Today’s NFL teams are looking for versatile tight end prospects who can do it all, and Texas A&M had one of the nation’s best-kept secrets in that department. This may be a historically deep class at the position, but Jace Sternberger is a name worth mentioning amongst the top prospects.
Sternberger played just one season for the Aggies, but he showcased the size and speed that will make him a match-up nightmare at the next level.
Sternberger recently spoke exclusively with MCM about how he can help a team at the next level, what he enjoys about playing tight end and why he can’t wait to try all the delicious food the world has to offer.
JM: What do you enjoy most about playing tight end?
JS: I love running with the football in my hands. Seeing what I can do after the catch gets me excited. I look forward to that every single time. I also love making contested catches. It’s fun to go up in traffic and come down with it. I remember playing backyard football as a kid and trying to make contested catches. I find that to be quite exciting.
JM: You recorded 47 receptions this year for 804 yards and 10 touchdowns. The double digits in touchdowns is the most impressive to me. What about your game allows you to find the end zone so often?
JS: It kinda just goes back to my mentality. I run every route like it’s man coverage. I always have the same mindset, I’m always thinking that nobody is capable of covering me. I feel like I’m fast enough to run by anybody, especially in the red zone.
JM: Playing at Texas A&M allowed you to face some big time competition. Did any defensive players on the opposition ever catch your eye?
JS: There was definitely a few guys that caught my eye. One would be Grant Delpit from LSU. He’s not even in this draft but he’s already that good. He’s a sophomore at LSU. He was probably one of my toughest battles from anyone I faced in any secondary. Defensive line wise I’d have to go with Christian Miller from Alabama or Josh Allen from Kentucky. They were both great.
JM: You mentioned three great players there. Going back to your high school years, you played some defensive end in 2014 and had 21 sacks which is hilarious. You also played basketball and ran track. Do you think that not specializing in tight end or football period too early helped you in the long run?
JS: Most definitely. My dad was the school superintendent and he used to coach. They never really wanted me to specialize in a sport. They wanted me to enjoy the high school process. Play as many things as your body will let you. Coming from a smaller school, if you were a half decent athlete, you played every sport there. There really wasn’t anything else to do. I definitely feel like I benefited from playing multiple sports.
JM: I agree. I think some kids specialize too early nowadays.
JS: I definitely agree with you. I feel like they get wrapped up in what other people are telling them. At the end of the day, let a kid be a kid. You just need to be a kid at that age. You can’t tell me that a 15 year old kid knows what he wants to do for the rest of his life. If that was the case, everybody would be successful. You need to try as many different things as you can and really just develop as a young man.
JM: I love that answer and I fully agree. If you could catch a pass from one NFL QB, who would it be and why?
JS: Man, that’s tough. I was actually thinking about this the other day for fun. I would honestly have to say Tom Brady because he’s such a legend. I’ve just respected his game for so long. I can name a bunch of quarterbacks that it would be cool to catch passes from though.
JM: Who are some others?
JS: Drew Brees is definitely another one. I grew up a Philadelphia Eagles fan so I have to say Carson Wentz. If Lamar Jackson would have stayed at Louisville, I was being recruited by Louisville. We could have played together. I feel like it would be cool to catch a pass from him. I grew up as a fan watching all of these guys. The fact that I’m going to be playing in the NFL is crazy to me (laughs). It’s gonna be cool to catch a pass from any NFL quarterback.
From my TE prospect article...— Chris Trapasso (@ChrisTrapasso) February 14, 2019
I have Texas A&M's Jace Sternberger in my "No. 1 TE" tier, right behind Hockenson and Fant.
Smooth athlete. Decent blocker. Very effective after the catch. Solid prospect.
JM: What are some of your hobbies outside of football?
JS: I’m really big into clothing and fashion. I love going out to eat. I love trying new foods. I used to watch diners, drive ins and dives with my dad on the Food Network (laughs). That’s one of the things I wanna do. I wanna travel the world and try all these different restaurants.
JM: That’s great. In closing, when a team drafts Jace Sternberger, what kind of guy are they getting?
JS: They’re getting a high character guy who holds himself accountable. At the end of the day, I just wanna win. I’ll do whatever it takes, even if it means I gotta play long snapper.