Kyle Pitts finally breaks out for Atlanta Falcons in win over Jets

Atlanta Falcons TE Kyle Pitts. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Atlanta Falcons TE Kyle Pitts. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Atlanta Falcons rookie first round pick Kyle Pitts finally had the breakout game that fans were looking for.

The Atlanta Falcons rebounded after last week’s defeat to the Washington Football Team with a 27-20 win over the New York Jets in the first London game of the 2021 season. The Atlanta offense showed up in a big way despite missing Russell Gage and Calvin Ridley, and the main reason was because of rookie tight end Kyle Pitts.

Pitts’ usage in Arthur Smith’s offense hadn’t been abundant to start the season. He was missing on a lot of red zone snaps in week one, and had one game where he surpassed 50 yards in the first four games (a garbage time affair with the Buccaneers). But, with top receivers out on a trip to the United Kingdom, opportunity arose for Pitts, and he took advantage.

Pitts caught nine passes for 119 yards and a touchdown. His touchdown catch was off of play action in the red zone, and Pitts did a great job leaning in his stem while snapping the route off at the top. He had an impressive one-handed catch, using that length and wingspan to stretch out for a ball outside his frame. With the game getting close late, Matt Ryan found Pitts on a deep ball where he split the safeties down the field. His play speed to threaten up the seam can really help this Falcons offense going forward.

This game should show Smith that Kyle Pitts is ready to roll as a rookie, and the three year period of development that’s normally reserved for tight ends doesn’t apply to him. His prowess as a route runner, his ability to create windows, and his play speed and body control through the catch point make him a dangerous playmaker week in and week out, and why he was a top five pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. It should be all systems go for him moving forward.