Well, that didn’t take very long.
It’s only day one of the offseason program, but Thomas Davis is already living up to the hype.
With the “bigs” on the field first, a group consisting of offensive and defensive linemen, tight ends and linebackers, Davis routinely led the way, pacing the pack during several workouts.
It didn’t matter that the 36-year-old was the oldest player on the field.
Simply put, Davis doesn’t know any other way.
“I love to compete,” he said. “That’s one of the things that’s allowed me to be able to play for this long. I just love to go out and be able to compete, no matter what we’re doing. Whether it’s sprints (like today). Whether it’s during walk-throughs. It’s the competitive side in me, and I think that’s what makes the game fun.”
The Bolts take the field for offseason workouts as part of Player Report Day on April 15, 2019.
Considered one of the preeminent leaders in the NFL, Davis immediately showed why he’s earned that reputation over 14 seasons. Thus, while some may look at Phase I of the offseason program as merely running and lifting, the longtime veteran knows it’s far more important than that.
It’s about coming together as one.
“This is the first step to us becoming the team that we want to become,” he said. “We’re working to reach the ultimate goal – that’s to win the Super Bowl. That’s why we’re all here. That first step starts today. There’s no question it makes a world of difference (on the field) when you’ve come together off the field. Coming together collectively as a group with the same goal in mind, but also everybody fighting together because (you care for your teammates as people). That makes the difference between winning and losing. When things get tough, the really good teams are really close teams. They stick together. When teams aren’t close, they fall apart. I’ve seen it.”
The good news is that Davis is joining a Chargers team that’s already incredibly close.
Thus, the linebacker arrived at Hoag Performance Center eager to find out where he fits in. In fact, while he was excited when he put pen to paper in mid-March, those feelings pale in comparison to how he feels now that offseason workouts are underway.
“The excitement level has gone up a lot as we got closer, and now that we’re actually in the building,” he said. “Getting started with learning the playbook. Getting to really know everybody. The excitement level has gone through the roof now. Getting to know everybody, really starting to see what everyone’s personalities (are) like, I’m starting to get a feel of how I’ll fit in into the locker room. It felt good introducing myself to the team. Talking about where I come from and getting to know the guys. Getting to know your teammates, that’s what this day is all about.”
To that end, Davis was among the most popular figures in the locker room on Monday. However, perhaps no one was more eager to meet the newest Bolt than Derwin James.
Coming off a rookie year for the ages, the All-Pro safety believes Davis is uniquely suited to help take his game to a new level heading into his sophomore campaign.
“Man, that’s a big piece,” he said. “He’s a vocal leader. A great guy. I can see as I’ve been around him. He’s a good guy to help mentor me especially as a young guy coming in trying to lead. He’s been doing it a long time for 15 years. So he’s a guy that’s willing to help, already I can see (that). It’s good to have people like that added to the locker room.… He’s working hard, and you can tell that he’s a competitor. I can see it in him.”