Dan Vitale

Green Bay Packers
Running Back #45
Green Bay Packers
Running Back #45

Dan Vitale News

Announces retirement

Vitale announced via his personal LinkedIn page Monday that he is moving on from football, Darren Hartwell of Yahoo! Sports reports.

Analysis: Vitale stated that his body is simply ready to move on from football after spending the last five seasons in the NFL. His most productive season came in 2019 with Green Bay, catching seven passes for 97 yards and rushing for three yards on one carry.

Jun 7, 2021 5:14 PM EST

Cut by New England

The Patriots cut Vitale on Thursday, Jim McBride of The Boston Globe reports.

Analysis: Vitale opted out of the 2020 season due to concerns related to COVID-19, so his tenure with the Patriots comes to an end without his ever having suited up for a game with the team. The dual-threat fullback shouldn't have much trouble latching on elsewhere this offseason.

May 27, 2021 12:20 PM EST

Opts out of season

Vitale is opting out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com reports.

Analysis: The fullback and his wife are parents to a newborn baby and has elected to sit out the coming season to remain with his family. In his absence, Jakob Johnson is the Patriots' lone fullback, though Reiss notes that tight ends Dalton Keene and/or Jake Burt could also assist in that area.

Jul 27, 2020 3:07 PM EST

Inks with New England

Vitale (knee) signed a contract with the Patriots on Friday, Zack Cox of NESN.com reports.

Analysis: Vitale spent the 2019 campaign in Green Bay, where he mainly contributed as a blocker while also handling limited receiving work. He's recovering from a minor knee procedure undergone early February. The decision to sign Vitale may be a hint that the Patriots do not expect longtime fullback James Develin (neck) to be healthy in time to begin the 2020 regular season.

Mar 20, 2020 3:13 PM EST

Undergoes minor procedure

Vitale had his right knee scoped Monday, Olivia Reiner of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Analysis: Vitale missed the final regular-season game and both postseason contests with a knee injury, and this procedure should help him return to full strength by training camp. The 25-year-old fullback mainly played a blocking role with the Packers in 2019 but caught a few passes. He's set to be a free agent in March.

Feb 10, 2020 12:06 PM EST

Finishes season on sidelines

Vitale (knee) rushed once for three yards and caught seven passes for 97 yards over 15 regular-season games in 2019.

Analysis: Vitale missed the season finale and both playoff games due to his knee injury, allowing Jace Sternberger to take a lead-blocking role. The 25-year-old rarely strayed from a blocking role with Green Bay, and he logged a hefty amount of special-teams snaps. It's unclear if the fullback's injury will affect his free-agent status, as Vitale will be an unrestricted free agent in March if he's not re-signed.

Jan 21, 2020 2:19 PM EST

Inactive Sunday

Vitale (knee) is inactive for Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the 49ers.

Analysis: Vitale doesn't see enough touches on offense to merit fantasy consideration, but the Packers will miss his blocking Sunday. In his absence, tight end Jace Sternberger figures to help out in that area.

Jan 19, 2020 2:45 PM EST

Listed as questionable

Vitale (knee) is officially questionable for Sunday's NFC Championship Game in San Francisco, Wes Hodkiewicz of the Packers' official site reports.

Analysis: Vitale has missed back-to-back games due to a knee injury, but he did manage a trio of limited practices this week. If available, the versatile fullback will contribute as a key blocker for Green Bay's offense.

Jan 17, 2020 2:16 PM EST

Can't play Sunday

Vitale (illness) is ruled out for Sunday's NFC divisional-round game against the Seahawks.

Analysis: Vitale is nursing an illness unrelated to the knee issue that caused him to miss the regular-season finale, but he'll nonetheless miss Sunday's playoff contest. In his stead, Elijah Wellman will operate as the only true fullback on Green Bay's roster.

Jan 12, 2020 2:26 PM EST

Availability up in air for Sunday

Vitale (knee/illness) is listed as questionable for Sunday's divisional-round game versus the Seahawks, Wes Hodkiewicz of the Packers' official site reports.

Analysis: Vitale was sidelined by a knee injury in the regular-season finale and kicked off this week as a limited participant on the injury report. However, an illness forced DNPs on Thursday and Friday, which may forecast his upcoming availability. The Packers will make a decision on Vitale roughly 90 minutes before Sunday's 6:40 p.m. ET kickoff.

Jan 10, 2020 3:23 PM EST

Not playing Sunday

Vitale (knee) is listed as inactive Sunday in Detroit, Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette reports.

Analysis: With Jamaal Williams (shoulder) also sidelined, the Packers will rely on Dexter Williams and Tyler Ervin as the reserve running backs to Aaron Jones.

Dec 29, 2019 8:43 AM EST

Trending in wrong direction

Vitale (knee) is officially listed as doubtful for Sunday's contest against the Lions, Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Analysis: Vitale failed to participate in all three practices this week due to the knee issue stemming from Monday's win over the Vikings. His likely absence will be a blow to the team without their lead blocker, and his versatility in the both the pass and run games. With No. 2 back Jamaal Williams (shoulder) also listed as doubtful, the depth is extremely thin behind starter Aaron Jones.

Dec 27, 2019 3:54 PM EST

Still slowed by knee injury

Vitale (knee) didn't participate in Thursday's practice.

Analysis: A non-participant on the Packers' injury report for the second day in a row, Vitale's availability for Sunday's regular-season finale against the Lions looks to be in jeopardy. The fullback typically offers his most value for Green Bay as a lead blocker, but if he can shake off the knee injury in time for the weekend, Vitale may notice a slightly more pronounced role as a ballcarrier and pass catcher. With No. 2 back Jamaal Williams (shoulder) also a non-participant in back-to-back practices and potentially in line to sit out Week 17, coach Matt LaFleur suggested he would rely more on Vitale and Dexter Williams as the main depth options behind Aaron Jones, according to Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Dec 26, 2019 2:38 PM EST

Sidelined Wednesday

Vitale (knee) was a non-participant on Wednesday's practice estimation, Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette reports.

Analysis: Vitale appears to have picked up a knee injury during Week 16's win over the Vikings, though it's worth noting Packers didn't actually practice Christmas Day. The fullback's participation in practice over the rest of the week will reveal further information about his Week 17 availability.

Dec 25, 2019 3:41 PM EST

Gearing up Sunday

Vitale (knee) is active for Sunday's matchup against the 49ers.

Analysis: After being limited in practice all week, Vitale was able to recover enough to suit up for this crucial NFC showdown. The fourth-year fullback will pave the way for Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams against a stout 49ers defensive front, and he'll continue contributing on special teams.

Nov 24, 2019 3:58 PM EST

Could sit Sunday

Vitale (knee) is listed as questionable ahead of Sunday's game against the 49ers, Olivia Reiner of The Journal Sentinel reports.

Analysis: The fullback was limited at practice all week, so it appears that there is a 50 percent chance, minimum, that Vitale misses Sunday's pivotal contest. Whether he plays or not, Vitale is unlikely to play a factor in fantasy.

Nov 22, 2019 3:37 PM EST

One catch in Week 5

Vitale had one reception for nine yards in Sunday's victory over the Cowboys.

Analysis: Vitale got more touches in Week 4 than he usually would as one of only two active running backs following Jamaal Williams' departure from the game with a head injury. However, the Packers added Tra Carson and used him as the backup behind Aaron Jones with Williams out in Week 5; and Vitale was back in standard fullback role.

Oct 7, 2019 12:04 PM EST

Gets extra work as injury fill-in

Vitale had one carry for three yards and two receptions for 15 yards in Thursday's loss to the Eagles.

Analysis: As a result of the head injury that forced running back Jamaal Williams from Thursday's game and left the Packers with just one active halfback in Aaron Jones, Vitale had three touches after getting the ball just once in the Packers' first three games. Don't expect Vitale to be the main beneficiary should Williams miss more time -- Dexter Williams would likely be added to the active roster and assume the No. 2 running back spot in that scenario.

Sep 27, 2019 9:25 AM EST

Just misses touchdown

Vitale had a 27-yard reception in Sunday's victory over the Broncos.

Analysis: The reception was Vitale's first touch of the season, and he nearly found paydirt with it, getting all the way to the one-yard line before being brought down. Vitale was on the field for a season-high 19 snaps in Week 3, but he remains a bit player in the Packers' offense.

Sep 23, 2019 9:18 AM EST

Starts at fullback

Vitale started at fullback and played 11 snaps in Thursday's victory over the Bears.

Analysis: Vitale played a minimal role Thursday, but he is still getting back into the swing of things a bit after missing a few weeks of training camp with a calf injury. Vitale made a number of plays during offseason practices, and head coach Matt LaFleur uses fullbacks more frequently than some other coaches, so his role could expand a bit over time.

Sep 6, 2019 1:28 PM EST

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