Demario Davis (born January 11, 1989) is an American football linebacker for the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the New York Jets in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. He played college football at Arkansas State.
|No. 56 – New Orleans Saints|
|Born:||January 11, 1989|
|Height:||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight:||248 lb (112 kg)|
|High school:||Brandon (Brandon, Mississippi)|
|NFL Draft:||2012 / Round: 3 / Pick: 77|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics as of 2018|
Davis' mother gave birth to him when she was 16, and his father served in the army. Davis attended Brandon High School in Brandon, Mississippi, where he was a three-sport athlete in football, basketball, and track. In football, he played mostly wide receiver as sophomore and junior, helping lead the team to its 14th playoff appearance in the last 16 years with a 7-5 record. As a senior, he recorded 81 tackles, six interceptions and one sack, while also receiving over 30 passes for 386 receiving yards with four scores. He was also a starter on the Brandon basketball team and competed as a high jumper with the varsity track & field team. He was selected to the Sun Belt First Team All-State team and was named to the Clarion Ledger All-Metro team.
Davis attended the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Indiana and completed all of the combine and positional drills. On March 27, 2012, he attended Arkansas State's pro day and chose to perform the 40-yard dash (4.52s), 20-yard dash (2.72s), 10-yard dash (1.63s), vertical jump (38.5"), and positional drills. At the conclusion of the pre-draft process, Davis was projected to be a third round pick by the majority of NFL draft experts and scouts. He was ranked as the ninth best outside linebacker prospect in the draft by DraftScout.com.
|Demario Davis' NFL Combine Workout|
|Ht||Wt||Arm length||Hand size||40-yard dash||10-yd split||20-yd split||20-ss||3-cone||Vert jump||Broad||BP|
|6 ft 2 in
|4.52 s||1.63 s||2.72 s||4.28 s||7.19 s||38.5 in
|10 ft 4 in
|All values from NFL Combine/Arkansas' State's Pro Day|
New York JetsEdit
|Draft Room Phone Call to Demario Davis|
Throughout training camp, Davis competed against veteran Bart Scott for the job as the starting weakside linebacker. Head coach Rex Ryan named Davis the third-string backup weakside linebacker to start the regular season, behind Bart Scott and Josh Mauga.
He made his professional regular season debut in the New York Jets' season-opening 48–28 victory against the Buffalo Bills. On September 23, 2012, Davis made his first career tackle during a one-yard punt return by Marcus Thigpen in the first quarter of a 23–20 overtime victory at the Miami Dolphins in Week 3. In Week 6, Davis was promoted to the Jets' primary backup weakside linebacker role after Josh Mauga was placed on injured reserve after tearing a pectoral muscle the previous week. On October 21, 2012, Davis earned his first career start in place of Bart Scott and recorded a season-high seven combined tackles during a 29–26 loss at the New England Patriots in Week 7. He remained as the starting weakside linebacker for the next two games (Weeks 8–10) as Bart Scott recovered from a toe injury he sustained in Week 7. He finished his rookie season in 2012 with 36 combined tackles (31 solo) and a fumble recovery in 16 games and three starts. He registered 15 of his tackles while playing on special teams.
Davis entered training camp slated as a starting inside linebacker after the Jets' new defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman switched from a base 4-3 defense to a base 3-4 defense. Head coach Rex Ryan named Davis and David Harris the starting inside linebackers to begin the regular season in 2013.
He started in the New York Jets' season-opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and recorded eight combined tackles in their 18–17 victory. On September 22, 2013, Davis collected six combined tackles and made his first career sack during a 27–20 win against the Buffalo Bills in Week 3. He sacked quarterback E. J. Manuel for a three-yard loss in the third quarter. On November 3, 2013, Davis made four tackles, deflected a pass, and made his first career interception during a 26–20 win against the New Orleans Saints in Week 9. He intercepted a pass thrown by quarterback Drew Brees that was originally intended for Benjamin Watson and was tackled for no gain in the first quarter. In Week 13, he collected a season-high ten combined tackles (six solo) in the Jets' 23–3 loss to the Miami Dolphins. He finished the season with 107 combined tackles (63 solo), a pass deflection, a sack, and an interception in 16 games and 16 starts.
Head coach Rex Ryan retained Davis and David Harris as the starting inside linebackers to begin the 2014 season, along with outside linebackers Calvin Pace and Quinton Coples. On September 14, 2014, Davis recorded six combined tackles and sacked quarterback Aaron Rodgers twice in the Jets' 31–24 loss at the Green Bay Packers in Week 2. In Week 10, he collected a season-high 12 combined tackles (11 solo) and broke up a pass during a 20–13 victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers. It was his fourth game with over ten combined tackles in 2014. He finished his third season with 116 combined tackles (79 solo), five pass deflections, and 3.5 sacks in 16 games and 16 starts. On December 30, 2014, New York Jets' owner Woody Johnson fired general manager John Idzik and head coach Rex Ryan after the Jets finished with a 4–12 record in 2014.
