LSU junior tight end Jamal Pettigrew, who was expected to add depth to a position of need in 2019, sustained an injury during the summer, Orgeron said, and it is unclear when he will join the team at preseason camp.
It is the second consecutive season that Pettigrew, a 6-foot-6, 258-pound New Orleans native, will miss a portion of preseason camp with an injury suffered during the previous summer.
Last year, Pettigrew missed all of the 2018 season with an ACL tear he suffered during the previous summer.
Orgeron did not specify what Pettigrew's injury was this summer.
"I don't know exactly when he's going to come back," Orgeron said Tuesday.
Later Tuesday night, Pettigrew tweeted that his injury "is minor," and "I'll be back real soon."
How you get indefinitely from “I don’t know”? The injury is minor. Chill I’ll be back real soon.. https://t.co/srPIgosDQw— Jamal Pettigrew (@jamalp80) August 7, 2019
Pettigrew, a Saint Augustine High graduate, has one catch for 18 yards in his career in Baton Rouge.
LSU has five healthy scholarship tight ends on the roster for preseason camp, and senior Stephen Sullivan, a converted wide receiver, has taken most of the first team reps along with junior Thaddeus Moss, who missed all of the 2018 season and most of the 2019 spring with a foot injury.
Orgeron said Tuesday that Moss has impressed him at tight end, and he's said that Sullivan is someone the coaching staff is looking to use as a hybrid wide receiver, much in the same way the New Orleans Saints used Jimmy Graham.
"We learned the same type of plays, and he's the same type of player," Orgeron said. "So I think he's totally bought into that, and I think that's a big reason."
Offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger was pleased with the depth at tight end going into preseason camp, since Pettigrew's and Moss' season-long injuries last season limited the offense.
Former tight end Foster Moreau was virtually the team's only true tight end, and Ensminger was unable to effectively use his favored '12' personnel (one running back, two tight ends, two wide receivers).
Depth increased at tight end during the offseason, with the signings of junior college transfer TK McLendon and Ruston High graduate Ray Parker. Sophomore Aaron Moffitt has also returned from an ACL injury he suffered during the 2018 season.
"We have enough depth there," Ensminger said in July. "So, I think we have a lot more in the bank that we can pull out each week to go with."
McLendon practiced on Tuesday for the first time since he attended the first day of practice last Friday.
McLendon was only allowed permitted to wear a helmet, no other pads, and he will have to practice twice more in order to join the rest of the team in full pads.
According to the NCAA rule book, all players must go through a five-day acclimatization period. During the first two days, players can wear helmets. On the third and fourth days, they can wear helmets and shoulder pads. On the fifth day, they can practice in full pads.