It didn’t take long for football fans across the country to fall in love with the prospects of their team having the opportunity to select the unanimous TE1 in this class.

In fact following his performance in week one of the college football season that saw him produce 8 receptions, 170 yards, and four touchdowns many draft analysts and football fans were ready to sharpie Pitts in atop his position.

However, there is one place in particular that Pitts has seemed to be linked to since the start of the off-season. Cue, the Philadelphia Eagles; who suddenly find themselves with a need at tight end. It has been expected for a while now that the Eagles and the franchises second all-time leader in receptions, Zach Ertz are expected to part ways at some point this off-season.

And while no one knows for sure what a Nick Sirianni-led offense will look like in the league, based on his history and his comments from the recent press conference that expressed the idea of being a multifaceted offense.

It sounds as the Eagles, who ranked at the top of 12 personnel usage over the last two seasons, will continue to prominently use the package in the foreseeable future.

“As far as the personnel goes, again it always looks different based on who you are and what teams you have. I’ve been on teams that have been heavy 11 personnel; and it really starts there. But then I’ve had teams where I had 21 and two halfbacks as our good mixer and 21 with a fullback as a good mixer. So again I hate to sound cliche here but its really all about what your players can do. I’ve had success in 12, again our teams in Indy had success with multiple tight ends on the field. But we know the signs of a good coach is using his personnel.”

Well, it doesn’t matter what personnel is being used because the 6’6/247 pound prospect out of Florida is considered by many position less. He is a threat in 3×1 sets as the X receiver, he’s a handful for any linebacker or safety to matchup with when in the slot due to his size and speed.

This offensive weapon is expected to be next in line in the group of the elite tight ends that seem have seemed to take the league by storm recently. Travis Kelce, George Kittle, Mark Andrews, Darren Waller, and now Kyle Pitts?

With free agency now underway and many teams filling holes at much-needed positions, the draft plans of some teams are becoming a bit clearer; obviously, the expectation is that quarterbacks will flood the market over the first few picks of the draft. There’s the sense that Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell will be the first player off the board following the rush of quarterbacks; reports seem to suggest that either the Dolphins or Bengals will be in line for the All-American. With this information its possible that when the Eagles hit the clock at 6, they will have the choice of their preferred pass catcher at their disposal.

While there seems to be a split on who the consensus selection should be in this scenario, today we are here to sell you on the idea of Philadelphia selecting Pitts at 6 and why the entire city of Philadelphia will be doing this iconic dance for years to come.

So who is Kyle Pitts? Well for starters Pitts isn’t just made for Philly, he’s made by Philly.

“Coming from Philadelphia, being from the area, we’re a bit different. We have a different type of work ethic; we’re blue-collar kids and competition makes me excited.”

The pride of Warminster, Pennsylvania located just a little over 30 minutes outside of Philadelphia, Pitts was a four-star prospect and the number four recruit in the entire state of Pennsylvania. For his first two years of high school, Pitts attended Abington High School where he played both sides of the ball one as quarterback the other as a linebacker.

This continued as Pitts transferred and began to attend Archbishop Wood Catholic High School for his junior and senior seasons.

“It’s been a weird, but good journey. I started at quarterback and linebacker, then when I transferred to Wood to my junior year, that’s when I told Devlin that I wanted to play tight end. I had been going to summer camps and I was being recruited to play tight end. I learned the position a little and by the time I got to Florida, I sat, because I had three fifth-year seniors in front of me. Some guys got hurt, and I got put out there as a receiver, which gave me the opportunity to learn the offense. It gave me the chance to get my feet wet.” 

During this time working as a receiver allowed Pitts to begin developing into the quality passer catcher we see today, a far cry from the young man from Warminster who was nowhere near the receiver you see today. In the end, Pitts has become possibly the most electric and versatile tight end College Football has seen maybe since Vernon Davis’ days at the University of Maryland.

During his final season at Florida, Pitts averaged 17.9 yards per reception, the most by a tight end since 2010; he became the first tight end since 1977 to finish in the top ten in Heisman Trophy voting, A unanimous All-American, and a member of the First team All-SEC group, Pitts had the entire country drooling over the level of his play.

Even a certain Eagles captain has taken notice of the mismatch nightmare.

