Tight End stories in the SI Vault

"I'm Going To Punish Them For Last Year" By Gwilym S. Brown, August 30, 1971 Coming off a knee operation, hassled by negotiations, the mighty John Mackey was a flop on the field. Now he is out for revenge.

To Be Tight, You've Got To Be Loose By Ron Reid, September 04, 1978 And that's not all. A good tight end has to be as fast as a running back, have hands as good as a wide receiver and be big and strong enough to block the likes of Harvey Martin or Lyle Alzado.

The Doggone Best By Rick Telander, September 01, 1982 San Diego's Kellen Winslow (left) and San Francisco's Dwight Clark, the NFL's top two receivers in 1980 and '81, proved they are a breed apart during last season's playoffs.

"I Can Catch The Rock" By Paul Zimmerman, August 10, 1987 When L.A. Raider tight end Todd Christensen puts on his personal highlight tape, it is easy to see how he made 349 receptions in the last four years. The best catch of all: When L.A. signed him up.

The Ditka Dilemma By Peter King, July 30, 1990 Can Chicago icon Mike Ditka calmly return the Bears to prominence and win a new contract as coach?

Lip Shtick By Rick Reilly, Fenruary 1, 1999 Want to know what Broncos All-Pro tight end Sharpe thinks about football, family, females, food, fame and fortune, among other things? Just ask him. The Tight End: Version 2.0 By Jeffri Chadiha, September 25, 2006 Once the domain of sluggish, one-dimensional players, the NFL's latest It Position has been upgraded by a new generation of game-breakers, and the most dangerous of them is Antonio Gates.

Tight Is Right By Gene Menez, November 13, 2006 O.K., so they haven't been the smash hits of the season as predicted, but tight ends can still make the difference for your team down the stretch.

The Transformative Power Of Tony Gonzalez By Austin Murphy, August 03, 2009 Is he the best tight end ever? That's up for debate. What isn't in question is his determination to help turn the upstart Falcons into Super Bowl contenders.

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