Payne Durham 2023 NFL Draft Profile

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AP Photo/Doug McSchooler
  • Position: Tight end
  • School: Purdue
  • Class: Senior
  • Height: 6-5
  • Weight: 258

Strengths

Payne Durham is a physical tight end who excels at blocking, by initiating violently at pad level with defenders on the correct shoulder to open up run lanes for ball carriers. Durham uses his size and weight to over-power defenders while blocking and is just effective at the second level. He displays soft hands while catching passes and understands soft spots in zone coverages, with using his body to box out defenders in the seams or catching a pass in the soft spot. The big tight end is aggressive in contested situations, as he uses his height and body frame to out-jump/absorb contact. He’s physical in run-after-catch situations, and he rarely goes down upon initial contact. Durham displays strength to carry multiple defenders upon contact for yards after catch as well.

Scheme Fit

Durham excels in 12 personnel, where he can be matched with a linebacker or safety one-on-one and win in the seams. He can easily beat cover 3 coverages and have the option of the seam or soft spot in coverage. Durham can also be utilized in the slot in certain formations as a “big slot.”

Weaknesses

  • Does not have speed to threat defenses deep.
  • Needs to be more consistent on tracking the ball.

Overall

Durham is a big physical tight end who absorbs contact in the middle of the defense and will use his wing span to secure the pass in traffic. He has body control and awareness to catch over smaller defenders and box-out defenders in tight spaces on the field. Durham is a receiving threat and will constantly move the chains. He’s also a big red zone target. Durham is not the most athletic as far as speed. However, he uses his 6’5″ frame, large wing span, and 258 pounds to out-muscle defenders for catches and produce yards after the catch.