With all the hype on the San Francisco 49ers surrounding Colin Kaepernick, many tend to forget about the “other” offensive stars on the team. We all hear about Frank Gore, Michael Crabtree, and even Mike Iupati. However, the one player who has virtually been a non-factor this season is Vernon Davis.
Remember that guy? The player that caught the historic, “Catch III?” Davis was drafted by the 49ers back in 2006 and was supposed to be the next big thing. However, his career has been up and down, to say the least, and this year is no different.
Davis was off to a fast start in the first three games of the season with 13 receptions for 169 yards and four touchdowns. The fans, including myself, were happy to see Davis finally coming into his own. Then reality set in, and Davis was back to being a non-factor. In his last 10 games Davis has only caught 34 passes for 337 yards and one touchdown.
So why, is arguably the best all-around tight-end not being used in the passing game? The answer remains to be seen.
We can all speculate and say that head coach Jim Harbaugh would rather use his blocking ability rather than route running, but how can you not incorporate a beast into the offense? Davis has the size, speed, and power that makes any defensive coordinator cringe.
Yet, the 49ers would rather call a play and throw the ball to wide receivers Michael Crabtree or Mario Manningham before even considering Davis. At least that’s what it looks like.
And although Davis ranks second on the team with 55 targets, I would say about 15 of those targets are check-downs. Not good if you ask me.
It’s not Davis’ fault for his poor production, he’s the consumate team player and does what he is told. However, if the 49ers hope to go far in the playoffs they need to have the offense running on all cylinders, and in order for that to happen, Davis must be a prime target and go-to receiver.