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NFL Draft Prospect Preview - Trey Knox

by J.T. Toth


Photo courtesy of NFL Draft Diamonds.


At Draft Nation, the NFL draft talk never ends. We will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars—from today and all the way until draft night 2024. We will bring you mock drafts, player profiles, individual team needs, and everything else you may need related to the 2024 NFL Draft.


Today’s Spotlight- South Carolina, Tight End, Trey Knox


Name- Trey Knox

Pos- Tight End

Team- South Carolina

HT/WT- 6’5” 240 lbs.

Born- 8/14/2001

Home – Murfreesboro, TN


Trey Knox graduated from Blackman High School in his hometown of Murfreesboro, Tennessee in 2019. He led Blackman to a 9-3 record and a second round appearance in the Tennessee state Division 1 Class 6A playoffs as a senior. During that season, he posted a career-best 669 receiving yards on 54 catches and 10 touchdowns. He was ranked as the No. 16 wide receiver in the country and No. 4 player in Tennessee by Rivals. During his senior season, he committed to the University of Arkansas.


As a freshman in 2019, Knox started all 11 games at wide receiver, hauling in 28 passes for 385 yards and 3 touchdowns. He saw his playing time dwindle in 2020, though he still played in all 10 games and made 6 starts. He was not targeted as much as he was the previous season and ended with only 7 catches for 70 yards. As a junior in 2021, he played in 12 games and caught 20 passes for 141 yards and a touchdown. Knox played mostly as a rotational receiver.


During his senior season at Arkansas, he started all 12 games and almost matched his production from his freshman season, catching 26 passes for 296 yards for 5 touchdowns. After the season, he entered the transfer portal and decided to continue playing at South Carolina.


In 2023, Knox earned second-team All-SEC honors from the league’s 14 coaches and third team honors from Phil Steele. Once a wide receiver at Arkansas, South Carolina moved Knox to tight end and he had a very promising season, hauling in 37 receptions for 312 yards and a pair of touchdowns. After the season, Knox announced he was entering the NFL Draft as a tight end. 


Trey Knox is a wide receiver in a tight end's body. He has strong hands and is able to high point most passes and take away the chances of a defensive player making a play on the ball. As a tight end, he will be able to threaten and stretch the seams of most defenses and will be a matchup nightmare against some defensive packages. Knox has a large catch radius and has exceptional body control to contort and make catches away from his body. He uses his frame to shield defenders and he is effective at contested passes. He should be a weapon in the red zone in the NFL if used the correct way. 


On the downside, Arkansas used Knox in a limited fashion, cutting down on his overall route tree and not showing what he could truly excel at. Four years in Arkansas’ spread offense has held him back and scouts will have to do more projecting on what he can accomplish at the next level. He lacks the proper technique and footwork to be an adequate blocker in the NFL. A lot of this has to do with playing wide receiver every year up until this past season for the Gamecocks. He will need to improve in this area to be a consistent performer in a team's offense. After catching the ball, he is easily brought down with arm tackles and lacks the proper balance to break tackles on a regular basis. 


Though he is substantially taller than Connor Heyward, Draft Nation sees a great comparison between the two. Heyward was a 6th round pick in 2022 out of Michigan State by the Pittsburgh Steelers. Both made a position change later on in their college career and both were able to be lined up all over the offense. Knox can be used in the red zone more than a Heyward and has a bit more upside. But at the same time, they both will be used in special situations and not get consistent playing time. 


Strengths


  • Strong hands

  • Athletic

  • TE in a WR’s body

  • Red zone


Weaknesses


  • Blocking

  • Route tree

  • Balance 

  • Breaking tackles 


Final Analysis


Knox has versatility that will be closely looked at late in the draft. If a team drafts Knox, they will need to be patient as he learns the position and gets more comfortable. He will be a match up nightmare once he realizes his full potential. 


Draft Nation Draft Prediction - Round 6 or round 7

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