2011 Countdown: #55 Steve Watson

2011 Countdown: #55 Steve Watson

July 7, 2011
Steve Watson tackles Illinois quarterback Juice Williams

Name: Steve Watson
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 268 lbs.
High school: Mullen High School in Cherry Hills Village, CO
Position: Tight end
Class: Redshirt senior
Jersey number: #81
Last year: I ranked Watson #63 and said he would be a special teamer and see spot duty on defense.  He played special teams and had 3 tackles on defense.

Watson is one of those kids who has bounced back and forth throughout his career.  His first couple seasons were spent at tight end, though he never saw the field on offense.  He switched to outside linebacker in Greg Robinson’s 4-3 scheme for the 2009 season, then became a defensive end/tackle in 2010’s 3-3-5 alignment.  But with the shortage of tight ends on the roster and a coach who wants to use sets with multiple tight ends, Watson flipped back to offense this spring.

He’s clearly behind starter Kevin Koger and even primary backup Brandon Moore, but it’s unclear how far down the depth chart Watson will be.  Converted wide receiver Ricardo Miller might see some time at tight end, but he’s more of an H-back than an on-the-line blocker.  There’s also the issue of incoming freshman Chris Barnett, who has a chance to steal some snaps if he’s recovered from his torn ACL.  Michigan doesn’t need Watson to be much of a pass receiving threat, but it would be great if he could handle being the #3 tight end and give the freshman Barnett a chance to redshirt.

Prediction: Backup tight end and special teams contributor


  1. Comments: 21384
    Jul 07, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    I like watson, he's as pretty nice guy, and smart too. and I can say that knowing him personally, kb. He was recruited to be a tight end, he's a rs senior, and were going to run 2 te sets. Now is his chance to step up. I'm really excited about barnett, but I dont want to play him unless he is ready, so I hope watson rises to the occasion.

  2. Comments: 21384
    Painter Smurf
    Jul 07, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    Was that picture from a sack? I did not realize Watson saw non-scrub time at DE. If this guy does not see any more significant PT this season, at least he has a good picture of himself taking down Juice Williams for the grand kids.

    Did you observe Watson at all this spring? I am curious about his blocking and receiving skills and wondering if he is at least passable. Despite his size, I do not think Moore is a particularly willing blocker. So maybe Watson could see time in short yardage situations?

  3. Comments: 21384
    Jul 07, 2011 at 5:27 PM

    @ Painter Smurf 1:04 p.m.

    Watson didn't make any sacks in that game, but he made 3 tackles and 1 TFL.

    I saw Watson a little bit this spring. He didn't look particularly good. His footwork was a little bit lacking as a blocker, which is understandable after spending two seasons on defense. But I don't know of many teams that have great #3 tight ends, so I don't know how much it matters. Hopefully he can just get in the way of a defender or two and wall them off.

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