Jaleel Skinner has big opportunity with Elijah Arroyo out for the season

Sep 3, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 3, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /

The announcement by Miami Hurricanes’ head coach Mario Cristobal that second-team tight end Elijah Arroyo is out for the season provides a big opportunity for true freshman Jaleel Skinner. Jaleel Skinner will become the second-team TE behind starter Will Mallory for the remainder of the 2022 season.

Jaleel Skinner has five receptions for 87 yards this season. The biggest game for Skinner came on Saturday against North Carolina with three receptions for 40 yards. Skinner had a key reception on the last Miami drive of the game. The game against North Carolina was the first one missed by Arroyo.

Miami flipped Skinner from Alabama when he signed in the Class of 2022. Skinner was the 102nd-ranked player, third TE and 15th in Florida out of IMG Academy in the Class of 2022. At 6’5, 210 pounds, Skinner has room to fill out into his body. An 80-inch wingspan should make Skinner and third down and red zone threat.

Mallory leads the Miami football team with 20 receptions and 242 yards after a career game versus North Carolina. Mallory set career highs with eight receptions for 115 yards versus the Tar Heels. The scouting report on Skinner from Andrew Ivins of 247 Sports states Skinner has to improve as a blocker.

Ivins also stated that Skinner needs to improve his ability for “attacking the ball in the air.” Ivins projects Skinner as an eventual second or third-round NFL Draft pick and compares him to longtime NFL TE Jared Cook. Mallory and Skinner provide Miami with an excellent receiving tandem at TE going forward.

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Miami quarterback Tyler Van Dyke was much more comfortable in the Hurricanes’ offense against North Carolina than in the previous four games this season. Mallory and Skinner combined for 11 receptions for 155 yards against North Carolina. Van Dyke is likely to continue to target Mallory and Skinner in the passing game.