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SANTA CLARA – Tight end Vernon Davis, who remained away from 49ers workouts in the offseason, reported on time for training camp. And a day later, he said there wasn’t much of a decision to make.
“It was a very easy decision,” Davis said Thursday before the team’s first full-squad practice. “All you have to do is think about the team. That’s what I did. I thought about my teammates, especially some of the guys like Frank Gore, guys that are on the last end of their contract and guys who I love and would die for. (There’s) nothing like being here.”
Davis failed to collect a $200,000 workout bonus with his decision to skip the voluntary offseason program. He is also subject to nearly $70,000 in fines for his failure to report for the team’s mandatory three-day minicamp in June.
“I just love playing football,” Davis said. “Any time I’m away from these guys, I’m hurting. It hurt me to be away from this group because we have such a special group. We definitely have a playoff team and we definitely want to get back to where we left off.”
Davis did not shed much light on why he did not attend the offseason workouts.
“The contract issue is up to my agent and the 49ers,” Davis said. “Just like anything, everybody wants a deal – every player in the league. It’s just the nature of the game.”
Davis ranks as the fourth-highest paid tight end in the NFL behind Jimmy Graham, Rob Gronkowski and Jason Witten. He has two years remaining on a contract he signed in 2010 that pays him an average of $7.35 million annually. Agent Todd France negotiated Davis' contract, and he continues to represent the two-time Pro Bowl player.