San Francisco 49ers TE George Kittle shares view on Detroit Lions prior to epic matchup
As the San Francisco 49ers prepare to face the Detroit Lions in the pivotal NFC Championship Game, 49ers star tight end George Kittle shared his insights on the Lions during his appearance on The Pat McAfee Show. Kittle expressed no surprise at the Lions' success, attributing it to their embodiment of head coach Dan Campbell's ethos: grit, hard work, and relentless effort.
What did Geroge Kittle Say?
He highlighted the Lions' ability to outwork and out-effort opponents as a fundamental aspect of their team identity, which is palpably reflected on the field.
“No, I’m not surprised at all. Yeah, not at all. The way that they play, you can just tell, everything that Dan Campbell preaches is what the team is,” Kittle said on The Pat McAfee Show Tuesday. “There’s no — It’s not fake. They’re gritty, they’re gonna out-work you, they’re gonna out-effort you, they’re gonna put everything on tape. One of our goals as tight ends is out-try your try-hards, that’s what one of our goals is every week. That kind of seems like their mindset as well, ‘We’re just gonna out-try you and we’re gonna put more effort on tape than anyone else.’ And you see that, and they’ve got good players to match it as well.”
Kittle's comments provide a unique perspective from a rival player who appreciates the Lions' combination of determination and talent.
Recognizing a Resilient Opponent
George Kittle's admiration for the Detroit Lions underscores the respect they have garnered from opponents. His detailed praise for individual players like Frank Ragnow and Sam LaPorta, coupled with his acknowledgment of Jared Goff's high-level performance, underscores the Lions' balanced offensive threat.
“I was looking really just at their offense and I’m a huge — I think Frank, their center, is a phenomenal player,” Kittle explained. “Yeah, absolute dog. Huge fan of Frank, met him last year at the Pro Bowl, super cool dude. I like watching their offense, too. LaPorta’s fantastic, St. Brown’s fantastic. Goff’s playing at a high level. So, their offense is doing everything they need to do. And hey, their running backs are pretty damn good as well.”
Kittle also acknowledged that the Lions' momentum will be a factor the 49ers will have to overcome on Sunday.
“So they have guys, they’re playing the way they want to play, and like what I said about the Packers, they’re hot,” Kittle said. “They’re on a roll right now. And when you have momentum and you’re playing for that city of Detroit, you could see and feel the energy in that stadium. That is a huge wave of momentum that they’re bringing with them to California.”
Kittle's perspective is invaluable as it reflects the recognition of the Lions' capabilities from a team that has been a consistent powerhouse in the NFC. It also emphasizes the importance of team culture and the impact of a coach's philosophy in shaping a team's identity and performance.
TL;DR (too long didn't read)
- George Kittle isn't surprised by the Lions' success, acknowledging their gritty and hardworking approach.
- Praises the Lions' offense, particularly center Frank Ragnow and tight end Sam LaPorta.
- Kittle recognizes the Lions' momentum and the energy of Detroit fans, anticipating a challenging matchup.
The Bottom Line – A Clash of Titans
Kittle's comments set the stage for an epic NFC Championship clash. His acknowledgment of the Lions' momentum and the palpable energy from Detroit fans highlights the psychological and emotional components that could play a significant role in the outcome. This game is not just a test of strategy and skill but also of willpower and resilience. As Kittle and the 49ers brace for a heated contest against a determined Lions team, this matchup promises to be more than just a battle for a Super Bowl berth; it's a showcase of the spirit and drive that epitomize the best of the NFL.