You could be forgiven for writing off Levine Toilolo after the Falcons went out and signed a pair of free agent tight ends, especially after Toilolo's extremely disappointing 2014 season.
I wouldn't do that, though. Toilolo is probably never going to turn into a great tight end, and my projections for his 2014 season were crazily overblown, but he still has all the physical tools and opportunity he'll need to make an impact. The question is simply whether he can play better and leverage his absurd height into red zone snaps, as that remains his ideal role.
It's a fair question. What we saw from Toilolo last year was borderline brutal, as he struggled to get open despite his height and the team letting him run a ton of routes. His blocking was better, but not exactly good, and given how little the Falcons should have needed from him, it all adds up to a lousy year.
As a red zone target, blocking tight end and part-time receiver in two tight ends sets, though, Toilolo has the potential to be useful. Given that his only real competition for that role comes in the form of oft-injured Tony Moeaki, journeyman Mickey Shuler and undrafted rookie Beau Gardner, I'd be hard-pressed to bet against him finding his way into playing time in 2015, and certainly he'll have more chances once Moeaki's contract comes off the books a year from now.
More than anything, though, just not having Toilolo in a feature role he definitely was unprepared for will make a massive difference. Let him continue to develop, let him contribute on special teams and as a specialized option on two tight end sets and then see if he's going to be part of your long-term plans in 2016, because his contract will be up after that year. Chances are that with a solid year that builds on what he's good at, Toilolo will prove useful again, and perhaps a little more than that.
What say you?