TE Garrett Celek - San Francisco 49ers

6-5, 252Born: 5-29-1988College: Michigan StateDrafted: ---

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Game Recaps

2018 Week 2 vs DET (2 / 2 / 22 / 1 rec)

Celek saw far more playing time than last week because the 49ers used two-tight end sets with greater frequency. However, he was used mainly as a blocker, as he only ran six routes all game. One of those ended up in a red zone touchdown, of course. On the play, he lined up on the back side of a three tight end formation (i.e., away from the other two tight ends), and ran a shallow cross. Most impressive was that Celek caught the ball at the 5-yard line, but was able to barrel through two tacklers and carry them into the end zone.

2018 Week 15 vs SEA (2 / 2 / 61 / 1 rec)

Celek didn't play more snaps than he usually does (around 30 percent as a blocking tight end), so he only warrants mention because one of his receptions produced San Francisco's longest gain of the game. It should not come as a shock that it was less an individual feat than perhaps the easiest touchdown Celek has scored in his career. Lined up in a three-point stance next to right tackle Mike McGlinchey, Celek ran a seam route uncovered through Seattle's zone. And after he caught the pass 16 yards downfield, safety Tedric Thompson -- Seattle's last line of defense -- slipped on the wet turf, thereby allowing Celek an uncontested (lumbering) jaunt into the end zone.

2017 Week 8 vs PHI (2 / 1 / 24 / 0 rec)

C.J. Beathard targeted Celek on the 49ers' first two pass plays, but then never targeted him again. The second was only technically a target insofar as it was a throwaway in Celek's general direction. The first, in contrast, resulted in San Francisco's longest gain of the game. On the play, Celek lined up next to the right tackle in a two tight end right formation, which was the same formation Kyle Shanahan used on the previous play. Philadelphia's defense didn't anticipate Celek going out for a pass out of this look (indeed he stayed in to run block on that previous play), so Celek was able to run free down the seam for an easy 24-yard pitch and catch.

2017 Week 9 vs ARI (4 / 1 / 13 / 0 rec)

Celek saw a big leap in playing time due to George Kittle shuttling in and out of the game while nursing an ankle injury. Celek couldn't do much with the opportunity, as two of his "targets" were deflected at the line of scrimmage, while another involved C.J. Beathard throwing a short comeback route when Celek was running a corner route.

2017 Week 10 vs NYG (6 / 4 / 67 / 1 rec)

Celek did almost all of his damage on three consecutive plays inside the two-minute warning before halftime. First, he made a nice hands adjustment for a 7-yard gain. Then he reached down to catch a low throw across the middle for 9 yards. To cap things off, he scored a 47-yard touchdown by beating Jonathan Casillas' man-to-man coverage and then juking Janoris Jenkins near the 20-yard line.

2017 Week 12 vs SEA (2 / 2 / 7 / 0 rec)

With George Kittle returning from injury, Celek returned to his blocking tight end role. He did have a couple of passes thrown his way, however both of them were inconsequential dumpoffs in front of Seattle's short middle zone.

2017 Week 13 vs CHI (4 / 2 / 30 / 0 rec)

Three of Celek's four targets arose out of running a route after lining up as a blocker in a three-point stance. Two were successfully completed because he beat the coverage of a Bears linebacker; Christian Jones once and Lamarr Houston once. Celek's two incomplete targets were a short pass near the goal line that was knocked down by cornerback Kyle Fuller and a deep corner route near midfield in which he beat Prince Amakumura, but the pass was overthrown.

2017 Week 14 vs HOU (4 / 2 / 67 / 1 rec)

The entirety of Celek's contributions as a receiver came in a five-play span during the third quarter. On 1st-and-10 at San Francisco's 19-yard line, Celek lined up in a tight slot left position with trips right on the opposite side. He ran a simple post route and was completely uncovered. It would have been a 30-yard catch and run if not for slipshod tackling allowing him to tack on an additional 30. Four plays later, Celek scored a touchdown on the backside pass off of play-action bootleg that the 49ers seem to run at least 10 times per game. This time it worked, as Celek was wide open when his route broke into the left flat.

2017 Week 15 vs TEN (3 / 3 / 63 / 1 rec)

Celek made the most out of his three targets. His first got San Francisco back into field goal range on 3rd-and-18. His second target produced their only touchdown of the game. And his third gained 41 yards, which comprised most of the yardage in an early fourth quarter field goal drive. On the latter two big plays, Celek was completely uncovered on his deep corner routes.

2017 Week 17 vs LAR (1 / 1 / 28 / 0 rec)

Celek's lone target (and reception) set up San Francisco's third quarter touchdown to go up 27-6. Algined on the left side of the offensive line opposite a trips right formation, Celek beat linebacker Corey Littleton on a deep corner route.

