COLUMBIA, Mo. • As much as Missouri quarterback Drew Lock wants to improve his accuracy this season there’s one area of the field where he can afford to be less than perfect: When he throws the ball to Planet Blanton.
Junior tight end Kendall Blanton wears No. 11 but could probably squeeze his own zip code onto the back of his jersey. When it comes to what NFL draftniks call a receiver’s catch radius, Mizzou might need the math department to measure Blanton’s.
At 6-foot-6 and 268 pounds, Blanton is a month of protein shakes away from joining the offensive line, but Lock’s biggest target runs and catches like a wide receiver. Blanton caught 16 of the 28 passes thrown his way last year and could become the ultimate chess piece for Lock and coordinator Josh Heupel this fall.
Tight ends coach Joe Jon Finley does not temper his thoughts on Blanton’s potential.
“As high as any tight end that’s played the game,” he said. “He’s got every tool you can ask for.”
Starting with a massive frame that’s impossible to miss on the field, unless you’re Middle Tennessee’s Alex Dale. With the Tigers perched in the red zone in last year’s homecoming game, the 5-foot-10 free safety crept toward the line of scrimmage and gave himself a front-row seat to one of Mizzou’s best highlights of the season. Blanton burst off the line of scrimmage with a clear path to the end zone and snagged Lock’s 15-yard pass with only his right hand as he crashed to the turf.
Teammates still marvel at the catch, including his roommate right tackle Paul…
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