Instant Analysis: Dennis Pitta out for the Season


We said Saturday was bad and we meant it.

Dennis Pitta of the Ravens is also out for the season with a hip injury being reported as both a fracture and a dislocation. It’s a monster blow to the defending champions who have now lost Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Anquan Boldin, Dennis Pitta and a whole host of others from their championship team from last season. Joe Flacco all of a sudden has a monster new contract, but has lost what was likely going to be his favorite target this season. The words “career threatening” and “more than significant” are being thrown out there tonight in regards to Pitta’s hip injury, but we’ll leave the medical analysis to one Dynasty Doctor known as Scott Peak (obvious teaser).  Let’s instead examine the ramifications for the Ravens and for dynasty enthusiasts.

For Pitta, this is brutally sad. He was on the cusp of becoming a TE1 in leagues and was a chic pick to finish in the top five in scoring this year. After all, Aaron Hernandez was out of the mix at the position, Pitta has improved each of his first three seasons and the Ravens desperately needed him to have a big year. Owners were salivating after seeing him catch three touchdowns in the four Baltimore playoff games last year. Most of his owners felt he was a sure fire “plug and play” option this year, especially with the chain mover in Boldin gone. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t meant to be this season. Pitta is an obvious dynasty hold until we can truly understand the injury and the recovery prognosis. “Dr. Peak, paging Dr. Peak.”

As for the Ravens, they’ll likely turn to Ed Dickson. As a dynasty owner, you shouldn’t. Dickson has yet to show much and expecting him to take the place of Pitta would be asking a little too much. Actually, that would be asking a LOT too much. In fact, the Ravens are already rumored to have interest in Visanthe Shiancoe, who hasn’t really had much value since the magical Brett Favre season in Minnesota. If Pitta was your TE1, you’re likely going to need to look outside the Ravens depth chart for a new tight end. On the plus side, there are about 467 with about the same value in dynasty leagues right now. Unfortunately, Pitta was obviously better than all of them.

In other Ravens fallout, Joe Flacco takes a hit with the loss of Pitta, but you shouldn’t have been expecting him to ascend to a QB1 status this year, anyway. One this is certain – he’s going to have to earn his money this year. Torrey Smith’s value shouldn’t really change much here, either. He was already going to get most of the defense’s attention and should still get his. The battle for the second receiver job did just get a little more interesting. With Pitta gone, the winner of that battle could get a few more targets headed their way. Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce have a little more pressure on them now as well.

With the loss of Hernandez and Pitta (for two obviously very different reasons), it’s amazing to see the Patriots and Ravens, two storied NFL franchises, arguably now having two of the worst receiving corps in all of football. It’s truly amazing how fast things can change in the NFL.

Ken Kelly

Ken Kelly

Senior Partner - Executive Editor at DynastyLeagueFootball
Ken is a corporate trainer by day an a tireless editor of dynasty content by night. His passion for the World Champion Seattle Seahawks is second only to his love of fantasy football and the dynasty format.

Ken is on Twitter at DLF_KenK
Ken Kelly


  1. DJB

    July 27, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I don’t see how you don’t consider Dickson an option. Who else with the Ravens is viable catching option outside of Rice and Smith? Basically nobody. Two seasons ago, plenty debated Pitta vs Dickson and to be honest I really think Pitta only emerged ahead because of his close relationship with Flacco (they are known to be best of pals). Dickson was used as more of a blocked as he is the more complete TE, but he had a decent stat lines two seasons ago. I don’t see how he can’t put up TE2 numbers with all the loses the Ravens have had on offence. Just my two cents.

  2. Ken Kelly

    July 27, 2013 at 10:18 pm

    He may, but I just haven’t seen enough from him to be confident it’s going to happen. He’s a good blocker, but he’s much more of a plodder. I do think he’s an obvious option for the Ravens, but I don’t see him being a viable option in fantasy. The preseason will go a long way in determining that, as will the Ravens personnel moves (if any) they take to replace Pitta.

  3. DJB

    July 27, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    The other thing to consider here is that Pitta is in a contract year and this might effect whether or not the Ravens sign him long term. Dickson still might be the best dynasty fantasy option for the Ravens next year barring a trade or a drafting of another TE if Pitta walks. Just something to think about. Thank you for taking the time to write this article for all of us here at DLF, much appreciated!

