Nolan on Davis: Two out of three not bad

Coach Mike Nolan held his usual Monday press conference, and spoke about Sunday’s 30-21 loss to the Patriots. Among the topics he discussed was tight end Vernon Davis, who was again held without a catch.

Coach Mike Nolan held his usual Monday press conference, and spoke about Sunday’s 30-21 loss to the Patriots. Among the topics he discussed was tight end Vernon Davis, who was again held without a catch.

In fact, Davis has just five catches in five games. He clearly has not yet fit into Mike Martz’s passing game. After all, a year ago, Davis caught 52 passes for 509 yards and four TDs.

When it comes to Davis‘ game, Nolan borrows a thought from the great Meat Loaf in saying that two out of three ain’t bad for the No. 6 overall pick in the 2006 draft.

“He’s done an outstanding job blocking, both pass and run,” Nolan said. “So he’s two out of three already. In order to utilize your exceptional speed, it’s better with the ball in your hand. Otherwise you’re just running fast and it looks good.

“The objective is to get the ball in his hand. He has a responsibility to himself to run the correct routes. By no stretch would I say he’s a bust. He is good at two out of the three, and he’ll continue to get better at the third part, but that’s a matter of working at it.”

Nolan said Davis remains after practice to run routes and gain the trust of QB J.T. O’Sullivan. “He’s not short on work ethic,” Nolan said of Davis.

In other highlights from Nolan’s press gathering:

–He was asked for the first time about his job security. Nolan said he feels he’s always coaching for his job. (That may never be more true than now. If the 49ers’ losing ways continue, the Yorks will unquestionably have to consider whether a change should be made at the bye week.)

–Nolan was late for his press conference. He said there were a lot of things to fix from the team’s loss to the Patriots. He said, “There are a lot of things we’ve got to work on.” He said there were obvious reasons for the 49ers’ shortcomings. He said some were technical.

–On Randy Moss’ deep pass. The 49ers were playing a three-deep zone, with Walt Harris and Nate Clements sharing the responsibility on that play.

–Nolan disputed the notion that Harris is near the end. After all, Harris was one of the few players in the secondary who was not beaten deep the previous week against the Saints, he said.

–Nolan acknowledged that teams have been able to sustain drives against his defense. He said the Patriots used the same running plays they use against every other team. He said the defense just needs to do a better job of fulfilling its assignments and tackling.

–Despite two rough weeks, Nolan said it is important to remind his team that it is still in the thick of the NFC West race. The 49ers are just one game behind the division-leading Cardinals.

–Michael Robinson played four snaps on offense. He said O.C. Mike Martz is still getting a handle on what these players can do. Because Robinson missed most of training camp with a knee injury, Martz does not yet have a firm idea of how to use him.

–O’Sullivan has thrown five interceptions in the past two games, but Nolan said, “I believe J.T. gives us our best chance to win.” Earlier, Nolan talked about how he believes this is a better team than a year ago. He added, “It was evident a year ago where our shortcomings were.”

–He reiterated the importance of getting the ball in the hands of Frank Gore. Up until the 49ers fell behind by two scores and ended the game with 10 consecutive passes, the 49ers called 25 pass plays in the huddle,compared to 12 Gore runs. Gore had just 16 touches in the game, including four pass receptions.

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