Sport

Falcons' Pitts on injured reserve with ailing right knee

Atlanta Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts (8) lies on the turf after a hit against the Chicago Bears during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 20, 2022, in Atlanta.
Atlanta Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts (8) lies on the turf after a hit against the Chicago Bears during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 20, 2022, in Atlanta.
AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

ATLANTA (AP) - Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts was placed on injured reserve on Monday with an ailing right knee.

Coach Arthur Smith added that it’s too early to know if Pitts, the No. 4 overall draft pick last year and a Pro Bowl pick as a rookie, will need surgery. He will miss at least the next four games.

”(General manager) Terry (Fontenot) and I will talk through the next 48 hours, and until we get confirmation from the full set of medical opinions and until everybody’s on the same page, then we’ll decide if we need to make a move or not,” Smith said.

Pitts was hurt in the third quarter of Sunday’s 27-24 win over the Chicago Bears. He caught an 18-yard pass over the middle and was hit low by Eddie Jackson. He stayed down on the field for a few seconds before walking off the field under his own power.

The Falcons (5-6) will likely turn to MyCole Pruitt to replace Pitts as Atlanta prepares to visit Washington (6-5) this weekend.

Smith said Sunday that the team wouldn’t know the severity of Pitts’ injury until he gets a couple of medical opinions. Pitts ranks second on the Falcons with 28 catches for 356 yards and two touchdowns. His numbers are down this season with Atlanta deploying a run-first offense.

Falcons starting defensive end Ta’Quon Graham was placed on injured reserve as well because of a knee injury.

Graham left in the second quarter against the Bears and was carted off the field. Smith said the team will know the full extent of Graham’s injury later this week.

Atlanta claimed Jaleel Johnson off waivers from Houston. The Falcons also signed tight end John Raine to the practice squad and placed offensive lineman Justin Shaffer on injured reserve list from the practice squad.

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