“Odds Are Stacked Against” Lavonte David

May 5th, 2012

It was a comment delivered in an upbeat manner but still one that made Joe take pause and reach for his bottle of Tums.

Bucs icon Derrick Brooks said the “odds are stacked against” Lavonte David because he’s “undersized.” No. 55 uttered the quick assessment during an interview with Justin “The Commish” Pawlowski on 1010 AM yesterday.

 David is listed at 6-0, 233 — nearly identical to Brooks’ playing size — and fielded does-size-matter questions at Bucs rookie minicamp yesterday. Stephen Holder of TampaBay.com took notes.

“On the size, I don’t care what anybody says,” David, 22, said.

“I’ve been doubted about my size my whole life. But playing in two different conferences (Big 12 and Big Ten at Nebraska), I (played against) better competition and prevailed in both and made All-American. I was doubted coming into the draft because of my size, but hopefully I can just improve on what I did in college.”

Now Joe’s been on the David bandwagon since December. So Joe’s not concerned, but it was still unsettling to hear the usually overly positive Brooks talk that way about a Bucs second-round pick, a guy many fans are hoping can revitalize the linebacking corps.

23 Responses to ““Odds Are Stacked Against” Lavonte David”

  1. OptimisTroll Says:

    No surprise here.

    Lavonte David is going to have to work harder and play the game with more intensity and instinct than most linebackers to be successful.

  2. Fired Greg Olson! Says:

    James Harrison – 6’0″ 242 lbs.

  3. Bishop Says:

    Great. So now we’re comparing David to a Hall of Famer and a guy playing at a Hall of Fame level who might get there in Harrison.

    I get what Brooks is saying. The kids got a lot to prove at this level. He’ll be fine if our D-line isn’t a swinging gate.

  4. Macabee Says:

    What am I missing here? The NFL Combine reports David’s height/weight as 6-1, 233. Brooks 6-0, 235, Patrick Willis 6-1, 242.

    I am not comparing performance because David has not played a down in the NFL. I’m comparing size. Why can’t David grow into his height or put on 5 to 7lbs during preseason with the right training table?

    Is the NFL not reporting his correct height/weight?

  5. Brad Says:

    Brooks heard the same thing coming out so it’s not like he’s not telling the truth. This is nothing David hasn’t heard and should do more to increase his motivation.

    If you think what Brooks said is bad never listen to the radio when a former player that’s on from 9-12 is on. Listening to him you would think the Bucs are about 10 years away from being good and none of the current players have any talent at all. Not who you want to listen to if your an optimistic Buc fan.

  6. BucWild007 Says:

    Beckles sucked and is negative about everything… even during the 10-6 season he was negative.

    David does have the odds stacked against him but it doesn’t mean he can’t succeed!

    Go Bucs!

  7. Bobby Says:

    This is why many undrafted FA’s do well in the NFL. The ‘tale of the tape’ doesn’t measure the intangibles like heart, instincts, etc. David will do just fine. Give me an undersized kid with heart and a great work ethic over some talented prima donna who thinks he’s arrived any day. Obviously Brooks is correct in his evaluation but I believe David will be fine as an NFL LB.

  8. musclehampster22 Says:

    Brooks is probably just preparing David for the struggle he will face to become a success in the NFL. If you’re a little behind the curve physically you’ll have to put that much more work into it.

  9. Bishop Says:

    Beckles? LOL

  10. OB Says:

    If size mattered, Gaines Adams, Trueblood, Clayton, etc would all be perineal Pro bowlers. The kid is 22 and he has not worked out in a pro program yet. Look at the difference in Josh Freeman. Yes, guess what a QB has to have to excell, an OL, receivers that can get open and catch, and an offensive plan that works. The great ones can create, but someone must catch the ball. Just like a LB, he has to be there and TACKLE the ball carrier. If you can’t or won’t TACKLE, we lose ten in a row.

    Desire and ablility are worth more than size, look at Rhonde, was he undersized, I think so, but would you have wanted anyone else, I don’t think so.

    Let’s see how Mr David does in being there and TACKLING, how different that would be.

  11. Thomas2.2 Says:

    You idiots who are saying that Beckles sucked either weren’t watching Bucs football back then (like I was) or you don’t understand O Line play.

    Ian Beckles was a very guard (not elite) but very good guard who played better than his god given skillet. When teamed with Tony Mayberry they made an effective interior duo.

    Beckles had pretty good feet and athleticism for his position and could pull effectively. He was never a huge guard so had to deal with size mismatches but he performed very well. For his prime years here, he played at just below a pro bowl level.

    His teammates respected him.

    Just because you don’t like his opinions don’t try to mischaracterize his career.

    Sapp thinks Gerald is soft, does that make Sapp less of a player?

  12. Stevek Says:

    I like the comments about David.

    He is small, but he still rises tot he occasion. I think this will further motivate him to be a better player.

  13. Buconomics Says:

    Schiano drafted guys who can tackle regardless of size. Barron doesn’t have huge measurements, but plays big.

    London Fletcher is 5’9″, Steve Smith is 5’9″, Sproles is 5’7″ etc.

    Brooks is still upset after getting shown the door. He is one of the guys who told Raheem to “keep the locker room light” becaue they wanted a drastic change from Gruden’s fiery style.

    Now we are back to Gruden’s fiery style. It’s called the Order of Schiano!!

  14. Northend Says:

    There will always be this kind of Negative bs at all levels of football.How many times does a small but talented qb loose out on a college scholorship to a “big” less talented one?All the time,every year(Drew Brees) for example.Or a db is only running a 4.55 and is considered slow.Tape dosent lie!!! If you can play you can play.David is a baller and will be a fixture in the middle of our D for a decade.

  15. Miguel Grande Says:

    Wish he was a little bit taller, hope he is a baller, wish he had girl who looked good, I would call her, I wish he had a rabbit and a hat with a bat and a sixty four Impala.

    Maybe, he can wear lifts to terrorize the NFC South.

  16. mcbuc Says:

    MG – Thanks for the Too Short reference…Made me chuckle a bit.

  17. canada buc fan Says:

    LOL at Miguel!

    Im not worried about the size issue at all. The dude had 280 tackles over the past 2 years, clearly not afraid of contact.

  18. mcbuc Says:

    Thomas, I have to agree on Beckles. I cannot stand listening to him, but you cannot say he sucked when he played 6 years or so in the NFL. He did have Mayberry helping him out, but you have to give the man some props. I still have not heard Sapp call GMC soft, but you did find a way to pull GMC into an article about an undersized Line backer…It keeps him in the conversation, no publicity is bad right…

  19. miracle Says:

    I have a prediction. By the end of his career he will be an all-pro, solid starter, role player or bust. You heard it here first!

  20. Red86 Says:

    I don’t think Brooks meant it in a negative light. Seem like a wisdom giving moment to a guy similar to him as a rookie. What better person for LaVonte to learn from than Brooks. Either through personal contact or just studying film on Brooks.

  21. Rick Says:

    i’ve stood next to derrick on several occasions and I know he is no taller than 5-10.

  22. So. Ill. Bucs Says:

    @Miracle, couldn’t agree more.

  23. Schmuckaneer Says:

    I don’t believe Brooks was being negative or other than positive. I think he would say the odds were stacked against him too and he prevailed. I’d say that’s a positive for David.