Pitta says Ravens’ close-game experience works to their advantage

January 30, 2013 | WNST Staff

TIGHT END DENNIS PITTA

(on being a rising talent) “Opportunity, I think that’s what this league is about. You have to be confident in the player that you are and the talents that you have. I think, finally, last year and this year, I’ve been getting a lot of opportunities to make plays. You have to make the most of them when you get them.”

 

(on learning from Ed Dickson) “I think we’ve learned a lot from each other. We came in together and so we’ve kind of gone through this process together. I get to bounce things off him and he gets to bounce things off me. When you get to play with a great player like Ed, you get to learn from what they do. I can kind of mimic some of the things he does and vice versa.”

 

(on playing in the Super Bowl) “It is meeting my expectations. I’ve never experienced this let alone go to the Super Bowl. You don’t know what you expect going into this and finally getting out here it’s a great experience, a lot of fun. Somehow we’ve got to try and focus on football with this game on Sunday.”

 

(on getting VIP treatment) “We haven’t gotten a whole lot yet. When we came in, we got a nice big bag from Nike. That’s probably the best we’ve been treated.”

 

(on game expectations for Sunday) “We expect to win. I think there’s a lot going on this week and a lot of distractions. The challenge, for both teams, is to try to focus and prepare the best we can so we can win on Sunday.”

 

(on facing the 49ers linebackers) “We are prepared. We will be prepared come Sunday. You know, their whole defense has talent all over the board. We’ll have our work cut out for us but we are excited about the challenge. This is definitely the best linebacker corps we’ve seen. I get to see a pretty good one every day at practice. As far as an opponent, these are definitely top in the league.”

 

(on Joe Flacco against other league quarterbacks) “He’s one of the elite quarterbacks and I think he’s proven that. We’ve known that about him all along. We’ve got a ton of confidence in him and he’s finally able to showcase that. Who are the other quarterbacks in the league? I only know Joe.”

 

(on playbook changes when Jim Caldwell came in) “I don’t know from a philosophical standpoint that it changed much. I think we’ve just got a few more opportunities to make some plays. I think Jim does a good job of mixing up the pass and the run so we’ve got more of an opportunity to stay balanced with the ball than we did in the past.”

 

(on increased popularity due to Fantasy Football) “I think Fantasy Football is a huge part of our sport. I think people learn about you through your stats and what you’re able to do for them on their team. So, it’s a huge part of the game and part of the reason why the game has become so popular. That’s pretty much what anyone wants to say to you, is ‘you helped me this week’ or ‘you hurt me this week in fantasy.’

 

(on personal opinion of Fantasy Football)  “I don’t hate it. I don’t play it. When I was in college, I played it. I think it’s fun. ”

 

(on why Ravens would win if the game were close on Sunday) “We’ve been in that situation before. We’ve had a lot of close games and a lot of adversity this year. We’ve gone through a lot and we’ve learned a lot. I don’t think there’s any team better prepared than we are to be in a close situation like that.”

 

(on fans’ role at the Super Bowl) “You know, our fans are great. Somebody told me, I think, we are selling more tickets than they (San Fransisco) are . It doesn’t matter. It’s always nice to have the support. You know, there are fans on both sides and there will be a lot of fans that are just there to kind of watch the game, not (to) have one side or the other. It will be interesting to see how it breaks down.”

 

(on playing at Moorpark High School) “Those were some good years. I had a great coach there. In high school, I played wide receiver. I was skinny, tall, and didn’t block anyone. I just got to run around and catch passes. It was fun.”

 

(on choosing Brigham Young University) “It was a crazy process. Like I said, I was a skinny wide receiver coming out of high school and didn’t get a whole lot of interest for whatever reason from Division I schools. BYU was always kind of on my radar. They showed some interest but didn’t have any available scholarships, they invited me to walk on. I kind of had to work my way up from the bottom and had a successful career there.”

 

(on why this year is special) “We’ve gone through a lot this year. We’ve had a lot of adversity, a lot of highs and lows. It’s been a tremendous year. We’ve had a lot to overcome to get to this point. It’s been a long journey. We’ve made a great run through the postseason and had to play in some tough environments and beat some great teams. We are a battled tested team and excited to be in the position to get one more win.”

 

(on indirectly getting to the Ravens through the Tim Tebow trade) “I know we picked up an extra pick and trading backs with Denver, and they got Tim Tebow. If  it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be with the Ravens.”

 

(on QB Joe Flacco throwing to him in the red zone) “You know in the red zone, you have to take advantage of the middle of the field. That’s primarily where Anquan (Boldin) and I work. You have to be able to create some separation there and Joe does a great job of giving us opportunities to make plays.”

 

(on helping Flacco become an elite quarterback) “Anytime you have a lot of weapons at quarterback, it certainly helps. In this offense, we do have a lot of weapons. I think it starts with the offensive line. The offensive line has a way of playing tremendous football and giving Joe a ton of time. He can sit back, be comfortable and pick defenses a part. He can get into a rhythm and get the ball out to some of his play makers. That’s really the key to his success as a player.”

 

(on Flacco throwing the ball deep) “I haven’t seen many better arms than Joe. He can make any throw on the field. Obviously, he’s got a ton of arm strength to get the ball down field. He does a great job with those throws.”

 

(on offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell’s transformation of the offense) “From the first day that Jim came in as offensive coordinator, he took us back to the basics, working on the fundamentals, detailing things a little bit better. He does a great job on game day, mixing up his calls, keeping defense on their heels, and allowing us to really attack and be aggressive.

 

(on Jim Harbaugh being a “player coach”) “I think Jim’s a great coach. He certainly has the respect of all his players. Everybody looks up to him as being a great football coach and a guy who knows the game. That’s what makes him successful.”

 

(on 49ers against tight ends in the red zone) “That’s a very interesting statistic. They’re obviously a good defense all around. I think any time you get in the red zone and have a big body like the tight end where you can create some mismatches, it helps, especially against a solid defense like that and you have to find mismatches where you can. We’ll take advantage of some of those as well, but it’s not going to be to score against this team. We’ve been pretty good in the red zone ourselves so we’ll try and take what they give us.”

 

 

 

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