49ers

Kittle roasts Zimmer for complaining about holding in 49ers' win

49ers
George Kittle

George Kittle isn't here for excuses.

After the 49ers ran the ball all over the Minnesota Vikings during their 34-26 win at Levi's Stadium on Sunday, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer was critical of the officials for allowing the 49ers to get away with a lot of holds.

Kittle, who is one of the top run-blocking tight ends in the NFL, had a suggestion for how Zimmer should handle the refs not throwing flags to help out his defense.

"I think if you're running your feet and your hands inside just because a guy spins and flails his arms, it's not holding," Kittle said. "He's just flopping. You can watch plenty of pass plays. I felt I got a holding call out there on a pass route. I got hugged and tackled. I think there were like three of those out there that don't get called. It's football, you know? Refs throw flags, refs don't throw flags. It's just the game.

"If you're going to sit on the sideline and complain about holding the whole time, I'd tell your guys to make better plays."

On Sunday, the 49ers ran the ball 39 times for 208 yards and three touchdowns. Zimmer's comments came when asked about wide receiver Deebo Samuel racking up 66 yards and two touchdowns on six carries.

"I think we misaligned on that one," Zimmer said. "The other ones were ... these guys hold all the time, so they're grabbing us around the waist, grabbing our backs. The officials, they don't want to call it every play, but until they start calling every play, they're not going to stop doing it."

 
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For the game, the 49ers were flagged five times for 57 yards, including two holding calls on guard Laken Tomlinson.

Zimmer can stew about missed holding calls, but the Vikings lost the turnover battle two-to-one and went just two-for-eight on third downs. That's not good enough to get a win on the road in a playoff atmosphere.

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