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Camp Spotlight: Linebacker Jarrad Davis


Position: Linebacker

Ht/Wt: 6-1, 238

College: Florida

Experience: Second year

Outlook: Davis stepped into the starting lineup at the MIKE linebacker spot Day 1 after the team selected him in the first round of last year's draft. He called the defense, and became a leader on that side of the ball pretty quickly.

He finished second on the team last year in tackles, and led all rookies and first-year players with 96.

Davis is athletic and physical, but even better, he's one of the hardest workers on this team. He's a cerebral player to go along with having terrific physical gifts. He struggled some as a rookie in pass coverage, but that's pretty normal for first-year linebackers learning the complexities of NFL passing attacks. The expectation is for him to be much improved in that department and be a three-down player for this defense.

This new defensive scheme Matt Patricia brought over from New England is more of a gap-control scheme that allows linebackers to roam freely and make plays. Davis could be in a position to make a lot of plays in his second season.

Practice report: One of the big takeaways I have from watching Davis more extensively Wednesday is that there's never much down time for him at practice. He's always doing something.

During a couple special teams periods Davis wasn't involved in, he and fellow linebacker Devon Kennard were working on their pass-rushing moves one-on-one on the other field with defensive coordinator Paul Pasqualoni and linebackers coach Al Golden.

When Davis was involved in the action, he was very active. There was one particular sequence when running back LeGarrette Blount bounced a play outside, and Davis went right through an offensive lineman to get to Blount. On the next play, Davis was the first man to meet Blount again after receiving a dump-off pass.

On the first rep of a team period later in practice, a hole looked to open up for Blount after taking a handoff from quarterback Matthew Stafford, but Davis quickly filled it, and there would have been a good collision between those physical players had the period been live.

Overall, Davis gets his work in. He looks much more comfortable, and seems to be playing much faster in his second training camp.

Quotable: "Just constantly pushing myself in every phase. Not only just football, but in the film room, in the locker room, in life in general," Davis said of his leadership style.

"If you want to be a leader, if you want to lead men, you have to really devote yourself to that fully. Completely. There can't be any loopholes. Can't be any areas in your life where you lack. Because if you have something that comes up in a game, in a room of men, they're going to find weaknesses. I have to make sure that I hold myself to a different standard."

View photos of linebacker Jarrad Davis from Day 5 of 2018 Detroit Lions Training Camp presented by Rocket Mortgage.

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