Note to self: Watch 'Fight Club' again...
If the Atlanta Falcons decide that taking a TE in the second round is too rich for their blood they could opt to ignore the position out of the gate, and rather than looking for a true future replacement for Tony Gonzalez, perhaps they would opt to get a value pick in the late 3rd, or possibly even 5th round. I can't find a scout who believes the speedy TE from Oregon would be a true #1 TE, but many outlets see him as a great second option, and with the Patriots and Panthers opting for aggressive two-TE systems it's an offensive move that's gaining traction.
Paulson will never be an NFL team's No. 1 tight end, but he's a versatile No. 2 who can can and block. He's even lined up some as an H-back.
At 6'3", 246 lbs Paulson has the size you want from a tight end, and in Indy he ran a respectable (albeit not impressive) 4.93 in the 40. That being said, there's good reason he'll be a mid-rounder, and not a player the Falcons will need to invest a 2nd round selection on. The folks over at theNational Football Post aren't quite as 'glass half full' regarding Paulson as I am.
A natural pass catcher who can make plays down the field, but isn't a real gifted straight-line athlete. Is tight hipped as a route runner, can't win consistently as a blocker and looks nothing more than a late round/FA option who will be limited in what he can offer an offense.
That's a pretty damning outlook, but I see their point of view. He will be limited as a prospect due to his lack of fluidity, but he's a player who just seems to have a knack for making big plays, even if he doesn't look pretty doing it. I disagree with the late round/UDFA assessment here, as I think he's talented enough and can bring enough to the table that he would warrant a look from the Falcons in the mid-rounds.