Dennis Pitta

6’4 1/2, 245 pounds | Tight end | BYU

Agility: Has some agility after the catch to be elusive, but he’s not Aaron Hernandez in this area. Prefers to run through opponents. Moves fairly well laterally. Above-average leaping ability.

Blocking: Shows poor blocking ability and was rarely used in-line in the BYU offense. Doesn’t have the strength to hold his blocks. May never be an asset in this area.

Hands: Pitta’s hands are as good as any tight end’s in the draft this year. He maintains concentration when going over the middle. Good hands after the catch. Routinely uses both hands on the ball when working through traffic.

Release: Pitta will probably need to improve some coming off the line. He’s used to lining up wide and hasn’t taken a lot of snaps with his hand down. When opponents are playing off coverage on Pitta, he has enough speed to run past an opponent.
Route Running: Pitta times his routes really nicely. He can set up defenders by going slow and changing gears to get separation. Ran a solid variety of routes moving to the middle and to the sideline. An asset beating zone coverage.

Size: Has good height and length. Long arms. However, Pitta is a lean tight end who should probably about 15 pounds of bulk.

Vision: Tends to play bigger than his size after the catch. Sheds arm tacklers when they try and come high into his body. Timed at 4.63 seconds in the 40-yard dash, but he doesn’t always seem to play that fast.

Final word:
Pitta is the latest in the growing number of tight ends who have only played in a spread. Some transition faster than others. Pitta appears to have the work ethic to adapt.

What he’ll have to do is learn to come off the line with his hand down. That means he’ll have to become a little stronger to beat linebacker jams. Pitta has good enough athletic ability to be a good target receiving. But he may not be an every-down player to start his career.

Averaged more than 13 yards per catch each of his three seasons at BYU. Served a two-year mission trip, so he’s already 25. Some question if he has already reached his peak. Is a slightly lesser version of Pittsburgh’s Heath Miller.