Against the Denver Broncos in Week 13 in early December, San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle had seven receptions for 210 yards and a touchdown … in the first half.
On the day, Kittle set a 49ers record for receiving yards by a tight end, finishing just five yards short of breaking former Broncos tight end Shannon Sharpe’s all-time NFL mark.
And, Kittle’s big day wasn’t an aberration for how the Broncos have played tight ends in recent years but more of an exclamation point.
But, on Wednesday, Tom Nalen suggested perhaps the newest member of the Denver secondary, Kareem Jackson, could be the answer to solving the team’s woes in covering Kittle and other tight ends of his ilk.
“(He’s) physical. He can tackle. Maybe he’s the answer to the tight end problem the Broncos have had,” said Nalen, who sat in on “The Drive” on Wednesday.
In terms of size, Jackson doesn’t necessarily jump out, measuring at 5-foot-10 and 185 pounds. But Nalen said Jackson has “some dog in him,” as illustrated by the former Houston Texan’s hit on Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay in Week 9.
Kareem Jackson signing with the #Broncos.
— Ryan Greene 📷 (@RyanCBS4) March 12, 2019
“The highlight hit that he had on Phillip Lindsay out of the backfield — thank you Case Keenum for that pass — everybody’s seen that. That’s not a corner hit. That’s a safety hit,” Nalen said. “So, he has that physical in him.”
Nalen also said Jackson is athletic enough to keep up with tight ends and maybe the Broncos could be thinking of using him as a safety in the box in nickel packages.
“The Kittles of the world, Travis Kelce, those types of guys, maybe he’s the guy that’s going to cover him. Because the linebackers can’t, not since Danny Trevathan left,” Nalen said.
Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @JohnnyHart7.
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