Kyle Pitts made history when he became the highest drafted tight end in league history at this year’s NFL Draft. The no. 4overall pick made history again this week when he signed the highest guaranteed rookie contract for a tight end.
Pitts put pen to paper on a four-year $32.9 million fully guaranteed contract with the Atlanta Falcons. The contract includes a $21.3 million signing bonus and a fifth-year option.
The 20-year-old now has the highest guaranteed contract among tight ends in the NFL. His $32.9 million deal is more than $12 million more than the league's top tight end Travis Kelce's and nearly $10 million more than the 49ers star George Kittle's.
The massive rookie contract puts even more pressure on the tight end to perform in his debut NFL season.
According to Sportrac, this year, Pitts will earn a base salary of $660,000 and a signing bonus of $21,294,904 while carrying a cap hit of $5,983,726 and a dead cap value of $32,910,494.
Pitts showcased star potential in Florida
During his final two seasons in Florida, the tight end showed why he was going to be a high pick in the NFL Draft. The 6' 6", 246 lbs receiver recorded 97 catches for 1,419 yards and 17 touchdowns.
That led to Pitts being named a unanimous All-American and winning the John Mackey Award as the most outstanding tight end in college football in 2020.
The Falcons were excited to draft the Florida tight end
The Atlanta Falcons and new coaching staff were very high on Kyle Pitts coming into the draft and were not going to miss the opportunity to pick the tight end.
During an interview in May with SiriusXM NFL Radio, Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot explained why the franchise couldn’t pass Kyle Pitts up at number four overall.
“No way we weren’t drafting Kyle Pitts right there on the clock,” Fontenot said. “Look, I talked to a lot of former general managers just in general and just people I respect in the business, coaches. And everyone else (would have) made that same pick.
“We did have an open line, and we listened to teams, and you have to listen and see if there’s going to be compensation that knocks your socks off. So we listened, and we didn’t have any offers that really moved the meter in that way. So we were really excited about selecting that player.”
After signing his massive contract, Kyle Pitts will get the opportunity this season to show the Atlanta Falcons staff and fans that he is their worth every cent.