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Free Agency Film Session: Ricky Seals-Jones

On Friday, the Chiefs signed tight end Ricky Seals-Jones. RSJ has spent the last three seasons playing for the Arizona Cardinals and Cleveland Browns. In both locations, he has been the backup TE and he should look to keep the same role in Kansas City this upcoming season. With the departure of Blake Bell, the Chiefs needed another body at TE. RSJ should help fill out the position. However, RSJ brings some interesting attributes to the table with his long athletic frame and his ability to catch the football. In 2019, the Chiefs struggled at times to make plays in the RedZone. With the weapons the Chiefs currently have on their roster and the amount of attention teams have to pay to keep Mahomes and Co. in check, it could lead to RSJ getting some catches and even make him somewhat of a headache for opposing teams.

RSJ has 60 career receptions and eight touchdowns, four of which came last season when he played for the Browns. According to Pro-Football-Reference RSJ played 23% of offensive snaps last year for the Browns down from 57% of offensive snaps from 2018 with Arizona. RSJ has some experience as a special teamer also, having played 11% of special team snaps in 2019 and 34% of special team snaps in 2017 with Arizona. That being said, he does have the ability to make contested catches and catches in traffic.

Andy Reid will have a field day finding ways to line up RSJ to get him open. In Cleveland, there were several plays where teams paid less attention to RSJ which allowed him to come open. This was primarily due to the other weapons that Cleveland possessed. At 6’5” 240, he has a nice catch radius and, as seen in the clip below, he has the ability to turn up the field and run after the catch. He fits the mold for an Andy Reid backup: athletic, versatile, with the ability to play special teams.

One thing that RSJ has consistently struggled with his entire career is on the line blocking. It doesn’t seem natural to him and even his three-point stance looks unnatural. While he held the title of TE2 for the Browns and Cardinals, both teams used him very sparingly in blocking, opting to bring in other TE’s on run downs. As can be seen below, RSJ is more at home in slot TE position which is where I believe the Chiefs will use him.

His three-point stance doesn’t look natural and his footwork is off. He steps underneath himself and does not have a lot of pop in his punch. I expect the Chiefs to use Deon Yelder as their run down and blocking TE2 but RSJ will be almost an off-the-bench mismatch. When teams try to double down on players like Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, and Sammy Watkins it will allow other routes and other players to open up. With a QB like Patrick Mahomes, who can elevate the players around him, it will be interesting to see where RSJ fits in on the 2020 Chiefs.

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