To Indianapolis Colts fans, wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. may not be viewed as an underrated player considering they got to watch his breakout season every week in 2021.
Relative to the rest of the league, however, Pittman Jr. does have a case as one of the more underrated players in the NFL. As ESPN and Football Outsiders named each team’s most underrated player, Pittman Jr. was the choice as the Colts’ representative.
Here’s what they had to say:
Pittman was the eighth receiver to come off the board in the 2020 NFL draft, after receivers like Justin Jefferson who can make you fall under the radar. However, he is due for a year finally placing himself in the conversation of top young receivers.
In 2021, Pittman caught 88 passes for 1,082 yards and six touchdowns, and finished 18th in DYAR — a large increase from finishing 64th in 2020. He often wins with his size, and when lined up out wide, his DVOA was 12.1%, the exact same as Davante Adams. With Matt Ryan under center for the Colts, Pittman is due for a breakout.
One might argue that Pittman Jr. already had his breakout season in 2021, but the notion that he could continue to ascend up the ladder of wide receiver rankings with Matt Ryan under center holds true.
For those who have been paying attention to the Colts, none would be surprised if Pittman Jr. found his way over 1,200 receiving yards. It might be the higher end of his projection, but considering the lack of YAC opportunities he had in 2021, there’s an argument that his numbers will boom even more during this upcoming campaign.
We’ll see just what kind of production Pittman Jr. will have with Ryan under center as many are expecting another jump for the young wide receiver.