Height: 6-foot-6 (1.98cm)
Weight: 246 lbs (111.6kg)
- Possibly the perfect receiving tight end prospect
- Great route footwork and precision
- Excellent quickness, long speed, agility
- Incredible contested catch ability
- Safe hands
- Can high point the ball or pluck it out of the air
- Showed versatility lining up pretty much everywhere in the offensive formation
- Understands how to find soft spots in zone
- Excellent releases against man -- can close space against cushion and can win versus press
- Shows strong base and power in blocking -- showed the ability to block defensive ends regularly
- Bottom Line: one of the rarest blends of size, speed, agility, power, athleticism, and smarts that I've ever seen in a tight end prospect
- Needs form improvement as a blocker
Summary and Archetype:
Kyle Pitts' scouting report is simple: he's probably the best tight end prospect of the last couple decades and may very well be the best tight end prospect ever.
Pitts quickly burst onto the draft scene during the 2020 season, showing off highlight play after highlight play as a truly fearsome offensive behemoth.
Even exclusively as a receiver, Pitts would almost certainly rank near the top of the class. His ability to work around defensive leverage, create quick separation, show off efficient footwork, and make contested catches when necessary makes him as complete as receiver as an NFL team could possibly hope for. His relative polish alongside his natural freakish athleticism make for a weapon that would immediately allow a team's passing game to open up within the numbers.
As a blocker, Pitts isn't exceptional; however, he has the tools to become exceptional. Currently, Pitts is just an above average blocker who struggles with hand placement, base, and overall precision. Yet, due to his natural athleticism and power, Pitts was often able to take on bigger defenders, such as defensive ends, and maintain a gap/edge with relative success. With some basic form improvements in the pros, Pitts can certainly become a true three down Y player.
Fit with the Patriots:
Every year that I've scouted college prospects, I've always had a round one draft crush for the New England Patriots.
Over the last five years, these have included names such as O.J. Howard, Reuben Foster, Baker Mayfield, Tremaine Edmunds, T.J. Hockenson, and Kenneth Murray. Almost all of these players were low first-round ranked prospects at the time I was first high on them, but throughout the draft process their stock shot up, and they eventually were selected before the Patriots had an opportunity to draft them. This year, my draft crush is unequivocally Kyle Pitts -- and while there is a good chance the trend continues, there is an equally good chance New England will be able to take him at 15.
It's no secret that the Patriots are currently anemic at virtually every position, but especially so at tight end and receiver. Drafting a dynamic and versatile playmaker and personnel mismatch like Pitts essentially helps with both those positions.
With additional rumors swirling that New England may go with a free-agent quarterback as a bridge, having an asset that can operate in the middle of the field would be paramount to the team's success. A lack of tight end play stymied the Patriots offense between the numbers in 2020, despite which the team still went 7-9. Having a player as dangerous as Pitts operating the middle would mean more threatening play actions, better isolation jump ball opportunities, and more receivers being able to get open.
One of my personal favorite moments while watching Pitts film was seeing his usage in Hoss Y Juke. Florida ran the play against Alabama, and Pitts was the H receiver responsible for running an option route in the short middle -- I especially loved this because Edelman is usually our option route runner on the play, and the example goes to show the kind of versatility that Pitts has to offer. If New England were to run the concept with a linebacker covering Pitts, it would result in a virtually guaranteed first down every time, a commodity the 2020 iteration of the New England offense just didn't have and a necessity the 2021 version desperately needs.