The general rule of thumb in the NFL is that it takes about three years for a wide receiver to develop into an everyday contributor. The same could apply to Dennis Pitta.
The Ravens' fourth-round selection in the 2010 NFL draft, Pitta has begun to assert himself as the franchise's tight end of the future. He is tied with wide receiver Torrey Smith for the team lead in touchdown receptions (seven), ranks second in catches (57), and is third in receiving yards (613).
With two more regular-season contests remaining, Pitta needs just one more score to break a tie with Todd Heap for the most touchdown catches by a tight end in a single season. After establishing career bests in receiving yards (125) and touchdowns (two) in Sunday's 34-17 loss to the Denver Broncos, Pitta talked about his season and Sunday's opponent, the New York Giants.
How pleased were you with your performance against the Broncos?
It's tough because the way that game was going, there was a lot of frustration and disappointment, especially early on. I was fortunate to be able to make some plays, especially in the second half. But it was kind of overshadowed by the level of disappointment in how we played initially, especially myself. There were a few plays in the first half that I would like to have back. So it's a tough one to say that I'm proud of that.
I know you are still tight with Todd Heap. How cool is it to share the franchise record for touchdowns by a tight end with him?
Obviously, Todd's a really good friend of mine, and we've stayed really close. We see each other all the time in the offseason and work out together. It's neat for me because he's a Pro Bowler, he's been an unbelievable success in the NFL and has meant a lot to this organization. So to be able to tie Todd, it's cool for me.
The New York Giants are a tough opponent, but they have been susceptible to opposing tight ends. The Dallas Cowboys' Jason Witten finished with 18 grabs for 167 yards on Oct. 28. Does that get you a little wide-eyed?
You do, but at the same time, every game is different. I don't think they're going to do the same things against Dallas against us. So you go in knowing that there might be plenty of opportunities. If it's there, great. If not, just do your job.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun