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Del Oro alum Ryan Otten excited for NFL Draft

Tight end projected to go in later rounds
By: Matthew Kimel, Journal sports editor
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The day Ryan Otten has been waiting for is almost here.

“It’s been a dream I’ve had since before I even got to high school,” said Otten, a 2008 Del Oro alumnus. “I always wanted to someday get to the NFL and get to the highest level. I’m almost there. It’s kind of surreal.”

Numerous experts throughout the country have Otten listed in their mock draft. The 6-foot-6, 245-pound tight end is projected to go in the later rounds of this year’s NFL Draft, which kicks off on Thursday.

Otten, speaking last week by phone from the Bay Area where he recently obtained a business management degree at San Jose State University, said he’s both anxious and excited for what’s ahead in the upcoming days.

“I’m ready to go out there and get started,” he said.

Otten’s game has come a long way since he started playing in junior football programs for the Golden Eagles in the fifth grade.

“You get a little better each year just from playing,” said Otten, who as a senior caught 47 balls for 742 yards and four touchdowns for the Spartans, who went 11-2 and capped their season off with a Military Bowl victory. “You mature more, get bigger, stronger, faster each year through high school and college. Now I’m ready for the next level.”

Since graduating in December, Otten’s been working on getting even bigger, stronger and faster. He’s been lifting weights, running routes and catching balls in San Jose.

On Saturday, he drove back home to Loomis, where he plans to watch the draft with family and friends. 

“It’s going to be pretty low-key,” he said of his viewing party.  

Otten still heads to Golden Eagle Stadium whenever he gets a chance to catch a Del Oro football game.

Growing up in Northern California, Otten was a fan of both the San Francisco 49ers and Oakland Raiders. He also rooted for the Minnesota Vikings as he enjoyed watching Randy Moss.

At the moment, Otten doesn’t have a favorite team.

“My favorite NFL team will be whichever one drafts me,” he said.

And he wouldn’t mind one bit if a NorCal team selected him.

“I think that would be awesome,” he said. “Friends and family could watch me play.”

 

Reach Matthew Kimel at matthewk@goldcountrymedia.com. Follow him on Twitter@matthewkimel