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Monday, September 26, 2022

Falcons select Kyle Pitts with the No. 4 overall pick

Pitts was the first tight end ever named a Biletnikoff Award finalist after scoring 12 touchdowns in 2020.

The Atlanta Falcons selected former Florida tight end Kyle Pitts with the fourth overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft Thursday. Pitts will slot into a receiving room that includes Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley, giving the Atlanta offense one of the most explosive arsenals in the NFL. 

Pitts should fit perfectly into the Falcons offense. He can line up all over the field, something current Atlanta tight end Hayden Hurst cannot do. The UF product provides new head coach Arthur Smith a swiss army knife who can outmuscle cornerbacks and outrun linebackers. Pitts will look to lock down a position for Atlanta that hasn’t been steady since the retirement of Tony Gonzalez in 2013.

Pitts put up historic numbers during his final season as a Gator in 2020. The tight end caught 43 passes for 770 yards and 12 touchdowns in eight games. He became the first tight end ever named a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award, given each year to the nation’s best receiver. He earned first team All-American honors and won the 2020 Mackey Award as the nation’s top tight end.

Experts  expected Pitts to be drafted historically early. The majority of mock drafts had Pitts going in the top-10, with the most common landing spot the Falcons at four. ESPN Draft Expert Mel Kiper Jr. gave Pitts his highest tight end rating since he began at ESPN in 1984. 

The Florida product is a matchup nightmare. Listed at 6-feet-6-inches tall and 245 pounds, he ran a 4.44 40-yard dash at his Pro Day in March. He casually made top-end SEC defenders look amateur on Saturdays and looks primed to be a dominant force in the NFL on Sundays.

Contact Michael Hull at mhull@alligator.org and follow him on Twitter @Michael_Hull33 


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Michael Hull

Michael Hull is a fourth-year journalism sports & media major and a sports writer at The Alligator. He hosts the weekly sports podcast and has worked on staff for five semesters. In the past, Hull has served as the sports editor, the men's and women's golf beat writer, the volleyball beat writer and the football beat writer. 


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