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Ja'Gared Davis: 5 Things You Need to Know About the SMU LB

Gary DavenportNFL AnalystJanuary 2, 2017

Ja'Gared Davis: 5 Things You Need to Know About the SMU LB

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    Leading up to the 2013 NFL draft, we've all read plenty of reports breaking down the top linebacker prospects, from inside linebackers such as Notre Dame's Manti Te'o, to pass-rushing edge linebackers such as Georgia's Jarvis Jones.

    However, there are any number of lesser-known players also trying to make the jump to the National Football League, whether it's as a late draft pick or an undrafted free agent.

    Coming off a senior season in which he returned both an interception and a fumble for a touchdown, Ja'Gared Davis of SMU is just such a player.

    Here's a look at five things you need to know about this under-the-radar prospect.

Background

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    Hometown: Crockett, Texas

    High School: Crockett High School (Crockett, Texas)

    Year: Senior

    Ja'Gared Davis starred at Crockett High School in his hometown, notching 228 tackles over his last two seasons in high school and earning all-state honors as a senior.

    A 2-star recruit according to Rivals.com, Davis turned down offers from Baylor, Louisiana Tech and Tulsa to play for the Mustangs.

Statistics

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    It didn't take Ja'Gared Davis long to carve out a significant role on defense for the Mustangs, as Davis saw action in all 13 games for SMU as a freshman, making five starts.

    Davis became a full-time starter during his sophomore season at SMU, and a consistent one at that.

    In fact, in each of Davis' last three years in Dallas he tallied at least 70 tackles, racked up double-digit tackles for loss and recorded at least four sacks.

    Year

    Games

    Tackles

    TFL

    Sacks

    FF

    INT

    2009

    13

    51

    2

    2

    2

    0

    2010

    14

    89

    15

    8

    0

    0

    2011

    13

    84

    12.5

    6

    2

    2

    2012

    13

    77

    11

    4

    3

    2

Draft Process

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    Measurables

    Height: 6'0"

    Weight: 238 pounds

    Arm Length: 31.625"

    Hand Size: 9.625"

     

    Combine Results

    Did not participate

     

    Pro Day Results

    40-Yard Dash: 4.78 seconds

    Bench Press: 14 reps

    Vertical Jump: 32.5"

    Broad Jump: 9'9"

    20-Yard Shuttle: 4.4 seconds

    60-Yard Shuttle: 12.10 seconds

    Three-Cone Drill: 7.26 seconds

     

    Ja'Gared Davis wasn't invited to participate in the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine, but Davis made up for that slight with a generally strong showing at SMU's pro day. However, Davis managed only 14 repetitions of 225 pounds on the bench press, which did nothing to allay concerns about his upper body strength.

     

    Pro day results courtesy of Southern Methodist University.

Interesting Facts

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    A few things you may not have known about Ja'Gared Davis.

    Davis was an All-Conference USA performer three times, earning first-team honors in 2010 and 2012, and second-team honors in 2011.

    Davis was no stranger to the end zone while with the Mustangs, scoring defensive touchdowns in his sophomore, junior and senior seasons.

    On the heels of his eight tackles, 1.5 sacks, an interception and a forced fumble and recovery for a touchdown against UTEP in 2011, Davis was named National Defensive Player of the Week.

    In an interview with Shaun DePasquale of NFL Draft Zone, Davis was asked who he would sit down to dinner with if he could pick any three people.

    I would have to say Lawrence Taylor, Ray Lewis, and Ernie Davis. Lawrence Taylor because in my eyes he is the greatest linebacker of all time, and the player I would love to even come close to one day. Ray Lewis because I want to pick his brain, I want to play with the passion he has, and gain all the knowledge about the game. Ernie Davis because I have so much respect for him and I would like to just talk and hear everything he had endured during his lifetime.

Observations

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    Here's a look at some of the latest draft buzz surrounding Ja'Gared Davis.

    From Dane Brugler of NFL Draft Scout:

    Takes too many overaggressive angles and false steps, but Davis is an energetic, active tackler with a relentless motor and versatile experience blitzing and dropping into coverage.

    According to Bleacher Report's Scott Carasik:

    In the NFL, Ja'Gared Davis would be best used as a 3-4 outside linebacker in a Terrell Suggs or James Harrison style role. He has potential to play in the 4-3 as a hands-down weak-side end, but it would only be good for him to do it sporadically. Ideally, he is a special teams player and a third-down pass rush specialist when he gets drafted.

    Per Russ Lande of National Football Post

    Davis is a short, thick outside linebacker with excellent athletic ability, play speed and lateral agility to develop for the position in the NFL. Davis is realistically a weak-side linebacker only. Overall, he deserves strong sixth-round draft consideration by a 4-3 team looking for a back-up weak-side linebacker. Davis will have to be a core contributor on special teams to stay on a roster.

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