  4. alden

    July 27, 2013 at 10:42 pm

    I have Pitta in three out of four leagues, ouch. Just keep digging to find a gem you gotta dig deep.

  5. PV

    July 27, 2013 at 11:05 pm

    I have one league where a guy has/had Aaron Hernandez and Dennis Pitta. Yeah feel better you Pitta owners it could be worse.

    Anyways, I don’t see how Pitta (as their TE1) owners don’t consider Dickson unless they’re really deep and can afford to go get someone else. Dickson is probably on your wire and should produce mid-low end TE2 numbers for free.

  6. BigB

    July 28, 2013 at 1:02 am

    Any one think Juszczyk could possibly be a sleeper here? He’s pretty much been used all over, and seems to be a pretty good receiver and run after catch guy. Obviously not expecting him to put up what Pitta would have, but based on how he was lining up he could be more than just a fullback. More a deep sleeper than anything, but I’ve never liked Dickson and someone has to see those TE targets this year.

  7. Coach

    July 28, 2013 at 1:04 am

    well this isn’t good. i traded jimmy graham to get randall cobb and ben tate and then covered up the tight end hole by trading my top rookie pick next season for Pitta because i thought he was due for a major breakout.


    now i have to hope that zach miller, jordan cameron, julius thomas, brandon myers or the ghost of dallas clark hit.

    not too excited about any of them. maybe myers.

    • duffmanohno

      July 28, 2013 at 12:36 pm

      Uhg. Trading Jimmy Graham is just foolish…sorry to hear about your plight, though.

      • The Coach

        July 30, 2013 at 12:09 am

        not that foolish in my opinion. i have demaryius thomas, but vincent jackson and marques colston are aging. Cobb is going to be a top 8 WR this year. I also have Foster and have been after Tate for quite a while, not only to back up foster but also hoping next year he signs elsewhere and i can start foster and tate.

        Pitta was my ace in the sleeve. i liked him for a huge year this year, so when it was made clear that i could grab him i deemed graham expendable. shit happens i guess.

  8. Shaun

    July 28, 2013 at 1:45 am

    What are the chances the Ravens trade for someone? Celek is buried in Philly, Gresham is obviously being replaced long term in Cincy and Denver has more TEs than they can use. Any chance Ozzie goes out and gets a replacement instead of thrusting Dickson into the starting role?

    • Broseph

      July 28, 2013 at 3:09 am

      I’m going to wager they look for another tight end to add. Maybe a Visanthe Shiancoe type of TE.

      *smacks his forehead*

    • phantasy5

      July 28, 2013 at 7:00 am

      From your lips to Ozzie’s ears my friend! I have Celek and he’s actually on my cut list, have until Thurs. 8/1 for it to happen unless he gets the axe.

  9. Mike

    July 28, 2013 at 3:23 am

    The Ravens already have a better TE in house that they stole after the draft in free agent signings. Matt Furstenburg was projected by some to be a top 5 TE in the draft, but a dumpster fire at the QB position at Maryland derailed any hopes of it. The talent is there; whether he gets an honest chance is another story.

    • bulc flog

      July 28, 2013 at 5:20 am

      Mike’s been paying attention. Furstenburg was creating a buzz in camp prior to the Pitta injury. Maybe Ozzie already did his job!

  10. Sensei John Kreese

    July 28, 2013 at 3:38 am

    You guys who lost Pitta, go out and try to get Rob Housler. He is going to be a factor in Arizona this year. He can be had relatively cheap right now.

    • Andr3w

      July 28, 2013 at 4:51 am

      This is my thought too. He was a guy I was targetting as it is. But if you are hurting at TE because of AHern or Pitta I think Housler will be big in the middle of Arizona’s offense with Floyd and Fitz drawing a ton of attention outside.

    • phantasy5

      July 28, 2013 at 7:06 am

      I like Housler too, but Arians is not too TE friendly! Miller in Pit. numbers went down with him as OC. Last season with Haley, Miller resurged! Same can be said for Fleener and Allen too? Just my opinion!

