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INDIANAPOLISYou think you know, but you are never 100 percent sure.

That’s life for NFL teams when projecting college players to the next level.

During the 2020 draft process, the Colts were pretty confident that Michael Pittman could make such a transition, and probably do it earlier than most rookies.

So far, the Colts like what they’ve seen in watching Pittman take part in some route running, with rookies allowed to get on the field before veterans.

For offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni, two specific things stand out with Pittman after seeing him work in-person.

First, the hands of Pittman.

“We go work (Pittman) out when he goes through the draft process and see him catch, but it’s really comforting to see how strong his hands are and how good his hands are. He has great hands,” the offensive coordinator says. “As we all know, the major requirement for that position is being able to catch a football, and Michael sure can do that.

Second, is the 6-4, 223-pound frame for the Colts’ biggest wideout.

“He’s a big man,” Sirianni stresses. “He’s big. You see him in that pre-draft work – obviously, this year was a little different because you couldn’t go out as much – but you see him at the Combine, this and that, but you don’t realize he’s a big man. That’s obviously been my first impressions.”

All offseason long, the need for the Colts to go out and find a bigger body wideout was noted as a huge priority.

Pittman certainly gives the Colts a wideout type that they’ve missed.

Back when the Colts took Pittman 34th overall in the 2020 Draft, Jim Irsay did not hide his emotion about the Colts finally getting a receiver that they’ve just not been able to find.

“There’s no question that this guy has some Reggie Wayne qualities,” Irsay said of the 6-4, 223-pound wideout. “He is a big target with outstanding hands, runs well. He fits so much in the mold of a Colt on and off the field. Coach Reich, Chris Ballard, all the scouts, everyone had Pittman as saying, ‘That’s the guy that makes the biggest impact for us.’

“One thing I’ll say about Michael Pittman, and I mean this, I’ve been talking to players for almost 50 years when we pick them, and this guy right away wanted to call Philip Rivers and get to work. I mean, literally, on the phone call. I’ve never had anyone ask me that before, and I’ve talked to all our top picks. And it was incredible. He’s the only guy who has ever said, ‘Can you give me his number right now?’ I said, ‘Yeah, Michael, I’ll get it to you in about five minutes.’”

When those comments were relayed to Pittman, the 22-year-old wideout was honored.

“When Mr. Irsay said that, that was probably one of the biggest compliments that I have ever got from a coach or owner,” Pittman says.

The compliments continue to pour in for Pittman, and the Colts will be counting on him quite a lot in 2020.

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