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Wide receiver or tight end? Michigan's Funchess: 'I consider myself a ballplayer'

Wide receiver or tight end? Michigan's Funchess: 'I consider myself a ballplayer'
Devin Funchess (right) could help an NFL team, regardless of whether he's classified as a tight end or wide receiver. (Alex Goodlett, Getty Images)

The debate from NFL teams about Michigan standout Devin Funchess hasn't stopped.

Determining whether Funchess is a big wide receiver, an athletic tight end -- or perhaps both depending on the offensive scheme -- has become a popular topic in NFL circles.

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Funchess' opinion: "I consider myself as a ballplayer."

Funchess played one full season at wide receiver this past season. And the 6-foot-4, 232-pound second-team All-Big Ten Conference selection caught 62 passes for 733 yards and four touchdowns.

Although Funchess wasn't the most consistent player for the Wolverines, the potential first-round draft pick did finish his career with 126 receptions, 1,715 yards and 15 touchdowns. Funchess began his career as a wide receiver before moving to tight end. He was named the Big Ten Tight End of the Year as a sophomore and was then moved back to wide receiver.

"I really went from wide receiver to tight end, back to wide receiver," Funchess said. "Coming out of high school, I played wide receiver and then they moved me to tight end.

"I talked to tons of teams. They get a feel for me and take their own analysis on me and see what they want to do."

Funchess' combination of athleticism and size has intrigued teams. He's set to meet with several teams, including the Ravens at the NFL scouting combine.

"My size, my speed -- I got sneaky speed," Funchess said. "I get up under defenders real quick. It doesn't look like I'm moving fast, but I cover ground."

Funchess compared himself to NFL stars like Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson and former NFL wide receivers Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco.

Funchess took the high road when asked about reports that he slacked off late last season.

"I can't respond," he said. "That's their opinion. I know that I was giving my all for my team, so they can have their opinion, but I know the truth."

awilson@baltsun.com
twitter.com/RavensInsider

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