Do your parses count autoattacks only, or do they incorporate the Herald's attack skills?
(Also, in RoR, the Heralds will now match player level. This could increase both DPS and survivability a bit, since miss chance and a bunch of other things are worse against above-level mobs. Remember that our heralds are all level 73 right now.)
Either way, yes, the actual DPS provided by Heralds and Archers is kind of low. The main reason they exist is so we have a target for -Brother skills while soloing. This is especially true post-RoI. The non-Archer Heralds also provide a heal that, while small, is still pretty helpful in some situations.
Back in the ancient times, I heard of people off-tanking with Heralds. I even used to try this on purpose by sending my Herald in first. Before Moria, it even sometimes worked, though mostly it didn't. Even with the (one, high-CD) threat generation skill they have, they simply can't hold threat against a PC.
Again, though, post-RoI simply having a target for your -Brother skills provides a nice benefit to the solo Captain. It would be nice if their role as solo companions could be expanded a bit more, since they don't now and never will have a valid use in groups.
For instance, the LtC traits that increase Herald damage output and armour could also apply to the Captain while the Herald is active. (Through a buff called "Companionship", perhaps? ) The Archer's evasion buff could apply to the Captain as well, to compensate for the loss of healing and banner buff.
Cainwen Ciaphas, Captain of Crickhollow, HERO OF MIDDLE EARTH!!!
I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed, or numbered! My opinions are my own!