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Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

49ers TE George Kittle ranks No. 7 on NFL Top 100 Players of 2020

Jul 29, 2020 at 5:36 PM--

We finally know where San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle ranks in the NFL Top 100 Players of 2020. He is the highest-ranked tight end on the list and came in at No. 7. The next-highest ranked tight end was Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs, who came in at No. 18.

Kittle becomes the highest-ranked tight end in the history of the NFL Top 100 Players.

Kittle is the fifth and final 49ers player in the NFL Top 100 Players of 2020. He joins linebacker Fred Warner, who came in at No. 70, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo at No. 43, cornerback Richard Sherman at No. 28, and defensive end Nick Bosa at No. 17.

Kittle, 26, is a two-time Pro Bowl selection and was named a first-team All-Pro in 2019. He is entering the final year of his rookie deal, and the 49ers would love nothing more than to lock him into a long-term deal.

"George is such a great fit for what we do," Lynch said Tuesday on KNBR. "He's a tremendous player. I'm sitting here looking at the vision statement for what we want in a player, and George checks every box. He's tremendous. He's what we want to be. I think it would be silly not to figure that out, so we're going to do our best to do just that."

While the two sides may not be too close in the negotiation process, Kittle did report to the team on Tuesday for his first of two COVID-19 tests—a necessary first step to entering the 49ers facility for the start of training camp.

"From what I understand, the two sides have had conversations, have negotiated a potentially massive long-term deal that would, of course, make him the [highest-paid] tight end in the NFL," NFL insider Ian Rapoport said this morning on NFL Network. "From what I understand, though, it doesn't feel like the two sides are particularly close on anything."

The 49ers made Kittle a fifth-round selection out of Iowa in 2017. He registered 85 receptions for 1,053 yards with five touchdowns through 14 games in 2019. It was his second consecutive 1,000-yard season, following a 2018 campaign during which he set a new NFL single-season record for receiving yards by a tight end with 1,377.

Kittle has caught 216 passes for 2,945 yards with 12 touchdowns through his three NFL seasons. His receiving yards total are the most by a tight end during the player's first three seasons, surpassing the 2,774-yard mark set by Mike Ditka from 1961 through 1963.

Kittle earned a 95.0 overall grade from Pro Football Focus last season, leading the NFL and marking the highest ever by a tight end during the analytics site's existence.

The NFL Top 100 Players list is voted on by players and is based on performance during the previous year and predicted performance during the upcoming season. The list is in its 10th season on NFL Network.

Two players — Kittle and pass rusher Dee Ford — represented the 49ers on last year's NFL Top 100 Players list.

Next: No. 17 - Defensive end Nick Bosa

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