Inside The Bills

TE Pettigrew is not a field stretcher

Posted by Chris Brown on January 27, 2009 – 8:56 pm

Oklahoma State TE Brandon Pettigrew is considered far and away the best all around talent at tight end in this year’s draft class, but I found it interesting that ESPN’s Todd McShay pointed out that Pettigrew is not a game changer as a pass catcher. Here’s his comment on Pettigrew,

Oklahoma State TE Brandon Pettigrew
Pettigrew entered the week as our top-ranked tight end, and although he didn’t have a spectacular week of practice, he keeps the top tight end spot on our list. The 6-foot-5, 257-pound Pettigrew is an effective inline blocker who has the quickness to get into position and lateral mobility to sustain his blocks. He also has enough room on his frame to add some weight. Pettigrew had some problems separating from man coverage as a receiver, though, and he lacks ideal top-end speed. However, he is a reliable possession receiver who has the wide frame to shield defenders from the ball and the strong hands to catch it in traffic.

He’s not going to be catching 20-yard passes down the seam with any regularity as McShay sees it and I tend to agree as the little that I’ve seen of him in games supports that. In fact McShay calls Pettigrew a “possession receiver.” As much as I like some of what I saw from Pettigrew in the practice tape I was able to see from the Senior Bowl, I’m uncomfortable using the 11th pick on a good blocking tight end that’s a possession WR as well.

I maintain my stance that defensive end is the way to go at 11 provided an early run at the position doesn’t happen prior to Buffalo’s pick.

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