Move over, Rob Gronkowski, because George Kittle is making his way to the top of the NFL tight ends list. Just last season, the 49ers selected tight end, George Kittle with their fifth-round pick. He quietly finished the season off with an impressive 43 catches for 515 yards and two touchdowns. Not bad for a fifth-round rookie.
Heading into 2018, Kittle was hardly talked about amongst the national media. Nobody said he was poised for a breakout year. While everybody was focused bigger names like O.J. Howard, David Njoku, and Evan Engram, Kittle ended up becoming not only one of the better Sophomore tight ends, but one of the better tight ends in the NFL, period.
Through nine games, Kittle has caught 41 passes for 692 yards, and three touchdowns. Apparently, he will shatter his rookie season numbers as long as he can stay healthy. His total yardage isn’t what is most impressive right now, though. It’s what we are seeing on film. With Kittle averaging 16.9 yards-per-catch, he’s flashing some great catch and run abilities.
By now, you have probably seen his highlight catch from Thursday night’s game against the Oakland Raiders, which was overshadowed by the fact that a third-string rookie quarterback threaded the pass-through tight coverage.
Kittle’s One-Handed Grab
That’s just a small sample of what Kittle has been quietly doing this season. At this point though, the George Kittle emergence is no longer a secret. It was one thing when Kittle was playing with C.J. Beathard who just so happened to be his quarterback in college as well. But it’s a whole other story when Kittle performs at a top-notch level with a third-string quarterback making his very first start.
He’s becoming the real deal, and the Kittle is hype is real in 2018. Although his personal stats won’t really help the 49ers this year as they are well out of the playoff conversation. But moving forward, everybody will have their eyes on Kittle for being one of the league’s top tight ends beyond this year. Check out some of Thursday night’s best Twitter reactions around the league.
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