2016 Week 1 vs LA (4 / 1 / 15 / 0 rec)

Like Vance McDonald, Celek wasn't targeted much in the passing game and didn't show much when he was. His first target was a drop in the red zone. His second target was a mixed bag. On one hand, although he couldn't beat converted safety Mark Barron in a man-to-man situation, Barron benefitted from holding him the entire route and it not getting called. On the other hand, the pass was on-target and it hit him squarely in the hands, so he still should have caught it despite the (illegal) contact. On his third target, Celek couldn't beat linebacker Alex Ogletree one-on-one (no shenanigans this time), and the quick out nearly turned into a pick-six. Midway through the fourth quarter, Celek finally had a positive play. On another questionable-but-somehow-not-disastrous throw from Gabbert, Celek redeemed his drops by snagging a slightly-behind-him pass between two defenders, and then holding onto the ball despite a big hit from safety T.J. McDonald.

2016 Week 2 vs CAR (2 / 1 / 12 / 0 rec)

Celek once again alternated series with McDonald, but saw the field a little more often this week because Chip Kelly used more two tight end sets. With limited targets in the passing game, Celek's only noteworthy play was the one where, instead of giving him a long reception, Blaine Gabbert nearly got him killed. With the offense driving on Carolina's half of the field late in the first quarter, Celek was wide open 20 yards down the seam. Gabbert's pass was outside and high despite Celek's in-breaking route, so he had to twist and jump just to even get his hands on the ball. That allowed free safety Tre Boston to deliver a big hit to Celek's back. He stayed down for a few moments, but ultimatly returned to the game. More throws like that, however, and Celek might not be so lucky next time.

2016 Week 3 vs SEA (4 / 3 / 25 / 0 rec)

Celek played around 80 percent of snaps due to Vance McDonald's hip injury. And for the second week in a row, he nearly got injured himself thanks to Blaine Gabbert throwing a pass that exposed him to a big hit to his back. Last week, the offending throw was high and inside on a deep corner route. This week, it was high and inside on an out route parallel to the line of scrimmage, which safety Kam Chancellor snuffed out. Prior to that, Celek had actually beaten Chancellor in man-to-man coverage for a 5-yard gain and had found himself wide open down the seam for an 18-yard gain before safety Earl Thomas could get there in his over-the-top defensive responsibility.

2016 Week 4 vs DAL (5 / 5 / 79 / 0 rec)

Celek did a great job of finding the soft spot in Dallas' zone, turning around, and providing a clean target to which Gabbert could deliver the ball. Every one of his receptions came from this template, with most including open spaces to run after the catch. There was one exception, though. On a deep corner route in the early third quarter, Celek was able to (finally) beat man-to-man coverage, but only by the slimmest of margins. Somehow, Blaine Gabbert was able to thread his pass through the tiniest of windows, picking up 15 yards through the air; Celek gained 14 after the (improbable) catch.

2016 Week 5 vs ARI (6 / 1 / 4 / 0 rec)

How does a tight end, the safety blanket of a quarterback who relies on short passes, have only one reception on six targets? First, said quarterback overthrows him by at least five feet when he's wide open 20 yards downfield. Second, he drops an easy catch that would have resulted in a first down rather than a punt. Third, a pass intended for him gets deflected at the line of scrimmage and lands right into the waiting arms of a defensive lineman, who makes the interception. And finally, he gets three "targets" in garbage time with a quarterback under constant pressure because this particular defense has a penchant for pinning their ears back in the pass rush when they have a fourth-quarter lead.

2016 Week 6 vs BUF (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

With Vance McDonald back in the lineup, Celek returned to his normal 50-50 snap split. He wasn't 50/50 in targets, though, because he only ran 8 routes in 21 plays before garbage time. Those other 13 snaps saw him helping out the offensive line both in run-blockig and pass protection.

2016 Week 7 vs TB (3 / 1 / 4 / 0 rec)

Despite splitting snaps almost 50/50 with Vance McDonald, Celek had a forgettable performance. His first target didn't come until midway through the third quarter. He beat linebacker Daryl Smith on a go route down the seam, but Kaepernick overthrew him. On his second target, he made the catch in space, but fumbled almost immediately. (Luckily for him, it was recovered by a teammate.) And on his third target, he dropped a rare accurate downfield throw by Kaepernick, which would have resulted in a late garbage-time touchdown. To be fair, it wasn't a wide-open drop a la McDonald's bugaboo. That said, Celek got both hands on the ball, and the defender didn't knock it out.

