Optimism Growing for George Kittle's Week 3 Return

Optimism is growing regarding San Francisco 49ers TE George Kittle's Week 3 return.
Optimism is growing regarding San Francisco 49ers TE George Kittle's Week 3 return. / AP Photos/Elaine Thompson

The San Francisco 49ers have a tough test in Week 3 of the 2022 NFL season, facing the Denver Broncos on the road this Sunday. The 49ers' chances of victory will increase if they get the return of No. 1 tight end George Kittle, who hasn't made his season debut due to a groin injury.

Kittle has been limited at practice this week, leaving his playing status up in the air. Fortunately, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan had an optimistic update on the 28-year-old, telling KNBR 680 that he'd be "surprised" if Kittle isn't in the lineup to face the Broncos.

George Kittle Injury Update

Groin injuries can be tricky, so the 49ers are clearly playing it safe with Kittle. Even if they're a run-first team, he's an important aspect of their passing game, having racked up nearly 4,500 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns over 67 games since arriving to the Bay Area in 2017.

When he does return, Kittle should be more productive now that Jimmy Garoppolo is under center for the injured Trey Lance. Kittle only played one game last year with Lance, resulting in one catch on two targets for 29 receiving yards.

On the flip side, the former Iowa Hawkeye has much more chemistry with Garoppolo. Kittle has played 41 games with Jimmy G as his quarterback over the years, resulting in 205 receptions for 2,654 yards and 13 TDs.

If Kittle's unable to play, Ross Dwelley will continue handling the TE duties. The 27-year-old old has recorded two catches for 49 receiving yards with a TD this season and could see an expanded role with Tyler Kroft sidelined with an MCL sprain.

49ers vs Broncos Week 3

Kittle returning would give San Francisco a serious boost ahead of Sunday's tilt. For now, FanDuel Sportsbook lists the 49ers as 1.5-point road favorites over the Broncos with both teams having -110 odds to cover the spread.

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Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Devon Platana also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username PepeSilvia0. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.