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Texas offers No. 2 2017 TE Kedrick James

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Tight ends coach Jeff Traylor isn't wasting any time offering the state's best prospects at his position.

Kedrick James
Kedrick James
Student Sports

After offering elite Cy-Fair tight end Brock Wright last week, the Texas Longhorns extended an offer to the state's second-best tight end prospect, Waco La Vega's Kedrick James, on Thursday.

As with Wright, the recruitment of James is already quite advanced based on his offer list, which includes Arkansas, Baylor, Illinois, Kansas, Miami, TCU, Texas A&M, and Texas Tech. The rankings already reflect the perception of the La Vega product's talent -- he's a consensus four-star prospect rated as the No. 131 prospect overall and the No. 17 player in Texas, in addition to his position as the No. 2 tight end nationally behind Wright, according to the 247Sports Composite.

The 247Sports Crystal Ball already has three predictions for hometown Baylor, but James has the look of a prospect who will eventually hold offers from most major national programs, so it's far too soon to even consider him a heavy Bears lean.

From the Texas standpoint, making an early move on James is absolutely the right decision by tight ends coach Jeff Traylor, who is in the position of struggling to make up ground with all the prospects at his position who weren't offered early by his predecessor.

Here's what Jonathan Wells had to say about James back in March:

Listed at an eye-catching 6'6" and 235 pounds (though he's probably at least an inch shorter), James is a power forward on the football field who has the look of a potential superstar. As a freshman, he not only played on La Vega's varsity basketball team but was named a 2nd team all-district selection. As a sophomore on La Vega's varsity football team, he put together a highlight reel of plays that was as brief as it was tantalizing. To state the obvious: watching a one-minute highlight video is not a substitute for doing an exhaustive scouting report on an entire game's worth of a player's film, or talking with his coach to learn about his strengths and areas needing improvement. To state what should be obvious after watching James's 1:06 sophomore highlight video: 6'5" guys weighing 220-230 who can move like him, and who are a threat to catch the ball up the seam and take it the distance at any time don't grow on trees.

There's only so many plays you can fit into 1:06, and how consistent his hands are, how good his blocking technique is from one play to the next, and how crisply he runs his routes are not things you'll learn from the video. But the pure ability and physical talent he shows in those few clips is near-elite for the position. His Hudl also includes a few of his basketball highlights from the current season, and in those he shows the ability to elevate and slam home a dunk after jumping flat-footed (see: this dunk vs. Lorena).

Indeed, James measured in at just under 6'5 in Dallas back in March, but is now up to 245 pounds. He has the frame to hold about as much weight as a future college program would like to put on him, so the extent to which he develops physically could impact eventual position.

It's not out of the question that he could grow into a offensive tackle if he's an easy gainer, but there are examples of prospects like Texas A&M signee Jordan Davis who seem to be on that trajectory and then essentially maintain their weight over the course of several years.

Based on the testing in Dallas, James is a good athlete, posting a 4.64 shuttle and 29.3-inch vertical leap that are both strong results for a prospect of his size and age. Based on those numbers and his film, his 5.13 40-yard dash is probably not an entirely accurate insight into his athleticism.