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Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ George Kittle reveals miraculous shoulder injury recovery, last season’s other setbacks, weight loss

Jun 18, 2024 at 9:54 AM

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George Kittle was sidelined for the San Francisco 49ers' offseason program as the tight end works his way back from core muscle surgery. Last month, he told reporters that he is recovering well and is on track to be ready for training camp. Kittle and the 49ers veterans will report to training camp on July 23.

Kittle has also been dealing with a lingering shoulder injury for years. You've probably seen the protective sleeve he regularly wears over his right shoulder during games. That injury has finally healed, thanks to a separate injury.

"My shoulder's been messed up since high school, and luckily, I play tight end, so I don't ever throw a football or anything like that," Kittle said on the "Bussin' with the Boys" podcast. "I'm just blocking, engaged. My shoulders don't bug me too often.

"But I hurt my shoulder in the Super Bowl. AC sprain, chipped a bone. And now that it's mostly healed, I can now throw a football again. It's like a kid that gets hit in the head, and you wake up with a superpower. I can throw a football. It's unreal. It doesn't make any sense to me.

"I started throwing football when it started feeling better, and I can actually zip it. I'm like, 'Oh, that's what it feels like to throw football.' My labrum doesn't hurt anymore when I throw. What happened to where I can just [throw] footballs now? Yeah, I get hurt, but I can play catch now with my kid at some point."

Watch out, Brock Purdy. Kittle may want to throw a few passes in training camp for fun.

Kittle added that he exited last season with several injuries. He hesitated to list them all, as he wanted to avoid potentially getting his team in trouble. However, Kittle noted that he believes the 49ers reported everything.

"NFC Championship Game, third play of the game, someone stepped on my foot, and I got rolled up on, and I tore the MCL of my big toe," Kittle finally said.

Additionally, Kittle was dealing with a fractured rib. He lost almost 30 pounds after the Super Bowl because he couldn't do weight training due to his injuries. Kittle commented that he is "feeling great now," is almost 100 percent healthy, and only has about 10 more pounds to regain.

"But overall, I'm pretty sure reported all that. And if I get my Niners in trouble, I'm sorry, but I think we reported all of that," Kittle concluded.

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