2016 Week 9 vs NO (6 / 4 / 76 / 0 rec)

Celek gained 37 receiving yards on identical plays, a backside throw to the tight end against zone coverage. He could have gained even more on a play identical to Vance McDonald's 65-yard touchdown, but he dropped the pass wide open. Granted, there were Saints defenders in the area ready to make the tackle, so it wouldn't have had that result, but it was an egregious error nonetheless. Before that drop, Celek did show some individual skill by beating linebacker Craig Robertson one-on-one down the seam for a 31-yard gain.

2016 Week 11 vs NE (3 / 3 / 41 / 0 rec)

Two of Celek's catches were of the simple, "sit down in the soft spot of short middle zone" variety. The other was on a pivot route, which San Francisco used frequently (and successfully) against New England. It was only a five-yard throw, but Celek had room to run after the catch. As he was about to head for paydirt, Shea McClellin made a shoestring tackle, which limited the gain to "only" 19 yards.

2016 Week 12 vs MIA (3 / 2 / 19 / 1 rec)

Celek's touchdown was the lone highlight in an otherwise awful performance. With the game tied 7-7 and San Francisco driving, he lost a fumble inside the Dolphins 20-yard line. Two plays before his touchdown, Celek badly missed a block on Neville Hewitt that turned a Carlos Hyde touchdown into a 3-yard run. And in the fourth quarter, with San Francisco having just gone down 31-14, Celek dropped a perfect pass across the middle that would have picked up at least 15 yards.

2016 Week 13 vs CHI (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

Combined, Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert threw 15 passes to 7 different receivers. Celek wasn't one of them, presumably because the 49ers' powers-that-be chose to prepare for a game played in wind and snow by vacationing at Disney World.

2016 Week 14 vs NYJ (1 / 1 / 5 / 0 rec)

Celek played a larger share of snaps than usual due to Vance McDonald's season-ending injury midway through the second quarter. Amazingly, however, he was not targeted until overtime. On the play, Celek ran a pivot route against linebacker David Harris' man-to-man coverage. He caught the pass, which was thrown slightly behind him, but Harris was able to bring Celek down immediately.

2016 Week 15 vs ATL (6 / 2 / 22 / 1 rec)

With Vance McDonald out, and Atlanta's defensive scheme susceptible to tight end production, this was supposed to be Celek's coming-out party. To wit, he was targeted on San Francisco's first offensive play. Yes, he caught a touchdown pass on his third target, but he dropped wide-open passes on his final three targets.

2016 Week 16 vs LA (7 / 4 / 39 / 0 rec)

Celek could have had a much larger fantasy output in this game if not for Colin Kaepernick's erratic arm. He was open for 10 yards (or more) on his first target, having beaten safety Mark Barron, but Kaepernick overthrew him badly. After a 12-yard reception on a pick play targeting linebacker Alec Ogletree, Celek was once again the recipient of an overthrow, this time on a deep corner route that resulted in an interception. After beating safety T.J. McDonald on a pivot route for 12 yards on the first play of the second quarter, Celek didn't see another target -- a 3-yard reception -- until midway through the fourth quarter, when Los Angeles was playing prevent defense while nursing a 21-7 lead. His next target should have been a touchdown, as he was wide open on a corner route in the red zone for an easy walk-in score, but Kaepernick badly underthrew him. Celek's final target came during San Francisco's game-winning drive. He beat Ogletree's man-to-man coverage down the seam, and this time Kaepernick delivered a perfect throw in a tight window for 12 yards.

2016 Week 17 vs SEA (1 / 1 / 9 / 1 rec)

Two weeks ago, Celek went for 2-22-1 against Atlanta's similar defensive scheme (i.e., almost exclusively Cover-1 and Cover-3). With even better talent at linebacker and safety, Celek went for 1-9-1 against Seattle this week, and that touchdown catch came in the most odiferous garbage of garbage time.

2015 Week 1 vs MIN (4 / 3 / 40 / 0 rec)

If the 49ers' passing game is going to heavily involve the tight end, and there's the possibility that another tight end besides Davis has the potential to be fantasy-viable, then Celek appears to be a better option than Vance McDonald given their different usage rates against Minnesota: Celek played 52 snaps to McDonald's 36, he ran 15 routes to McDonald's 9, and he had 4 targets to McDonald's 1. Celek was also the second tight end in the formation for almost all of the 49ers' two touchdown drives, which is something coaches notice. The only problem seems to be that Celek is a well below-average blocker, and so it's possible coaches will lose trust over time given San Francisco's reliance on the running game, and their need to keep Colin Kaepernick healthy. That said, if something were to happen to Vernon Davis, Celek's receiving ability and usage suggests he's the likely replacement, not McDonald.

