He’s one of those move tight ends who can be a matchup nightmare for a defense trying to cover him with a linebacker or even some safeties. He’s a very good route runner, and he’s got good hands as well. It seems like Joe really likes to get the football to him, so he presents some problems. —Vikings coach Leslie Frazier, on Dennis Pitta
Just a little more than four months after fracturing and dislocating his hip during practice, former BYU tight end Dennis Pitta will be back in game action Sunday.
The Baltimore Ravens announced Saturday that they had activated Pitta from the injured-reserve designated to return list, clearing the way for him to play in the Ravens' game against Minnesota.
According to the Baltimore Sun, Pitta participated in practice all week, which included catching a diving touchdown pass while landing on his surgically repaired right hip.
While Pitta is cleared to play, it's expected he will have a limited role against the Vikings as he continues to get used to game speed following the surgery.
"Ultimately, it's up to me and how I feel," Pitta told the Sun Friday. "It's a rare injury in sports, so the doctors are relying on me to see how I feel and how my body responds and all that."
Pitta, who had 61 catches for 669 yards and seven touchdowns last season, could provide an offensive spark for the Ravens (6-6) need as they fight to defend their Super Bowl title. Baltimore is currently in the thick of the AFC Wild Card race.
Baltimore has had a minimal impact from the tight end position in 2013. Veteran Dallas Clark and Ed Dickson have combined for 47 receptions for 554 yards and three scores.
Pitta was second on the team in receptions last season.
Minnesota coach Leslie Frazier is aware of the impact Pitta can have on a game.
“He’s one of those move tight ends who can be a matchup nightmare for a defense trying to cover him with a linebacker or even some safeties,” the coach said in a conference call this week. “He’s a very good route runner, and he’s got good hands as well. It seems like Joe (Flacco) really likes to get the football to him, so he presents some problems.”
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