49ers Place George Kittle on Injured Reserve

Here we go again.

PHOENIX — Here we go again.

For the second season in a row, George Kittle will miss significant time with an injury. This time, he has a calf injury. And so Saturday, the 49ers placed him on Injured Reserve. He can return to the active roster in as soon as three weeks if his calf has healed by then.

Kittle initially injured his calf Week 1 against the Detroit Lions, and has played through the pain every game this season. But he made the injury worse Week 3 against the Green Bay Packers, and now the 49ers have to pay the price.

Last season, Kittle injured his knee during the season opener. Then he broke his foot a few weeks later. In total, he missed eight games last season. This season, he will have to miss at least three.

Which means Kittle has been injured pretty much since the 49ers made him the highest-paid tight end in NFL history last offseason. The 49ers are not getting a good return on their investment.

in retrospect, maybe the 49ers should have seen this coming with Kittle. He’s a tough guy who plays an extremely violent style of football, a style that naturally will lead to injuries. He played through them the first three seasons of his career, but now he’s getting older.

Kittle used to be one of the biggest bargains in the NFL  Now his contract is becoming an albatross for the 49ers, because he’s almost never healthy anymore. In retrospect, maybe the 49ers should have traded him before the injuries started to pile up.

What a shame.