Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

George Kittle says tight ends Noah Fant, T.J. Hockenson ‘would have taken my spot’ at Iowa

Apr 6, 2019 at 10:27 AM--

San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle already owns the NFL record for most receiving yards at his position in a single season, breaking now-retired tight end Rob Gronkowski's record set back in 2012.

That said, Kittle sees the prowess two of his former teammates at Iowa, tight ends T.J. Hockenson and Noah Fant, have in the days counting down before both are selected in the 2019 NFL Draft this April.

Kittle joined Good Morning Football's Nate Burleson to talk about what both Hockenson and Fant have to offer to whichever teams end up taking them later this month. And he had something interesting to say about both prospect's immediate impact during Kittle's senior year.

"One week into fall camp my senior year, I literally said out loud 'I am so happy I'm graduating because both those guys would have taken my spot,'" Kittle said.

Both Hockenson and Fant could easily go in Round 1 of April's draft, and neither player is expected to slip deep into the second round.

"I don't think there's a lot of differences [between the two]," Kittle followed up. "T.J. might be a little more sound in the run game, because that's what he did in all the 21 personnel stuff. But with the explosiveness Noah brings every single day, you can't go wrong with drafting either one of them. If I had two first-round picks, I'd draft them both."

While the 49ers aren't exactly in desperate need of a tight end, there's always the thought grabbing either Fant or Hockenson at some point on the fringes of the first and second rounds would add yet another dynamic level to head coach Kyle Shanahan's offense.

The 2019 NFL Draft kicks off on Thursday, April 25 at 8 p.m. ET.
  • Written by:
    Peter Panacy has been writing about the 49ers since 2011 for outlets like Bleacher Report, Niner Noise, 49ers Webzone, and is occasionally heard as a guest on San Francisco's 95.7 FM The Game and the Niners' flagship station, KNBR 680. Feel free to follow him, or direct any inquiries to his Twitter account.

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