Dexter Davis should not be so important, but he is. Davis could be a Chris Clemons injury away from starting and Clemons has struggled with injury throughout his career. At the same time, it's entirely possible Davis does not make the roster. If Clemons stays healthy, Ricky Foley or Nick Reed or both outplay Davis, Davis might be stashed on the practice squad. Before the season is over, Davis could be re-signed and start. That's the situation for Seattle at stand up end.
USC scraped out a win against the Arizona State Sun Devils. It was a win that looked like a loss. The Sun Devils had the 112th ranked offense in college football by S&P, but the 30th ranked defense. This was a grind. I watched this game unfold and didn't take any special notice of Davis. I re-watched.
1. 1st and 10 at USC 17 Joe McKnight rush for 8 yards to the USC 25.
Davis starts the series at left defensive end, weakside. USC breaks in trips left but motions D.J. Shoemate to fullback forming an "I" formation. Davis shows adequate speed off the line, is initially unblocked on a run left, drops a shoulder into Shoemate and pursues the action across the field. Good hustle, but no impact.
2. 2nd and 2 at USC 25 Joe McKnight rush for 3 yards to the USC 28 for a 1ST down.
RDE. Adequate jump, stands up and sheds tight end Blake Ayles, and works into the action for a tackle, but only after McKnight converts the first.
RDE, weakside. Works inside against Charles Brown, separates and is able to hit Barkley as he's throwing.
LDE. Line moves hard right, play-action, Barkley rolls left and targets but overthrows Johnson on a short lob. Davis pursues defensive left but is knocked off balance and stumbles towards the right sideline and away from the action.
5. 2nd and 10 at USC 41 ARIZONA ST penalty 10 yard Holding accepted.
(Interception undone by a careless penalty)
(Davis is out)
6. 1st and 10 at ASU 49 Joe McKnight rush for 7 yards to the ArzSt 42.
7. 2nd and 3 at ASU 42 Joe McKnight rush for a loss of 1 yard to the ArzSt 43.
LDE, 7-tech. USC runs a sweep right. Both guards pull. Davis stands up and sheds Ayles, avoids Alex Parsons attempting to redirect inside and block, and forces McKnight to abandon the outside and cut in.
8. 3rd and 4 at ASU 43 USC penalty 15 yard Pass Interference accepted, no play.
LDE, 5-tech, weakside. Davis attacks the outside and turns the corner, but Barkley passes quickly to his left and the ball is out and into the receivers hands long before Davis can arrive. Offensive pass interference negates the play.
RDE, 5-tech, weakside. Davis runs around and then avoids a cut block by Charles Brown. The pressure forces an underneath route well short of the first.