With Brandon Marshall(foot) and Danny Trevathan(knee) both currently rehabbing injuries, second-year linebacker Todd Davis has been getting the majority of first-team reps at inside linebacker this offseason. Some young linebackers put in this situation would be overwhelmed, but Davis by all accounts has been impressing coaches.
Interesting that #Broncos Kubiak said that ILB will be one of best spots for competition in camp. Todd Davis has been impressive— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) June 9, 2015
Davis signed with the New Orleans Saints after he went undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft. The Saints ended up waiving Davis during the regular season with the hopes of adding him to their practice squad, but the Broncos ended up claiming the rookie linebacker.
Once Davis joined the Broncos, he continued to improve week to week and started to catch the eye of the coaches and teammates. After both Danny Trevathan and Brandon Marshall both went down injured against the San Diego Chargers, Davis stepped into the starting lineup and played well. Davis ended up starting two games for the Broncos defense and totaling 25 tackles in limited time.
Davis has continued to build off last year and his confidence and swagger have stood out to veteran/Pro Bowl outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware.
"I think with Todd Davis it goes back all the way to the season, the end of the season with him playing a little bit and him taking on that role now. You’re used to seeing him in the huddle now, calling the plays, calling the defense and being confident. He’s gotten that confidence and that swagger that he needs to be that role player for us."
With both Marshall and Trevathan having injuries that more than likely will linger into the regular season, it's good to hear that Davis is getting some valuable reps and is getting comfortable calling plays inside the huddle.
Davis has also caught the eye of the Head Coach Gary Kubiak. He mentions how Davis flashed in limited time last season for the Broncos, and how the inside linebacker position could be the most competitive position during Training Camp.
"Well, he flashed with his time playing last year" said Kubiak "Our guys inside right now to me have played really well and it’s because they kind of got forced into a tough situation with two injuries, with Danny and Marshall not working. But those guys have responded and I think it’s just going to help them. That’s just going to be—they may be as competitive as spot as we’ll have probably going into camp."
The inside linebacker position does figure to be competitive during Training Camp and the Preseason. Veteran's Steven Johnson and Reggie Walker are competing with second-year linebackers Todd Davis, Lamin Barrow, and Corey Nelson are battling for the backup and special team jobs.
It will be interesting to see how this all plays out in the coming weeks and months. Will Todd Davus continue to improve once the pads come on during Camp? Can Davis end up pushing Marshall and Trevathan for a starting job? Are Marshall and Trevathan even healthy? Or can any of the other guys step up? It figures to be a fun positional battle to watch.
I know it's only June, but could Todd Davis be this year's Brandon Marshall? Be bounced from one team, and come to the Broncos and succeed?
I sure hope so.