2015 Week 2 vs PIT (2 / 2 / 10 / 0 rec)

Celek is included here because, although he didn't produce a big statline, his usage given the game script produced further confirmation that he's San Francisco's clear second tight end in passing situations. Aside from playing nearly three times as many snaps as Vance McDonald, he also ran five times as many routes. Of course, the bad news (besides his statline) is that, once the game got really out of reach, San Francisco used far more three-wide receiver sets than two-tight end sets, which prevented Celek from partaking in any possible game script-induced receiving bonanza.

2015 Week 3 vs ARI (3 / 3 / 29 / 0 rec)

Celek didn't get his first target until San Francisco's final drive, with about five minutes left in a 47-7 game. He made the most of his looks, however, finding a hole in Arizona's umbrella zone for two of his three catches. On the second reception, he showed some agility, successfully juking cornerback Justin Bethel to turn a one-yard gain into an eight-yard gain.

2015 Week 4 vs GB (5 / 3 / 26 / 0 rec)

Celek, not Vance McDonald, was the target beneficiary of Vernon Davis' absence. Predictably, all of his targets came on short passes. Not predictable was a display of running ability after the catch on a second-quarter reception. After receiving the ball in stride on an underneath crossing route, Celek was able to gain an extra 10 yards (and a first down in the red zone) by juking safety Micah Hyde in the open field.

2015 Week 5 vs NYG (5 / 3 / 26 / 1 rec)

Four out of Celek's five targets came on third down or in the red zone; his touchdown catch qualified as both. With each passing week, he seems to be gaining the trust of his coaches and quarterback, and further cements his role as Vernon Davis' primary injury replacement.

2015 Week 6 vs BAL (2 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

Celek actually started despite Vernon Davis being healthy enough to play, but he wasn't as involved in the passing game as he has been recently. In fact, his second and final target of the game came with 4:53 left in the first quarter. Both targets were uncatchable, one because Kaepernick overthrew the pass while rolling to his left; the other because it was deflected at the line of scrimmage.

2015 Week 9 vs ATL (2 / 2 / 12 / 2 rec)

Coming off of a concussion, and with San Francisco using a fullback instead of a second tight end in most running situations, Celek saw less playing time than usual. Still, he made the most of his limited opportunities. Celek's first touchdown was on a play-action pass at the 1-yard line, where both he and Vance McDonald were wide open thanks to the fake. His second touchdown, however, was perfect execution of the "stick-nod" concepT, with Celek faking out rookie cornerback Jalen Collins in man-to-man coverage.

2015 Week 11 vs SEA (3 / 2 / 35 / 0 rec)

Not sure if the coaching staff is trying to protect Celek from another concussion or if they think (for whatever reason) that Vance McDonald is actually a better receiver, but Celek only played 60 percent of San Francisco's offensive snaps. Celek's lone highlight was a 33-yard reception wherein he "got lost" in Seattle's coverage after feigning a run-block. With an uncharateristic "confused" appearance on the part of several defenders, this one was more about failed Seahawks execution than about anything Celek did individually.

2014 Week 15 vs SEA (1 / 1 / 31 / 0 rec)

Celek has the longest reception of the day early in the 1st quarter. With Kaepernick scrambling for his life Celek did a good job keeping the route alive and hauled in a well thrown 31 yard pass down the right sideline. He was injured later in the quarter and did not return.

2013 Week 3 vs IND (2 / 1 / 30 / 0 rec)

The longest pass play of the game was a 30 yard catch from Celek as the 49ers attempted a comeback. Finding the soft zone over the middle, Celek caught the ball and had open space down the middle. Though mostly used as a blocker, Celek's ability to reel in the hard throw was impressive.

2013 Week 15 vs TB (1 / 1 / 8 / 0 rec)

On Celek's lone catch, the tight end took the short catch to the right sideline and was stood up by the defenders, giving them enough time to tear the ball free only for the fumble to go out-of-bounds.

2013 Week 18 vs GB (1 / 1 / 6 / 0 rec)

Celek saw very little work Sunday, on the field for just five offensive snaps overall. His one catch was a nice one in traffic, with linebacker A.J. Hawk draped over his back.

2012 Week 16 vs SEA (3 / 2 / 41 / 0 rec)

The seldom used tight end saw a large increase in snaps after Vernon Davis left the game with a concussion. Though the tight end wasn't the fastest, he made a fantastic catch and run in the 3rd quarter. Catching the ball on a medium route down the middle, Celek spun off a tackle from the safety and sprinted up the field for a gain of 35 yards, displaying a great amount of power to absorb the hit and keep his feet.