Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2014 Draft Prep: Pitta will be a Top 5 tight end

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

Draft Averages | Rankings | Podcasts | Draft Index

Are you looking for a tight end with "breakout potential" written all over him? You need to target Dennis Pitta.

The Ravens tight end is 100 percent healthy after last season's hip injury and he's ready for a career year. There's a lot going in his favor and the prediction is he will be a top-five tight end across the board.

Pitta was headed for greatness last season after his performance in 2012 when he established himself as a reliable option for Joe Flacco. He had 61 catches for 669 yards and seven touchdowns and he was No. 7 in Fantasy points in standard leagues.

But he injured his hip in training camp in 2013 and we never got to see his career year unfold. That changes now.

New Ravens offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak relies on tight ends more than anyone else. His former team, the Texans, targeted tight ends more than any other team since 2008. That system is now in Baltimore -- and don't be afraid of veteran tight end Owen Daniels, who was with Kubiak in Houston. Daniels will work in certain packages, but he's a distant second on the depth chart.

Flacco relies on Pitta, who was second in targets for the Ravens in 2012 behind Torrey Smith (110 to 94), but his red-zone work and third-down productivity is vital. According to ESPN, the Ravens ranked 31st in red-zone scoring percentage and 20th on third-down conversion percentage with Pitta out most of last year.

But go back to 2011 and 2012 when Pitta scored a combined 10 touchdowns in the red zone. No other Baltimore player had more than seven during that span. And, in those same two seasons, Pitta had 36 third-down receptions, which tied Ray Rice for the team lead. Only three tight ends (Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten and Tony Gonzalez) had more third-down receptions than Pitta over that span.

Another factor to consider is the Ravens might have to throw more with Rice suspended for the first two games. Bernard Pierce could be great filling in for Rice, but keep in mind Baltimore struggled to run as a team last season. More passing would mean more production for Pitta.

We understand it's risky to consider Pitta as a top-five tight end. He's clearly behind Graham, Rob Gronkowski and Julius Thomas coming into the season. And Fantasy owners trust Vernon Davis, Jason Witten and Jordan Cameron ahead of him based on Average Draft Position in August.

But if you believe in Pitta then this only helps your cause. You can draft him later -- his ADP is No. 75 overall -- and get better results. I have him ranked ahead of Davis, Witten and Cameron at No. 4, and I plan to target Pitta in all leagues.

We'll find out if he can live up to the hype, but I'm willing to gamble on him in Round 7 in a 12-team league. I'm expecting a great season and I like him as a top-five tight end this year.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee) able to run, but not practice
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:50 pm ET) Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said he is making progress and is able to run, but he still isn't practicing because of a sprained MCL. Fitzgerald, who sat out Week 12, is optimistic about playing Week 13 against the Falcons, but added it's not his call.

Browns TE Jordan Cameron limited in practice Thursday
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(2:48 pm ET) Browns tight end Jordan Cameron, who's missed four straight games with a concussion, was limited in Thursday's practice ahead of Sunday's game at Buffalo, reports ESPN.com. Cameron still must gain clearance from an independent neurologist to suit up Week 13.

Steelers tackle Marcus Gilbert misses practice with ankle injury
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:44 pm ET) Steelers right tackle Marcus Gilbert did not practice Thursday due to an ankle injury, putting his status for Week 13 vs. New Orleans, according to ESPN. Gilbert was injured during practice Wednesday when he collided with left guard Ramon Foster.

Mike Adams would start at right tackle for Pittsburgh, if Gilbert is unable to play Sunday.


Bears safety Chris Conte won't return Week 13 due to eye injury
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:30 pm ET) Bears safety Chris Conte left Thursday's game at Detroit in the first half to be evaluated for a concussion. He was then ruled out for the remainder of the game shortly after halftime, but he was cleared of a concussion. He was ruled out due to an eye injury.

Colts TE Dwayne Allen unable to practice Thursday
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:20 pm ET) Colts tight end Dwayne Allen was absent from practice Thursday for a second straight day due to an ankle injury. The Colts are preparing to face the Redskins in Week 13.

Allen missed his first game of the season Week 12 against the Jaguars.


Megatron becomes fastest to 10,000 career receiving yards
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:10 pm ET) With a 9-yard reception in the second quarter Thursday against the Bears, Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson became the fastest to reach 10,000 receiving yards in NFL history. It took Johnson just 115 games to accomplish the feat, besting Torry Holt, who reached 10,000 receiving yards in 116 games.

Four plays after reaching 10,000 yards, Johnson had his second touchdown catch of the first half. He finished the first half with nine catches for 109 yards on 11 targets.


Bears DL Cornelius Washington suffers chest injury Week 13
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:50 pm ET) Bears defensive lineman Cornelius Washington left Thursday's game at Detroit due to a chest injury. He had no tackles before leaving the game.

Patterson, McKinnon absent from Vikings practice again
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:43 pm ET) Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson (knee) and running back Jerick McKinnon (low back) missed practice Thursday. It was the second straight day they sat out.

The Vikings host the Panthers Week 13.


Broncos TE Julius Thomas does some individual drills Thursday
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:40 pm ET) Broncos tight end Julius Thomas (ankle) did some individual drills during practice Thursday, according to ESPN. He also worked with the strength coaches.

Thomas sat out Week 12 due to a sprained left ankle. The Broncos travel to play at Kansas City in Week 13.


Packers' McCarthy not overly concerned about Adams' injury
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:23 pm ET) Packers wide receiver Davante Adams was limited in practice Thursday due to a heel injury. However, coach Mike McCarthy didn't seem too concerned about Adams' status for Week 13 vs. New England.

"Davante moved around, did some things," McCarthy said Thursday. "I don't have high concern. Got stepped on yesterday."


 
 
 
Rankings