The San Francisco 49ers were never mentioned in connection with Jimmy Graham, but it turns out the team might be looking for depth at the tight end position. The Cincinnati Bengals re-signed Tyler Eifert to a one-year contract, and Bengals.com editor Geoff Hobson had an interesting nugget about Eifert’s market.
The Bengals, believed to have edged out the Rams and 49ers in the Eifert Derby, are delighted to get him back despite his injury history that has knocked him out of more than half his 80 NFL games. They know when healthy he’s broken up more games than the internet with a Pro Bowl season in 2015 that saw him confound defenses with 13 touchdowns.
When Eifert has gotten on the field, he has been a dynamic playmaker. The problem is that he has struggled to stay healthy. He has never played a full 16 game season, and he has played a combined 39 games in five full seasons.
The 49ers tight end depth chart currently includes George Kittle, Garrett Celek, Cole Hikutini, Cole Wick, and Malcolm Johnson. Kittle is settled in as the No. 1 tight end, with Celek best suited as a blocking tight end who can occasionally rev it up for “Celek Time.” Cole Hikutini is a raw prospect, and adding a veteran would make some sense. The fact that they were reportedly kicking the tires on Eifert suggests they might still look for someone who can make some plays in the passing game.