Oct 28, 2017; Bowling Green, KY, USA; WKU Hilltoppers tight end Deon Yelder (19) celebrates the score at Houchens Industries-L.T. Smith Stadium.

USA Today Sports

Undrafted TE Deon Yelder "flashes" at mini camp

Steve Geller
May 12, 2018 - 3:19 pm
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A missing piece to the Saint offense last year was definitely consistent production from the tight end position. The team did not end up selecting one in the NFL draft but did sign a kid nicknamed “Thump” out of Western Kentucky.

Deon Yelder stands 6ft4, 255 pounds and is a name many Saints fans are anxious to find out more about since the team gave him a deal with $90k guaranteed! That’s big bucks for any undrafted free agent who was a starter for the first time last season. Yelder did put up nice numbers hauling in 52 catches for 688 yards and seven touchdowns.

 

What were coach Sean Payton’s post practice thoughts of Yelder?

“Well, he’s big and he can run. He’s done pretty well here for the first two days. His speed and some of this times were good. We think he catches the ball well; we’ve got and get up to speed a little bit in the blocking.”

Tight end’s coach Dan Cambell also had some good things to say; especially about a vital piece to playing the position you cannot teach.

“He’s proven that he’s smart enough. That’s probably thee biggest thing in our room”, said Campbell. “You’ve got to be able to think. Behind the quarterback we have to know the most. He’s shown that he has that ability right now and I think he’s flashed with his athletic ability. So he’s done some good things.”

If Yelder can be the latest undrafted gem the Saints scouts have mined, he will join a solid group of TEs to learn from. The ageless wonder Benjamin Watson is back after 2 seasons in Baltimore. The 37 year old leads the pack consisting of Josh Hill and Michael Hoomanawanui.

“It’s a really good group, a vet group”, says TE coach Campbell. “They understand football. It’s about tweaking those guys because their technique; they’ve been in it long enough, they understand, they’ve seen the looks. It’s a really good room.

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