Diamond in the Rough: TE Will Loerzel, Isidore Newman School (New Orleans)

Photo taken by Derick Hingle Photography

Will Loerzel is one of the best tight ends in the state of Louisiana and is also one of the biggest sleepers in the country.

Loerzel plays for Isidore Newman School, one of the top programs in the New Orleans area. in the New Orleans area. The school has produced NFL players such as Eli and Peyton Manning as well as All-Pro wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. The school has most recently produced current Texas players Will Randle and Arch Manning, Eli and Peyton’s nephew.

Loerzel is one of the reasons why Newman is 11-1 with the No.3 seed in the LHSAA Division III (Select) playoffs and have reached the semifinals where they will face a very talented Calvary Baptist team led by one of the top running backs in the country, James Simon.

On the year, Loerzel has 19 catches for 172 yards and four touchdowns for the Greenies.

The 6’5, 245-pound specimen is committed to South Alabama and his other offers include from Army, Louisiana Tech, Nicholls, Purdue, Southeast Missouri State, Southern Miss and ULM. Loerzel picked South Alabama because he liked the vision the program had and it wasn’t too far from home.

“Over the recruiting process, I was able to connect a lot with the head coach, Kane Wommack, Coach (Rob) Ezell and Coach (Michael) Smith and I think there is going to be a lot of success from this staff in the future,” Loerzel said. “Also, I felt that it was a good distance from home where it wasn’t too far or too close.”

After sharing snaps with current Texas tight end Will Randle last year, Loerzel has blossomed into a more complete tight end due to having a bigger workload this season. “I have become more of a hybrid in terms of both blocking and receiving this season,” Loerzel said. “After being a blocking tight end last season, I am playing a bigger role in the passing game this season.”

Loerzel models his game after San Francisco 49ers All-Pro tight end George Kittle. “He is my favorite player in the NFL right now because he is a hybrid tight end like me,” Loerzel said. Loerzel also likes the way the University of Georgia All-American tight end Brock Bowers plays after watching him at practice on a visit there. “I was able to watch him run routes and I liked the fact that he was a violent and tough runner but he was also able to keep his stature,” Loerzel said.

It makes sense why Loerzel likes their play style because if you watch his film, he is extremely tough to tackle after he catches the ball, which is something he acknowledges. Because he is extremely hard to bring down because of his large size, his head coach, Nelson Stewart, started to give him reps at running back in the middle of the season. Primarily used in short-yardage situations, he currently has eight carries for 43 yards and two touchdowns on the season.

Loerzel says that he is constantly working on his speed and he feels more explosive than he was the year before.

Loerzel, who is one of the senior leaders on his team, has found the transition from being an underclassman to a senior to be fun and it has changed his perspective on how to lead.

“I remember when I was an underclassman and I was heavily influenced by the seniors,” Loerzel said. “I looked up to them and now I am able to be that person that the current underclassmen can look up to.”

Because this is his last year, he wants to make sure that he is remembered in a positive light and that he was part of the first state championship team in school history, which is shocking considering the amount of talent Newman has produced.

“I hope I am remembered as a hard worker, someone who wanted to win and a pivotal part of the team who brought the first state championship to Newman ever,” Loerzel said.