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Anthony Davis tweets, deletes: “I will play ball”

San Francisco 49ers v St. Louis Rams

ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 02: Tackle Anthony Davis #76, tackle Joe Staley #74 and members of the San Francisco 49ers stand in the tunnel prior to the game against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on December 2, 2012 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by David Welker/Getty Images)

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Retired 49ers tackle Anthony Davis apparently wants to return to the NFL, but not to the 49ers. The problem he faces is that, if he unretires, the 49ers will hold his rights until they cut him or trade him.

And so he has yet to unretire. But he recently claimed he still intends to return to the NFL.

I will play ball,” Davis said on Twitter in response to a question from a fan, via Matt Maiocco of The tweet was later deleted by Davis.

Davis previously has tried to agitate for a possible release, but the 49ers have yet to sever ties with him.

Money likely is at the core of the dispute. PFT has reported that Davis refunded to the 49ers the signing bonus allocation applicable to 2015. However, the labor deal does not expressly compel the 49ers to refund the refund if he unretires. If he’s not getting the money back, he presumably would prefer to hit the open market and sign a new contract with another team.

Here’s the main reason to believe that Davis eventually will return: If he doesn’t, he’ll owe the 49ers another large chunk of money that he previously was paid.