Rookie Watch: TE Hamilton Already Solid As Both Blocker & Pass Catcher

(Editor's Note: With the offseason practices now complete, the Cowboys will take some downtime before departing for training camp on July 28. Until then, let's focus on some of the more unknown rookies on this team, fighting for a roster spot. Today's featured player is tight end Ray Hamilton.)

Name: Ray Hamilton
Position: Tight End
College: Iowa
Height/Weight: 6-5 / 252
Acquired: Undrafted Free Agent
Jersey Number: 86

Collegiate Career:He was more of a blocking tight end at Iowa, where he totaled just 29 catches in four seasons with the Hawkeyes. Most of his production occurred in 2014 as a senior, where he had 18 catches for 175 yards and all three of his career touchdown receptions.

Did You Know?Hamilton caught his only pass of his true freshman season in 2011 in the season opener vs. Tennessee Tech for 15 yards. He closed his career with a career-best 51 yards receiving in a bowl game vs. Tennessee.[embeddedad0]

2015 Outlook:While the Cowboys made an effort to acquire another draft pick to land Geoff Swaim late in the seventh round, Hamilton has been just as impressive during the summer practices. He's a polished blocker, which could help stick around if the Cowboys decide to keep four tight ends. That's an unlikely scenario but good blockers tend to have a way of sticking around. Hamilton not only has to be better than Swaim, he'll have to push James Hanna as well. With Witten getting limited reps in preseason, along with Escobar and Hanna playing sparingly, Hamilton should get lots of chances to shine.

Scout's Take:

  • Will line up in the slot and inline
  • Nice size to shield the defender from the ball
  • Able to find ways to get open up the field
  • Uses his hands to push and shove
  • Understands how to avoid coverage
  • Would not call him the most athletic route runner
  • Stays after his blocks in the running game

– Bryan Broaddus

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