South Dakota State football player Tucker Kraft announces for the NFL Draft

South Dakota State's Tucker Kraft runs the ball on Saturday, October 9, 2021, at Dana G. Dickhouse Stadium in Brookings.

Tucker Kraft made it official on Monday, announcing via social media that he would enter the 2023 NFL Draft rather than return to South Dakota State. Officially, Kraft would have had two more years after this year, with an extra year given to players due to COVID-19 affected the 2020 season.

But the 6-foot-5, 255-pound Kraft established himself as one of the best tight ends in college football last year, catching 65 passes for 780 yards, and despite missing most of the regular season this year with a foot injury, he was The Timber Lake native has been impressive enough since his return that he clearly manages to be the same player he was before his injury. He’s been projected as a Top 50 pick, which made Monday’s announcement unsurprising.

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