George Kittle hints that he will ‘be there’ for the 49ers, won’t hold out

George Kittle (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
George Kittle (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

George Kittle hinted in a recent interview with NBC Sports Bay Area that he won’t hold out.

George Kittle‘s ongoing contract situation continues to dominate headlines this offseason. And following an offseason where multiple difficult decisions had to be made, the San Francisco 49ers could face their most challenging task yet.

General manager John Lynch and company will be tasked with managing a tricky cap situation while also looking to ink their superstar tight end to a long-term deal.

After being essentially forced to trade away star defensive tackle DeForest Buckner in the offseason, the 49ers could ill-afford to lose Kittle. Fortunately, the Buckner trade was done to ensure some degree of future cap flexibility.

And the team could use any cap flexibility they could get right now.

Kittle remains without an extension as we approach the middle of July and it’s becoming increasingly unclear if the 49ers will give him a new deal before the season starts. That has, of course, led to rumors of a possible hold out.

However, if Kittle’s recent comments are to be taken into account, a hold out might not be in the cards.

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What did George Kittle say about the possibility of holding out?

Kittle was asked by NBC Sports Bay Area recently about the possibility of him holding out and he was quoted saying, “being a captain, I want to be there for my team and I need to show the right leadership skills.”

While he didn’t directly respond to the question of whether he would hold out or not, it doesn’t seem as though he’s too fond of the idea. Any remaining questions about his contract were deferred to his agent, Jack Bechta.

But it seems clear where Kittle’s heart lies. He wants to be on the field in 2020 and he appears set in that mindest. And knowing Kittle, that’s about the least surprising news to come out of this entire development.

Few players are as committed to the game and their team than George Kittle as his passion and admiration for the sport shine through each and every time he steps foot on the gridiron.

It would pain Kittle to sit out for an entire season, thus hurting his team in the process. So even if it comes at the expense of a new contract (at least right away), it’s very hard to see Kittle actually going through with a holdout.

Not to mention the restrictions placed on him by the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Next. 49ers seem to believe that Jimmy Garoppolo is still the long-term answer. dark

George Kittle will likely be playing for the 49ers in 2020 regardless. But for his sake, here’s to hoping that he does so while playing on a fancy new contract.