 prospects for 2014 NFL draft". si.com. May 1, 2014. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  17. ^ "2014 NFL Draft Profile: Eric Ebron". NFL.com.
  18. ^ "Lions select top tight end Eric Ebron". Detroit Lions. Archived from the original on May 11, 2014. Retrieved May 9, 2014.
  19. ^ "North Carolina Players/Alumni". pro-football-reference.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  20. ^ "Detroit Lions All-Time Draft History". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  21. ^ "Spotrac.com: Eric Ebron contract". Spotrac.com. Retrieved November 11, 2018.
  22. ^ "Detroit Lions TE Joe Fauria up for the challenge". dailytribune.com. May 22, 2014. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  23. ^ "Lions Sign First-Round Pick Eric Ebron". detroit.cbslocal.com. June 13, 2014. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  24. ^ Yuille, Sean (September 1, 2014). "Lions depth chart released for Week 1 of season". prideofdetroit.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  25. ^ "Watch Detroit Lions vs. New York Jets [09/28/2014] - NFL.com". www.nfl.com.
  26. ^ "Detroit Lions injury report: Eric Ebron doubtful". freep.com. November 7, 2014. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  27. ^ a b c d e "NFL Player stats: Eric Ebron (career)". NFL.com. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  28. ^ "Fauria elusive, cryptic after Lions trade for TE Wright". freep.com. September 1, 2015. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  29. ^ "Ourlads.com: Detroit Lions Depth Chart: 09/01/2015". Ourlads.com. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  30. ^ "Lions TE Eric Ebron suffers knee injury vs. Seahawks". sbnation.com. October 6, 2015. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  31. ^ "NFL Player stats: Eric Ebron (2015)". NFL.com. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  32. ^ "Lions fire offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi". NFL.com. October 26, 2015. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  33. ^ "2016 Detroit Lions projected depth chart". prideofdetroit.com. Retrieved January 7, 2019.
  34. ^ "Eric Ebron likely out Sunday; Ezekiel Ansah doubtful to return". 6ABC.com. October 6, 2016. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  35. ^ "Jacksonville Jaguars at Detroit Lions – November 20th, 2016". pro-football-reference.com. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  36. ^ "NFL Player stats: Eric Ebron (2016)". NFL.com. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  37. ^ Patra, Kevin (May 2, 2017). "Lions pick up fifth-year option on TE Eric Ebron". NFL.com.
  38. ^ "Detroit Lions depth chart: Tate to return punts; Worrilow starting OLB". FreeP.com. September 5, 2017. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  39. ^ "Detroit Lions fire Jim Caldwell after missing playoffs". NFL.com. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  40. ^ Wesseling, Chris (March 14, 2018). "Detroit Lions release TE Eric Ebron after four seasons". NFL.com.
  41. ^ "Colts are hosting TE Eric Ebron". NFL.com. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  42. ^ Walker, Andrew (March 19, 2018). "Colts Sign Free Agent Tight End Eric Ebron". Colts.com. Archived from the original on May 24, 2018. Retrieved March 20, 2018.
  43. ^ "Colts' depth chart lists Joe Haeg, Ryan Grant, Margus Hunt, Nate Hairston as starters". indystar.com. September 4, 2018. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  44. ^ Horner, Scott. "Colts briefly make it interesting before losing to Patriots". Indianapolis Star. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
  45. ^ "Eric Ebron Explodes For Three Touchdowns In Win Over Jaguars". www.colts.com. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  46. ^ "Ebron scores three touchdowns in Colts' 29–26 victory over Jaguars". FOX Sports. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  47. ^ "Eric Ebron's 2nd TD ties Dolphins late". Indianapolis Colts. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  48. ^ "Eric Ebron's Breakout Season Results In First Pro Bowl Selection". Colts.com. December 18, 2018. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  49. ^ "National Football League Stats – by Player Category | NFL.com". www.nfl.com. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  50. ^ "Pro Football Focus: Eric Ebron". profootballfocus.com. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  51. ^ "2018 Indianapolis Colts Statistics & Players". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  52. ^ "NFL Player stats: Eric Ebron (2018)". NFL.com. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  53. ^ "Raiders use fast start, interception return to beat Colts". www.espn.com. September 29, 2019. Retrieved September 29, 2019.

External linksEdit