Sam LaPorta Complete NFL Draft Profile (Iowa TE's Upside Points to Day 2 Selection)
After a solid senior year at Iowa, tight end Sam LaPorta is entering the 2023 NFL Draft. He's far from the top player at his position this year, but that doesn't mean he can't be a reliable contributor to at least one NFL team.
Here's everything you need to know about Sam LaPorta heading into the 2023 NFL Draft.
Sam LaPorta Draft Stock & Mock Draft Projections
Las Vegas Raiders
Pro Football Network
Mock draft sources accurate as of 4/15: Walter Football, Sporting News, Draft Tek, Pro Football Network, ESPN, Todd McShay.
Projected Draft Round: Round 2 (3), Round 3 (3)
Projected Team: Lions (2), Bengals (1), Raiders (1), Seahawks (1), Dolphins (1)
Sam LaPorta Scouting Report
Sam LaPorta is far from a scoring machine like Notre Dame TE Michael Mayer, but he was still productive in his final season at Iowa. The talented pass-catcher turned a career-high 58 catches into 657 receiving yards and a touchdown over 12 games with the Hawkeyes.
At 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, LaPorta has a solid frame to find NFL success. Scouts often praise him for his reliable hands, as well as the fact that he can run routes similar to those of wide receivers. His long arms also help with his catch radius.
While he doesn't have a ton of weaknesses, there are areas for LaPorta to improve. He's often been criticized for his blocking abilities, especially concerning the run game. He also struggles to make catches when there's a lot of pressure on him.
Sam LaPorta NFL Draft Prediction
If the aforementioned draft projections are anything to go by, Sam LaPorta will likely find himself off the board by the end of Day 2. His blocking shortcomings likely prevent him from going any earlier, but whichever team lands him will have a nice project on their hands.
Having said that, I do agree with ESPN that the Cincinnati Bengals are a good fit. The Bengals got little production from their TE group last season and quarterback Joe Burrow would love a tight end with LaPorta's athleticism.
While Cincinnati did add Irv Smith Jr. this past offseason, it's never a bad idea to have multiple options at TE. Smith is also a superior blocker, meaning his presence would allow LaPorta to participate more in passing plays. Considering how the Bengals racked up the seventh-most passing yards in 2022, there'll be more than enough opportunities for the Iowa product to eat.
I don't think LaPorta will be on the board by the end of the third round, though, which is why I see the Bengals taking him at the end of the second.
Prediction: Cincinnati Bengals (Round 2, 60th overall)
Check out more NFL Draft content from The Duel:
Sam LaPorta NFL Combine Results
Sam LaPorta Iowa Stats
Yards Per Reception
Sam LaPorta Iowa Highlights
Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Devon Platana also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username PepeSilvia0. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.