The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets have been hard at work this offseason bringing in transfers to bolster their roster for the upcoming 2023 season. One position that received some much-needed attention was tight end, a position that struggled to produce in 2022. Two transfers were brought in to provide depth and potentially jumpstart the position in 2023.
Unfortunately, the Yellow Jackets lost Peje’ Harris to an early retirement, leaving the team with Dylan Leonard, Luke Benson, Brett Seither (transfer from UGA), and USF transfer Jackson Long at the tight end position. Long redshirted last season with the Bulls and only appeared in one game, but the young player has potential.
Long was a three-star recruit out of high school and signed with USF before entering the transfer portal after just one season. In his high school career, he caught 28 passes for 510 yards and five touchdowns his senior year. He also played defensive line, where he was named the Class 6A-Region 5 Most Valuable Defensive Lineman after tallying 49 tackles, eight tackles for a loss, and five sacks.
While Long has yet to make a significant impact on the field, I believe he has the potential to be a capable receiving threat with intriguing athleticism. With the competition between the tight ends heating up, Long may have a chance to make an impact this fall if he puts in the work and continues to develop under new offensive coordinator and tight ends coach Buster Faulkner.
The lack of production from the tight end position last season was a problem for the Yellow Jackets. Faulkner will be working to change that and ensure that the tight ends become a more significant factor in the passing game. With the loss of several key wide receivers this offseason, the tight ends may play an even more critical role in 2023.
Keep an eye out this spring for how the tight ends are performing and how the reps are being distributed. It will be interesting to see how Long and the rest of the tight ends develop under Faulkner’s tutelage and if they can make a significant impact on the field next season. If Long can make enough strides, there is no reason why he cannot become a valuable asset for the Yellow Jackets in 2023.