Lions' exhibition win whets Jarrad Davis' appetite

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News
Rookie Jarrad Davis

Indianapolis — It was just a small taste, a nibble really, and it left Detroit Lions rookie linebacker Jarrad Davis wanting more. 

“It was definitely nice,” Davis said. “I didn’t play too much today, so I still have a little taste for it right now. Hopefully next week, I’ll be able to feel that and do some more.”

On the first snap against the Indianapolis Colts, Davis was in the mix, helping stop a run for a short gain. And on third-and-3, when the Colts looked to extend their initial possession by targeting tight end Jack Doyle, Davis was in tight coverage and denied the completion.

“It let me know I can do this, I can play out here,” Davis said.

He only played a handful of defensive series before taking a seat for the night, but it was a good initial impression for the man expected to start in the middle of Detroit’s defense for years to come.

And even though it was one play, it was promising seeing his ability to cover a tight end, given the defense’s struggles in that area the past few years. Last year, in a season-opening win over the Colts, tight ends caught three touchdowns against the Lions.

With his first game in the books, Davis has already turned his focus to getting better. Consistently praised for his passion for the game and his work ethic before the draft, that football character was on display minutes after the final whistle when he was thoughtfully processing his performance, even without the benefit of film, digging for nuanced ways to improve when the Lions host the Jets next week.

“Everything was going pretty good, just little, small things — different kinds of movements you do pre-snap or right at the snap of the ball,” he said. “Maybe I’m stepping off my outside foot or my inside foot, different things like that, something I can really focus on in practice to make each practice more interesting and push myself even more.”

jdrogers@detnews.com

Twitter: @justin_rogers