      • Sensei John Kreese

        July 28, 2013 at 3:15 pm

        True, but Carson likes to lean on tight ends, and Housler has a ridiculous skill set. That is a good point, though.

  11. Eric Hardter

    July 28, 2013 at 7:10 am

    Another name who should come cheaply is Marcedes Lewis. Despite the downright atrocious QB play in JAX last season, he still somehow managed to finish as the TE18 in PPR leagues…not a starter, but a solid bye week replacement for sure. The new regime seems to be high on him, and more importantly, he has a chance to build chemistry with [insert QB’s name here] early on due to Blackmon’s suspension. I’d much rather have him than Dickson right now.

    • slppyclwn

      July 28, 2013 at 10:13 am

      Thanks Eric, i traded Housler earlier in the year to fill another hole, because I was expecting big things out of Pitta. Obviously, his injury had me feeling regretful. But i also had added Lewis to my roster on a whim during the draft. I’m now really hoping he has a decent year.

  12. BigD

    July 28, 2013 at 10:48 am

    alha….enter dallas clark.

  13. SJ

    July 28, 2013 at 11:01 am

    Hmm.. I actually have Housler and M.Lewis in a league where I lost Pitta. Guess my work is done in replacing him. Unfortunately, no one is going to replace the likely 80 rec Pitta was going to catch thi yr. Sad.. a guaranteed 200+ pt PPR player gone with the wind.

  14. Irvs Irvineson

    July 28, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    Karma is a bitch. I had Crabtree and was counting on a monster season in my dynasty. When he went out and tore his achilles, our league champion, who could afford to wait, traded me Reuben Randle and Pitta for him. I felt really good about this deal until last night when I heard about Pitta.

  15. Zach

    July 28, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    Is Pitta worth holding on to my roster in a 12 team league when I already have Graham and Kelece?

  16. jnyc

    July 28, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Don’t listen to this poor analysis. Go get Dickson. The guy was the Ravens TE to own two years ago (things always change fast), last year he got derailed and had some injuries. I have know idea why the author thinks Dickson is a plodder, he’s a better athlete than Pitta. However he doesn’t have as sure hands as Pitta – but that is something he can work on.

    In 2011
    Dickson – 54 receptions, 528 yards, 5 tds
    Pitta – 40 receptions, 405 yards, 3 tds

    There is zero reason to think Dickson can’t build off his 2011 line and produce, 80 receptions, 800 yards, and 10 tds. In standard PPR this would equal 220 fantasy points, which is easily TE 1 numbers.

    Pitta was already being over drafted as people were discounting the presence of Dickson.

    Those who let Dickson pass them by at his bargain price today will regret it later.

    • SJ

      July 28, 2013 at 4:08 pm


  17. dlfkenk

    July 28, 2013 at 6:00 pm

    A lot of good debate here, that’s great. My thinking is even if Dickson plays up to his potential this year (his ceiling is lower than Pitta’s in my mind), he still wouldn’t be able to crack though a huge group of second tier tight ends. I just don’t believe the potential is there to be a difference maker in fantasy leagues, while there could have been with Pitta.

  18. lastStand

    July 28, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    I agree a little with you Ken, Dickson has not showed a lot. But at the same time I do not believe he’s a plodder. He just can’t catch the ball weather it be drops or just a bad play on the ball. Both of those problems can be fixed. At the same time I think Just because Pitta was primed and ready to produce. Does not mean Dickson is just going to step in and do it all himself. Although the last game of the season when they took Pitta out Dickson jumped in and had 6-64 on the day. It’s possible Dickson could put up about the same #’s Pitta did last year. If he fixes his drops he could be inline for 6 to 10 TDs. I think Pitta would have easily put up 1000yd 10TD season.

    I’m so glad I traded Pitta, Fitzpatrick and Kolb for Rivers, DeAngelo and Brandon Myers. All 3 were well needed depth I did need Rivers as a backup QB.

    • SJ

      July 28, 2013 at 9:23 pm

      Given the longterm, if Pitta comes back to form (possible/not possible).. I still think that owner got the better of the deal give the likeliness that Rivers DeAngelo and Myers are all limited values not beyond this year.

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