San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle has constantly proven his top-tier status as each NFL season passes. Fantasy Football owners can appreciate this. His unreal athleticism makes him dangerous all over the field, far and wide. His strength comes into play for numerous situations, such as run-blocking, pass-blocking and contested catches. His speed is other-worldly. He can beat any corner, safety and linebacker one-on-one. He is the perfect version of a tight end. However, even with all of these perfections, he faced a setback in 2020.

2020 Fantasy Statistics with 49ers

In a trio of injuries that included a pedal foot fracture, the 49ers star was sidelined for multiple games. He only played eight games, but was able to contribute as much as possible. He even contributed enough to be a top 20 player in his position. Last year he amassed 634 yards, two touchdowns and 48 receptions. What is astounding that even though he was limited in play, he averaged 13.2 yards per catch. That would land him top-40 in his respective position. When it comes to fantasy football, he was a somewhat reliable starter. He put up 10+ point in five games. He had one 40+ point game against the Philadelphia Eagles. In total, he amassed 125.1 points. While his short amount of starts aren’t favorable, he was still consistent and was a decent starter for all teams alike.

What makes him such a dangerous weapon is 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan’s creative genius. One of the best offensive play-callers in the NFL,  he has the ultimate ability to take advantage of each players strengths. In Kittle’s case, he utilizes his athleticism and speed to find some wide open spots in a zone coverage or even beat someone 1-on-1 in man coverage. With that, his production goes above and beyond. Somehow, Shanahan managed to get his star weapon going even in small amount of games.

Another thing that makes this season impressive for Kittle is the QB’s he played with throughout 2020-2021. The list includes Jimmy Garoppolo and Nick Mullens. Having the ability to produce even with two QBs in the mix shows how crazy good he is. Even though he wasn’t playing for all 16 games, he still was able to play at another level.

2021 Fantasy Projections

Live and breathe the NFL?

🚨 Get viral NFL graphics, memes, rumors and trending news delivered right to your inbox with the Clutch Newsletter.

According to ESPN, Kittle is projected to total over a thousand yards, 83 receptions and five touchdowns. In total, he is projected to put up 225.54 points, which would put him in the top-tier in terms of his position.

This projection may very well come true. However, his ability to stay healthy for all 16 games will be the ultimate factor. If injuries continue to affect his play and health, then he may have to limit his snaps and allow for others to get receptions, yards and touchdowns. Nonetheless, he will stay healthy for the majority of the games and should be able to hit the projection marks. What I am most excited about is the possibility of having rookie Trey Lance start for the team. With training camp currently underway, he has shown some poise and promise with the 49ers. His potential, mobility and cannon are some things that would allow Kittle to truly step up his game. Once Lance starts to comprehend the playbook and gains confidence playing against an NFL-caliber defense, then he should be able to find his tight end wide open. If Shanahan can continue his play action style of play and add some deep ball plays to maximize his QBs potential, then Lance and Kittle should be able to have a field day every Sunday. If Garoppolo ends up the starter for the majority of the season, then he may not be able to meet his projections. He should be able to produce though, just not as much with Jimmy G.

Overall, Kittle’s production and fantasy projections should only go through the roof if he can stay healthy and plays with Lance.


Kittle currently is ranked No. 2 in his respective position. This placement makes sense, as it factors in a full healthy season and a change of QB. The only player that was placed ahead of him is Kansas City Chiefs superstar tight end Travis Kelce. Of course, Kelce has already shown to be one of the best players in the NFL. His repertoire with Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is outstanding, and allows them to maximize their production. Players that are ranked below Kittle includes the likes of Darren Waller, Mark Andrews, Kyle Pitts and Noah Fant. Waller and Andrews have been proven top-five players in their positions. Players like Pitts and Fant have yet to prove themselves in the NFL, but have potential to be the best out there. Overall, Kittle’s ranking is as accurate as it can get. As one of the best offensive players in the league, he should always be placed top-three at the tight end position unless something crazy happens.

If Kittle is available after the third round, take him. Many fantasy owners can get great players in the first three rounds. There is a gamble in taking him. With his recent injury concerns, he may not play all 16 games. Nonetheless, take him if the opportunity is there.