Head coach Todd Bowles chose to retain the Jets' starting linebackers and officially named Davis, Harris, Coples, and Pace the starters to begin the regular season. In Week 3, he collected a season-high 13 combined tackles (six solo) in the Jets' 24–17 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. The following week, Davis made a season-high two pass deflections and a tackle during a 27–14 win at the Miami Dolphins in Week 3. Davis finished the 2015 season with 90 combined tackles (57 solo), two pass deflections, and two sacks in 16 games and 16 starts. Although the New York Jets finished second in the AFC East with a 10–6 record they did not qualify for the playoffs. He earned the 15th highest overall grade among 60 qualifying inside linebackers by Pro Football Focus.
On March 16, 2016, the Cleveland Browns signed Davis to a two-year, $8 million contract that includes $4.10 million guaranteed and a signing bonus of $2 million. Head coach Hue Jackson named Davis and Christian Kirksey the starting inside linebackers to begin the regular season, along with outside linebackers Nate Orchard and Emmanuel Ogbah.
He made his Cleveland Browns' regular season debut in their season-opener at the Philadelphia Eagles and recorded seven combined tackles in their 29–10 loss. In Week 10, Davis recorded three combined tackles and sacked quarterback Joe Flacco during a 28–7 loss at the Baltimore Ravens. On December 18, 2016, Davis collected a season-high tying ten combined tackles (eight solo) in the Browns' 33–13 loss at the Buffalo Bills in Week 15. He finished his only season with the Cleveland Browns with 99 combined tackles (59 solo), two pass deflections, and two sacks in 16 games and 16 starts.
New York Jets (second stint)Edit
On January 7, 2017, the Cleveland Browns fired defensive coordinator Ray Horton after their defense finished 31st in the league. They also finished 31st in run defense and 21st in pass defense. They hired former Los Angeles Rams' defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
On June 1, 2017, the Cleveland Browns traded Davis to the New York Jets in exchange for Calvin Pryor. Davis became expendable after Browns' defensive coordinator Gregg Williams switched to a base 4-3 defense that required a single middle linebacker. They also acquired Jamie Collins from the New England Patriots and had Christian Kirksey and Joe Schobert develop into viable starters.
He entered training camp slated as a starting inside linebacker, but saw competition from Bruce Carter, Julian Stanford, Spencer Paysinger, Frank Beltre, and Connor Harris. Head coach Todd Bowles named Davis and rookie Darron Lee the starting inside linebackers to begin the regular season.
He started in the New York Jets' season-opener at the Buffalo Bills and collected a season-high 14 combined tackles (eight solo) and was credited for half a sack in their 21–12 loss. On September 24, 2017, he recorded a season-high 11 solo tackles, assisted on a tackle, and deflected a pass in the Jets' 29–6 win against the Miami Dolphins in Week 3. In Week 14, Davis collected 13 combined tackles (ten solo) and half a sack during a 23–0 loss at the Denver Broncos. He finished the 2017 season with a career-high 135 combined tackles (97 solo), a career-high five sacks, and three pass deflections in 16 games and 16 starts. His 135 combined tackles finished sixth in the league in 2017. He earned an overall grade of 87.3 from Pro Football Focus and received the eighth highest among all qualified linebackers in 2017.
New Orleans SaintsEdit
Davis became an unrestricted free agent in 2018 and received interest from multiple teams as he was considered to be the top linebacker available in free agency. Davis stated he intended to return to New York and considered the Jets his home. The Jets and Davis failed to reach an agreement and Davis claimed the Jets never officially made him contract offer, but it was possibly due to his asking price. On March 19, 2018, the New Orleans Saints signed Davis to a three-year, $24 million contract with $16 million guaranteed and a signing bonus of $9.20 million.
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- Cabot, Mary Kay (January 8, 2017). "Browns' Ray Horton fired and Gregg Williams hired as new defensive coordinator". Cleveland.com. Retrieved May 7, 2018.
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- DeShazier, John (March 19, 2018). "John DeShazier: Linebacker Demario Davis joined Saints to chase greatness". NewOrleansSaints.com.
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- Knoblauch, Austin (October 3, 2018). "Jared Goff, Marcus Mariota among Players of the Week". NFL.com.
- "For Jets Linebacker Demario Davis, Leadership And Faith Are Intertwined".
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