49ers aim for long-awaited takeaway; Kittle closing in; Mitchell inactive

In Week 1, Richard Sherman recovered a fumble.

In Week 2, Cassius Marsh recovered a fumble.

In Week 4, Antone Exum had an interception.

In Week 8, Jaqusiki Tartt had an interception and Elijah Lee recovered a fumble.

And that’s all folks.

Yes, the 49ers have managed just five takeaways this season and none since before Halloween. You read that correctly: They haven’t forced a turnover since Oct. 28, which is a stretch of six games, 55 days and 371 minutes and 38 seconds of game action.

Put it this way: You – yes, you, my friend – have forced as many turnovers as every member of the 49ers defense in November and December.

Congrats!

The 49ers’ incomprehensible stretch (they haven’t had a takeaway in nine of their past 10 games) means they’re just out of contention for the Takeaway Triple Crown: They could set NFL records for fewest takeaways and fewest interceptions, but they won’t establish a record for fewest fumble recoveries.

Here’s a look at where they stand entering today’s game against the Bears.

Fewest takeaways in a non-strike season (49ers have 5)

11: 2016 Bears

11: 2015 Cowboys

11: 2013 Texans

Fewest interceptions in a non-strike season (49ers have 2)

4: 2009 Lions

5: 2017 Raiders

5: 2005 Raiders

Fewest opponents’ fumbles recovered in a non-strike season (49ers have 3)

2: 2017 Bengals

2: 2013 Jets

10 teams tied with 3

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Tight end George Kittle needs 174 yards in the final two games to break Rob Gronkowski’s record for the most yards by a TE in NFL history. However, Kansas City’s Travis Kelce has 66 more yards than Kittle this season.

The most yards by TE in NFL history:

1,327: Rob Gronkowski, 2011

1,310: Jimmy Graham, 2011

1,290: Kellen Winslow Sr., 1980

1,258: Tony Gonzalez, 2004

1,247: Todd Christensen, 1983

1,220: Travis Kelce, 1,220

1,215: Jimmy Graham, 2013

1,205: Jackie Smith, 1967

1,203: Tony Gonzalez, 2000

1,190: Pete Retzlaff, 1965

1,176: Rob Gronkowski, 2015

1,174: Ben Coates, 1994

1,172: Tony Gonzalez, 2007

1,172: Kellen Winslow Sr., 1983

1,157: Antonio Gates, 2009

1,154: George Kittle, 2018

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Nose tackle Earl Mitchell is inactive for the first time this season after he’d been replaced in the starting lineup by D.J. Jones the past two games.

There are no surprises among the 49ers’ other inactives.

S Jaqusiki Tartt (IR)

RB Alfred Morris

S Tyree Robinson

OL Erik Magnuson

OT Shon Coleman

NT Earl Mitchell

DT Sheldon Day

Twitter: @Eric_Branch

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/49ers/article/Date-of-the-49ers-last-takeaway-Oct-28-13486243.php.

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