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49ers 2011 Roster Confidence, Right Tackle: Anthony Davis And His Progression

Last time out, we took a look at Joe Staley and his injury concerns. A lot of people voted high marks for Staley, and I'm inclined to agree with the folks that do not consider him as "injury prone." Staley suffered broken limbs, it's not like he was consistently banged up with minor injuries and things of that nature. The only question mark is if his recent injury weakened him to the point where he'll get hurt more, but I doubt it - broken bones generally heal to 100%, sometimes even stronger than before.

We've taken a look at David Baas and Chilo Rachal right now, so we go now to right tackle and Anthony Davis. A lot of people disagreed with this pick, and even more disagreed with the 49ers moving up to make it. Some questioned whether or not this was a Mike Singletary selection, and that leads them to dislike it even more, but I personally believe Davis exceeded expectations in 2010.

He was billed as a very raw player with a very high ceiling, perhaps the highest in the draft, and that I certainly agree with. In 2010, he was supposed to come in, get muscled around a little bit, make a lot of mistakes and hopefully show something special. I think he performed at least on an average level more than 90% of the time and showed flashes of dominant play a few times.

People continually reference beating Clay Matthews, and people argue that point by saying Clay moves around a lot ... he obviously does, but I saw Davis beat him more than once. That's not an indicator that Davis is a Pro Bowler by any means, but he's shown flashes. Of course, he had bad games, the season opener was particularly gut-wrenching, and there were times I wanted to knock 'im out, Chilo style. The majority of the pressure in 2011 came from the tackle positions, the 49ers actually had great interior line play. When Staley went down and Sims went back to being a hologram, Davis had to shoulder more of the workload, and he just wasn't ready.

So, to confidence levels ... For 2011, let's say a '10' implies that Davis will have a breakout year and be worthy of his draft status. That doesn't necessarily imply that he's a Pro Bowler yet, but he will show us why he was drafted. A '7' would imply generally good, top-level play, while a '5' is right around average. You guys can figure out the rest. With a guy who is still so raw, I think you can justify almost any confidence level in this particular poll.