The Cleveland Browns may be in the market for an inside linebacker and the team is reportedly hosting free agent Demario Davis for a visit.
The Cleveland Browns are reportedly hosting free agent linebacker Demario Davis for a visit on Tuesday.
Browns fans will remember Davis as he was one of two New York defenders that knocked quarterback Josh McCown out of the season-opening game with a goal line hit that left McCown with a concussion.
Davis joined the New York Jets in 2012 after being drafted in the third round out of Arkansas State. He has worked his way up from being a special teams contributor as a rookie to starting at inside linebacker for each of the past three seasons. However, Davis struggles in pass coverage against running backs and was being platooned with fellow inside linebacker Erin Henderson over the final six games of the 2015 season.
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That is one reason why the Jets reportedly are willing to let Davis test the market in free agency and let the league determine his value.
This past season Davis finished with 57 solo tackles, his lowest total since his rookie year, two sacks, nine tackles-for-loss and 11 quarterback hits. He is a durable player and one who, according to ESPN, you never have to worry about getting into trouble off the field – which should appeal to a Cleveland team that has dealt with a lifetime of off-the-field issues in the past two years.
However, as the stats show, Davis is not a playmaker at the linebacker position, as ESPN notes:
"For a player with his athleticism, Davis doesn’t make enough big plays — no forced fumbles, one interception and only 6.5 sacks in four seasons. Those are low numbers for a player who has participated in more than 2,700 defensive snaps in the past three years. Unbeknownst to people outside the organization, he played some reps at David Harris’ “Mike” position in 2015, which may have hurt his numbers. Some scouts say he doesn’t have keen instincts for the position, and it shows up at times in pass coverage — i.e. using the wrong technique. He also led the team in missed tackles (16) last season, according to Pro Football Focus."
With linebacker Craig Robertson – the last of the Browns six unrestricted free agents – visiting the Seattle Seahawks and New Orleans Saints, the Browns are in the market for another inside linebacker, meaning Davis is a player that Browns fans should keep an eye on.
Free agency is underway and the NFL Draft is on the horizon. Be sure to follow Dawg Pound Daily to keep up with everything the Browns are trying to do while they go through their latest biennial rebuilding project.