NFL Player News

  • 49ers' George Kittle: Sparsely used in OT loss

    Kittle caught two of three targets for four yards in Sunday's 25-22 overtime loss to the Chiefs in Super Bowl LVIII.

    Kittle was dealing with a minor toe injury early in the practice week carrying over from the win over the Lions in the divisional round, but he was able to start and see the field for most of the Super Bowl. That's where the positive news ends for the star tight end, who didn't record his first reception until San Francisco needed a fourth-down conversion late in the game. Underutilization has been a theme with Kittle at times, as his role will fluctuate despite his skill level remaining elite. That said, the 30-year-old produced his first 1,000-yard campaign since 2019 as the 49ers offense hit a crescendo in 2023 under head coach Kyle Shanahan. Kittle may be frustrating to roster when his hands are tied in low-usage games like Sunday's, but he remains a top option at a shallow fantasy position heading into next season.

  • Travis Kelce TE | KC

    Chiefs' Travis Kelce: Nine receptions in Super Bowl

    Kelce recorded nine receptions (on 10 targets) for 93 yards in Sunday's 25-22 overtime victory over the 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII.

    Kelce was held nearly silent in the first half, as he had only one catch on one target for one yard. However, he came alive in the final two quarters to help the Chiefs to a comeback Super Bowl victory. His biggest play of the game came on the final drive of regulation, when he shook free of Fred Werner and picked up 22 yards to give Harrison Butker a short field-goal attempt to tie the game. Kelce had a relatively underwhelming regular season, but he posted no fewer than 70 receiving yards in each of Kansas City's four postseason games while also tallying three touchdowns in the same span.

  • 49ers' George Kittle: Set for Super Bowl

    Kittle (toe) practiced fully Friday and doesn't have an injury designation for Super Bowl LVIII versus the Chiefs on Sunday.

    Kittle didn't manage any on-field work during the first week of preparation for the Super Bowl due to a toe injury that he suffered in the NFC Championship Game. The tight end followed it up with back-to-back capped sessions to kick off this week before having no restrictions Friday. Kittle thus is set to serve as one of the key playmakers in the 49ers offense for quarterback Brock Purdy on Sunday alongside running back Christian McCaffrey and wide receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk.

  • Elijah Higgins TE | ARI

    Cardinals' Elijah Higgins: Makes some headway after Week 10

    Higgins gathered in 14 of 19 targets for 163 yards and one touchdown in 11 regular-season games in 2023.

    A sixth-round pick of the Dolphins in April, Higgins transitioned from oversized wide receiver to undersized tight end in the move to the pros. The 6-foot-3, 235-pounder didn't survive cut-down day in Miami in late August and subsequently was claimed off waivers by Arizona. He eventually became a regular in the Cardinals offense after veteran Zach Ertz went down with a quad strain Week 7 and even recorded at least one catch in each of the team's final seven contests. That said, Higgins played second fiddle by a large margin to 2022 second-round pick Trey McBride, a role that likely will continue for him next season barring further additions at the position.

  • Drew Sample TE | CIN

    Bengals' Drew Sample: Plays in all 17 games

    Sample played in all 17 games for the Bengals in 2023, recording 22 catches for 163 yards and two touchdowns.

    The tight end finished the season second on the depth chart behind Tanner Hudson. Sample will become an unrestricted free agent this offseason. Cincinnati does not yet have any tight ends under contract for 2024.

  • Tanner Hudson TE | CIN

    Bengals' Tanner Hudson: Records career-best season

    Hudson finished with 39 catches for 352 yards and one touchdown in 12 games for the Bengals in 2023.

    All those numbers were career highs as Hudson finished the season as Cincinnati's top tight end. The fifth-year pro will be an unrestricted free agent in the offseason. The Bengals do not yet have any tight ends under contract for 2024.

  • Cowboys' Peyton Hendershot: Undergoes ankle surgery

    Hendershot (ankle) had surgery after the Cowboys' season ended, Todd Archer of reports.

    The depth tight end should be available once the team's offseason program begins in the spring, per Archer. Hendershot caught four passes for 38 yards and no touchdowns in eight games this season.

  • 49ers' George Kittle: Remains limited Thursday

    Coach Kyle Shanahan said Kittle (toe) was limited in practice Thursday, Matt Barrows of The Athletic reports.

    When speaking to the media Wednesday, Shanahan relayed to David Lombardi of The Athletic that he was hopeful Kittle would log a full session one day later. However, Kittle continues to have practice restrictions due to the toe injury he sustained in the NFC Championship Game against the Lions. Shanahan also noted Thursday that Kittle is "good to go" ahead of Super Bowl LVIII versus the Chiefs on Sunday, but it remains to be seen if the tight end avoids a designation when the 49ers post their final injury report of the week Friday.

  • Cole Kmet TE | CHI

    Bears' Cole Kmet: Recovering from broken forearm

    Kmet said Thursday on media row before Super Bowl LVIII that he sustained a broken right forearm in the Bears' Week 18 loss at Green Bay, Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

    Kmet was donning a brace due to the hit he took at the end of a 27-yard catch in the season finale, which caused him to sit out most of the fourth quarter. The timing of the injury likely allowed the 2020 second-round pick to keep his games played streak (67 of 67) to begin his career intact, and his career-high 73 catches (seventh among tight ends) translated to 719 yards (ninth) and six touchdowns (tied for second). Kmet expects to gain medical clearance in the near future, meaning it won't impact his work in the offseason.

  • 49ers' George Kittle: Limited Wednesday

    Kittle (toe) was a limited participant in Wednesday's practice, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

    Head coach Kyle Shanahan said he's hopeful Kittle will put in a full practice Thursday, which would clear up any remaining concern about the star tight end's availability for Sunday's Super Bowl matchup with the Chiefs. Kittle missed some practice reps last week but was ultimately estimated as having no injury designation if the 49ers and Chiefs had played the game last Sunday.

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