"I've always wanted an opportunity to go against kids with the Alabama stickers on their helmet, the Ohio State, Michigan," Trautman said at the NFL Combine in February.
"To go out there and be able to move people off the ball like I did from those type of schools, get separation like I did at my level, I just showed that it was a seamless transition for me."
If any NFL team has skepticism regarding Trautman's ability take a big jump, he just points to the Senior Bowl tape. During that week, Trautman showcased himself as a big target in the passing game and a physical blocker.
After posting 14 touchdowns for Dayton at the FCS level in 2019, Trautman believes he proved what he can do against top college competition.
"I’d rather dominate the line of scrimmage and move people off the ball than score touchdowns," Trautman said.
The Bears have 10 tight ends on their roster after signing Jimmy Graham in free agency, but they still don't have a long-term answer at the position. Trautman represents a potentially dynamic fit in coach Matt Nagy's offense. He's projected by many analysts to be selected on the second day of the draft, which features the second and third rounds. The Bears currently own two second-round picks, at No. 43 and No. 50 overall.
Trautman stands at 6-foot-5 and 255 pounds and models his game after Pro Bowl tight ends George Kittle and Travis Kelce. What he admires about their play isn't just the production but the relentless nature with which they attack.
For Trautman, arriving in the NFL means he has something more to prove.
"Every level I've been at, I've been (considered to be) not good enough," Trautman said. "Coming out of high school, you're not good enough to play FBS. And then going to Dayton, no one's ever really played in the NFL.
"I'm here to keep fighting that and always use that edge and carry it with me."