SANTA CLARA -– Anthony Davis underwent a mind and body makeover during his season away from the NFL.
Davis said when he last played for the 49ers in 2014, he weighed in the 365- to 370-pound range. On Sunday, as the 49ers held their first practice of training camp, Davis was a comparatively svelte 332 pounds.
When a reporter repeated his 2014 weight out of astonishment, Davis replied, “I don’t know how I played at that weight, either.”
The fact is, Davis rarely played at that weight because he had a difficult time remaining healthy long enough to get on the field. Davis started just seven games in 2014, as he battled shoulder, ankle, knee and hamstring issues. He also missed four games due to a concussion.
Davis announced his retirement in June 2015, stating then he was stepping away from the sport for a year or two to let his mind and body heal. He said it was the correct move for him.
“I didn’t miss it right away,” Davis said. “I had a lot of work to do on my mind and body, so I knew it wasn’t ready to come back and play, so missing it wouldn’t have done me any good.”
Davis has written on social media about the benefits of meditation.
And that’s not all he wrote about on social media during his absence from the NFL. Davis took swipes at general manager Trent Baalke and the 49ers organization. He also was critical of Joe Staley, posting video of a Seattle safety Kam Chancellor standing up the 49ers’ left tackle on a run play.
“I’m excited he’s back,” Staley said. “I’m excited he’s able to get back here on the football team.
“We’ve had all the conversations that we need. . . I’m excited he’s back on the football team. We’ve worked everything out we needed to work out.”
Likewise, Baalke said he and Davis had all the conversation that were necessary to clear the air.
“You can put all of that stuff to rest,” Baalke said. “We had an excellent conversation. Everything’s in actions. Words are words.
“A.D. and I have had a pretty good relationship, a special relationship, dating back to 2010. There’ve been times when we’ve gone at it, and he understands why and we move on. But everything is very position at this point. Now, it’s blending back in and going to work.”
Said Davis, “Me and Trent, we get into it sometimes. But our relationship is fine. We have a special relationship. Sometimes we bump heads and we get past it. We understand each other.”
Davis said some of his posts on Twitter were with a business intent, such as when he suggested the 49ers should select an offensive tackle in the top 10 of the draft.
“That was me trying to manipulate emotions to get what I wanted at that time,” Davis said.
When asked what he was trying to accomplish, Davis responded, “(It) doesn’t matter now. I’m here. I’m happy and we’re moving forward.”
Davis’ year away from the NFL came with a price. At one point, Davis suggested he paid back $2 million to the 49ers –- a portion of the $7.5 million signing bonus he received in 2013 for a deal he signed through the 2019 season.
Davis confirmed he paid back “a lot,” but declined to specify the exact amount.
“I don’t want to make people sick,” he said.
Davis said he would not get that payment back.
“That money’s upstairs,” he said.
Davis will compete for the starting job at right tackle. On Sunday, he lined up with the third-team offense, as he looks to overtake Trent Brown and rookie John Theus for the starting role.
“I just want to be healthy and feel good,” he said. “That was my main focus, just getting my body to where its healthy and everything is functioning at a high level.”