George Kittle Reveals How He’d Handle Polarizing Contract Situation

Deebo Samuel

Getty Deebo Samuel gets joined by Kyle Juszczyk and George Kittle after a touchdown on January 30, 2022.

George Kittle isn’t exactly John Lynch. He’s not responsible for handling contracts and other money-related topics.

Yet, that doesn’t prevent anyone from asking the All-Pro San Francisco 49ers tight end questions about how he would handle certain polarizing contract talks…especially the ones involving his team.

And Kittle was asked about one of the more scrutinized and publicized contract negotiations in the 49ers’ offseason during his appearance on the Bussin’ with the Boys podcast with NFL players Will Compton and Taylor Lewan released on Thursday, June 23.

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What Kittle Would’ve Paid

Kittle was asked the burning question regarding his fellow Pro Bowl teammate Deebo Samuel.

The tight end first admitted that he hadn’t talked to his general manager, head coach, or even Samuel himself about his contract situation.

“Hindsight is 20-20, right?” Kittle said to both men, who were also joined by Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen. “And I know nothing. I haven’t talked to John Lynch, Kyle Shanahan, or Deebo about it. I have not. I don’t know anything.”

But then, “The People’s Tight” shared what he would’ve given Samuel.

“All I know is that, in hindsight, I would’ve paid Deebo three-quarters of the way through the season, try to do a contract in-season, for sure,” Kittle said. “Probably would’ve been cheaper. Christian Kirk (former Arizona Cardinals receiver who signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars) really set the market off.”

Kittle Then Dives Into What he Thinks Will Happen

Kittle formulated some ideas of how things will eventually shake out between the incoming fourth-year pro Samuel and the 49ers’ front office.

“What’s gonna happen — and this is me not knowing anything — Deebo’s got another year on his contract left regardless, right?” Kittle asked. “Assuming he’s not going to sit out, that’s a lot of money, so he’s either going to play this year as a Niner with one year left on his deal, or he’s going to get a contract extension.”

Samuel became the subject of trade rumors during the 2022 NFL Draft after requesting he seek a trade, with the New York Jets and the Detroit Lions representing the team interested in acquiring the versatile wide receiver and running back. Both franchises, however, had their deals turned down by the 49ers. Samuel since made a return to the 49ers during their June minicamp.

Does Kittle himself believe that Samuel is a tradable player this late into the offseason period?

“At this point, you can’t even trade him,” Kittle declared. “What are you going to trade him for? A first-round pick in next year’s draft? That doesn’t help us this year. Like, c’mon, you can’t trade for future picks, not right now, so that window is kind of closed.”

Then, Kittle gave his boldest prediction on the podcast: The timeframe of when a deal can get done between the 49ers and Samuel.

“Something crazy could happen, I could be eating my words in two weeks, but the Niners have done every major contract — mine, Fred Warner’s — the week before the season started. So, my guess is, within three weeks,” Kittle predicted. “We’ll hear news of it, but I have no idea.”

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