The San Francisco 49ers are one team that no one wants to play against right now. They are riding an eight-game winning streak as they have continued steamrolling teams despite having Mr. Irrelevant himself, rookie Brock Purdy, installed as the starting quarterback.
Purdy has played like a multi-year veteran since taking over for Jimmy Garoppolo, who broke his foot in Week 13 against the Miami Dolphins. The offensive game plan hasn’t had to change at all and it can be argued that they are actually moving the ball more with Purdy under center.
One of the reasons for that in recent weeks has been the re-emergence of tight end George Kittle in the passing game. For a lot of the season, he was being used seemingly as a third offensive tackle, spending a lot of his time blocking in the run game. In the last two games, he has reminded everyone why he is one of the best players in the NFL at his position.
Against the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday Night Football in Week 15, Kittle caught four passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns. He followed it up with another two-touchdown game against the Washington Commanders on Christmas Eve, finishing the game with six receptions for 120 yards.
213 of Kittle’s 713 yards and half of his touchdowns on the season have come in the last two games for the 49ers. He has performed at a very high level and that performance has been reflected in his PFF grade. Over the last two weeks, Kittle has a grade of 95.7, which is first among all players in the NFL over that time span.
Tight ends and a strong running game are a young quarterback’s best friend and Purdy is benefitting from both. It is no surprise that Kittle has come alive in recent weeks as he is helping fill the void left by Deebo Samuel being sidelined because of injury.
All season the 49ers have been a dominant defensive team, stifling their opponents in every facet of the game. With Kittle playing at this level, the offense is moving up the rankings as well as San Francisco is arguably the most well-rounded team in the NFL.