Ravens' Pitta likely to open season on PUP, per report

Ravens tight end Dennis Pitta has worked tirelessly in his comeback attempt from a fractured and dislocated right hip, but his return to the field remains a work in progress.

The sixth-year pass-catcher is likely to open training camp and the regular season on the physically unable to perform list, league sources told Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun. Landing on the PUP would cost Pitta the first six games of the campaign, but such a designation wouldn't be a surprise considering he has yet to be cleared for practice.

Pitta participated in individual drills and route running during offseason sessions, but hip injuries are tricky and the former fourth-round pick is coming off two major hip surgeries in as many years.

"A couple of things are going to have to happen for him to play ultimately," coach John Harbaugh said in June. "No. 1, he has to be cleared by the doctors. And, No. 2, he has to decide if he wants to play because obviously there will be some risk involved. He hasn't been cleared by the doctors."

Pitta's five-year, $32 million deal guarantees him $4 million this season no matter what he accomplishes, but the Ravens have already insured themselves at the position after drafting second-round tight end Maxx Williams out of Minnesota. Baltimore also has Crockett Gillmore, who made a handful of plays down the stretch last season.

Lacking depth at wide receiver, quarterback Joe Flacco would love to have his friend and trusty tight end back in the mix, but the reality is that Pitta might never play again. Taking a patient approach makes plenty of sense.

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