49ers GM George Lynch explains why long-term extension for George Kittle is 'tricky'

49ers GM George Lynch explains why long-term extension for George Kittle is 'tricky'

NFL

49ers GM George Lynch explains why long-term extension for George Kittle is 'tricky'

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49ers tight end George Kittle is the best at his position, but that doesn’t necessarily mean getting a deal done with him is a slam dunk.

The team clearly wants to lock up Kittle for years to come, as he’s a generational player, and they surely don’t want to see him go elsewhere — especially as it relates to division rivals. But he’s entering the final year of his rookie deal, and the two sides still have yet to come to an agreement.

Kittle is remaining patient, saying all the right things, but that could be because he believes he should be paid like a top receiver, not a tight end. The problem, however, is that the salary cap is projected to drop immensely, from $198.2 million this season, down to possibly $175 million in 2021. That’s a challenge that 49ers general manager John Lynch is aware of, even though he says the team is “really hopeful” the two sides can get a deal done.

“Now we have that information,” Lynch said, via Matt Barrows of The Athletic. “So we’ve traded ideas and things. And we’re really hopeful. We’re going to work extremely hard. George is such a great fit for what we do. 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.”

This makes for an interesting next few months, that’s for sure.

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