After setting the NFL single-season record for receptions by a tight end with 116, Zach Ertz has earned the No. 40 spot on the NFL’s Top 100 list heading into the 2019-20 season. Ertz moved up 28 spots from last season when he came in at 68th on the list after the Eagles’ Super Bowl season.
The annual countdown of the league’s best 100 players is currently through players 21-100, and four Eagles are on the list. In addition to Ertz, Philadelphia has Fletcher Cox (No. 28), Jason Kelce (No. 72) and Carson Wentz (No. 96) on the list of the NFL’s most elite players as voted on by the players themselves. Ertz is currently third among all NFL tight ends on the list, with only Kansas City’s Travis Kelce (No. 21) and San Francisco’s George Kittle (No. 28) ahead of him.
As seen in the video, Ertz’s peers had some high praise for No. 86.
“When I think about the best tight end in the NFL, I think about Zach Ertz,” Redskins tight end Vernon Davis said.
Kittle also expressed his amazement at No. 86’s abilities on the field, particularly citing Zach’s innate ability to catch seemingly everything that comes near him.
“He catches every single thing you throw at him,” 49ers tight end George Kittle said.
Kittle isn’t too far off, as Ertz posted the 10th best catch rate in the NFL last season. Of players with 100 receptions, only Michael Thomas posted a better catch rate. Thomas was also the only player in the league to catch more passes than Ertz a season ago with 125 receptions.
Ertz enters this season coming off the best individual year of his career. One of Philadelphia’s most reliable targets snagged 116 passes for over 1,000 yards. He was one of only three tight ends across the entire NFL to reach the end zone eight times last season, and Travis Kelce (103) was the only other tight end in the league to surpass 90 catches.
His stellar play has given Vernon Davis, a two-time pro bowler who is entering his 14th NFL campaign, a reason to look forward to his future Sundays when he ultimately decides to hang up his cleats.
“I know that my time is running short in the NFL, and he’ll still be playing, and I get an opportunity to sit on the couch and watch him play,” Redskins tight end Vernon Davis said.
Ertz and the Eagles begin preseason play on August 8 against the Tennessee Titans, where Zach will look to continue earning respect among his peers as he and this year’s Eagles will begin striving towards another Lombardi Trophy.