So much time and effort and thought has gone into deciphering the social media activity of athletes over the years. Sometimes, a like or follow could signal an impending roster move. Sometimes, athletes make it quite clear where they would like to be or what they would like to have done.
And sometimes — quite often, actually — the whole thing means absolutely nothing.
George Kittle helped confirm that on Wednesday when he discussed a tweet with KNBR that sent the NFL world’s heart a-flutter on New Year’s Eve.
Antonio Brown has since joined the Oakland Raiders, but at the time, it was well known his relationship with the Pittsburgh Steelers was on the rocks. Kittle’s San Francisco 49ers were widely seen as a possible trade partner if Brown forced a move.
Brown added even more fuel to the fire by replying 25 minutes later. He didn’t exactly shut Kittle down.
Now that Brown is playing for the Bay Area’s other team, Kittle went ahead and revealed that there was no inside chatter or burning desire to improve the Niners’ receiving corps that prompted the tweet. Rather, Kittle said it was the result of a dare from quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo:
“Jimmy totally dared me to do it,” Kittle said Wednesday. “And I am not going to say no. (I) threw it out there, and I thought it was going to be completely meaningless, and I got a response in about 10 minutes. I was like, ‘Oh, that’s exciting.’ It was fun.”
Being treated as the butt of a joke on another team is obviously a less than flattering look for Brown, though Brown’s response could mean it’s all in good fun.
For his part, Garoppolo implied that Kittle might not have been completely truthful:
“It depends who you ask,” Garoppolo said. “He said it was (me)? I’d take it with a grain of salt then.”
Check back later for all the updates on who made who tweet what in the 49ers locker room.
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