In 2008, the New Orleans Saints acquired a former New York Jets linebacker that would go on to be a staple in turning around the Saints defense. Ten years later, the Saints added another former New York Jets linebacker to revitalize the defense, with Demario Davis looking to find similar success as Jonathan Vilma before him.
Fast forward from the 2018 season to the 2021 season, and Demario Davis is one of the best linebackers, not just in the NFC South, but in the entire NFL. CBS Sports recently nabbed Demario 8th overall in their top Top 10:
Some thought Davis may have reached his apex at age 30 with his inaugural All-Pro selection, but he didn’t regress in 2021. The former third-round pick out of Arkansas State recorded 119 combined tackles, four sacks and earned an AV of 14 — which ranked fifth among linebackers. Davis may have been a late bloomer, but he has evolved into the leader of what has been one of the best defenses over the past few years. He doesn’t miss tackles much, is solid in coverage, and knows how to read and react to movement quickly. He has also played a couple of different positions in New Orleans’ scheme, and has done so well.
Speaking of the NFC South, it’s a loaded division at the linebacker position.
Demario came in one spot above Deion Jones of the Atlanta Falcons and two spots behind Devin White and Lavonte David of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That gave the NFC South four different linebacker representatives in CBS’s list, with only one other division (the NFC West) having more than one representative, with two in Seattle’s Bobby Wagner and San Francisco’s Fred Warner.