Ravens Need Production From Raw Rookie Carl Davis


While much of the focus this summer has been on the Ravens' top two draft picks and pass catchers, wide receiver Breshad Perriman and tight end Maxx Williams, Baltimore's top defensive rookie has flown under the radar.

Not to coaches, however.

Upon his visit to the Under Armour Performance Center, MMQB's Peter King said Ravens coaches are most excited about third-round defensive tackle Carl Davis, calling him "Mr. Versatile."

Now with defensive end Brent Urban going down with a torn biceps, the Ravens may need even more from Davis in 2015.

"He has to contribute this year," Defensive Coordinator Dean Pees said. "I don't think he is going to; he has to. We're expecting him to.

"He's getting better and better all the time. Like I say, [he has] a long ways to go; we all do. We're far from being where we need to be, but at the same time, he has increased reps, because he deserves to get increased reps, and he's doing well."

The 6-foot-5, 320-pound Iowa product has been running with the first- and second-team defenses. He's stepping into multiple positions across the defensive line.

It's easy to see Davis' potential. He's a big, powerful force up the middle.

During Saturday's practice, Davis took one undrafted rookie offensive lineman and bulldozed him into the backfield before ripping him to the ground. Davis didn't make the stop, as the running back cut the other way, but his disruptive potential was on display.

"Carl Davis is definitely a raw, great player," fellow defensive tackle Brandon Williams said. "He definitely needs work, like I did in my rookie year, but at the same time you can see him getting it. He's getting it slowly but surely."

Even though he has great size, Davis' physique is also a bit raw. Often, rookies come into training camp with college bodies and transform between their first and second year when in an NFL weight lifting program.

"I still think he's a big puppy as far as his body," Head Coach John Harbaugh said. "He's a big one like those big dogs. They're still big, but he's in the process of sharpening up his edges a little bit, and to me, he's going to do that. He's a talented guy, and he really works hard."

Davis said his biggest task now is being consistent, and he's spending most of his time in the playbook with the help of the veterans. He said he knows he can physically hang with NFL offensive linemen.

"I'm a rookie and I need to prove myself," Davis said. "Nothing I did in college matters, good or bad. I'm here now and I'm blessed to have this opportunity."

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