Tyler Cameron’s conversion to tight end was arguably FAU’s biggest offensive personnel success last season.
FAU coach Charlie Partridge expects Cameron to be even better this season.
“He’s going into camp knowing he’s playing the position,” Partridge said. “He’s been gearing himself toward this position. He’s been catching it as opposed to throwing it.”
A quarterback at Wake Forest, Cameron transferred to FAU last summer. He began fall camp as part of the battle to back up quarterback Quez Johnson.
Eager to take advantage of Cameron’s athleticism, FAU asked him to try playing tight end. It didn’t take long before Cameron became a full-time tight end.
He caught 21 passes for 257 yards and threw only one pass all season.
Cameron’s smooth transition to tight end made this spring’s decision to move Nate Terry from tight end to wide receiver easier.
Quick and possessing good hands, Cameron has added weight in the offseason but still lacks the bulk of a traditional tight end. He’s still improving as a blocker.
“There’s a lot of tight ends that play for a long time that maybe they don’t go in there and knock you on your back but they just don’t stop,” Partridge said. “That’s the thing that Tyler displayed right away. He’s just not going to stop blocking you. If you think you are just going to knock him out of the way and fall off a block and make a tackle as a defender, that’s just not going to happen because he’s going to stay on your body, he’s going to keep moving his feet, he’s going to make you work. And now Tyler has more practice at the technique of doing that so we have a lot of confidence in putting him in multiple positions both blocking and pass catching.”
Should the Owls need a little more bulk, they can turn to 6-foot-4, 260-pound redshirt junior Dustin Bowens.
“He’s a big body that takes a lot of pride in putting his hat on you and moving defensive ends out of there, if he’s going against a defensive end, or getting up on a linebacker,” Partridge said of Bowens.
FAUOwlAccess.com Projected Depth Chart
Tyler Cameron (6-3, 240, R-Sr.)
Showed flashes of becoming a play-maker in the passing game last season. Given a full year to learn the position, Cameron stands to become both a weapon and a security blanket for whichever player wins the current quarterback battle.
Dustin Bowens (6-4, 260, R-Jr.)
Moved from the defensive line to tight end last season. Continues to improve as a pass receiver.
“The growth of his blocking combined with the improvement in his ability to catch the ball, these things really put Dustin in a place to have a good year,” Partridge said.
Jacob Wilson (6-4, 245, R-So.)
Biggest contributions in 2016 will likely come on special teams. Wilson “still has growth to come before we feel he’s someone that’s going to be a factor on Saturdays, but we are seeing improvements with him,” Partridge said.