Rod Davis NFL Bio

Official NFL profile for the Vikings' fifth-round draft choice, middle linebacker Rod Davis.

Rod Davis
Position: Middle linebacker
College: Southern Mississippi
Height: 6-1
Weight: 246
Hometown: Gulfport, Miss.


OVERVIEW
A vocal leader who is considered to be the "heart and soul" of one of the nation's premier defenses, the three-year starter and two-time defensive captain has been a model of consistency for the Golden Eagles … Boasts a string of 23 games with at least 10 tackles during his 35-game career … Recorded 362 tackles (246 solos) with 141/2 sacks for minus 102 yards and 401/2 stops for losses of 177 yards during his career, adding 14 deflected passes, two forced fumbles and six interceptions for 82 yards in returns … His eight fumble recoveries are topped only by Melvin Ratcliff (10, 1992-95) on the school's career list.

ANALYSIS
Positives:
Broad-shouldered athlete with thick calves and good overall muscle definition … Shows aggression as a wrap-up tackler, quickly locating the ball while using his hands effectively to shed working through the inside trash … Shows fluid moves working in space and has a sudden burst when playing off the edge … Face-up tackler with the lateral agility to pursue and string plays wide, displaying a sharp burst stringing plays down the line … Has the short area speed to contain tight ends and backs on crossing and fade patterns … Displays good closing speed, as he can drop quickly into the zone or step up to engage the bigger blockers … Very effective utilizing his swim moves and displays proper hand usage needed to avoid blocks at his feet.

Negatives: Needs to show better knee bend when trying to contain the inside run … Has the ability to locate the ball, but will sometimes take bad angles vs. the inside run … Needs to develop more lower body power to prevent blockers from riding him away from the play, but compensates with consistent stun-and-jolt hand usage … Adequate in his pass drops, needing to develop better hip swerve … While quick, he needs to improve on his foot speed.

AGILITY TESTS
4.85 (rubber track) and 4.92 (grass field) in the 40-yard dash … 37-inch vertical jump … 345-pound bench press … 600-pound squat … 313/4-inch arm length … 10-inch hands … Right-handed.

HIGH SCHOOL
Attended Gulfport (Miss.) High, playing for coach Ronnie Cuevas … Lettered three times as a defensive back before moving to linebacker in his senior year … Recorded 128 tackles with four interceptions, eight sacks and three fumble recoveries in his final seasons … The Clarion-Ledger second-team all-state selection, he was listed among the top 40 recruits in Mississippi by The Clarion-Ledger … Played in the Alabama/Mississippi All-Star Classic.

PERSONAL
Management major … Son of Linda Johnson … Heavily involved in community volunteer work, participating in Real Winners Read (helps gather and deliver books to libraries around the area to help build the book volume in libraries for children in the area), Humane Society Food Drive (helps gather food and money to buy food and supplies for the Hattiesburg area Humane Society), Dubard School For Disabilities (serves as a mentor to children who have disabilities and also reads to the children at the school), Habitat for Humanity (helped athletic department build a house to give to a needy family as part of the program) and Mentor for Area Schools (reads to children in local schools and gives speeches encouraging the kids about not using drugs and the importance of a quality education) programs … Born April 2, 1981 … Resides in Gulfport, Miss.

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