Player Page

Vance McDonald | Tight End

Team: San Francisco 49ers
Age / DOB:  (24) / 6/13/1990
Ht / Wt:  6'4' / 267
College: Rice
Contract: view contract details

Latest News

Recent News

According to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 49ers TE Vance McDonald has "dropped a couple of passes" in every practice open to the media this spring.
It's notable because McDonald committed three drops on just 18 targets last season. He managed only eight total catches across 15 games as a rookie. Even with Vernon Davis angling for a new contract, McDonald won't come into re-draft value this season, and remains a low-upside option in Dynasty formats. Jun 17 - 10:17 PM

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Player News


ESPN's Bill Williamson believes the 49ers will attempt to get second-year TE Vance McDonald more involved in the passing game this season.

McDonald only caught eight passes for 119 yards in 2013, so more involved is not a high bar to jump. McDonald seems locked into the old Delanie Walker role in the 49ers offense. In that role Walker never reached 30 receptions and was never fantasy relevant. McDonald has some value in Dynasty formats, but he is useless in redraft as long as Vernon Davis is healthy.
May 3 - 12:18 PM

CSN Bay Area believes 2013 second-round TE Vance McDonald will "never put up big numbers" in San Francisco.

McDonald plays around 50 percent of the Niners' snaps in the old Delanie Walker role, where Walker never reached 30 receptions. Beat writer Matt Maiocco anticipates McDonald's passing-game use to be "occasional," focusing on run blocking behind Vernon Davis. Even when Davis missed a game due to injury last season, McDonald managed one catch for six yards. He's a TE3 in Dynasty.
Apr 27 - 2:46 PM

Vance McDonald caught one pass for 13 yards in San Francisco's NFC Championship Game loss to the Seahawks.

McDonald's first-quarter grab was his lone target of the game. The No. 55 pick of last April's draft ends his rookie season with eight catches for 119 yards. He played 494 snaps on offense, with the majority of his work coming as a run blocker. McDonald was an intriguing size/speed prospect coming out of Rice, but committed three drops on only 18 targets this season. He has a long way to go as an NFL pass catcher, and won't be a big part of the 49ers' passing attack in 2014 with Vernon Davis atop the depth chart.
Jan 19 - 11:27 PM

49ers TE Vance McDonald (ankle) is listed as doubtful for Week 16.

McDonald will likely miss his second straight game after being limited in practice throughout the week. Garrett Celek will replace him in two-tight end sets behind Vernon Davis.
Sat, Dec 21, 2013 10:29:00 PM

49ers declared TE Vance McDonald (ankle) inactive for Sunday's game against the Bucs.

McDonald's absence could lead to an extra target or two for Vernon Davis. Meanwhile, LG Mike Iupati (knee) isn't ready to return, giving Frank Gore a slight downgrade against the Bucs' strong run defense. The rest of the 49ers inactives: WR Quinton Patto, WR Jon Baldwin, LB Nick Moody, DL Quinton Dial and G Ryan Seymour.
Sun, Dec 15, 2013 12:04:00 PM

Vance McDonald was held without a catch in Sunday's Week 10 loss to the Panthers.

McDonald saw a big bump in snaps after Vernon Davis (concussion) and Garrett Celek (hamstring) both left early on. But he failed to haul in a perfectly thrown seam pass deep down the field, getting his arm pulled at the last second by Luke Kuechly. Still, McDonald is a talented rookie that would have to be a part of the gameplan if Vernon Davis sits in Week 11. He's someone to put on watch lists.
Sun, Nov 10, 2013 07:42:00 PM

Vance McDonald caught one pass for nine yards in Week 4 against the Rams.

McDonald was mostly a blocker in two-tight end sets and only targeted twice in the passing game. He has just four receptions for 59 yards through four games.
Fri, Sep 27, 2013 02:13:00 AM

Filling in for an injured Vernon Davis (hamstring), Vance McDonald caught one pass for six yards in the 49ers' Week 3 loss to the Colts.

Playing through an ankle injury of his own, McDonald drew only three targets. He won't be a fantasy option for Thursday Night Football against the Rams if Davis misses his second straight game.
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 08:18:00 PM

49ers TE Vance McDonald (ankle) is listed as questionable for Week 3.

The Niners' beat writers expect McDonald to play against the Colts despite the "Q" tag, though his game-day role is uncertain. He's banged up, and starting tight end Vernon Davis (hamstring) is in danger of being inactive.
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 06:07:00 PM

Vance McDonald caught one pass for 19 yards in Week 2 against the Seahawks.

McDonald played in all two-tight end sets, but saw just two targets. He could be asked to take on a bigger role with Vernon Davis dealing with a hamstring injury.
Mon, Sep 16, 2013 02:12:00 AM

Vance McDonald caught one pass for 25 yards in Sunday's Week 1 win over the Packers.

McDonald flashed his athletic ability on the catch, going up the seam and making a play in traffic. However, the second-round rookie played sparingly and saw just two targets. McDonald is a Dynasty hold only.
Sun, Sep 8, 2013 08:41:00 PM

Second-round TE Vance McDonald (undisclosed) will be out 7-10 days.

McDonald, an oversized slot receiver/move tight end at Rice, posted four catches for 66 yards in the preseason opener. His injury is not considered serious and he could play in the third preseason game, therefore losing only a little momentum as he presses for snaps in two-tight end sets. At 6'4/262 with 4.69 speed, McDonald can help the Niners' depleted pass-catching corps.
Wed, Aug 14, 2013 09:17:00 AM

SI's Peter King believes 49ers rookie TE Vance McDonald "could get a very long look in the preseason."

King made the observation after taking in Niners practice on Sunday. McDonald supposedly opened camp behind Garrett Celek on the depth chart, but it shouldn't be long before he settles in behind Vernon Davis. McDonald consistently stood out in OTAs. An impressive receiver at 6-foot-4, 262 pounds with 4.69 wheels, McDonald could very much be a part of the solution as the 49ers look to make up for Michael Crabtree's lost production.
Mon, Jul 29, 2013 09:06:00 AM

Second-round rookie Vance McDonald opened camp as the 49ers' No. 3 TE.

McDonald was the Niners' most impressive rookie during pad-less offseason sessions. But he was essentially an oversized receiver at Rice, while Garrett Celek is known for his blocking. Still, McDonald has the skill set to rapidly improve as a run-blocker and climb the depth chart quickly. Coach Jim Harbaugh has compared him to Mike Ditka, and even gave McDonald Ditka's old number. He remains a prospect for deep leaguers to keep an eye on, especially if Vernon Davis sees significant time as a wide receiver.
Fri, Jul 26, 2013 03:32:00 PM

Depth Charts

Skill Players
QB1Colin Kaepernick
2Blaine Gabbert
3McLeod Bethel-Thompson
4Josh Johnson
RB1Frank Gore
2Carlos Hyde
3LaMichael James
4Jewel Hampton
5Marcus Lattimore
GLB1Frank Gore
2Carlos Hyde
3RB1Frank Gore
2Carlos Hyde
FB1Bruce Miller
2Will Tukuafu
3Trey Millard
WR11Michael Crabtree
2Stevie Johnson
3Brandon Lloyd
4Jon Baldwin
5Kassim Osgood
WR21Anquan Boldin
2Quinton Patton
3Bruce Ellington
4David Reed
5Devon Wylie
WR31Stevie Johnson
TE1Vernon Davis
2Vance McDonald
3Garrett Celek
4Derek Carrier
5Kyle Nelson
K1Phil Dawson