Thomas Davis should come back for swan song with Panthers
The Panthers veteran should come back for one final season.
The Carolina Panthers have many player personnel decisions to make when the off-season gets fully underway, and that may include parting with some players who are fan favorites. It is not easy, but it is part of the business. One of the names that would fit into the category is Carolina Panthers legend and multiple Pro Bowler Thomas Davis. A free agent heading into the off-season, the Panthers should think about keeping Davis for one more year if he decides to continue playing football. However, there is no denying that his skills are diminishing.
It is not as if Davis had a bad season. He played effectively in many instances over the course of the 2018 campaign. His best game of the season in terms of tackles came on December 17 against the New Orleans Saints. In that respect, we saw a vintage Thomas Davis performance. He recorded 12 in total in addition to a pass deflection.
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All things considered, the Carolina Panthers got a very good season out of Davis. He served a four-game suspension at the beginning of the season and even still, he managed to put up effective numbers. He recorded 46 tackles in total, as well as six pass deflections. The pass deflections were his highest total since the 2015 season. If it was not for the suspension, he probably would’ve put up bigger numbers in the tackle department and surpassed his total from the 2017 season.
At face value, it may not make a ton of sense in keeping Davis. Per statistics from Pro Football Focus, his tackling rating of 66.9 was the worst number he has recorded in that category since 2014. Even still, he put together an admirable season statistically despite diminishing skills. He recorded a 74.2 defensive rating, a pass-rushing rating of 74, and a coverage rating of 74.4. However, there were times on the field that he looked very slow. Of course, that is to be expected. He is a 35-year-old player who gives 100% every time he steps on the football field. With that in mind, there is no denying that the Panthers should definitely look to get younger talent in Davis’s spot.
The Panthers have already begun to put together a young secondary and there is some very good talent on the line in Mario Addison and Kawaan Short. Davis should come back for one more season to help mentor that talent and offer himself as a resource for the rookies to learn. Who better to learn from then Davis? If there is one player that gets what it takes to be a Carolina Panther and knows what it takes to win, it is Davis.
The Panthers should not sign him to an outrageous contract, but they should make an effort to keep Thomas Davis around one more season. He still has some playing ability left in him, and he could be a very useful individual to help prepare the next set of Panthers players.
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