Pitta dislocated his hip for the third time in five years, and this time it could be a career-ending injury, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Pitta will need surgery to repair the hip.
He was injured without being hit, according to the Ravens. During a closed practice, Pitta stretched out to make a catch and fell to the ground. When he tried to get up, he couldn't put any weight on his leg.
"This is incredibly disappointing, obviously for Dennis, and for the Ravens," general manager Ozzie Newsome said in a statement.
Safety Eric Weddle tweeted about the injuries Friday.
Losing 2 brothers back to back days is hard. Never take for granted the time we get with our teammates!!! Gonna miss u bro. https://t.co/F4YaZeh9tk— Eric Weddle (@weddlesbeard) June 2, 2017
Pitta's injury is a tough blow to the Ravens' passing attack. If Pitta misses the season, the Ravens would have only one player (Mike Wallace) who had more than 34 catches last season.
Nick Boyle and Crockett Gillmore are the Ravens' only healthy tight ends. Benjamin Watson (Achilles) and Maxx Williams (knee) are expected to be back for training camp after surgeries, and Darren Waller is dealing with an undisclosed injury.
Only last week, Pitta spoke about how preparing for the 2017 season has been so different than 2016.
"I am not getting as many questions about my hip; that is one [difference]," Pitta said on May 25. "I feel good. I got to have a full offseason of just normal preparation. It feels good -- feeling healthy."
Pitta fractured and dislocated his hip for the first time in July 2013 during a collision at a training camp practice. He hurt the hip again in a game in Cleveland in September 2014, when he fell to the ground without being hit -- which is similar to the latest injury.
He once wondered if his career was over after fracturing his right hip twice in a 14-month period. There were doctors, friends and family members who discouraged Pitta from returning to football.
But after sitting out the 2015 season, he decided to return even though he knew he could dislocate his hip at any time.
"You could talk all day about what the risks are," Pitta said before the 2016 season. "There will always be people that say I'm crazy and don't understand why I would put myself at risk. But to those people you say, 'We all put ourselves at risk playing football.'"
Pitta played all 16 games last season and set a franchise record for most catches by a tight end in a single season, with 86. He then agreed to a $2.5 million payout to return to the Ravens this season.
"Dennis is one of the great Ravens," Newsome said, "and he's done everything he can to make our team better."