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Ravens and Dennis Pitta “far apart” as grievance looms

Dennis+Pitta+Baltimore+Ravens+Training+Camp+wrgEj6Wc_0kx Getty Images

Saints larger-than-average pass-catching football person Jimmy Graham is prepared to file a grievance if he’s franchise-tagged as a tight end, and he may have company.

According to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun, the Ravens and tight end Dennis Pitta are “far apart” in their talks on a contract extension, which could lead to several problems for the team.

Like Graham, Pitta will back at the tight end tag designation, since he lined up the majority of his snaps as a slot receiver. Given the $4.8 million difference in the wide receiver tag and the tight end tag, both are hoping to use the grievance as leverage.

That complicates things for the Ravens, who have other business to do, notably with left tackle Eugene Monroe.

With two weeks left before free agency, there’s a lot of posturing by both sides at this point, but the threat of a grievance that could drag things out and make it harder to do other deal is a useful tool for players looking for what they believe they deserve.

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40 Responses to “Ravens and Dennis Pitta “far apart” as grievance looms”
  1. thehouseofho says: Feb 18, 2014 8:06 AM

    I’m surprised the Ravens are even thinking about using the franchise tag on this guy. He had one good year and is coming off a major injury. He doesn’t even deserve the 6mil for the franchise tag.

    The Ravens traded Anquan Boldin because he was owed 6mil. Q’s a better player, receiver, AND blocker than Pitta will ever be. The Ravens should let this fool walk.

  2. lovefootball4life says: Feb 18, 2014 8:11 AM

    I would really love to know who is the so called “source that predicted” in the Baltimore Sun article. Pitta is good and had a good 2012 season but he’s not Jimmy Graham.

  3. stlunatik says: Feb 18, 2014 8:11 AM

    When you pay a tight end receiver pay they turn into Jared Cook. What a let down. just sayin

  4. weepingjebus says: Feb 18, 2014 8:17 AM

    I really hope that’s a water fountain.

  5. dcapettini says: Feb 18, 2014 8:18 AM

    We like Pitta and he is a good player, but after sitting out almost his total option year, you would think that he would be reasonable in his demands. Ozzie made a big mistake taking TEs on consecutive picks in the draft. Instead of having a potential replacement for Pitta in the wings, we have Dickson, who isn’t half the player that Pitta is.

    There are several good looking TEs in the draft and they should plan on taking one in the first round. Make Pitta a reasonable offer and if he isn’t interested let someone else take a chance at high dollars. He isn’t all that. It just seems that way because the receiving corps is so second rate. I’m not sure why, but it seems that teams are willing to overpay Raven free agents more than they would other teams. The list of disappointing Raven free agents signed somewhere else is legion.

  6. thebirdsareback says: Feb 18, 2014 8:28 AM

    I love the Baltimore Ravens, and am a huge fan of Dennis Pitta, We have the same name so thats cool. But seriously, he’s had a handful of great games in his career and the rest are pretty forgettable. I dont care if he’s Joes bestie. Hes a middle of the pack TE with a Bum Hip. MOVE ON! TE is stacked in the draft this season. I say, if he thinks he’s a WR, then he needs to go try and be a WR somewhere else cause he’s no Jimmy Graham.

  7. thebirdsareback says: Feb 18, 2014 8:29 AM

    And if Dennis believes this to be the case, then the Ravens mine as well go after Jimmy Graham if were gonna pay for a TE/WR salary.

  8. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Feb 18, 2014 8:31 AM

    Get your money, Dennis. We’re all pulling for you.

  9. anonymous135 says: Feb 18, 2014 8:38 AM

    “Pitta will back at the tight end tag designation, since he lined up the majority of his snaps as a slot receiver.”…

    Really, they judge from majority of snaps when he’s only played 3 games this season… and in consideration the Raven’s dropped Boldin, so more out of necessity in this case…

    Jimmy Graham has been slotting up his entire career and most importantly – recently. I’m all for getting paid, but even though technically in the same boat, I only see JG as deserving of consideration of the ‘WR’ component.

