When Jackson Bowers joined the ‘Give ‘Em Hell, Brigham’ podcast a few months ago, he mentioned that he modeled his game after San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle. Specifically, he mentioned the mindset that Kittle has as something that he tries to emulate when he’s on the field. What is that mindset, exactly?
To be a little psycho.
Bowers talked about how tight ends are getting soft and heavily focused on their receiving abilities. While he likes to catch touchdowns as much as the next guy, Bowers loves blocking and chucking people around the field. He’s a pancake machine and he has some swagger about it. He takes pride in being physical and he let’s opponents know that he’s going to be a physical freak again and again and again. His mindset is reminiscent of tight ends in the 1980s. He is a hard-nosed guy who is an absolute monster on the field.
You can’t talk about Bowers’ blocking ability without talking about the enormous frame that he gets to work with. He’s listed at 6-5 and plays somewhere between 235-245 pounds. He has long arms and a strong base that making him an imposing presence in the open field. He has the raw strength to take on any defensive lineman off the edge, and he has the athleticism to be an absolute weapon in the second level of the defense. His ability to block inside, outside, and in multiple levels of the field is something that offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick will have a ton of fun with in play design meetings.
But what really sets Bowers apart as a blocker is his mindset. He is relentless from the snap to the whistle. He punishes players and drives them into the ground. And when the play is over, he gets up, gets back on line of scrimage, and does it again the next play. His attitude when he blocks is demoralizing for defenders. He is coming after people at 100% on every play, and he does it with a sort of cockiness that is going to make him a fan-favorite in Provo.
Bowers is going to be a physical tight end and that is the part of his game that will shine the most when he arrives in Provo. But, make no mistake about it, this dude will be a weapon as a receiver too. He pulled in 47 catches for 867 yards and 11 touchdowns as a junior last year. He is no scrub in the receiving game, even if it is his blocking that makes him so unique. He is athletic enough to get open and he has a really unique ability to catch balls in traffic. He has demonstrated on film that he can make catches away from his body and in traffic. He’s the kind of tight end who could thrive in short-yardage situations and near the endzone. He will make plays between the 20s, but he will be a weapon when it comes to punching the ball into getting the ball into the end zone and moving the chains in short-yardage spots. His size and catching ability will present matchup nightmares for opposing linebackers.
Have we mentioned his attitude? Bowers is just wired differently. He has the kind of ‘psycho’ that makes Kittle great. Obviously, that attitude has to be channeled onto the field and you need the football talent to truly be a player like Kittle. Bowers has that potential. As that shows on the field, and he combines that with his already-Kittle-esque mindset, he has the potential to be a very special player for BYU.