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Vernon Davis says return to Levi’s Stadium is “surreal”

San Francisco 49ers v Oakland Raiders Getty Images

Tight end Vernon Davis will be capping a contract year as a largely invisible man in the Denver offense. He doesn’t seem to be bothered by that. In fact, few seem to even notice it.

A five-question press conference on Thursday addressed in no way his diminished role in the offense or his complete lack of production in the passing game since seemingly having a breakthrough with seven catches for 74 yards in a 15-12 home loss to the Raiders. Since then, Davis has caught one pass for five yards, and that came the following week at Pittsburgh. In four straight critical wins since then, two of which delivered the No. 1 seed and the next two of which put the Broncos into the Super Bowl, Davis hasn’t caught a single pass.

Still, the five questions he got on Thursday — and the answers he provided — addressed in no way the struggles he’s had this year. Which made the entire session fit with a term he used to describe the looming return to his former home field for the Super Bowl.

“It all seemed surreal to me when we first got the win over the Patriots,” Davis told reporters. “I was like, ‘Wow, we’re actually going back to Levi’s Stadium.’ It couldn’t get any better that. It couldn’t get any better than this. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’m very pleased, thankful and excited all at the same time for an opportunity to go in and experience this year’s Super Bowl in Levi’s Stadium.”

Well, it could get better than that. Davis could be returning not as an afterthought but as the impact player he was in past postseasons for the team that now plays at Levi’s Field. Three years ago, he had 100-yard receiving games in the NFC championship and the Super Bowl. The year before, he had 292 yards in a pair of playoff games that nearly resulted in a Super Bowl berth. The year after, he caught a pair of postseason touchdowns, including one in Charlotte, during a 23-10 win over the Panthers.

Davis then was asked whether there’s “added motivation” to play in his former home stadium.

“Sometimes you just have to let things go,” Davis said. “It’s nothing personal. My mindset and my focus is on this game and doing whatever I can do. Whether it’s going out there and getting two or three big blocks, whatever it may be to help this team win in Super Bowl 50. That’s my only goal.”

It’s a fair answer, but it implies he’s actually contributing something more than getting “two or three big blocks” (if he’s even doing that). He’s been MIA for more than a month, but he wasn’t asked about that at all.

The rest of the questions dealt with staying calm in the moment, having nerves the week before the game, and preparing mentally and physically for the Super Bowl. Which would be fine questions, if his complete and total lack of production wasn’t the large gray mammal with a trunk and tusks and his wrinkly butt plopped onto on the futon.

It’s safe to say that, once the Broncos arrive in San Francisco and have multiple media availabilities attended by reporters from all over the world (including reporters who cover the 49ers), Davis will be asked directly about why he has disappeared, whether it bothers him, and why anyone should think he’ll spend much more of his return to Levi’s Stadium watching the game than playing in it.

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21 Responses to “Vernon Davis says return to Levi’s Stadium is “surreal””
  1. Pat says: Jan 29, 2016 8:37 AM

    You couldn’t be any more miserable.

  2. ctiggs says: Jan 29, 2016 8:44 AM

    If they even play you Vernon. I can see it now game winning drive for PFM, 4th and 8, he throws a wobble duck to Vernon who is wide open. Vernon drops the ball (as he did often in Levi’s) Panthers win 21-17

  3. zinnsand21 says: Jan 29, 2016 8:48 AM

    I screamed since the 2014 season for Baalke to trade VD. He finally pulls the trigger mid season and got little. Had he traded him off season he likely would have got a second or third round pick.. This guy is so done as a player it ain’t even funny.

  4. flash1287 says: Jan 29, 2016 8:52 AM

    It will be just like the first half of the season for you.
    Another beat down.

  5. beavertonsteve says: Jan 29, 2016 9:04 AM

    He’s had personal success. He’s had regular season success. He’s had playoff success.

    Sure, playing more than a handful of snaps would be nice. Grabbing a touchdown would be better, but in the end all that matters for Davis is getting a SB ring to cap his career accomplishments.

