September 16, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers tight end Vernon Davis (85) celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Lions 27-19. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers: Vernon Davis Has Been a Non-Factor

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.




Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Colin Kaepernick Frank Gore Mario Manningham Michael Crabtree Mike Iupati San Francisco 49ers Vernon Davis

  • Jim Radley

    Well last year it was the same thing and if you recall the year before that as well. It may be that the Niners are finally spreading the ball around which they should rather than have one go to guy. Also note, this happened last year, and the year prior. They then set Vernon loose in the playoffs stunning their opponents each time. Forgetting he was even part of the offense may be a strategy for the playoffs again. This sure was apparent for the last 3 years. He goes goes quiet in the 2nd half of the season only to explode during the playoffs. Nice tactic which begs the question that it might be the strategy. OR , they are simply spreading the ball around, more weapons is always good instead of using two guys as your go to guys ala Gore and Davis. Last year people were moaning that Crabtree wasnt playing to his capabilities, now he clearly is, and now your complaining Vernons not getting all the primary throws. You cant have it both ways. West coast offense was always about spreading the ball around.