George Kittle Trying to Become More Than Highest-Paid Tight End
Through his first few seasons, tight end George Kittle has emerged as one of the best players at his position in the league. The San Francisco 49ers star has become one of the top talents that have put him on a promising path for his NFL career. It has also put Kittle well on his way to get a lucrative payday on his next contract with the 49ers soon. There is much more than just getting paid what he has earned as he’s looking for more than breaking the contract mold at his position with his next contract.
George Kittle’s NFL career
Since being selected in the fifth round of the 2017 draft, George Kittle has taken full advantage of the opportunity in San Francisco.
It didn’t take long for Kittle to make a significant impact as he proved to be a dynamic receiving threat in the passing game. That has seen him take off in his second and third years in the league into complete stardom as he has notched numerous NFL records along the way.
Kittle holds the all-time mark for a tight end with 1,377 receiving yards in the regular season. He also holds the league record with 870 receiving yards after the catch and the most receiving yards by a tight end through their first three years (2,945). Kittle broke the 49ers record by becoming the first tight end to notch 1,000 receiving yards in a single season.
Beyond that, Kittle has established himself as one of the game’s best tight ends as he’s firmly near the top of the list with Travis Kelce. He is much more than a receiving threat as he’s proven to be a strong asset as a blocker. That has put him in the position to garner a massive payday on his next deal, where he’s eyeing more than anticipated.
George Kittle wants more than tight end money
George Kittle’s rise to stardom has put him in a promising spot to command a significant offer from the 49ers.
The 26-year-old is heading into the final year of his rookie deal that will pay him $735,000 for the 2020 season. However, his agent, Jack Bechta, has made it clear his client wants to more than the highest-paid tight end. (H/T ESPN)
George Kittle and the San Francisco 49ers haven’t made much progress on a new contract, with his agent saying he is looking for more than a deal that makes Kittle the highest-paid tight end in the NFL.
“I don’t care about the tight end market,” Kittle’s agent, Jack Bechta, told NFL Network. “I’m being paid to do a George Kittle deal.”
Kittle has put himself in the spot to become the highest-paid tight end in NFL history. Rob Gronkowski still holds the highest-paid contract at the position at six-year, $54 million, but Hunter Henry has the highest annual salary on the franchise tag at $10.6 million.
The tight end position hasn’t been able to raise the bar beyond $10 million with Austin Hooper’s four-year, $42 million with the Cleveland Browns this offseason that put him at $10.5 million a year. It passed the previous high that was set by Kelce at roughly $9.3 million annually in his five-year, $46.8 million contract.
Will George Kittle get paid what he wants?
That puts the 49ers in a tight spot of having of navigating the contract situation with their star tight end.
Kittle has put himself in the spot to earn a record-breaking deal, given what he’s shown through his first three seasons. The 49ers will have to break the bank to keep their star tight end, who has emerged as a critical piece to their offensive game plan.
The 26-year-old has remained relatively healthy and didn’t let a torn labrum from 2018 deter his production and success on the field this past season. Kittle has also been the model teammate with a strong and clean image that helps represent the 49ers in a positive light.
All the markers are there for him to get paid, which could see him more than reset the entire market at his position but start the outpouring of money for tight ends.