Cavendish won three stages of last year's race and believes it could be possible for a sprinter to win the eight-stage event.
But the profile of this year's edition - with a 10km time trial next week and some demanding climbing, including a first-ever summit finish - means he'll have to wait for his chance.
"With time bonuses, given the right course, there is a year I believe I could win here," said Cavendish, who won the sprints and points jerseys in the 2007 race, his debut professional season.
"This year there is a 10-mile time trial, so it's a very British route in some ways.
"It is a very difficult race so, as a pure sprinter, it's not possible this time. But who knows in the future, if the course is different."
Last year massive crowds lined the roads for the week long event, despite miserable weather, as Britain basked in the glory of their Olympic achievements.
And Cavendish memorably won the final stage in Guildford to conclude his year in the world champion's rainbow jersey.
"To be able to get that win was very significant for me," he added.
"I was unfortunate not to win my first race in the jersey, I was sick, but I won my second race in it. So to win my second and last race book-ended quite a spectacular year.
"I was honoured to be able to finish that off, in front of home crowds. That was superb."
This year's race starts on the Scottish Borders and will move through the Lake District, Snowdonia and Dartmoor before concluding with a showpiece finish in central London that will be a key Cavendish target.
Former Tour de France winner Sir Bradley Wiggins is among the race favourites along with Nairo Quintana, second behind Britain's Chris Froome in this year's Tour.
Watch every stage LIVE and in high definition on British Eurosport, 15-22 September