Nelson had an early impact for USM, and continued to be a factor throughout his career. As a freshman, he hauled in 35 passes for 540 yards and three scores. As a sophomore, he battled hand and ankle injuries but still caught 36 passes for 506 yards and three touchdowns. As a junior, Nelson caught 33 balls for 451 yards and a career high five touchdowns. He was again a playmaker as a senior, catching 53 passes for 557 yards and three scores.
Nelson is a big time receiver from the tight end position. He is an excellent athlete that has smooth actions on the field. He is very fluid and has the quickness and speed to get open and make plays. He also has long arms and fantastic hands, catching anything in his vicinity. Nelson has a great frame, and has the room to get bigger. He also shows potential as a blocker, because he gives the effort in this aspect, which is rare for college TE’s with his receiving skills.
His lanky frame will need to be addressed quickly for him to develop his all around skills. He is simply too thin and must bulk up and get stronger to be a factor as a blocker. Until he does that, he will be pushed around and will have to be moved around to utilize his pass catching ability.
Nelson is one of the best TE’s available for the draft and could push to be the second or third selected in April. He is a great receiver right now, but brings some upside to be a complete TE down the road.