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National Signing Day: Cincinnati Signs Defensive End Michael Pitts

Cincinnati officially signs the three-star defensive end from Stone Mountain, Georgia.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

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Analysis

Off the line of scrimmage, he's fast. When pursuing the quarterback, he's fast and tenacious. He is quick to attack and shows great lateral quickness for a defensive lineman. He is more than willing to throw his body around, which is nice to see jump off the screen. Pitts does tend to stand up a bit straight, although he does a good job getting leverage as the edge rusher on other plays, showing that he needs to build more consistency rather than an entire skill-set.

At 232 pounds, he will need to add on size to see the field as a defensive end, but that speed and agility is the quick burst you need to see from quality, and even great, pass rushers. He flies around the field and seems to make plays with raw athleticism at this point in his development, but he is a prototypical project for the Cincinnati coaching staff to work with. He will likely sit for his freshman year (redshirt is likely) and then begin to see the field in passing situations as the coaches unleash his speed on opposing quarterbacks. As with any project player, long-term success is hard to predict, but when you watch Pitts on film, you see a player who terrorizes offense with raw athleticism. If Cincinnati and Pitts refine that raw talent, watch out.