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Bucs rookie David earns trust quicker than expected

Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Getty Images

Lavonte David was on the field for every Bucs defensive snap because of his physical abilities.

But he got the dot on the back of his helmet because his coaches trusted him.

The rookie linebacker was responsible for relaying signals from the coaches to the huddle, wearing the radio-receiver in his helmet (which is marked with a green dot sticker) that allows coaches to talk to him.

“Obviously, that meant a lot,” David told Alex Marvez of FoxSports.com. “It puts a lot of pressure on your shoulders.”

Having him call the signals wasn’t the initial plan, as the weakside linebacker hadn’t played in the middle. But his ability to cover ground made him too important to the defense to take off the field, so they put the responsibility on him.

“I’m not going to lie. I’d never been in that position before,” David said. “Guys just told me to calm down so everyone could get the call loud and clear.”

It appears to have worked, as he led a defense which allowed the Panthers just 10 rushing yards and 10 points, with the team picking off Cam Newton twice in the Bucs’ win last week.

“It’s hard to do that in college without the pressure of having to face a guy like Cam and all the dynamics he brings to their offense,” Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said. “Lavonte never backed down once. He went out and did his job. . . .

“What he did Sunday was amazing to see from a rookie. It just shows he’s going be around here for a long time.”

Along with McCoy and rookie safety Mark Barron, the Bucs have young playmakers at every level of the defense, giving them a solid foundation. And knowing David’s able to handle the pressure of setting the defense makes it that much easier to build.

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10 Responses to “Bucs rookie David earns trust quicker than expected”
  1. leeeroooyjeeenkiiins says: Sep 15, 2012 12:31 PM

    As good as he’s been so far, a large reason for it also has to do with the other LBs we have. Foster has been decent but doesn’t seem like a leader of the defense type at all, and Black has been a tremendous disappointment, although he did show signs of improvement on Sunday.

    Dominik had better hope that the team continues to play well and, perhaps more importantly, that this year’s draft picks and free agents play well also, because I think he’s on thinner ice than a lot of people realize. When it comes down to it, he has very little to show via the draft or free agency through his 4 years as GM.

  2. milkmandanimal says: Sep 15, 2012 12:47 PM

    This should be an interesting weekend for him; Cam Newton’s one thing in terms of athleticism, but Eli Manning is the classic pocket guy who’s going to sit back and pick you apart. How’s David going to do against Victor Cruz running all those little crossing and curl routes?

  3. ckualii says: Sep 15, 2012 1:11 PM

    milkmandanimal says: Sep 15, 2012 12:47 PM

    This should be an interesting weekend for him; Cam Newton’s one thing in terms of athleticism, but Eli Manning is the classic pocket guy who’s going to sit back and pick you apart. How’s David going to do against Victor Cruz running all those little crossing and curl routes?
    ———————————————–
    Judging by Cruz’s inability to catch the ball last week, David should do alright. And if Cam was a pocket guy, the Bucs would have had 6 or 7 sacks. They only got 3 because of Cam’s athleticism. Eli won’t have time to “sit back”. I expect 4+ sacks from Tampa tomorrow.

  4. Nic says: Sep 15, 2012 1:14 PM

    The Bucs really did a solid job in the draft this year with some great athletic talents. My concern is the depth, if we can build that over the next couple years, we could be looking at early 2000′s Buc-Ball which would definitely bring the fan base back. Ownership made a bad mistake by cutting ties on all the players our community had come to embrace at once. We took that as a big middle finger in the face and it’s a big reason for the lack of tix sales.

  5. wjmoffatt says: Sep 15, 2012 1:19 PM

    They both looked great, but the guy that is giving the statement in this article is being overlooked by to many. Of all the week 1 games I didn’t see a Defensive Tackle play better than McCoy! Like statements above, if Carolina had Eli under center instead of Cam, people would’ve thought that Clay Mathew’s performance Thursday night was nothing compared to McCoy’s last Sunday.

  6. kingcarlbanks says: Sep 15, 2012 4:27 PM

    Wow, Being 1-0 is obviously going to tje Bucs fans heads. I’m glad TB is playing better ball than usual, but don’t think the Giants are gonna lay down for them. Giants have more than a few weapons you..

  7. vinceofdarkness says: Sep 15, 2012 6:29 PM

    I think Bucs r 4 real!!

  8. vinceofdarkness says: Sep 15, 2012 6:30 PM

    Schiano is the man!!

  9. 1brocktacular says: Sep 16, 2012 7:04 AM

    Ya never know whats gonna happen each Sunday. GO BUCS!!!!!

  10. bucingnasty says: Sep 16, 2012 7:20 AM

    Well find out today just how good our D is I believe. If we could get the penetration we did against carolina, control the clock, and not turn the ball over, to like us 2-0 going into big D

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