San Francisco 49ers: The Anthony Davis Saga Continues To Roll On

December 20, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers tackle Anthony Davis (76) blocks San Diego Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram (54) during the third quarter at Levi
December 20, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers tackle Anthony Davis (76) blocks San Diego Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram (54) during the third quarter at Levi /

San Francisco 49ers tackle Antony Davis once again hinted at a possible return, but has yet to apply for reinstatement, further prolonging the drama.

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Anthony Davis surprised the San Francisco 49ers – and everybody else – when he up and retired following the 2014 season. After starting every game between 2010-2013, he was limited to just seven games in 2014. That offseason, he stepped away from the game to give his “brain and body a chance to heal.” And the 49ers/Davis saga since, then has been nothing short of a soap opera.

It goes without saying that the 49ers had a terrible 2015 season that resulted in a 5-11 record. There weren’t a lot of positives that could be taken away from that debacle. And Davis certainly didn’t help matters any by Tweeting out some rather harsh criticisms of his former teammates over the course of the season – something that didn’t sit well with some of those former teammates.

Ever since then though, Davis has been playing an on again/off again game of “will he or won’t he” with the 49ers. Reports as far back as January have Davis preparing to apply for reinstatement. Even worse, he’s been engaged in a running feud with 49ers CEO Jed York that has been as contentious as it has been ridiculous.

The conventional thinking is that with his sometimes combative, other times erratic behavior, Davis is attempting to force the 49ers to release him. Though retired, the 49ers still control his rights, so if he were to apply for reinstatement, he would be a San Francisco 49er.

There is some speculation floating around that because the 49ers are holding all of the cards at the moment, GM Trent Baalke is attempting to force a restructured (and possibly less lucrative) deal on Davis – something he most assuredly would not be thrilled with.

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Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, if Davis un-retires, the terms of his current deal would become active one again, or they could release him and seek a repayment of the forfeitable salary allocations for the remainder of his deal – obviously, something else Davis would be less than thrilled with.

All of that helps lend a little credence to the idea of the big rift between York/Baalke and Davis, and does help partly explain plain his rather cryptic Tweet back on April 1 that Baalke was “giving him a headache.”

If nothing else, it lends a little bit of credence to the idea that a re-worked contract is on the table if Davis wants to return to the game.

As recently this past weekend though, Davis tossed out a Tweet (now deleted – which many of Davis’ Tweets these days are) that seemed to indicate he is still planning on returning to the game. In response to a fan’s Tweet, asking if he’s coming back to the 49ers or not, Davis replied by saying “Yes. I appreciate the support.”

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Some fans are speculating that he’s just trolling and has no intention of returning. Some continue to believe that he will return to San Francisco and help shore up an offensive line that needs some serious help. And others believe that he wants to return to the game, but does not want to play for the 49ers ever again.

With so much uncertainty and drama, it’s hard to get a read on what is exactly going on. All that we seem to know for certain is that there is a rift between Davis and Baalke – yet neither side appears willing to repair it at the moment.

Perhaps as the summer wears on and the regular season nears, we’ll get some clarity on the issue. But as of now, the 49ers seem content moving forward without him. He would be a real asset to have back in the fold, of course, but the team has already adjust to life without him.

Davis on the other hand though, doesn’t seem to realize he really has no leverage in this fight. If the 49ers want to continue to squat on his rights, that is their right to do so by virtue of the deal they signed with him in the first place.

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The 49ers have had a tremendous amount of unrest and drama over the last couple of seasons. Truly, they don’t need any more as they try to focus on the coming season. But Davis seems intent on attempting to continue drawing the drama out until he gets his way – though he very well may never actually get it.