Throughout the month of June, we'll be breaking down each of the Jets' undrafted free agent signings in detail. We start today with a look at former Oklahoma fullback Dimitri Flowers.
The 22-year old Flowers is listed at 6'2" and 248 pounds. He caught 54 passes for 886 yards and 13 touchdowns and rushed for 151 yards and four more touchdowns in his four-year career with the Sooners.
Flowers played in 53 games over four seasons for the Sooners having been ranked as the fifth best fullback recruit in the nation coming out of high school.
He started five games and caught nine passes for 92 yards as a freshman and four more games in his sophomore year, catching eight more passes for 130 yards and the first four touchdowns of his career.
In his junior year, he started 10 games and caught 11 passes for 200 yards and four more touchdowns. He also had one game where he played the tailback position and rushed for 115 yards on the only 22 carries he had in his first three years.
As a senior, he set career highs with 26 catches, 464 yards and five touchdown catches. He was also used as a short yardage back, adding another four rushing scores.
Let's move onto some more in-depth analysis of what Flowers brings to the table, based on extensive research and film study.
As you can see, Flowers posted unremarkable results across the board in his combine workout. However he displays power and agility at times on the field:
Flowers played in a variety of roles at Oklahoma, not just as a conventional fullback.
In 2017, he actually lined up outside the tackle more than in the backfield, usually as an h-back on the tackle's shoulder but occasionally as a conventional inline tight end. He also lined up in the slot regularly.
He even took some snaps as a wildcat quarterback in short yardage situations and played as a tailback at times.
Flowers is an interesting weapon in the passing game because he generates production as a downfield threat as well as on dump off passes. He averaged 16 yards per catch over the course of his career.
Here he lines up at tight end and gets open on an out-breaking route for a first down:
Flowers doesn't generally get open downfield by creating separation with his route running, as he usually just leaks out and can be effective in the open field:
However, he fools the defensive back - his cousin Tre Flowers - with a sharp cut on this play:
Flowers hands are very reliable, as he had a catch rate of 86 percent in college and only a couple of drops in total.
He looks natural catching the ball and shows a surprising adeptness for going up to make catches over defenders, hanging onto the ball in traffic and getting his feet inbounds on sideline catches:
Brown only had one game where he was used in a conventional tailback role and he responded with a 115 yard performance, during which he showed good patience and vision. He's not particularly elusive, but was really good in that game at falling forwards for extra yardage at the end of the run.
Flowers was effective in a short yardage role for the first time last year. His ability to hit the hole hard and fall forward after first contact is useful here.
He shows good vision here to bounce the run out to the edge for an easy score:
Flowers is an effective blocker, both at the point of attack and in space while on the move.
One of the plays he carries out effectively is lead blocking on a trap play. He'll also block down on defensive linemen effectively at times.
He locates his target well here in space to drive him back and set up a touchdown run:
Flowers will make aggressive blocks and take out defensive backs at times, but he doesn't fall into the trap of trying to light his man up and failing to sustain the block as often as many young fullbacks do. However, he can be inconsistent with his angles or lose control of his block at times.
His abilities in space led Oklahoma to put him out in the slot as a lead blocker on receiver screens and he was able to make some effective blocks in that role. However, on this occasion he doesn't engage his man in time and fails to sustain his block, leading to this play being blown up:
Flowers has plenty of experience staying in to pass block and managed to go through the 2017 season without giving up a sack.
He surrenders a quarterback hit on this play as he fails to prevent his man from getting upfield as the quarterback rolls out:
Flowers has had some success as a blocker on the kick return unit. He opens up a big lane here, going right to left, to set up an 80-yard return:
He also had four penalties, though, although all of these were during the 2015 season.
In addition, Flowers fielded three kickoffs as an upback, returning them for a total of 11 yards.
In 2017, Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley described Flowers as the "smartest offensive player on the team". Playing multiple roles usually goes hand in hand with good instincts and command of the offense.
He seems to have a good knack for finding open spots in the defense when running routes. On this play, he does a good job of finding an open area once the play gets extended:
Flowers is also a pretty good open field runner and adept at picking the right hole when in the backfield.
There were occasions, however, both in terms of run blocking and pass protection, where he struggled to locate his target in space or seemed unsure of who he was supposed to block.
In 2017, Flowers was the recipient of the Don Key Award at Oklahoma, which rewards a player for their qualities on and off the field.
He's also regarded as tough and with a good work ethic and he plays with effort and passion.
He was frustrated with himself after getting flagged for a costly unsportsmanlike penalty in the 2015 Orange Bowl. This "stupid penalty" (in Flowers' own words) caused an early drive to stall:
Injuries weren't really a problem for Flowers at OU, as he played in 53 games in four years. The worst issue he had was a hyper-extended knee in the spring early on in his career, but he was healthy in time for the start of the season. He was knocked out of one game against Louisiana-Monroe with an arm injury but that wasn't serious either.
Flowers is an exciting addition that could bring another dimension to the Jets' offense. As much fun as it was putting the oversized Lawrence Thomas in the backfield, he was a very inconsistent blocker and Flowers has a much more varied skill-set.
It would be optimistic to suggest there was a strong chance that he could be as good as Jets' great Richie Anderson was but he could certainly be the same kind of player in terms of being able to contribute in a variety of ways with the occasional threat of a big play from time to time.
We've heard how important running backs coach Stump Mitchell believes the fullback position is and new running game coordinator Rick Dennison is also someone who favors their use. That means the job is there for the taking and the rookie Flowers probably has an experience edge over his main competition for the role.
He can't assume that spot is his though. Each of the Jets tight ends could line up in the backfield and contribute, so if Flowers struggles to impress in camp, that's probably the option the Jets will go with - or maybe they'll bring in another fullback from somewhere else.
However, if Flowers can earn that spot, his film indicates he has the potential to be a really good one as well as being a possible fan favorite.