March 21, 2018

Chris Coyle Knows There is Work to Be Done

When you think of Arizona State the lineage of players that have made their mark in the NFL it is an impressive list. The likes of Todd Heap and Zach Miller were two of the more decorated tight ends to play the position with Arizona State to make it to the NFL. Now in 2014, Houston Texans rookie tight end Chris Coyle is looking to follow in their footsteps.

Considered a “move” tight end, Coyle has the athleticism and mental make up to be a H-Back in the NFL and that is what his plans are with the Texans.

Coyle at Arizona State lettered four seasons with the Sun Devils and caught 92 passes for 1,192 receiving yards and 9 touchdowns and holds the single season record for receptions in a season for a tight end (57 in 2012). His breakout season in 2012 put heavy expectations on him for his Senior season which ended with 29 receptions for 423 yards and 4 touchdowns. He appeared in 40 games and started 26 straight as the Sun Devils starting tight end and earned All-Pac 12 1st Teams in 2013.

Coyle made no mistake on how he felt about Arizona State and it’s football program,

“It was the best decision I have ever made.”

It was at Arizona State where he made his mark and it was apparent on how much he appreciated what the university did for him. Just like all the rookies with the Texans they have been given a message to appreciate their time in college but now it was time to move on with their task at hand.

It was apparent to Coyle that things change in a hurry when he arrived to Houston,

“Well as soon as I got here and just getting off the plane, you see that everyone is huge and everyone is a freak of nature. One of the he best at their position. When I came I knew it was going to be faster and the competition level was going to be much higher that is was in college. At that point you just have to accept that you have to step your game up and go against these guys and make things happen.”

There is a tough road for Coyle these next few months and getting settled into what the Texans are asking him to do is key. Through three days of rookie mini-camp that involved meetings, walk throughs and full practices occurred within a day of arriving with the Texans. Adjustments needed to be made.

We asked him the biggest adjustment for him as a football player,

“Biggest adjustment? The adjustment is really taking advantage of your opportunities when you get them cause they are so finite. Especially how everything moves so quickly. Guys are getting reps and as soon as you get in on your reps you got to take advantage of it and prove that you understand the concepts that are being taught to you each and every day. You got to go out there and produce.”

Watching Coyle work is impressive to watch and he is a technician that pays attention to detail. His routes were crisp in 7-on-7s and he worked on the finer points of blocking with new Texans tight end coach, John Perry. Perry expects results with his position group and it has already rubbed off on Coyle.

“He (Perry) is a great coach and I have learned a lot from him within the two days. Whether is working on technique or routes, he is a great teacher. He allows us to figure out things on our own and then he will give us certain pointers here and there that will help us achieve what we are trying to do to the absolute best of our ability. If it is us running our routes or a blocking technique, he helps us a lot.”

Despite the work put in at rookie mini-camp and the upcoming OTAs arriving next week. Coyle still has to sit back a recognize what it took to get to this point and the Westlake Village, California native is taking it all in while he can. When he arrives to the facility every morning seeing the Texans logo makes the situation a reality.

“It is a great reminder every morning in here and seeing the Texans logo and living so close to NRG Stadium. I can see it outside my hotel window, it is a constant reminder I am here. It is a feeling of excitement to be here and getting this opportunity that the coaches have given to all of us to have an opportunity to make the team. It is unbelievable and I am just so grateful.”

Coyle understands there is work to be done and the real work for the rookie starts this coming Tuesday when OTAs begins. With plenty of tight ends under contract, Coyle has an outside chance to make the Texans practice squad and his main competition will come from fellow rookie Anthony Denham. Totally opposite players when it come to the position, Denham’s athleticism works with his ability to be a pass catching threat, while Coyle is more of the H-Back type that can do it all with good hands and blocking ability.

The journey has started for Coyle and there is work to be done.

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