C.J. Fiedorowicz came away from last month's Senior Bowl feeling pretty good about his performance.
Apparently, he wasn't the only one.
Phil Savage, a former NFL assistant coach, scout and general manager who now serves as the Senior Bowl's executive director, ranked the former Johnsburg and Iowa standout as the top tight end prospect from the week-long event in Mobile, Ala.
Savage released his rankings on Tuesday. The former Cleveland Browns general manager also predicted that Fiedorowicz would make a contribution to whatever NFL team drafts him and believes the 6-foot-5, 265-pound tight end will be a NFL starter within three years.
"He has excellent size with a proportioned body and is physical enough to continue developing as a blocker," Savage wrote. "He demonstrated more suddenness in and out of his cuts that will allow him to get separation when facing man coverage.
"His hands are dependable, and he provides a large catching radius for the QB. Expect to see C.J. get on the field as a rookie in two- and three-TE personnel groupings. He has the physical development and mental maturity to contribute in his first year."
Savage ranked Fiedorowicz ahead of Georgia's Arthur Lynch and Colorado State's Crockett Gillmore among the six tight ends he ranked for the week.
Fiedorowicz will be one of 22 tight ends that will participate at the NFL Combine starting next week in Indianapolis. He was also named the Senior Bowl's top receiver based on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday practices. Fiedorowicz did not have a catch in the Senior Bowl game, telling the Northwest Herald that "When it mattered most, I feel like I did my best."
Fiedorowicz said he would grade himself out with a 'B or B+"– only because he feels like there is always something he can work on. He said although he was satisfied overall with his blocking and pass-catching, there were little things that he feels like he can clean up before he heads to Indianapolis.
"The first practice, I was a little nervous – it was a big crowd and I knew it was all scouts and I had the butterflies in my stomach," Fiedorowicz said in the recent phone interview. "Once the practices starting going, that all left and I just went out and played football and did my thing. It was just natural."