Coming off his most successful season in the NFL, Dennis Pitta was dealt a huge blow when the Baltimore Ravens tight end injured his hip during practice Saturday.
According to an ESPN source, Pitta underwent surgery and is done for the season. A NFL Network report around 8:16 p.m. MT confirmed the news, as the network's Albert Breer tweeted that a source said Pitta suffered a hip fracture.
Earlier in the night, Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun tweeted, "Source didn't declare Dennis Pitta out for the season definitively, but acknowledged: 'It doesn't look good.'"
Pitta's injury occurred when the former BYU standout collided with safety James Ihedigbo in the end zone as they went for a pass from Joe Flacco.
"Obviously, he was a very, very productive guy for us," Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell told the Associated Press of Pitta. "He made a lot of big plays last year. We'll see what happens. But somebody is going to have to step up. We do have some capable guys all across the flanks. We do have some weapons. We're just going to have to have some guys make some plays for us."
Pitta lay on the field for several minutes before being carted off. He was taken to a local hospital via ambulance, where he underwent surgery, a source told the Baltimore Sun.
Pitta, who will be an unrestricted free agent next year, caught a career-high 61 passes for 669 yards and seven touchdowns during the regular season in 2012. He also played a big part in Baltimore's postseason run that culminated in a Super Bowl championship, catching 14 passes for 163 yards and three touchdowns in the playoffs.
The Ravens were counting on Pitta to play an increased role in the team's offense after last year's receiving leader, Anquan Boldin, was traded to the San Francisco 49ers. With Pitta out for the season, the starting tight end position will belong to Ed Dickson, who was drafted by Baltimore the same year as Pitta.
“We're a 1-2 punch,” Dickson told the Sun. “He had a great season last year. Him and Joe's chemistry, I have to try to get to that level where they are. I will pick him up on my back. Everything I do in practice and anything I do in a game, I got to pick him up. He'll be back and probably better than ever. I got a long camp. I'm improving every day. I was gearing up anyway to go out there and contribute as a leader and pick it up even more. We lost a great receiver in Anquan Boldin and we lost another great receiver in Dennis for a little bit.”
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