George Kittle Fantasy Owners Shouldn't Be Concerned By Slow Start to 2019 NFL Season
Following a breakout year in which he eclipsed the single-season yardage record for tight ends (1,377), George Kittle was going in the second to third round of most fantasy drafts heading into the 2019 NFL season, according to FantasyPros.com.
Through two games, Kittle has failed to match his 2018 hype, totaling 108 scoreless yards on 13 receptions. After getting a healthy 10 targets in Week 1, Kittle was limited to just three targets in Week 2's win over the Cincinnati Bengals, all three of which he caught for 54 yards.
While some might be panicking about the slow start, it's important to remember that it's only been two weeks. Based on Kittle's record-breaking 2018 season, the slow start shouldn't last for long.
Kittle had a similarly quiet first few weeks in 2018, before setting the league on fire during the rest of the season. He is currently dealing with a quarterback still working his way back from a torn ACL last season, but Jimmy Garoppolo showed plenty of promise in Week 2 with 297 passing yards and three touchdowns.
While Kittle wasn't part of the party, he still leads the team with a healthy 26.4 percent target share in the early goings. He could have also had a much bigger game in Week 1 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, having two touchdowns called back due to penalty.
Kittle did remind us of all of the dynamic playmaking ability that made him a fantasy star in 2018 on one play in Week 2 though. The tight end caught a pass from Garoppolo and then dropped two Cincinnati defenders with stiff arms to add yards after the catch (YAC) on a 36-yard gain. Many were hesitant to expect Kittle to repeat his stellar 2018 campaign, due to the high amount of YAC he gained last year, but it is clearly a big part of the former Iowa Hawkeye's game.
While Kittle experienced his breakout season mostly without Garoppolo last year, it's safe to say that the two have solid chemistry based on Kittle's usage in their games played together. Kittle and the San Francisco 49ers face the Pittsburgh Steelers before a Week 4 bye, and could make for an attractive buy-low option if he were to underwhelm once again in Week 3. His season-long outlook remains bright, as that of a top three-3 end in fantasy.
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