Snapshot: Morgan Davis

Offensive linemen are unknowns, sure, but Google can't be right on this one: Morgan Davis is a blues guitarist from Canada?

"That's not me," said Davis, the 6-foot-6, 313-pound rookie tackle with the Steelers.

"No," Davis said. "I'm from Wisconsin."

Yes, he is. Way up in Wisconsin. Davis comes from Barron, located some 55 miles north of Eau Claire. As you may know, Eau Claire is French for North Pole.

Or something like that.

"My hobby is pretty much my fiancé," Davis continued. "In fact, she's from Pittsburgh. Her name's Juliann Hertz. We hang out a lot."

Hertz went to Wisconsin after leading a Fox Chapel rowing team to the junior nationals. When they met as freshmen, Davis was a hockey player who dabbled in football.

"I played hockey for 13 years," Davis said. "I was one of the few 6-6 hockey players."

So why not basketball?

"I always wanted to play full-contact sports," he said. "When I was younger, I learned basketball was one of those games where if you touch somebody just a little bit you get in trouble. So I'd rather play hockey where you can run into somebody head on and bowl them over. Hockey has been my first love. Football came into play when I was recruited everywhere. I finished my senior year of high school and decided it was time to hang up my skates – at least for now."

Davis' father ran the Zamboni machine at the Barron community ice rink, but Davis knew he had to play football because, well, he could.

He became Wisconsin's left tackle as a junior and helped the Badgers beat Ohio State to end a 17-game winning streak. It was one of Davis' top highlights.

"My other would be – and a lot of people don't think this is a highlight – but we had lost the axe to Minnesota the year before and last year we got it back," he said. "It's one of those deals where the axe belongs in Madison. That's the way everybody feels, except for the people in Minnesota."

Davis was a co-starter at right tackle his senior year. After an underclassman had emerged at left tackle, Davis was moved and split time with his friend Mike Lorenz.

Wisconsin won its first nine games, but lost the last two of the regular season. Lorenz, who'd been out since mid-season, came back for the Outback Bowl and the two tackles were burned by David Pollack for three sacks in Wisconsin's third consecutive loss to end what had been a great season.

"It surprised us all," was all Davis wanted to say about it.

With the Steelers, Davis has been working at both tackle positions, and he can also play guard. Scouts love his size, strength and intelligence. They also believe he has the frame to add several pounds. On the other hand, scouts knock his footwork and range.

"I approach it like I did the past two years at Wisconsin," Davis said. "Nobody really gave me a shot at Wisconsin. I came from a town of 3,000 people. People said I probably shouldn't have played there, but I started for two years. I already said I'm going to go out and practice every day and give it my all and put everything I've got into each play."

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