Allen Park – It was far from an ideal rookie season for Detroit Lions linebacker Jarrad Davis, but he’s banking on a year of on-the-job learning and a strong finish in 2017 to lead to positive results in his second season.
You can’t really dwell on the bad things, Davis said. You just have to go out, you have to play and you have to have fun. I was able to go out and say that those last three games. … I just went back to being a kid again. Just going out there and letting loose, not really worrying about anything, not really stressing about messing up, not really trying to say,’I’ve gotta do this, I’ve gotta do this.’ Just going out there and letting things happen.
Even though he knows he’ll be learning another new defensive scheme this offseason, with Matt Patricia at the helm, along with a new defensive coordinator and position coach, Davis said he feels more mentally relaxed coming into his second season.
While the playbook might be different, the young linebacker is confident the transition will be made smoother because of the study habits he refined during his rookie campaign.
The biggest key to Davis’ improvement will certainly be the strides he can make in pass coverage.
According to Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune, the primary factor in their decision to not tag the restricted free agent at a more restrictive level was the fact they were worried about Meredith’s recovery from a torn ACL and partially torn MCL in a preseason game. Campbell reported that heavy doubt about Meredith’s knee has existed since his surgery, and that by late October, the team was uncertain about his future.
It must have been a considerable concern, since they still need all the offensive weapons that they can get and they’re still sitting on $24 million in cap room, meaning they could have easily absorbed the two-year, $9.6 million offer the Saints lured him away with.
Making it that much more strange is they guaranteed a lot more money to another wide receiver coming off an ACL tear.
The Bears gave Allen Robinson a three-year, $42 million contract, with $25.2 million guaranteed. He tore his ACL in the regular season opener for the Jaguars, weeks after Meredith’s injury.