The Falcons made Kyle Pitts the highest-picked tight end in league history after selecting him fourth overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, and he’s already one of the best tight ends in the league. He was easily the best non-quarterback prospect in the 2021 draft, so from the very beginning, there was almost insurmountable pressure put on him. Pitts hauled in 68 receptions for 1,026 yards, an average of 15.1 yards per reception, and eclipsed a bevy of franchise records this season.
He became the first rookie tight end in 60 years to surpass 1,000 receiving yards; he’s also Atlanta’s all-time rookie receiving yards leader, a title previously held by Julio Jones for a decade. Pitts passed Tony Gonzalez for the most single-season receiving yards in team history from a tight end and was rewarded with a spot in the Pro Bowl—the first rookie tight end to make the Pro Bowl since Jeremy Shockey in 2002.
Pitts also finished the season just short of Mike Ditka’s rookie receiving record for tight ends, which Ditka set in 1961 after totaling 1,076 yards. Despite coming up short of Ditka’s record, Pitts was a sensational rookie by most metrics. He had the most contested catches of all tight ends, which isn’t surprising at all given his size and ball skills.
The Falcons have another Julio Jones-esque pass catcher in Kyle Pitts, and fans should be thrilled moving forward. The next step will be finding a franchise quarterback to get the ball to him.
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— SportsTalkATL.com (@SportsTalkATL) March 23, 2022