Pitt’s most impressive freshman and overall players on the team has been wide receiver Jordan Addison from Frederick, Maryland.
From day one, Addison has been Kenny Pickett’s go-to receiver as he leads the Panthers in catches (38), receiving yards (444) and receiving touchdowns (3). Not only is he Pitt’s top receiver, he leads the ACC and is 6th in the country in receptions.
It’s unusual for a freshman to have such an impact this early but it was easy to see how talented Addison was from the start.
Looking at Pitt’s current recruiting class, they have a player that sees what Addison is accomplishing and hopes to make a similar impact in 2021.
Jaden Bradley is a three-star player, like Addison, is from Maryland (DeMatha Catholic) and is being recruited to Pitt by wide receivers coach Chris Beatty. Bradley is still learning the position as he made the conversion from quarterback last season. Unfortunately for him, the DeMatha Catholic football season was moved from the fall until March of 2021.
Pittsburgh Sports Now talked with Bradley on Thursday and despite no football this fall, he believes that he’s a better player than a year ago and is ready to make an early impact in Pitt’s offense.
“We still have practice everyday, plus we lift on Monday’s and Wednesday’s and are on the field Tuesday’s and Thursday’s,” said Bradley. “Aside from that, I also go to a personal trainer so I’ve been staying on top of things but it is sad that we’re not playing real football right now.”
“Honestly, I believe that I’ve gotten better throughout COVID because I was working out like 3 times a day during the summer. I’ve gotten a lot bigger (6’4″, 195), stronger and my routes have gotten a lot better. I’ve been able to learn a lot about the receiving position and my football IQ has gotten higher. Even though we weren’t playing, I’ve been able to learn a lot more about the position because I am still fairly new to it.”
Bradley made the switch to wide receiver from quarterback prior to last season but still showed enough athleticism to draw Power 5 interest and believes what he’s picked up this offseason will make him an even better player and take him to the next level.
“I’ve learned how to react to the defensive back,” said Bradley. “I was already good at being a zone receiver and sitting down in the zone because I played quarterback and knew where to sit in the zone. I’ve gotten better in getting open in man-to-man coverage. I know understand what the defensive back is trying to do to me and where he doesn’t want me to go. This summer, I had the chance to go against some really, really good DB’s this summer, some college guys, some pros and some other guys that are going to high major programs. We were all working together this summer and they pushed me and I’m feeling really good. I just wish I could play so I can show how much I’ve improved.”
— Jaden G Bradley (@JadenBradleyyy) October 21, 2020
Bradley says that although his high school team will be starting back up in March, he doesn’t see himself playing and will instead be concentrating on getting ready for his freshman season at Pitt. Speaking of his future team, despite already having given them a commitment, the coaching staff have remained in constant contact with Bradley and have begun coaching him.
“I talk to Coach Beatty probably every other day and I talk to Coach Narduzzi every week,” Bradley said. “I talk to him the day after their games or at the beginning of the week. I’ll send Coach Beatty clips of me working out and he’ll coach me up and tell me what I can do better to improve, he’s helping me get better as a receiver already. Even though it’s over the phone, I already have an idea of how I’ll be getting coached next year when I get up there.
“I watch them play every weekend and seeing the way Jordan is performing makes me want to get better,” said Bradley. “It’s showing me that if I take care of my business that I could possibly be in the same situation as him. He’s killing things up there and I’m looking forward to doing the same.