  10. ravensterps says: Feb 18, 2014 8:38 AM

    Delusional. At least jimmy graham PRODUCES. Pitta’s career numbers are probably comparable to a single season of Graham’s.

  11. anonymous135 says: Feb 18, 2014 8:43 AM

    NFL/PA should make an amendment to include a hybrid designation to recognize the reality of the tween position.

    A TE shouldn’t be paid as a receiver, but he shouldn’t be paid as a TE when he’s lining up half the time as a WR.

    Traditional TE’s block and make clutch 1st down catches and red zone touchdown’s.

    They use JG like Calvin Johnson… pay him.

  12. Joemontanaflacco says: Feb 18, 2014 8:51 AM

    I hope Pitta considers that, as a Raven, he’ll also get to win a second Superbowl. This is why teams like the Steelers and Deadskins are in cap hell — they have nothing to offer their players but cash since their playoff chances, at best, are zero.

  13. jmblosser82 says: Feb 18, 2014 9:03 AM

    As long as Flacco is the QB and you continue to let the good players go the Ravens will not sniff the SB again. Rice hit the wall, Pitta wants out of town or he would accept the TE tag, Smith is the only WR threat, the line is terrible, and the only thing that will help win games is the beefed up defense.

  14. joemammy says: Feb 18, 2014 9:08 AM

    It’s the curse of Art Modell.

  15. Nofoolnodrool says: Feb 18, 2014 9:09 AM

    Pitta needs to sign with the 3rd place ravens or Flacco will throw his way into fourth place. Nobody wants a washed up JumpBallJoe slow TE/slot receiver so stay where you are Dennis and enjoy the trip to the basement.

  16. metrocritical says: Feb 18, 2014 9:18 AM

    In the bigger picture, this TE/WR designation will continue to be a problem unless fixed through the CBA. The game has evolved but the agreement isn’t a living document like the U.S. Constitution and is not subject to broad interpretation or application. If the players win a few grievances under the current scenario, teams will end up letting all but the truly elite TEs walk and let FAs test the market where the market will likely pay pay out more like a TE than a WR in most cases. In the end, compromise would seem to make the most sense for most TE/WR stalemates.

  17. travelingwillies says: Feb 18, 2014 9:25 AM

    How did this guy become this overrated?

  18. sbchampsagain says: Feb 18, 2014 9:26 AM

    No worries for Ravens fans. Pitta can test the water. But Ozzie won’t overpay for a TE coming off a major injury.
    There are lots of TEs available on the FA market this year, including a couple that played for Kubiak in Texas…

  19. xli2006 says: Feb 18, 2014 9:26 AM

    It is interesting they felt Boldin was expendable for a similar price.

    They obviously didn’t know Pitta would fracture his hip, but in hindsight letting Boldin go (and getting next to nothing in return) to keep other FAs was a questionable decision.

    With key players getting some serious “wear on the tires” (Rice and Suggs) the Ravens will have some major decisions on the horizon… starting now.

  20. flylikearaven88 says: Feb 18, 2014 9:28 AM

    I’m fine with that, let’s just trade pitta and a second for Jimmy Graham and call it a day.

  21. bigcid10 says: Feb 18, 2014 9:37 AM

    that’s fine Dennis,come sign with Pittsburgh

  22. southsidesteve86 says: Feb 18, 2014 9:47 AM

    I’d let him go ahead let him test FA.

    He won’t get $6m on the open market….he’s no Gronkowski. He’s an average receiving tight end.

  23. crownofthehelmet says: Feb 18, 2014 9:55 AM

    I’m so glad the Steelers do not have greedy, unreasonable players, and management that doesn’t know what they’re doing.

  24. The Great Ted Thompson the Genius says: Feb 18, 2014 9:56 AM

    Pizzle will be a Raven for life.

  25. jakec4 says: Feb 18, 2014 10:10 AM

    Pitta isn’t all that. Ozzie shouldn’t waste too much time playing games with a player who doesn’t rank with the marquee tight ends around the league. Jimmy Graham can flex his muscle because he’s one of those enormous, fast, strong, game changing, really hard to defend tight ends. Pitta not so much.

