3 Reasons the Dallas Cowboys will draft DT Jordan Davis

(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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Reason No. 2 the Dallas Cowboys will draft DT Jordan Davis

He’s more than just a part-time player

Jordan Davis, the monstrous DT out of Georgia, may be the selection that causes the biggest split amongst Cowboy fans and analysts. Some believe he’s well worth the 24th selection, while many others feel a two-down player with limited pass rush abilities would be a poor value. The former is correct and the latter needs to consider context.

Re-watching the October 30th matchup between Georgia and Florida, a stat flashed on the screen regarding Jordan Davis. It read that opponents were averaging 2.7 yards per play and 3.5 yards per pass attempt in the 155 snaps Davis had played up to that point in the season. Meanwhile, teams averaged 4.1 yards per play and 5.9 yards per pass attempt without Davis on the field.

The consensus is these numbers reflect Jordan Davis perfectly. The concern is the snap count for Davis where, at that time, he was 155 snaps on the field and 253 snaps on the sideline. The same trend for him continued throughout the season, or did it? Now it’s context time.

opponents were averaging 3.5 yards per pass attempt when Jordan Davis was on the field and 5.9 yards per pass attempt when Davis was off the field.

In the six games leading up to that October Florida game, Georgia blew out five opponents. Only the season opener vs. Clemson was a close 10-3 Bulldog victory. A game where Davis played 43% of the snaps. In the following five matchups, Georgia would outscored their opponents 259-43.

An average victory of 51.8 to 8.6. During that span, the snap count for Davis plummeted below his ultimate season average of 29% of snaps played. But wouldn’t you sit him as well? What business does he have playing in blowout games against Vanderbilt, UAB or Charleston Southern?

So let’s take a peak at the biggest and most competitive games Georgia played…

Although the Bulldogs pulled away in the second half, their game against Kentucky was a one possession, 14-7 Georgia lead at the half. Kentucky was ranked and Georgia is battling and suddenly we see Jordan Davis’ snap count spike to 55% (39 snaps played).

Looking at other big games the trend remains the same as Davis plays 45% of the snaps in Georgia’s lone loss against Alabama in the SEC Championship. Then 38% of the snaps in a 34-11 playoff semi-final game against Michigan, where Georgia establishes a dominating 27-3 halftime lead.

Then, of course, in the National Title game in a rematch against Alabama Davis plays a season high 47 snaps (54%).

Take a second to think about that. It’s the final and biggest game of the season and Kirby Smart and Jordan Davis take the narrative about #99 and toss it out the window. He was needed on the field, so he stayed on the field.

By the way, none of this even takes into account the vast amount of talent Georgia has in the DT rotation. More so than anything, here’s why you don’t pass on Jordan Davis. He’s a special player in a draft class that lacks special players.

And Dallas Cowboys Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn knows how to use special. On to item three…