CINCINNATI (FOX19) - The 2021 NFL Draft is just three weeks away. Before the league’s newcomers hear their names announced, let us look at who could end up in a Cincinnati Bengals uniform.
The draft order looks this:
No. 1) Jacksonville Jaguars
No. 2) New York Jets
No. 3) San Francisco 49ers (via trade with Miami)
No. 4) Atlanta Falcons
No. 5) Cincinnati Bengals
The Bengals’ playbook for the foreseeable future is clear: build around quarterback Joe Burrow.
How Cincinnati will do that is not as clear. The Bengals could add to the offensive line or go the route of adding another dynamic playmaker.
Picking at fifth puts the Bengals in a great position to get whatever player they want.
The Bengals could wind up getting arguably the best skill position player in the draft if the Jags, Jets, 49ers, and Falcons all take a quarterback.
Kyle Pitts, the tight end out of the University of Florida, is the second-best player in the draft, according to ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr.
Pitts is actually slated to go to Cincinnati at No. 5 in Kiper’s mock draft he unveiled last week.
Pitts is one of those guys you see and wonder if he was created in a lab.
He ran a 4.44 40-yard dash at the Gators’ Pro Day on March 31.
That is a nice time.
When you factor in that Pitts is an unofficial 6′5″, 245lbs, that time looks even more impressive.
His wingspan was measured at 83″.
Now, it can be easy to go gaga when players run around in shorts for pro days and combines.
So, look at the stats from his junior year at Florida.
Pitts racked up 12 touchdowns, 43 catches, and 770 yards in just eight games last season.
Reports from around the league suggest many in the NFL think Pitts is that guy who can make an impact on day one.
“It’s the best tape he’s ever seen for a tight end. And really, Jalen Ramsey would be the only guy you could line him up against that he couldn’t beat,” said ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler citing a conversation with a long-time NFL offensive coach.
NFL Analyst Lance Zierlein’s pro comparison for Pitts is Las Vegas Raiders’ star tight end Darren Waller.
Here is what Zierlein wrote about Pitts on NFL.com, “While the player comparison for the purposes of this scouting report is Darren Waller, Pitts may have the traits and talent to create mismatches similar to those created by Calvin Johnson and Tyreek Hill.”
Pitts was compared to Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce by ESPN’s Dan Orlovsky.
Waller, Johnson, Hill, Kelce - those are amazing names to be mentioned with.
A playmaker like Pitts could do wonders for Burrow and the Bengals’ offense.
Will Pitts be the Bengals pick at No. 5 in the 2021 NFL Draft? We will have to wait and see.
The 2021 NFL Draft from Cleveland starts Thursday, April 29.
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