  26. infectorman says: Feb 18, 2014 10:12 AM

    travelwillies says: Feb 18, 2014 9:25 AM

    How did this guy become this overrated?

    __________________________

    Same way Flacco did

  27. ballinmore says: Feb 18, 2014 10:19 AM

    He’s 29 and coming off an injury. As much as I want to see him stay he’s 3 years older than most guys coming into their first pay day.

  28. steelerstrong says: Feb 18, 2014 10:27 AM

    They will overpay again. Don’t believe me? Just look at what they gave an average quarterback.

  29. crownofthehelmet says: Feb 18, 2014 10:45 AM

    “Announcing your Ravens 2015 starting line-up: Flacco, Suggs, and Pitta, that’s it.”

  30. hlmatty1 says: Feb 18, 2014 11:19 AM

    I have no problem with his grievance if, when allowed to test market, he goes to a team where the team must play him at wide receiver — since he considers himself one. Or he and graham cannot go to pro Bowls at the TE position because a majority of snaps he took at WR. What about someone like Cameron Wake oe Demarcus Ware, pass rushing LBs. Are their cap number at LB or DE?

  31. SmashMouthFootball says: Feb 18, 2014 11:44 AM

    At least there is news coming from the Ravens. Steelers are so strapped for cap space they’re trying to figure out who is the cheapest FA they can actually keep.

    I’m sure the Ravens front office will make the best business decision. The FA TE market is a buyers market and the draft is deep. Pitta won’t get WR money anywhere. Except maybe Miami…where players get overpaid and only play 16 games.

  32. scoobies05 says: Feb 18, 2014 12:01 PM

    that lineup would still beat Pittsburgh

  33. crownofthehelmet says: Feb 18, 2014 12:06 PM

    “Except maybe Miami…where players get overpaid and only play 16 games”

    Flacco is insulted you excluded him.

  34. itsunclepauley says: Feb 18, 2014 12:47 PM

    will he “back” at it, or will he “balk” at it?

  35. scoobies05 says: Feb 18, 2014 1:46 PM

    overrated like flacco. oh, you mean by winning the super bowl

  36. taosravenfan says: Feb 18, 2014 2:00 PM

    Love the love from the Steeler fans. Only confirms my suspicion that they believe we are a better team and management? When was their last playoff game?

  37. nickster31 says: Feb 18, 2014 2:32 PM

    If Pitta stays, Ozzy is the greatest GM of all time!
    If he doesnt, Ozzy is the greatest GM of all time!

    Pitta leaves, then he was garbage and it doesnt matter. If he stays then he is the greatest in the game.

    All Im saying is bookmark this page, and when he signs wherever he signs, check the comments on that article and compare them to this one.

    On another note, I crack up when a Ravens fan slams the cap strapped Steelers and all the money Ben makes, when next year at this time the Ravens are going to have to either pay Flacco the $27 million ROSTER bonus (roster bonus counts against a single year cap) or pay him the rest of his guaranteed money, which I think is like $20 million by cutting him.

  38. nickster31 says: Feb 18, 2014 2:38 PM

    One other thing, Bengals fans, the AFC North has a Super Bowl record of 4-2 since your last playoff victory.

    Steelers and Ravens fans may slam each other, but it is because (as much as either fan base may hate to admit) our teams are normally great teams.
    Funny, it takes a couple years of Steelers/Ravens having down years for you to rep the AFCN in the playoffs, and 1 and done each year.

  39. lovefootball4life says: Feb 18, 2014 5:11 PM

    “this time the Ravens are going to have to either pay Flacco the $27 million ROSTER bonus (roster bonus counts against a single year cap) ”
    Nope that’s not Flacco’s contract. His cap number escalates every year as does any NFL contract because the guaranteed money is spread over the remaining years. Signing bonus spread over 5 years. Option bonus in year two spread over four, etc. expectation is he will renegotiate when the cap gets big as they just did with Suggs and Bears are trying with Cutler.

    Totally with you on the Cincy thing though.

  40. steelcurtainn says: Feb 18, 2014 11:14 PM

    No wide receivers, no line and now no tight end. Fans need to be on high alert, Flacco will be heaving for the stands.

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