18 Sep 2020

Home of the NFL Offseason

Summer Scouting Notes: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

Scenes from the Gators' 36-28 win against the Virginia Cavaliers in the Orange Bowl on December 30, 2019, in Miami, Fla. Photo by Courtney Culbreath

Junior | 6’6” 239 lbs |Philadelphia, PA

Mismatch receiving weapon and proficient blocker with great awareness and versatility

Kyle Pitts went from freshman reserve tight end and special teamer to becoming arguably the best tight end in college football as a true sophomore in 2019. He lined up frequently at tight end, in the slot, and out wide and was featured prominently as a pass catcher, finishing third in catches and seventh in receiving yards among all FBS tight ends. He primarily ran stop routes, digs and slants, but was also given a healthy dose of tight end screens. While many collegiate receiving tight ends have functionally become oversized wide receivers, Pitts is well-rounded as both a run and pass blocker.

Strengths:

  • Huge mismatch potential at 6-foot-6 with elite speed for the position
  • Can toggle back and forth positionally between tight end and wide receiver
  • Extensive catch radius complemented by flashes of high-level ball skills
  • Has the savvy to sit in vacated areas when facing zone coverage. Constantly open against zone on tape
  • Exhibits improvisational skills on broken plays
  • Shows recovery balance as both a blocker and receiver
  • Holds his own as a pass blocker against SEC defensive ends
  • Solid lead run blocker

Areas to improve:

  • Route running is only rudimentary (doesn’t stem up DBs or showcase efficient footwork)
  • Hands can be a bit inconsistent (ex. body catches and drops against tight coverage)
  • Doesn’t explode in and out of his breaks regularly
  • Would like to see him be more physical as a route runner
  • Not a threat to break many open-field tackles (limits his YAC ability)

Injury concerns: N/A

Way too early projection:

In all likelihood, Pitts will be the first tight end to have his name called at the 2021 draft. He may not be the featured option on offense in the NFL, but his combination mismatch receiving ability and blocking chops will make him a highly valuable starting tight end from day one. If he takes a step forward this season, he could be a top 20 selection.

What to watch in 2020:

Will Pitts become the true No. 1 option for the Florida offense? To do so, he’ll need to improve his route running footwork and physicality. He has major mismatch potential against defensive backs due to his size advantage, but he should be more physically dominant. Improved quarterback play will also be key to Pitts’ success as a receiver, as the mixed bag Florida receiver Kyle Trask, Feleipe Franks and Emory Jones seem to hold back the entire passing attack.

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