A Look Into Former Gamecocks Running Back Mike Davis’ Ascent To The Top Of The NFL

Normally I would write an article about how certain South Carolina players performed in the NFL each week, but this will be more of a Mike Davis appreciation article. Davis has been absolutely incredible as a replacement for Christian McCaffery. 

Mike Davis was an incredible replacement for Marcus Lattimore after he left South Carolina. Davis achieved a second team all-SEC honor in his sophomore year, which was his first starting year. He only played one more year before he decided to declare for the NFL Draft. 

Davis was drafted by the 49ers in the fourth round of the 2015 NFL draft. The 49ers also drafted Lattimore, but he was unable to play due to his injury.

Davis didn’t do a lot on the 49ers, but that was because Carlos Hyde was the starter. The 49ers waived Davis in 2017 until he was picked up by the Seattle Seahawks. 

Davis had an ok 2017 with over 350 scrimmage yards. He was stuck in a crowded running back room with Eddie Lacy and J.D. McKissic. Funny enough, Russell Wilson was the leading rusher for the 2017 Seahawks.

Davis had a mini breakout year in 2018. He started his first game for the Seahawks against the Cardinals. He finished with 101 yards and two touchdowns in that game. Davis continued to have a solid role as a backup for the Seahawks.

The Seahawks decided to let Davis walk after they found a new run game with Rashaad Penny. The Chicago Bears decided to sign Davis in 2019, and they completely wasted him.

As a Bears fan, I always say that South Carolina players will never succeed on the Bears. Alshon Jeffery was the most successful South Carolina player ever for the Bears. Other Gamecocks to play for the Bears include Connor Shaw and Elliott Fry. Davis was stuck in a three running back system with a poor offensive line and run scheme. The Bears were very bad on offense last year, and for some reason they decided to cut Davis in the middle of the year. 

Davis found his new home with the Carolina Panthers. Davis didn’t play for the rest of the 2019 season.

This year, he became the number two running back behind star Christian McCaffery. It would’ve been hard for Davis to get snaps in because McCaffery is a workhorse who could play 30-plus snaps per game with great stats. Davis was called up when McCaffery injured his ankle in week two. In his first start against a solid Chargers defense, Davis finished with 91 scrimmage yards and one receiving touchdown.

Davis has increased his amount of scrimmage yards week by week. He has established himself as a really strong running back with great receiving potential. He’s also really shifty for his size. Davis fits perfectly into Matt Rhule’s system. In fantasy, Davis is already the number seven running back.

Davis may or may not be the starting running back this week against the Bears, but he should get a decent amount of snaps either way. The Bears haven’t had the best run defense this year, so Davis will look for revenge against his former team.

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