Eric Davis: 49ers' Mays can't work in space


Eric Davis: 49ers' Mays can't work in space

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Matt MaioccoCSNBayArea.com
SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers have informed the other NFL teams that safety Taylor Mays is available in a trade.But why would the 49ers seemingly give up on such a big, strong and fast player just one year after making him the 49th overall pick?Former 49ers Pro Bowl cornerback Eric Davis, who is the 49ers' radio analyst and co-hosts a daily talk show on 95.7-FM "The Game," said he does not see Mays as a starting safety."He doesn't have the movement to work in space," Davis said. "The game has changed. The NFL has become, offensively, 7 on 7 (passing drill).

"You need a guy who can work in space. You need two free safeties. You're going to get three-wideout sets. And offenses want a running back to motion out of the backfield. So it's important to have safeties who end up working in space and exhibit the same qualities of a corner. And Taylor does not possess that.
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"He's a big guy. He's a fast guy. He's a straight-line speed guy. But that fast-twitch, lateral movement you need, he doesn't have the footwork and hips for that. That's not his fault. It's not his game."Davis said he believes Mays (listed at 6-foot-3, 230 pounds) could be an All-Pro special-teams player if he channeled his frustration into that area.Last year, Mays tied for was tied for seventh on the 49ers with nine special-teams tackles. His best play came on special teams when he made a nifty catch of a blocked punt at the back of the end zone for a touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons.

Still unconvinced there is a place for Kaepernick in a new and nastier NFL


Still unconvinced there is a place for Kaepernick in a new and nastier NFL

I hadn’t considered the notion of Jacksonville quarterback Blake Bortles bombing quite so badly Thursday night, so I hadn’t considered the notion advanced by Pro Football Talk Friday morning that Jacksonville might be a great place for Colin Kaepernick.

That’s because I long ago stopped considering the idea that Kaepernick’s exile from football was, or is, about football. It isn’t. He is the example for future player/miscreants, and trotting his name out every time a quarterback in the new NFL vomits up a practice game on national television is simply perpetuating a lie.

Until someone gets so desperate that it isn’t any more.

That’s the problem with being so definitive about Kaepernick’s perpetual ban. It only takes one owner with a willingness to stick a middle finger up to the objections and say, “I own a football team, not some branch of the USO” to end this national spitfest once and for all. And yes, I say owner because this is an owner’s decision, solely and completely. In the hypothetical of Kaepernick the Jaguar, it will be made not by Doug Marrone, who is merely a coach, or by Tom Coughlin, who is only the general manager, but Shahid Khad, one of the brightest and quietly more powerful owners in the league.

But the odds still scream No Kaep For You, because it would mean that exhibition games matter for judgmental purposes (which they don’t), that Bortles is somehow worse than half the quarterbacks in the NFL (he is part of an amorphous blob of non-producers whose numbers are growing as the differences between college and pro football offenses expand), and that owners easily break away from the herd once the herd has decided on something (Khan is not a rebel in the Jerry Jones mold by any means).

In other words, I remain unconvinced that there is a place for Colin Kaepernick in a new and nastier NFL. And he’s probably better off.

Zuttah ends up back with Ravens after release from 49ers


Zuttah ends up back with Ravens after release from 49ers

One week after center Jeremy Zuttah played his way off the 49ers’ roster in short order, he ended up back with the team that got rid of him to open the offseason.

The Baltimore Ravens on Friday announced the signing of Zuttah, whom the 49ers released on Aug. 9 after acquiring him from the Ravens in a March trade.

The 49ers determined center Daniel Kilgore was clearly better than Zuttah. Moreover, Zuttah he did not demonstrate any promise of being an asset at either of the guard positions.

Zuttah, 31, played the past three seasons with the Ravens after six seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Zuttah was named to his first Pro Bowl after last season.

The 49ers originally acquired Zuttah in a swap of sixth-round draft picks. The Ravens received the 49ers’ pick at No. 186 and selected Virginia Tech safety Chuck Clark. The 49ers took over Baltimore’s selection at No. 198 and chose Mississippi defensive tackle D.J. Jones.

The 49ers are confident in Kilgore and offensive tackles Joe Staley and Trent Brown. However, there is concern at the guard positions.

Brandon Fusco appears to be earning the confidence of the coaching staff at right guard. But left guard remains a concern. Zane Beadles is currently the starter while Joshua Garnett rehabs from arthroscopic knee surgery to repair cartilage. The 49ers are hopeful Garnett will be available for the opening of the regular season.