The label “workout warrior” carries plenty of negative connotations across the landscape of the NFL. Perhaps that is what ultimately scared teams away from former Texas Tech safety Cody Davis for all seven rounds of the 2013 NFL Draft as his ridiculous pre-draft numbers went unrecognized and undrafted by the league. The St. Louis Rams were a team that passed on Davis a few times themselves, but that doesn’t mean the doesn’t realize the potential steal they have after signing him to a contract as an undrafted free agent.
It’s not like Davis wasn’t productive during his senior season with the Red Raiders either. The ridiculous numbers that he compiled during a regional combine performance were eye-popping enough that they should have confirmed his ability to get the job done at the next level rather than dispelled it. Davis started all 49 games during his four years in Lubbock, and he led the team in tackles with 101 during his senior year to go along with three interceptions and seven pass breakups.
One would think that numbers like these with his ridiculous regional combine numbers would garner some attention in the draft. Those combine times were a 40-yard dash in 4.42 and 4.41 seconds, a 41.5-inch vertical, a10-foot-3-inch broad jump, a short shuttle time of 4.00 seconds, a 6.78-second three-cone drill, and a solid 15 reps on the bench press. There really is no explanation for Davis not hearing his name called during the 254 picks that took place from April 25 to April 27.
According to St. Louis Today, the youngster shares that bewilderment as to how he wasn’t selected saying:
“I’m the wrong guy to be asking. I think I’m too bland, I don’t know. I might need to add some flash to my game or something. I just pride myself on being fundamentally sound, flying around to the ball, really having a nose for the ball and making the tackle. It doesn’t have to be pretty. It doesn’t have to be a knockout hit all the time, as long as you get the guy down.”
That type of mentality will go a long way in earning Davis a spot on the 53-man roster when it’s all said and done. The lack of safety depth in St. Louis is also working in his favor as there is no reason he couldn’t go from undrafted to week one starter if Davis plays his cards right. He seems to understand the opportunity that is in front of him, and when asked about why he chose the Rams, Davis said:
“It was just a combination of things. Coach (Jeff) Fisher and his staff — I really like ’em. Also, the opportunity here to get playing time. You know, it’s kind of a young team coming in. And there are some opportunities for free agents to grab roster spots. I’ve still got to come in here and work it from the bottom up.”
It wouldn’t be a total shock if the Rams are starting two rookies at safety by the time week one rolls around. Third round pick T.J. McDonald is expected to get every chance to start at strong safety while Davis spent the three-day rookie camp learning responsibilities at the free safety spot. The Rams may have youth in the secondary, but that comes with plenty of potential looking ahead to the 2013 season.