Thomas Davis has some stiff competition with high-profile offensive stars like Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson vying for NFL Comeback Player of the Year honors, but the Panthers believe their starting weak-side linebacker deserves to be in the conversation for the award.
Davis has been one of the brightest spots in a disappointing season for Carolina. In fact, we hear some league observers think he is playing at a Pro Bowl level, which is a notable development considering his injury history — Davis is believed to be the first player in history to continue his NFL career after suffering three ACL tears (he tore the ACL in his right knee in each of the past three years).
Heading into this season, Davis, an eighth-year veteran, had played in only nine games since the start of the 2009 season. And he opened this season as a part-time player — he did not start and played about a third of the defensive snaps in each of his first three games.
However, Davis, who missed a Week Three game with a hamstring injury, has played at least 76 percent of the defensive snaps in every game since Week Five. He was asked to play a bigger role when the Panthers lost MLB Jon Beason for the season and slid rookie Luke Kuechly from the weak side to Beason’s spot in the middle. Davis has answered the call.