The voluntary portion of New York Jets OTAs has come to its conclusion.
Next week will be mandatory minicamp and then the players will enjoy a little vacation before reconvening in late July for training camp.
Before we get to all of that a certain player has surprised early on and could be someone to watch this offseason.
ALL the latest Jets news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Jets newsletter here!
Surprising Rise up the Ranks
“Leading into OTAs this year, though, Davis didn’t have combine drills to practice for or an injury to rehab. He actually prepared for the season. He looks significantly improved having done so as he works with the second-team defense. Davis had two interceptions — including an impressive one-handed grab Wednesday — in the four media-open practices. He’s flying around on defense.”
The former California product originally entered the NFL as the No. 68 overall pick in the third round of the 2020 NFL draft. An interesting fun fact, Davis was the highest-drafted defender by general manager Joe Douglas prior to the team selecting Ahmad ‘Sauce’ Gardner with the No. 4 overall pick in 2022 out of Cincinnati.
He was heralded as an athletic piece of clay that didn’t have a ton of football experience, but if you bet on the traits you could land a stud.
Through the first two years of his career there were a whole lot of injuries, inconsistencies, and erratic play:
- Missed 10 games
- 98 total tackles
- Two interceptions
Although with a full offseason under his belt and some newfound hope with a potential starting gig, you’re seeing a massive difference in Davis in 2022.
Trending in the Wrong Direction
If there are risers there have to be fallers.
Hughes also listed veteran safety Lamarcus Joyner in that very category.
“The veteran is still the starter, and likely will be when the season starts, but you wonder if Davis can’t push him for playing time if his strong OTAs turn into a strong minicamp and then training camp. Joyner is older (31) and his future with the Jets likely doesn’t extend past 2022. If Davis shows he can provide the same quality of play now, it might make sense to begin playing him now.”
On one side of the coin, you have an aging veteran coming off a lost season due to a torn triceps. On the other, you have a young safety that you drafted that still has two years left on his rookie contract for cheap money.
The Jets want Davis to seize the day and steal the starting job. Everything is lined up for him to do so, but they can’t do everything for him.
It’ll be up to the talented safety to take advantage of the situation and grab the bull by the horns. The path to a starting gig and rejuvenating his career is all in front of him, we’ll see if he can do it.
In theory, Davis would be the perfect complement to their new free agent stud Jordan Whitehead.
The former Tampa Bay Buccaneers star is a versatile player that can thrive in the box. While Davis brings a centerfielder mentality with his track background and unique ability to make plays on the ball.