The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Sports

September 15, 2013

Matured Davis ready to meet former mates

(Continued)

After battling through injuries early, Davis really started to come on at the end of last season.

Despite playing in just 10 games, he finished second on the team with three interceptions and added eight pass deflections. Davis also proved to be a well-rounded defender, recording 51 tackles and his second career sack.

Indianapolis believes it can have one of the best defensive secondaries in the NFL this season. That notion is likely to be tested today by a talented Dolphins offense.

Quarterback Ryan Tannehill got his second season off to a solid start by completing 63.2 percent of his passes for 272 yards with one touchdown and one interception in a 23-10 win at Cleveland. He has a new big-play target in former Pittsburgh Steeler speedster Mike Wallace and a dependable security blanket in possession receiver Brian Hartline.

Davis likely will spend much of the day matched up against Wallace, but Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said he won’t have the cornerback shadow Miami’s star. Instead, Indianapolis likely will roll a safety over the top to Wallace’s side on each possession.

No matter how the defense ultimately lines up, Davis acknowledged the difficulty of Indianapolis’ task.

“Everybody knows Mike can run,” he said. “He’s a fast guy, got a lot of ability, and I’m pretty sure they’re looking forward to using Mike to make different mismatches. We got a challenge ahead of us with Mike Wallace and also Brian Hartline. They got real good receivers.”

If Davis is better equipped for that challenge than he has been in the past, he said the credit should go to Pagano and his staff.

“Being that Coach Pagano is a (former) defensive backs coach, he can relate to the defensive backs a little bit more,” Davis said. “I got very good coaches, well-rounded coaches here in Indy.”

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