Recently, Fooch took a look at San Francisco 49ers receivers Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith, setting an over/under of 2,000 receiving yards between the two of them for 2015-16. I think that's a good number, and I'm personally picking the over. I'm a big fan of Smith and think he'll have his best season yet. That said, I think the more interesting position as far as receiving yardage is concerned is tight end.
I don't think the 49ers have their 2016 starting tight end on the roster at this point -- sorry, Vance McDonald fans -- and I'm really not sure what to expect out of the position this coming season. Before everybody started retiring and what not, I was one of the few people suggesting that it would be a good idea for the 49ers to use a first-round pick on one of the top tight ends this year, but with holes at cornerback and inside linebacker, I suppose that's no longer an option.
So we can probably rule out a rookie seriously contributing this season. Vernon Davis is back with the team and by all accounts, he's excited and the 49ers coaching staff is excited to have him. Everybody has an idea to get Davis back to his old self (not his old-old self, but the self he became after his old-old self, which he became again last season, so he needs to get back to his new self ... do you get it?) but at this point, he can't have a whole lot left in the tank.
Maybe this will be one of those times where I'm massively wrong in every way and Davis has 1,000 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. That would be great -- I've never had a problem with being wrong. As a pessimist, it makes me feel good when I'm wrong. But ... I'm not going to be this time. Davis isn't that guy anymore, but even I will admit there's room to improve on last season's numbers.
Davis caught just 26 passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns. Those numbers were among his worst ever, especially given that he had 13 touchdowns and 850 receiving yards in 2013. How much of Davis' stumbling can we attribute to an overall bad offense? How much can we expect that offense to improve enough to give him a better stat line? I'm honestly not sure, but I know that Davis himself wasn't exactly good last year. It can't all be blamed on the offense when Davis was dropping passes, jumping for perfectly-thrown balls erroneously and giving up halfway through his routes.
Now let's talk predictions. I'm not very pleased with Davis at this point, but I do think he'll have a better season. Something closer to 2012 numbers seems right to me, so I'll set the over/under at 550 receiving yards for him. We can also do touchdowns if you'd like -- I'm going with five touchdowns. We'll keep this post to Davis and look at the other tight ends later on. What say you?