NFL.com listed 12 players in the NFL whose team should never let them leave, and for the San Francisco 49ers, their selection was an easy one. In a perfect world, George Kittle remains with the Niners for the duration of his career. Timing is everything, and we found that out with DeForest Buckner early in the offseason. We are a month and a week away from when San Francisco will report to training camp. Will Kittle have a new deal by the time the team takes the field?
Here is the blurb on Kittle:
Kittle is eligible for an extension this offseason, and his camp expects his next contract to look more like one given to a superstar wide receiver than what tight ends are typically offered. Who could blame them? Kittle is both a willing blocker and the kind of pass-caching presence (averaging 87 catches, 1,215 yards and five touchdowns over the past two seasons) that forces opponents to take a run defender out of the box to account for him in coverage. In other words, he’s a true dual-threat tight end in the mold of Rob Gronkowski. And Kittle is as important to San Francisco’s success as Gronk was to New England’s over the past decade.
Calling Kittle a “willing” blocker is like calling Patrick Willis a “willing” tackler.
I’m not sure who Kittle reminds me of, but I don’t get Gronk vibes. Do you? I know the aggressiveness and personality fit, but after that, the comparison feels forced. Kittle is a one of one.
5 players 49ers should let walk in 2021 NFL free agency (Niners Noise)