Anthony Davis has taken the first step toward returning to the NFL after abruptly retiring last year.
The 49ers’ former right tackle tweeted Monday that he has sent a letter to the league office in New York requesting reinstatement. Davis let the 49ers know last week he planned to file his request Monday.
It’s not known how long it will take league officials to act on Davis’ request. The 49ers begin training camp Sunday.
Davis, 26, a first-round draft pick in 2010, was one of the top right tackles in the league entering the 2014 season, but his season was cut short due to an array of injuries, including a concussion Davis said left him feeling as if he were in a “white fog.” His retirement – due to health concerns – in June 2015 came shortly after Patrick Willis’ and Chris Borland’s retirements. After starting every game his first four seasons, Davis played just seven games in 2014.
Davis has been prolific on social media since his retirement, using it to nettle both teammates – including de facto offensive-line captain Joe Staley – and general manager Trent Baalke.
“I do not want to work with a front office or anyone else who seemingly doesn’t want to win as bad as I do,” Davis wrote in April. “Would you happily rent your body out to people that … constantly try to manipulate you? I hope you’d stand up for yourself.”
Because of his social media posts and his absence from new coach Chip Kelly’s offseason practices, his status with the 49ers appears tenuous if he is reinstated.
Baalke has avoided questions about Davis by noting he is not on the roster, which will continue to be the case until he is reinstated by the league
Trent Brown, a seventh-round draft pick in 2015, started the last two games last season and played well. However, veteran Erik Pears took most of the snaps at right tackle during recent spring practices and played with the second-string line. Draft picks John Theus and Fahn Cooper are other options at the position.
The 49ers will have to cut a player from their 90-man offseason roster if Davis is reinstated.
Gamble promoted – The 49ers have promoted Tom Gamble to assistant general manager.
“Tom is an accomplished talent evaluator who grew up around the game of football,” Baalke said in a statement. “Having spent the last 28 years of his life in the NFL, his wealth of experience has been invaluable to our organization for almost a decade.”
After eight seasons with the 49ers, including the last two years (2011-12) as director of player personnel, Gamble was the Philadelphia Eagles’ vice president of player personnel in 2013 and 2014. He returned to the 49ers in January 2015 as the team’s senior personnel executive.
Gamble also has worked for the Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, Carolina Panthers and Baltimore Ravens.