Former Florida LB Jarrad Davis has heard all the clichés, but he’s not interested in living up to the outside world’s expectation of rookie leadership.
After being drafted by the Detriot Lions with the No. 21 overall pick in April’s NFL Draft, some expected Davis to come in and single-handedly transform a defense that has been lackluster for years.
Davis told Nate Atkins of MLive that being a leader as a 21-year-old fresh out of college isn’t as easy as people think.
“You’re not going to come in and raise your voice and talk to an older guy who has been in the league doing this for six, seven, eight, nine years. You’re not going to be able to tell them, ‘Hey, this is how we’re going to do it. This is how things are going to go.’ You can’t do that.”
This goes against the familiar sports movie trope where a fresh, young player comes in and turns around the locker room by giving impassioned speeches and flipping tables. Davis says that grown men just won’t respond to that kind of insubordination.
What they do respect, according to Davis, is hard work.
“You have to make sure you’re on top of your game in every phase of the game, whether that be in meeting rooms, whether that be in recovery, whether that be in the weight room or maybe how you wake up in the morning and put your pants on. They say everybody puts their pants on the same way. I might be a little biased. I put my pants on a little different than anybody else. I’m not going to tell you how.”
Though pants-buttoning speed isn’t one of the measurables that impressed the Lions into drafting Davis, his unorthodox mind and innate leadership are certainly assets.
Jarrad Davis knows that his time will come if he works hard, he just has to put in work on the field first.
Source: Saturday Down South