This is the first in a three-part ‘Huddle Up with Tony Gonzalez’ series. You can catch Part II on Sept. 9 and Part III on Sept. 16.
Tony Gonzalez, a likely first-ballot Hall of Famer when he becomes eligible in 2019 and member of “The NFL Today” on CBS Sports, spent part of his offseason visiting some elite high school football programs around the country. His first stop was Loyola Academy in Wilmette, Illinois. The Ramblers went 14-0 on their way to a state championship in 2015, the sixth time in seven years they’ve made it to the title game.
“What he’s gonna have to learn is, when you play tight end it’s a dual position — meaning you’re an offensive lineman and you’re a receiver … I’m from the old school. You play tight end, you block.”Tony Gonzalez
Gonzalez went and checked out a few practices, where he was hosted by the team’s coach and former eight-year NFL veteran John Holocek. Holocek spent six seasons as a linebacker for the Bills before ending his career with one-year stints on the Chargers and Falcons. He became Loyola’s head coach back in 2006 and his teams have made the playoffs every single season since.
Gonzalez came away from his time with the team especially impressed with two players in particular: wide receiver Noah Jones (No. 21), whom Gonzalez told that he should be one of the top receivers in the country in a couple years; and tight end Jake Marwede, who was recruited by Ohio State and Alabama but committed to play at Duke. Gonzalez gave Marwede some personal instruction on his blocking and in the film room.
“What he’s gonna have to learn is, when you play tight end it’s a dual position — meaning you’re an offensive lineman and you’re a receiver,” Gonzalez said. “That’s something that a lot of tight ends have to learn. I’m from the old school. You play tight end, you block.”
This is still the best pass-catching tight end in NFL history we’re talking about here though, so he also made sure to tell Marwede that he needs to set a personal goal of catching at least 10 touchdowns this upcoming season. Gonzalez spent 12 of his 17 seasons with the Chiefs (1997-2008) and finished his career with the Falcons.
Source: CBS Sports / Tony Gonzalez give players at Loyola Academy in Chicago some practice tips, advice