The New England Patriots worked out safety Sean Davis on Tuesday. The team seems to be aware of some potential depth issues in the secondary.
Davis may or may not make the team, but some Patriots fans might remember him for being the guy Rob Gronkowski savagely taunted after a red-zone TD catch when the former was a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
What Happened When Rob Gronkowski Scored on Sean Davis?
Gronkowski has obviously had his share of highlights during his career. However, the one that happened at the expense of Davis is pretty memorable.
Zack Cox of NESN chronicled Gronkowski’s dismantling of Davis on a crucial drive that led to a Patriots win over the Steelers. Cox broke down each play and said this of the decisive TD that led to Gronk laughing at Davis as he failed to prevent the predictable, but unstoppable fade route in the end zone.
The coup de grace came on the ensuing two-point conversion. When the Patriots split Gronkowski out wide to the right and Davis followed him, everyone in the stadium knew where the ball was going. Romo even circled the pair before the snap. “It’s a fade right here,” the retired quarterback said. He was right. Gronkowski took one step inside, and Davis bit, resulting in an easy pitch and catch for Brady. Gronkowski celebrated this final blow by literally pointing and laughing at his fallen adversary before slamming a spike into the rain-soaked Pittsburgh turf. Good job, good effort. The conversion put the Patriots ahead by three with 56 seconds remaining. New England went on to survive one of the wildest NFL finishes in recent memory to emerge victorious and move into first place in the AFC. Gronkowski finished the game with nine catches for a career-high 168 yards, 69 of which came on that final drive.
The Patriots trailed this all-important game 24-16 heading into the fourth quarter before reeling off 11 unanswered points that led to the 27-24 victory. The Patriots would finish the regular season 13-3 that year, which was ties with the Steelers, but the head-to-head win gave New England the edge in the AFC standings.
Unfortunately for New England, they would make it to the Super Bowl only to lose to Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles in a massive upset.
The Patriots Have Some Issues in the Secondary
There is only one Gronk. Just because Davis was manhandled by arguably the best tight end in NFL history doesn’t mean he has no potential value to the Patriots.
The 6’1″ 202-pound safety was a second-round pick out of Maryland by the Steelers in 2016. Davis spent the first five years of his career with the Steelers until he signed with the Cincinnati Bengals and Indianapolis Colts this season. Davis played in four games this season, but he hasn’t scratched the stat sheet.
As you can see in this tweet from Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal charting the Patriots’ pass-coverage stats, there have been some issues in coverage.
Davis is a physical player capable of assisting against the run and covering big receivers and tight ends–as long as none of them are named Gronkowski.