Lavonte David No. 20

June 26th, 2013

Yes, Joe likes to boast a little bit that he began begging Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik to draft Nebraska linebacker Lavonte David back in December 2011, as a fourth-round, perhaps a third-round pick.

Dominik drafted David in the late second round, but the way David played as a rookie, he could have been the first overall pick and the Bucs still would have looked smart.

David was simply outstanding last year. He even drew comparisons to another speedy, undersized linebacker some Bucs fans may remember — a guy by the name of Derrick Brooks.

A certain NFC South blogger mocked those who compared David to Brooks. After watching him perform as a rookie, Pat Yasinskas admits he’s been won over by the No. 20 player in the NFC South, David.

What he did in 2012: As a rookie, he was in on 139 tackles with two sacks and an interception while starting 16 games.

Why he’s No. 20 in 2013: It didn’t take David long to emerge as a defensive leader last year and I expect him to be even better in his second season. I chuckled when some people compared David to Derrick Brooks prior to last season. I’m not laughing now. It still may be a little premature to put David in the same class as a guy who will be heading for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. But there are a lot of similarities between the two. The next step for David is to become more of a playmaker. I expect that to start happening this year and that’s why David is in my top 20.

If David was this good as a rookie, Joe positively drools over how he might play this season in both his second year in the NFL and his second year in the New Schiano Order.

David very well may be the top up-and-comer in the NFC. He should be the anchor to the Bucs defense for quite some time.

14 Responses to “Lavonte David No. 20”

  1. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    Really sad that pile jumper Kuechly got the DROY because he had more tackles. Lavonte had more solo tackles than Kuechly and I believe more tackles for loss than every player in the league not named James Laurinaitis.

  2. Buc1987 Says:

    I for one am very excited to see what David does this year. Derrick Brooks comes to mind…

  3. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    I am sorry, he was second in the league in solo tackles with 112. He was third in the league in tackles for loss with 20. Behind only JJ Watt and Von Miller. (Now that is some good company.)

  4. Jonny 2.3 Says:

    If you consider that JJ Watt is a defensive lineman and Von Miller is a LB that often plays DL, I must say LaVonte is in his own league among LBs.

  5. Andrew 1 Says:

    number 20 seems a bit low for a guy who had the 3rd most tackles in the entire league. whatever… I expect him to be much higher after next season.

  6. SteveK Says:

    LaVonte David might be our best player on the team?

    Revis, GMC, Penn, David?

    Dominick and Schiano got one helluva first draft together. If their 2013 class is half as productive, then WATCH OUT FOR THE BUCS.

    I long to see this team drop an ass whooping on San Franciso this year, pay back is a b!tch, right WCBF?

  7. Tampa2 Says:

    Jonny 2.3 – I agree, but Von Miller is extremely unique. Yes he gets in a 3 point stance on obvious passing downs, but by and large he’s a 4-3 LB that is also exceptional at dropping back in coverage and stopping run. Unlike Aldon Smith who is strictly a rush 3-4 ‘backer. Miller ‘maybe’ weighs 245 but the power and explosion he exhibits to bull rush a qb against guys 100lbs heavier than him is unlike anything I’ve ever seen with 4.48 speed. To me, theres Von Miller and everyone else at LB. Lavonte is a stallion though. Plays the weakside beautifully, excited to see him play with Revis and Goldson, as I think Veteran Pro Bowlers like that can only make him better.

  8. WestCoastBucsFan Says:


    I would love nothing more than to see the Bucs deliver a royal ass whooping to the 49ers. (Taking some of these mouthy Niner fans down a peg would be great.) Unfortunately, I think we would be lucky to walk away with any sort of win. The Niners are ridiculous right now. They just might be a better team than last year. (Sans Crabtree, that one’s gotta suck for them.)


    Von Miller came in second with 28 TFLs. JJ Watt though . . . 42 tackles for a loss. That guy is an absolute savage.

    The top nine guys in tackles for loss are all either defensive lineman or OLB in a 3-4, except Lavonte. He is the only true 4-3 linebacker in the top nine. I think David is going to be a VERY special player.

  9. Buc1987 Says:

    @SteveK…I can’t freaking wait for that 9ers game. I hope we can payback the pasting they gave us being up by what 28 pts in the 3rd and still bombing the ball downfield. Man I can’t wait. For that game I’m going to be the loudest I’ve ever been at a Bucs game.

  10. jvato24 Says:

    David, had a great rookie year and statistically it will be hard to follow up, especially with sophomore slumps. I think David will really take off in his 3rd year.

  11. Andrew 1 Says:

    @ WCBF

    those are amazing numbers from JJ, and I agree with you about David. I was just strictly talking about the nfc south player rankings where he was ranked 20th. to me that seems a bit low, I think he should be in the top 10-15. Im sure he will eventually get there though.

  12. BigMacAttack Says:

    David is a BEAST!!!

    I think 20 is too low for him as well. But with all the love the Saints get, the Falcons’ offense, and of course they all love Cam (I think he is ignorant, arrogant and way overrated), I’m surprised any Buc even made the list.

    Based on performance Lavonte David was top 20 in defense in the league even if he was a rookie. The guy called plays and lead the defense. Even if 20 D is too high, he was surely top 50 of the 100 best in 2012′.

    Season is close and I’m freakin stoked!

    Go Bucs !!!!!!

  13. Piratic Says:

    jvato24 Says:
    “David had a great rookie year and statistically it will be hard to follow up, especially with sophomore slumps. I think David will really take off in his 3rd year.”
    I respectfully disagree. #54 has the instincts and intelligence to ward off the dreaded sophomore slump. This guy is special. It’s going to be a genuine pleasure to watch him become an All-Pro as a Buccaneer.

  14. jvato24 Says:

    I thought Lavoonte David was probably the most important player in the Bucs defense behind McCoy. I just dont want to come out to expect him to be better this year because you never know. Mike Williams 2nd year was almost the same as his 1st minus the TDs and the media thought he disapeared.