49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

November 17, 2013
Vernon Davis, Eric Reid to start vs. Saints; Dobbs fills in for McDonald

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Both Vernon Davis and rookie Eric Reid have been medically cleared after suffering concussions a week ago and will start today's game. Both figure to be key figures against the Saints.

Davis has missed all or part of three games this season, all of them 49ers losses. He is averaging more than 17 yards per catch, leads the team with seven touchdown catches and has been San Francisco's only deep threat. Davis and Anquan Boldin are the only 49ers to catch touchdown this year - they are the only team with just two players in that category - and finding new targets is one of Colin Kaepernick's challenges this season.

On the other side of the ball, Reid will face the hottest quarterback in the NFC. Drew Brees is second to Denver's Peyton Manning in passing yards, has thrown 25 touchdowns against seven interceptions and has a 108.9 passer rating. Reid grew up 40 miles west of New Orleans, played at LSU and said last week it's been his "dream" to play against Brees and the Saints. His four-year-old daughter, LeiLani, who was last seen on his arm at the draft, was on the field today while Reid warmed up.

Reid has suffered two concussions this season. The only safety taken ahead of him in the draft, the Saints' Kenny Vaccaro, also suffered his second concussion of the season last week and will not play today.

Defensive end Ray McDonald (high-ankle sprain) and tight end Garrett Celek (hamstring) are inactive. Demarcus Dobbs will make his first career start at defensive end and Tony Jerod-Eddie is expected to play there as well. Derek Carrier, who was elevated from the practice squad Saturday, will fill in as the 49ers' third tight end. To read more on Carrier, click here.

One rookie defensive end, Tank Carradine, is inactive. Another, Quinton Dial, will be in uniform.

49ers inactives:
QB McLeod Bethel-Thomson
WR Qunton Patton
G Joe Looney
DE Ray McDonald
DE Tank Carradine
TE Garrett Celek.
LB Nick Moody

Saints inactives:
QB Ryan Griffin
RB Khiry Robinsion
S Kenny Vaccaro
CB Rod Sweeting
T Terron Armstead
DE Tyrunn Walker
TE Benjamin Watson

-- Matt Barrows



MATTHEW BARROWS

Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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