San Francisco 49ers had their first training camp practice with a familiar face returning to the field. Formerly retired OL Anthony Davis was at the facility working in all phases of practice even though head coach Chip Kelly mentioned that they were going work their way into ramping it up to full force with the lineman.
Several players mentioned that Davis was in great shape, having kept up his conditioning throughout his absence and during his first practice of training camp that appeared to be the case. He kept up while working with the 3s during most of the practice.
Joe Staley spoke to the media saying Davis is in the best shape he’s ever seen him in. When asked, Davis confirmed that he also felt that he was in the best shape he’s ever seen himself in. Most importantly, he feels that his best football is in front of him.
Davis spent his time away getting healthy in his mind and body. He has been on social media regularly talking about Headspace, which is an app that simplifies the process of meditation. During his media availability he was soft spoken with short, simplified answers that were almost, at times, inaudible. We have the full transcript:
How did it feel out there?
It felt great. It felt good to get back out there.
Where you able to pick up on everything?
Yep. picking up everything pretty fast. Need to keep working and keep at it.
What did you think of the tempo?
Yes, it’s very fast. I feel it’ll be easier once we all get it down.
Joe Staley was saying that he thought you’re in the best shape he’s ever seen. Is that true?
Yep. I’m in the best shep I’ve ever seen.
Weight wise where are you compared to 2014?
2014 I played at about 365-370, right now I’m 332.
You were at 365?
I don’t know how I played at that weight either. I don’t
What kind of work outs have you been doing?
A lot of conditioning, a lot of hard work.
Do you think playing at that weight was one of the reasons you struggled with injuries?
I don’t know. I can’t really give you an exact reason why I dealt with those injuries, but I know being lighter, my body is happy.
Did you have to put weight back on for camp?
Is 332 where you want to be?
I just want to be healthy and feel good. That was my main focus. Just getting my body to a point where it’s healthy and everything is functioning at the highest level.
How have your conversations been with Chip, Trent and Staley?
Yeah, we talked about everything, man to man, got past it and now we’re on the same page.
Why did you chose to file for reinstatement when you did?
Why did I? So I could come back and play football.
Why didn’t you do it before minicamp and OTAs?
I wanted to do it when I did.
Did you need that time to be fully ready?
I think I was waiting til I was ready.
When you retired you said you were going to let your mind and body heal. Did they heal?
Was it a good move?
Yeah, it was a good move. It comes with some positive and some things to grow from like practices today. As far as football there are things I need to keep working on. I’m already moving that way. It worked out well.
The concussion that you had 2014, did that go into 2015 and impact your decision?
Just during the season you were bad?
Were you symptom free when the season ended?
By the end of the season I was good to go.
Were you having any second thoughts last year as the season started?
About the decision? No, I knew that was a decision I made and I had to live with it. So, dwelling on it wouldn’t have done me any good.
But you missed it right away?
No, not right away honestly. I didn’t miss it right away. I had a lot of work to do on my mind and body, so I knew I wasn’t ready to come back and play so missing wouldn’t have done me any good.
Obviously, it was a serious decision. You had to give back the money.
You want to say how much?
No, I don’t want to make people sick.
Do you get that money back now?
That money is upstairs.
You needed to work on your mind, did you have someone help you with that or did you do that on your own?
A little of both. I was led in the right direction and it takes a lot of work to work on yourself so somebody can give me an idea or something to help me out but ultimately I had to put the work in myself.
Where was that or who? Can you share?
I don’t want to share who helped me, I don’t know if they want me to share that.
Where were you this whole time?
I was between California, New York and New Jersey.
How do you assess the shape you’re in. Are you where you want to be?
I fell like I’m in great shape but I feel I can get better.
You made some news blasting Staley and the front office on social media. Why, and do you have any regrets?
That was me trying to manipulate emotions to get what I wanted at that time.
What did you want?
It doesn't matter now. I’m here, happy and we’re moving forward.
How long will it take to rebuild the trust between you and the organization?
I can’t control it. I won’t worry about it. All I can do is come out and be the best I can be and work my ass off.
Do you feel like your approach is different now?
Yeah, it does. It’s more focused, I feel...It’s more focused and clearer.
Have you grown up and matured through this process?
I’d like to think so.
Just by growing up and maturing I guess.
You’re a young guy. Do you think you’re best football could be ahead of you?
Oh it is ahead of me.
Because of why?
I just know.
How does Colin look to you?
Honestly I’ve been looking at signals all day and I felt like I was on a highway today so I wasn’t really watching anybody else. I’m not to the point where I can look around yet.
How many more years do you think you’ll play in the NFL?
I don’t know.
At least one more?
One more (laughs).
Did you feel welcomed back by your teammates?
Yeah, I did.
How would you describe your relationship with Trent Baalke?
Trent, me and Trent we get into it sometimes but our relationship is fine. It’s ah...we have a special relationship. sometimes we bump heads and we get past it. we understand each other.
How did he react when you finally filed for reinstatement?
How did he react? He reacted like Trent.
Davis then does his best raspy Trent Baalke voice and there’s laughter from all.