- Southern Miss Pro Day: All eyes were on Davis as he threw to Brown and two other former Golden Eagle receivers - Ryan Balentine and Kelvin Bolden. Davis was mostly on the spot while Bolden made some of the more impressive catches. Davis said he's improved in a variety of ways as he's prepared for the April 26 NFL Draft. "I think just (taking snaps) under center has helped," Davis said. "Obviously, we didn't do that much at Southern. I think my feet have improved. I've improved my arm strength just for the amount of throwing I've been doing. Hopefully, that'll translate to the next level." Davis and offensive tackle Lamar Holmes were the lone Golden Eagles to receive invitations to the NFL combine in February,but it was apparent by the showing from NFL scouts that there are more Golden Eagles they hav their eyes on. "I feel like it was a good showing," Davis said. "There are a lot of guys that are good football players that didn't make it to the combine, that didn't play in the all-star game either. There were probably a lot of scouts here to see those guys. I thought a lot of them did well." - Patrick Magee, Hattiesburg American
Full Austin Davis News Wire
A four-year starter, Davis was a two-star quarterback recruit out of high school who received little attention from major programs, walking on at Southern Miss. After redshirting in 2007, he earned the starting quarterback job in 2008 as a redshirt freshman (13 starts), going 261-of-454 (57.5 percent) for 3,128 yards, 23 touchdowns, eight interceptions and nine rushing scores, earning Freshman All-American honors. Davis was again the starter in 2009 as a sophomore but missed the second half of the season with a foot injury (5 starts), finishing 108-of-156 (69.2 percent) for 1,165 yards, 10 touchdowns and two interceptions.
He returned healthy in 2010 as a junior and started all 13 games, going 278-of-442 (62.9 percent) for 3,103 yards, 20 touchdowns, six interceptions, 10 rush scores and one receiving touchdown, earning Second Team All-CUSA honors. Davis had his best season in 2011 as a senior with 14 starts, finishing 286-of-475 (60.2 percent) for 3,496 yards, 30 touchdowns, 11 interceptions and four rushing scores, earning Second Team All-CUSA honors and leading his team to the CUSA title.
Davis, who was also an all-state baseball player in high school, won the Burlsworth Trophy this past season as the nation?s most outstanding player who began his career as a walk-on. He compiled an impressive collegiate resume with 45 career starts and several school passing records, breaking many of Brett Favre?s old marks. Davis is a tough, gritty signal-caller with better than advertised mobility, but he has limited size and arm strength and does not boast many distinguishing traits. He is comfortable with his skill-set and gets the most out of his ability. Davis is built for a West Coast Offense and will battle in an NFL camp, but probably as a priority free agent.
Positives: A dual threat quarterback with athletic footwork and mobility. An instinctive runner with very good toughness ? uses stiff arms and runs with good body strength. Has quick, smooth delivery with very good touch and anticipation as a passer. Has natural leadership traits and plays with his heart, willing his team to victory. A smart and confident individual on and off the field. Plays like a veteran and executes ? sells fakes well, doesn?t force a lot and isn?t afraid to throw it away. Does a nice job maneuvering in the pocket and is always a threat to run (1,375 rush yards and 25 rush scores in his career). Very good starting experience as a four-year starter (45 career starts) with above average production ? broke several of Brett Favre?s school passing records including career pass yards (10,892), touchdown passes (83), completion percentage (61.1 percent) and total offense (12,267).
Negatives: Shorter than ideal and isn?t physically imposing in any way. Limited arm strength with an unorthodox throwing motion; doesn?t effectively use his body or footwork (almost like he?s throwing darts). Inconsistent downfield passer and puts too much air under his throws ? too many underthrows and streaky ball placement. Tends to predetermine a lot of his passes and stare down targets. Wasn?t asked to make a lot of defensive reads in Southern Miss? simple zone offense ? inconsistent footwork in limited experience in his drops from under center. Suspect ball security as a runner.
-- Dane Brugler