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Demario Davis Is All Business This Week

Top-Tackling 'Backer Says Jets Are 'Locked In' About Their Mission in Cleveland on Sunday


Several Jets spent recent time with the Cleveland, their Sunday opponent. Demario Davis, of course, was a Brown in 2016 before returning to the Jets, who drafted him in 2012.

The linebacker goes back to FirstEnergy Stadium this weekend with business, not sightseeing, on his mind.

"At this point, man, it's just another game," Davis told me after today's practice. "I played there, had a great year there, it was fun, I enjoyed it.

"I'm here now, though, and we're on a mission, we're on a goal — you know, one team, one goal. It's not about individuals. So I have to put that to the side for the betterment of the team."

So all the handshakes and back slaps will be ...

"After the game," he said. "It's all secondary to the mission. We're going to Cleveland on a business trip to get a win and we're locked in about that."

Davis has appeared zoned in all year and in particular during the two home victories. He has individual tackle totals of 14-11-12-12 in the four games — the first Jet since David Harris in 2012 with four consecutive 10-tackle games — and his total of 49 puts him on a ridiculous season pace of 196 tackles.

"That was my intent, to come back and be a better player in all phases of the game," he said, echoing his remarks from early training camp. "The middle linebacker has to play at a high level, the defense has to play at a high level, and I kind of put that onus on myself to be the best player I can be."

Coordinator Kacy Rodgers challenged his defense this week to improve against the run. In three of their four games, all except for the strong Miami effort, the Jets have yielded at least 175 rushing yards to the tune of at least 4.5 yards/carry.

"It's about accountability. We know what we have to do in the run game and we have the ability to do it," Davis said. "We have the front, we have the linebackers, we have the safeties. We have all the tools to be effective in the run game, and it's as simple as execution."

Next up are the Browns, who, despite their 0-4 start and sluggish rush numbers, present another challenge. Isaiah Crowell and Duke Johnson both averaged better than 4.8 yards/carry last year, and similar to the Jaguars puzzle from last week, the Brownies have added a dangerously mobile QB to the mix in rookie DeShone Kizer.

"He has tremendous awareness in the pocket. He can move," Davis analyzed. "It's going to be a challenge for us. They have good running backs. We've got to be able to stop those running backs, put the game in the hands of the quarterback, and then get after him."

If so, that will go a long way toward Davis and the Jets enjoying a productive business trip to Cleveland.

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