Midway through the third quarter of Sunday’s divisional round playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys, the San Francisco 49ers were stuck in mud offensively and in need of a lift.
But he was able to gain full control of the football, giving the 49ers a 30-yard gain and a first down that seemed to shift them into a higher gear.
The #49ers needed one explosive play on offense in the second half for a touchdown drive and it came by way of a broken play from Purdy to Kittle.
Watch Deebo just stand there at the end in disbelief of what just happened lol pic.twitter.com/Rvwwrx1ZiQ
— Akash Anavarathan (@akashanav) January 23, 2023
In all, Kittle led the team with 95 receiving yards, as the Niners defeated the Cowboys 19-12 and moved on to their third appearance in the NFC Championship Game in the last four years.
It was a defensive struggle, as Purdy didn’t throw any touchdown passes, but it was the type of game the best defensive team in the NFL feels perfectly comfortable playing and winning.
Kittle Has Become Purdy’s Security Blanket
Ever since he took over for the injured Jimmy Garoppolo in Week 13, Purdy has been looking to Kittle a lot, and Kittle has become his favorite receiver.
He has had three games with over 90 receiving yards with Purdy under center, compared to just one before Week 13 with either Garoppolo or Trey Lance at quarterback.
Kittle got off to a rough start this season, as he missed San Francisco’s first two games with a groin injury and recorded less than 30 yards in both of his first two contests.
But he recovered nicely to finish the regular season with a career-high 11 touchdowns, seven of them coming after Purdy became the team’s QB1.
The Niners will need Kittle to again be at his best when they face the Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday with a spot in the Super Bowl at stake.