Gee Scott Jr. Remains Optimistic About Future at Tight End As He Strives to Become Complete Player at Position

By Dan Hope on August 17, 2022 at 10:10 am
Gee Scott Jr.

Because Gee Scott Jr. began his Ohio State career as a wide receiver, it’s easy to think of him as more of a pass-catcher than a true tight end. But that’s not what Scott wants you to think.

Since Scott made the move to tight end last offseason, the widespread expectation has been that Scott will be more of a hybrid receiver than an in-line blocker for the Buckeyes. Scott himself seemed to lean into that idea when he first talked about his position change last August.

“When you think tight end, you think of somebody that’s a 6-6, 260-pound slower guy that blocks, and that kind of has been the history of the game and that’s kind of the way it’s been going, but if you look kind of in the future of where the tight end position could potentially go, you could see it being more of an elite, faster and someone that’s physical, kind of like a receiver that almost transitions into a tight end,” Scott said then.

A year later, however, Scott wants to be seen as a tight end rather than a receiver who plays tight end. He’s bulked up accordingly, putting on 20 pounds this offseason to reach his current weight of 240 pounds, and has embraced the nitty-gritty aspects of playing his new position.

“The more one-sided you are, which I was last year, I was a 220 guy – when I'm in the game, they dang near counted me as a receiver. They kind of just figured that it was gonna be a route being ran, and it's not very realistic,” Scott said Monday. “So my goal as a tight end is to not have a (specific) role. I can do everything. It's like that running back that he's just your speed back and he plays on speed downs or a third-down back, but I want to be the guy that’s every down.”

Scott referenced Netflix’s recent documentary on Kanye West when explaining why he wants to be regarded as a true tight end rather than a hybrid.

“Everyone would call him a producer. He said, ‘Kanye, you're a great producer, man, you're such a good producer.’ And Kanye said, ‘No, I want to be a rapper. I’m a rapper, I want to be the greatest rapper ever,’” Scott said. “That's what I feel like. I don't want to be, I'm not a receiver that plays tight end. I'm a tight end that plays tight end and I want to be a great tight end.”

Now that Scott is physically built like a tight end, he feels capable of doing everything he’s expected to do at the position. While he acknowledges he isn’t quite as explosive out of his releases as he was when he arrived at Ohio State as a 210-pound receiver, he says he doesn’t feel slower but feels much stronger as a blocker.

“When I first got over there and I'm blocking these big guys, the coaches were obviously taking care of me. They wouldn't have me going these bigger blocks when I was 215 pounds,” Scott said. “But now that I'm a lot bigger, I feel like I take on all the blocks pretty well.”

Fellow Ohio State tight end Cade Stover says Scott has come “a long way” in his development since he initially changed positions in the spring of 2021.

“He's put on the weight, he's worked hard in his blocking game and stuff like that, so he's really coming along well,” Stover said.

Even so, Scott knows his development as a tight end remains a work in progress.

“It's not something that you jump over and learn and I'm ready to play tight end and the next day, you're great,” Scott said. “You got to completely erase that mindset if you want to go into this position. There's so many jobs, I have to be a right tackle and I also have to be a wide receiver running against these small, fast DBs, and I gotta be big enough to block these big D-ends. So it's a lot of jobs that you got to be able to do, and it's something that you got to be ready to be in for the long haul.

“This is a position that I probably won't be my best until five, six, seven years from now when I’m three or four years in the NFL. It's not going to be an overnight thing.”

“I’m not a receiver that plays tight end. I’m a tight end that plays tight end and I want to be a great tight end.”– Gee Scott Jr.

As such, it still remains uncertain how much playing time Scott will actually see this season. Ohio State offensive coordinator and tight ends coach Kevin Wilson said Monday that Scott is currently competing with fellow third-year Joe Royer to be the Buckeyes’ third tight end, as Stover and Mitch Rossi have established themselves as Ohio State’s top two tight ends for the time being.

“You got Gee and Joe figuring out that next niche and how good are you without the ball and blocking. And what's the blocking matchups? And then what's the route running? And they've been a little, you see it, and then a little inconsistency as they're growing,” Wilson said. “So I think both of those guys are kind of jabbing back and forth.”

As his quest to earn significant playing time at Ohio State continues, Scott admits he has had second thoughts at times about whether his move to tight end was the right decision. But he remains optimistic that decision will ultimately lead to succeed both as a Buckeye and in the NFL.

“I feel good. And it's just a matter of just understanding that it's going to take time. And just keep going and just get rid of discouragement because discouragement’s always going to try to come into your ear,” said Scott, who still has three more years of eligibility including this season. “Anything you want to try in this world new, discouragement is going to come in and it's just your job just to stay consistent. And like I said, keep putting one foot in front of the other and keep putting together good days.”

Scott also says his priorities have changed since he arrived at Ohio State. While he had his sights set on individual stardom when he became a Buckeye in 2020, the four-star recruit from Washington says he’s now focused on doing whatever he can to help the team win, even if that means waiting another year or two to play a major role and become an NFL draft prospect.

“When I first got here, I wanted it to be the Gee Scott show. That’s how I felt, that was where my heart was at,” Scott said. “But man, when you've been here, I’m going into my third year now and you really get to – and this isn't no corny stuff, this is real – when you get to spend time with these guys and you really get to be around the team a lot, it’s really, you start to form a brotherhood. So then your mind starts switching from selfishness to almost, ‘Where can I benefit the team?’

“And so if that takes me, if I'm a three-year guy and this is my last year and I'm out, great. If I'm a five-year guy, it is what it is. My goal is I want to win national championships and I want to be a great component to the team and do the job that I need to do.”

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