As a prospect, Pitts is everything an offense could dream of and possibly more. He offers the ability to allow an offense to disguise formations, due to his versatility and experience lining up in different positions across the offense.

Here is an example of Pitts lined up as the X receiver in a 3×1 formation for the Gators. As the lone receiver at the bottom of the screen, you can see how Pitts uses his size to beat the defender at the line of scrimmage. He does a great job fighting off the coverage, locating the football, and adjusting his body to make the reception.

Probably isn’t the best idea to leave Pitts in single coverage, in this case, Ole Miss placed a cornerback Otis Reese on Pitts. Even at 6’2″, it was almost impossible for Reese to matchup with Pitts one on one.

As Alabama head coach Nick Saban referred to him, Pitts is “a power forward with a point guard skill set.”

In this instance, Alabama has what many consider to be the best consensus CB1 in the 2021 draft class Patrick Surtain as well as what is expected to be the next ‘star’ of the Tide defense Brian Branch both in coverage over Pitts. Still, with his extended frame and massive catch radius, Pitts makes the reception looks easy. This is what you call a quarterback’s best friend, someone that will bail the quarterback out time and time again.

For a team that seems to be currently limited on talent imagine a set that sees Pitts lined up alone in the X role, Dallas Goedert lined up as the slot and Reagor as the Z receiver.

This set of skilled position players doesn’t sound that bad now, does it?

Once again here is Pitts lined up against the top cornerback in this year’s class, the first thing you notice here is the release. How Pitts gives the outside step to get Surtain to commit before quickly coming back inside.

Following the release Pitts runs a clean slant route; NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah mentioned in his scouting report on Pitts: ” a unique talent with the ability to take over a game. He runs routes like a wideout” and “he beat upper-echelon SEC cornerbacks on a regular basis.”

Each of which you can see on full display in this video. The next most notable thing about Pitts here is the way he uses his big 6’6 frame to completely box out the defender; ball placement also helps out here but Surtain reacted about as well as you could have in this instance, Pitts was just too big for him to go around.

My personal favorite thing about Pitts is his vast improvements as a blocker. Pitts was asked about his willingness to improve as a blocker prior to the 2020 season and here is how he responded.

“Just blocking and knowing the game from the defensive side, knowing how they’re going to play and how I can maneuver in certain situations. Just to get heavier and hands inside, like stepping on my in my in-step, the balls of my feet, just things like small details of my hand placement and hat placement is something that helps at the line of scrimmage.”

Kyle Pitts should certainly be in play for Philadelphia if he’s available at six. While it is certainly unordinary to see tight ends selected in the top ten picks of the NFL Draft; only six other tight ends in about the past 30 years have been selected that high. Yet Pitts should be the exception to all rules. You’d have to go back to 2006 where oddly enough the 49ers used the sixth overall pick to select Vernon Davis, to find a tight end actually worth selecting that high (sorry T.J. Hockenson and Eric Ebron). It has been mentioned that Pitts arguably could be viewed as the top overall pass-catching prospect in the entire draft. While LSU’s Ja’Marr Chase may have a thing or two to say about that, this just goes to show how talented Pitts is as a prospect.

Not only would he be able to step in and make an immediate impact, joining Dallas Goedert to form one of the league’s best tight end tandems. But Pitts would immediately become the Eagles’ best wide receiver option and can be used as such. Sirianni often mentions how a great coach uses his personnel to the best of his abilities; to put them in positions to hide weaknesses and capitalize on strengths. The selection of Pitts arguably gives him the best opportunity to do such, and while Philadelphia fans may crave the traditional X receiver the team has been seemingly missing.

Pitts has the opportunity to be that and so much more, a possible face of the offense prospect.

“If you were going to pick the player most likely to have (a) HOF career in this draft class, I think the overwhelming choice around the NFL would be Kyle Pitts. I would take Pitts. I would. I think it’s a no-brainer. We’ve talked about how high the ceiling is with him. I think he can emerge as the best tight end in the National Football League. He has that type of dynamic ability.” – Daniel Jeremiah

Maybe it also helps that it sounds like Pitts, the area native may be an Eagles fan himself. Could possibly be a dream come true for the hometown kid.

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