    He’ll never have to hear from anyone “but you never won a Super Bowl…” even if he just throws a couple blocks.

  6. kanodogg says: Jan 29, 2016 9:06 AM

    Wouldn’t trade it for anything? I’d say trade it for a couple of 6th’s

  7. greenbaychicksarefat says: Jan 29, 2016 9:07 AM

    Vernon Davis is probably the worst player playing in the Super Bowl on either team. Not hatin, just statin…

  8. sisqsage says: Jan 29, 2016 9:15 AM

    Always been a better athlete than a polished football player. Never had great hands. Was pretty worthless the last 1 1/2 years in SF. Quit on the team in Harbaugh’s last year.
    You knew it was over when he turned himself into a “stock” and was seeking investors. Can’t get much more selfish than that.
    Never had a great rep in the locker room either.
    VD, in his prime, had rare combo of speed and size, but is basically 2nd-3rd string now. Likely playing elsewhere when new league year kicks in.
    At least we got a decent draft pick for him.
    Probably out of the league in 1-2 years, and he won’t care much about it.
    The “Vernon Post” last second win over the Saints in the playoffs showed what he could do when he gave a rip.
    Too bad it didn’t happen more often.

  9. DawgPound83 says: Jan 29, 2016 9:30 AM

    not many players traded in the middle of a season have much of an impact. whole bunch of factors in play here besides the simple ‘been MIA for a month.’

  10. jonwill57 says: Jan 29, 2016 10:04 AM

    What will be surreal is if he, you know, doesn’t drop any passes! It is interesting to go from being banished from the sideline and being made an example of by Samurai Mike, traded away only to return to play in the SB. He should be thanking the Niners organization.

  11. niners806 says: Jan 29, 2016 10:08 AM

    Honestly before he got traded I really thought it was the 9ers coaching staff and QBs for the reason Vernon was an after thought but if Kubiac can’t even get you involved in one catch a game that pretty much tells you that your done.

  12. niners806 says: Jan 29, 2016 10:11 AM

    I’m sure Vernon wants to take shots at the 9ers but when you don’t have as much of an impact as a ball boy, what can you really say lol

  13. 202folife says: Jan 29, 2016 10:16 AM

    He needs to concentrate on how he can return to the in game rotation. #washed

  14. ehsguy72 says: Jan 29, 2016 10:24 AM

    Typical Vernon comments. No clue that his skills are half of what they once were and content to make a “couple of big blocks” in a Super Bowl. No fire burning in that guy anymore

  15. jason9696 says: Jan 29, 2016 10:28 AM

    I hope Vernon Davis is a factor in the Super Bowl but I really don’t think that’s going to be the case.

    Was he even in the game at all against the Patriots?

  16. bspurloc says: Jan 29, 2016 10:32 AM

    .
    He can throw up crazy numbers…

    but either he doesn’t understand the Peyton offense or is incapable of learning it.
    If he fixes that then it can get nuts…

  17. placebo2000 says: Jan 29, 2016 11:02 AM

    pathetic haters spew their sadness… a sad empty clown show… FACT: VD was a beast his entire career… 2 years ago he was hurdling over players like it was nothing… so this year it’s not happening for Vernon… ohh we’ll… guess what? life goes on in the real world… but most of you are always gonna be haters

  18. collectordude says: Jan 29, 2016 12:48 PM

    He’s still in the NFL?

  19. mi6agent says: Jan 29, 2016 2:04 PM

    The fire has been extinguished inside Vernon since 2011 NFC game lost to the Giants. Not sure of the diagnosis on whether he is more interested in doing business, or the PTS from Kam Chancellor’s big hits.

  20. decon49 says: Jan 30, 2016 9:18 AM

    He will jinx the broncos like he jinxed the niners in the superbowl

  21. supichoo says: Feb 3, 2016 1:48 PM

    The over/under on number of snaps he will see is 2.

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