30-Year-Old Linebacker – Carolina Panthers
2013 Fantasy Football Outlook
Davis was second on the Panthers in tackles last season, and will start at strong side linebacker this season alongside rookie of the year and NFL leading tackler Luke Kuechly....
Thomas Davis Contract Information:
Agreed to a five-year contract with Carolina in July of 2011.
Davis has restructured his contract with the Panthers, the Charlotte Observer reports.
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Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
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Thomas Davis: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)Davis epitomizes perseverance, since after three previous ACL surgeries, the 30-year-old turned in the best season of his professional career this year. In his first full campaign since 2008, Davis's career highs in tackles and sacks were accompanied by six games of at least eight tackles, including three double-digit performances. Additionally, his presence next to middle linebacker Luke Kuechly accounted for a combined 279 tackles, the most by any duo in the league this season. Perhaps more importantly, Davis continued to stay healthy this season, after featuring in 15 contests last year. Now with back-to-back 100-tackle seasons, Davis is an IDP option on the rise and makes for a feel-good story as well.
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Thomas is attempting to become the first player in NFL history to return to action following three torn ACL surgeries. Even if he can do it, he's playing behind James Anderson and Luke Kuechly, both of which are expected to have big tackle numbers this year.
Davis is an extremely injury prone player, but he remains a rare athlete with the potential to put up big numbers in Carolina’s defense, which figures to spend a lot of time on the field in 2011. He tore his right ACL twice between November 2009 and June 2010, so he's in Bob Sanders territory when it comes to durability, but Davis’ 174 tackles (140 solo), five sacks, two interceptions and two forced fumbles in his last 23 games are nice numbers. If he’s on the field, he should be a steal.
Another torn ACL during summer OTAs has Davis likely to miss the majority of the regular season. The injury is a blow to Carolina's defensive corps, as Davis was in line for a career year as the Panthers' starting weak side linebacker. The Panthers have so far neglected to place him on injured reserve, so he may still be available as a late season pickup.
Davis finished the 2008 season with a career-high 113 tackles along with 3.5 sacks and two forced fumbles. The move over the weak side behind Julius Peppers paid immediate dividends for Davis, as he became a very productive player for the Panthers and IDP owners alike. It looks like Peppers will remain in Carolina this season, so a repeat of his 2008 numbers isn't out of the question.
Davis enjoyed another solid -- if unspectacular -- season as the Panthers' starting strong-side linebacker rolling up another 88 tackles including a career-high three sacks. He'll be pushed for snaps by rookie Dan Connor, but he's a viable option for 80-90 tackles again if he can stay healthy.
Davis will start at the strongside linebacker spot again in 2007 after piling up 88 tackles over 14 games a year ago. He could crack the century mark for the first time in his career with a full season's worth of starts and another year of experience under his belt, given his incredible athleticism and continued development at linebacker after playing safety at Georgia.
After playing safety and linebacker last season, the Panthers decided to move him to linebacker this season. Playing only one position should help the second-year player. Davis will be worth a late-round selection in all IDP formats.
Davis is a very versatile defensive player who can play both safety and linebacker. With the Panthers lacking much depth at either position, Davis will be forced to play both positions for much of the season. Colin Branch's season-ending knee injury opened up a starting job for Davis at strong safety and he'll likely play most snaps in that spot but could spell Brandon Short at linebacker as well.