DETROIT, MI - DECEMBER 16: Tight end Brandon Pettigrew #87 of the Detroit Lions is tackled by free safety Matt Elam #26 of the Baltimore Ravens during the second half at Ford Field on December 16, 2013 in Detroit, Michigan. The Ravens defeated the Lions 18-16. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

For the third time in his football career, Lions tight end Brandon Pettigrew tore his ACL. The season-ending injury occurred in Sunday’s 21-14 loss against the St. Louis Rams.

“Saddened by that because he’s such a warrior and does a tremendous job for us,” Lions coach Jim Caldwell said Monday. “Tough guy, great leader and he’s just had some difficulty. He’s had a couple of them now, I guess three total. He knows how to fight back, that’s for sure.”

Pettigrew ends his seventh NFL season with seven receptions for 67 yards and one touchdown. Despite poor stats, Pettigrew has been an important piece due to his blocking ability and has been playing well. With Pettigrew out for the season, second year tight end Eric Ebron will likely have an increased role.

With two years still left on his four year contract that he signed back in 2013, the Lions will now have determine what his future looks like with the team.

Detroit takes on the New Orleans Saints next Monday on Monday Night Football on ESPN.