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Baltimore Places Dennis Pitta On Short-Term IR

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Although Dennis Pitta can return week nine it is highly unlikely that the player or the team will risk it. Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images.
Although Dennis Pitta can return week nine it is highly unlikely that the player or the team will risk it. Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images.

The Baltimore Ravens announced that TE Dennis Pitta will be placed on injured reserve with a designation to return. The short-term injured reserve list makes it so the earliest he'll be eligible to return is Week 9.

Even though he can return Week 9, it would be shocking to see him fully recovered that quickly. After fracturing his hip in training camp, initial reports indicated a three-to-four month timetable for the tight end, and a Week 9 return seems overly optimistic. What seems more likely and prudent for both Pitta and the Ravens is to expect him to return for the last three to four games of the season, at the earliest. Pitta, who will be a free agent after the season, has no incentive to risk returning too early and reinjuring himself.

The team also announced Wednesday that they resigned TE Billy Bajema. Bajema, who played for Baltimore last season and has previously played for San Francisco and St. Louis, is purely a blocking tight end. The Ravens will look to Ed Dickson, who has been cleared for Week 1 after suffering a partially torn hamstring in early August, and the 34-year-old Dallas Clark to fill the pass catching tight end void in Pitta’s stead. Both are capable receivers (assuming Clark has anything left in the tank), but they won’t be able to fill Pitta’s shoes.