2022 NFL Draft Scouting Report


Kenny Pickett Scouting Report

December 7, 2021 1:00 AM EST


Kenny Pickett Scouting Report picture

School: Pitt

Height: 6'3"

Weight: 220

Eligibility: RSR

Uniform: #8

Position: QB


Evaluated by: Kagen Irwin
KagenIrwin@gmail.com
Twitter: KirwinNation10
July 6, 2021

Prospect Overview


2017: 4 G, 39-66 (59.1%), 509 yards, 1/1 (TD/INT), 26 rush, 93 yards, 2 TD
2018: 14 G, 180-310 (58.1%), 1969 yards, 12/6 (TD/INT), 117 rush, 220 yards, 3 TD
2019: 12 G, 289-469 (61.6%), 3098 yards, 13/9 (TD/INT), 95 rush, 110 yards, 3 TD
2020: 9 G, 203-332 (61.1%), 2408 yards, 13/9 (TD/INT), 81 rush, 145 yards, 8 TD
2021: 11 G, 286-426 (67.1%), 3857 yards, 36/6 (TD/INT), 89 rush, 209 yards, 4 TD

Kenny Pickett was a 3-star recruit out of Oakhurst, NJ. At Ocean Township High School he was an All-Shore Conference player and was ranked as 247Sports 10th best pro-style QB coming out of his senior year. He enrolled at Pitt in January 2017, after graduating early.


Kenny Pickett Scouting Report image 1

In his first year at Pitt, Kenny started only one game and played in 4 games through the course of the season. In his second year he became the full time starter for Pitt's offense. In that year he started all 14 games and led the team to a 7-7 record.

His next season Pickett took a big leap throwing for 3,098 yards and leading several fourth quarter comebacks. He averaged 258 yards/game and totalled 16 TDs on the year. He brought home ACC Quarterback of the Week several times while taking Pitt to an 8-5 record, winning the MVP in the Quick Lane Bowl.

Pickett started 9 games in 2020 missing 2 due to injury. His production had incremental increases this season throwing for 267 yards/game and totalling 21 TDs with 8 on the ground. Pitt went 6-5 on the shortened season and missed out on a bowl game. Pickett was eligible to enter the 2021 draft as a projected Day 3 prospect, but chose to stay for his final year.

In his final year of eligibility Pickett took a major leap forward in production totalling over 4,000 yards and 40 TDs. He's been named a finalist for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, the Maxwell Award, and is a semi-finalist for the Walter Camp Award. Pickett is the pilot of the Nations #2 offense and has led them to a 9-2 record.

Positives

Pickett is a big body at 6'3 220, and is built sturdy and tall. Size tends to be an overrated aspect of the quarterback position, however it is an advantage. Given that over a 17 game season he will see plenty of contact, one big advantage would be that he's durable and tough enough to withstand a thumping at the next level. He's got a solid arm with great zip and quick release. In several games he's shown to have enough juice to get to the opposite hash and squeeze into tight zones across the field. It may not be an elite NFL arm but Pickett has plenty to be able to run an offense.

Kenny Pickett Scouting Report image 2

Pickett's also got great touch downfield and can make hard throws to the boundaries with accuracy. He's made a number of incredible throws along the sideline and on deep crossers. And he's gotten better and better each year before taking a massive leap in year 5. Pickett's lower body mechanics have been a big part of his success and consistency. From a clean pocket his feet are smooth with great hip drive and delivery. He's also become very willing to throw receivers open and throw with anticipation. A lot of Pickett's most impressive throws were completed with a corner right on his receivers hip pocket. Not to say he forces throws, he does a great job straddling the line to give his receivers a chance. I doubt the tight windows at the next level will deter him.

Areas for Improvement

Pickett's biggest weakness felt obvious watching on tape. Game by game he shows a serious lack of awareness of blitzers and pressure in general. On several occasions he was sacked by late blitzing LB's or corners and had seemingly zero awareness of it. He does have a knowledge of coverages and how to progress through them, so with some tutoring he may catch on. But at the moment his processing speed against the blitz is slow. And when pressure does come, he isn't quite the type of athlete to beat anyone with his feet. Pickett doesn't have much speed especially when trying to escape freak athlete edge rushers. When he does sprint outside of the pocket his accuracy becomes erratic and his mechanics get sloppy.

While his general accuracy is pretty solid, his placement is inconsistent. Over the middle Pickett will sometimes throw just behind his receiver causing them to break stride. And there are times where he trusts his arm a little too much to get into tight zones, which could crop up more in the NFL. While it wouldn't be fair to say he has a weak arm, he certainly isn't a bomber.


KennyPickett Scouting Report image 3

Draft Stock

In his 5th year, Kenny Pickett has really blossomed. Early in his tenure at Pitt he struggled to complete passes with consistency and last year he was projected to be a Day 3 selection at best. After the huge year he's had, however, he's shot up draft boards to a possible round 1 selection.

And the hype is justified, Pickett has shown great skill and a certain toughness that cannot be taught. But I'd temper my expectations. I think he has plenty of ability and leadership qualities to lead a team, but I'd like to see him go somewhere with a veteran presence and a quality O-Line so that he can develop and learn to handle the blitz and the wild schemes defenses can throw at him. I think Kenny shows great value as a late Round 1 selection but is not the type of player I'd be willing to take with a top-15 pick.

The best place for him, for me, would be around the front end of the second round or late first. But in the league, quarterbacks get snatched up very early so I wouldn't be at all surprised to see him sneak into the top 10.

Games Evaluated

  • Virginia (11-20-21)
  • North Carolina (11-11-20)
  • Miami (10-30-20)
  • Clemson (10-23-20)
  • Tennessee (9-11-21)
  • Clemson (11-28-20)


Scouting Video Courtesy of Breakshot Media




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