Vernon Davis: 49ers TE Talks CBA, Alex Smith, New System, and More

Joseph BurkeyAnalyst IMay 18, 2011

Vernon Davis: 49ers TE Talks CBA, Alex Smith, New System, and More

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    ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 26: Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers looks to get up field against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on December 26, 2010 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Rams beat the 49ers 25-17. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty
    Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

    When I told the editing staff at Bleacher Report I'd be stepping away in light of a career change, they gave me a truly great reward for the time spent: an assignment. What kind of assignment? An interview with one of the best (if not the best) tight ends in the league.

    In our brief phone conversation, Vernon Davis—VD#85—talked to me about his recent life off the field, and gave opinions on some on-the-field issues going into the next season.

    We touched briefly on the CBA, Alex Smith, Jim Harbaugh, Mike Singletary, and the toughest player to block in the division.

Collective Bargaining

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    SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 16:  Tight end Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers sits on the bench during their game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on December 16, 2010 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
    Harry How/Getty Images

    JB: I know you can't say too much on the CBA or the lockout, but is there anything you can say about it right now?

    VD#85: At the moment I really don't know what to say, because this whole thing is crazy, because it's going on too many—we're still not doing anything football related! I mean, it's crazy. It's crazy man...

    ...My thing is I really don't have [a] say so on it because I just have to, you know, meet with my teammates and just wait and have patience. Just like the rest of them. I really don't have [any] control over anything. I just have to kind of sit back and see what's going on.

Alex Smith

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    SAN FRANCISCO - DECEMBER 12:    Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates with Alex Smith #11 after a catching a touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks during an NFL game at Candlestick Park on December 12, 2010 in San Francisco, California.
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    JB: Assuming we eventually get to watch you out there on the field tearing it up, you've basically flourished with just about every quarterback you've had on the Niners—whether it was Shaun Hill, Alex Smith, or Troy Smith. The big question a lot of people have right now is "What's up with Alex Smith?"

    VD#85: Um, I don't really know what's up with Alex. I don't know, I mean. Alex me he's...when people ask me about Alex Smith I'll be like—I can't really say anything about Alex Smith because he's a competitor. You know, Alex is Alex. I see a competitor. I see an athlete. I see someone who wants to do well and succeed. I never really have anything negative to say about the kid because I don't see anything negative about him. Though other people may see some negative things in his play or whatever, I've been with Alex from day one and I know he's got the tools and the ability to make it happen. But he just has to come around sooner or later.

Jim Harbaugh

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    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 07:  Jim Harbaugh speaks at a press conference where he was introduced as the new San Francisco 49ers head coach at the Palace Hotel on January 7, 2011 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    JB: A lot of people have cited that the systems—and the revolving door at offensive coordinator—have been a big issue. Now we've got Jim Harbaugh coming in with his system. Are you excited for it?

    VD#85: Oh yeah, I'm excited for it. It's different. It's another opportunity to learn something different. Getting a new offense is nothing new because I've been in a new offense every year that I've been with the 49ers. You know what I mean?

    JB: (laughing) Yeah, I know what you mean.

    VD#85: Yeah, so I've been to a new offense before. I look forward to it. It's not—It's not a big deal. I just want to get back with my teammates and keep that bond going. Make it a championship bond.

Mike Singletary

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    SAN FRANCISCO - SEPTEMBER 20:  Vernon Davis #85 and head coach Mike Singletary of the San Francisco 49ers celebrate a two-point conversion ruling was reversed in their favor due to instant replay during their game against the New Orleans Saints at Candles
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    JB: So in the transition from the Singletary system, you think there's going to be a big change in mentality?

    VD#85: Um, I think there will be a big change. Being under coach Singletary, man, you don't know what to expect. It can't get [any] worse. Can't anything get worse than being with coach Singletary because coach Singletary is a disciplinary coach. He will coach you to the fullest. I mean, it's expected of him. Because his attitude toward the game and his approach, I mean, you know, when he was playing he was very emotional, he really loved the game. But you know, I enjoyed that out of coach Singletary. I learned a lot from him. I learned a lot.

The Hardest Player to Block in the NFC West

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    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 02:    Alex Smith #11 of the San Francisco 49ers is sacked by Darnell Dockett #90 of the Arizona Cardinals during an NFL game at Candlestick Park on January 2, 2011 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty I
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    JB: Who's the toughest defensive end you've matched up against? Of anyone you've blocked in the division, who 's the toughest to block?

    VD#85: In the division? Defensive end? Or whoever?

    JB: Anyone you've blocked.

    VD#85: If it comes down to blocking the division, what I'd probably have to say is Darnell Dockett.

    JB: Darnell?

    VD#85: Yeah, he has a motor.

    JB: Yeah, you guys get into it on Twitter every once in a while, don't you?

    VD#85: Yeah, we just be play'n around. No hard feelings.

The Best Around?

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    SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 14:  Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers catches the ball in the endzone over James Laurinaitis #55 of the St. Louis Rams at Candlestick Park on November 14, 2010 in San Francisco, California. The touchdown was not allowed
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    JB: A lot of people think you're the best. Are you the best tight end in the league?

    VD#85: I think I am...

    JB: Alright. I think so too.

    VD#85: (laughing) Yeah, I think I am.



    Thanks, Bleacher Report. It's been tons of fun killing downtime writing with y'all!