Harbaugh remains hopeful Pitta returns this season

Harbaugh remains hopeful Pitta returns this season
October 23, 2013, 2:15 pm
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Ravens must improve in all 3 aspects of the game

John Harbaugh said Wednesday that he remained cautiously optimistic tight end Dennis Pitta would return this season.

Pitta suffered a hip injury July 27 that required surgery, but he was placed on the injured reserve – designated to return list. No timetable has been set for Pitta, although he would be eligible to play as early as the Week 9 game against the Bengals on Nov. 10. Harbaugh did not rule out that Pitta would be activated in mid-to-late November.

“Nothing has changed as far as I know,” Harbaugh said. “Everything is on schedule. There have been no setbacks with Dennis, so we’ll just have to see how it goes. Until we get him on the field and see him start running around, I think we’ll know more then. And I’m looking forward to that. That will be very interesting.”

Teammates have been encouraged seeing Pitta at the practice facility, getting treatment and walking without a limp.

“He’s working his tail off rehab-wise,” wide receiver Torrey Smith said of Pitta. “It’s always pretty cool to see him in there, really see his progression. Hopefully he can get back. I don’t know an exact date, and if I did, I wouldn’t give out any hints anyways. He’s definitely looking a lot better.”

Pitta is one of Joe Flacco’s favorite targets, expected to be a major part of this year’s offense prior to the injury. Neither Dallas Clark (23 catches, 265 yards, two touchdowns) nor Ed Dickson (seven catches, 93 yards) has been as productive as Pitta was last season (61 catches, 669 yards, seven touchdowns). Getting Pitta back for the stretch run could be a major lift at a crucial time.