Week 6 spotlight: Can Mike Davis make his old team pay?

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Mike Davis
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Mike Davis /

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Could Mike Davis make his old team pay when the Carolina Panthers clash with the Chicago Bears in Week 6 at Bank of America Stadium?

The rise to prominence of Mike Davis over the past few weeks has been nothing short of phenomenal. He has been a tremendous asset for the Carolina Panthers after they lost Christian McCaffrey to a high ankle sprain, which has led to a career renaissance for a player whose hopes of a starting role in the NFL were dwindling with every passing year.

This is a fantastic story and one that should inspire every NFL veteran who has lost their place on the depth chart. Davis has made the most out of this opportunity with the Carolina Panthers in no uncertain terms and has left no doubt there will be a role for the running back even when the face of the franchise makes a return to the field in the coming weeks.

Next up for Davis is a significant test against the Chicago Bears, a team that he played for briefly at the end of last season before the organization chose to go in a different direction.

If Davis needed any more incentive, he certainly has it.

Mike Davis is a key component for the Carolina Panthers.

He will be looking to prove a point against the team that let him go. Davis carried the ball just 11 times in 2019 on his way to 25 rushing yards, which is a stark contrast to what the player has achieved in a more increased role in Carolina.

Davis has been a bulldozer for the Panthers when they needed him most. The offense hasn’t missed a beat in McCaffrey’s absence and this is proof positive to just what sort of impact the former South Carolina standout has made in Joe Brady’s offensive scheme.

He has amassed 226 rushing yards and one touchdown from 46 carries this season. If that’s not enough, Davis has also collected 30 receptions from 33 targets for 206 receiving yards and two scores to further enhance his overall influence during Carolina’s three-game winning streak.

This sensational form has him ranked among the NFL’s best running backs by Pro Football Focus with a grade of 83.1. Considering Davis’ place on the 53-man roster was in serious question before training camp, this rise to prominence has been exceptional.

However, whether Davis can continue this fine form against the Bears is another matter.

Chicago possesses a dominant defensive front that can make plays at will. They do have some difficulty stopping the run that Davis can exploit. But that is going to be easier said than done if the Panthers don’t get off to the same fast start that has played a leading role in their turnaround.

There is every chance McCaffrey will be back in the next couple of weeks. This might be one of the last times Davis gets the lion’s share of the carries in Carolina and he will not want to less another chance to shine pass him by.

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If this ends up being a game of fine margins as expected, then Davis could have the deciding say in the overall outcome.