DAVIE — In less than a year, Kenyan Drake has gone from being Jay Ajayi’s understudy to a featured running back poised to break out in 2018.
But has he come the farthest of any Dolphin?
Drake has competition from offensive lineman Jesse Davis, an undrafted free agent who last summer was fighting for any of the 53 roster spots.
Davis isn’t fighting to keep his jersey anymore.
He’s working to maintain his status as the starting right guard.
Davis, 26, couldn’t help but think of how far he has come before OTAs when line coach Jeremiah Washburn called to confirm the promotion.
“Kind of sitting back, going, ‘Whoa. Things are happening pretty quick,’ ” Davis said. “Now I’m in a position to where I’m starting versus, ‘Am I a bubble guy? Am I going to be released here if they sign a different guy?’ It’s definitely a roller coaster.”
The turning point came, of all days, during the Dolphins’ trip to Baltimore last season. It was a miserable game, a 40-0 blowout. Yet Davis, who’d gone into the nationally televised game just hoping to not make a mistake, came away with a renewed sense of confidence.
“I can actually do this,” he thought.
Davis had been cut by the Seahawks and Jets before joining the Dolphins’ practice squad in November 2016. His status as a starter isn’t to suggest Davis feels content he has arrived.
“You have to reinvent yourself every day,” Davis said. “A coach told me that my rookie year and it’s always stuck with me. You can’t just come in here thinking that you’ve got something.”
Davis does have something: He has his hands full. He’s getting married June 30.
The wedding will be on a reservation on a lake in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. They’re going to Hawaii for their honeymoon, to Maui, where dodging lava from Kilauea won’t be a problem.
“Just hectic,” he said of planning. “We’re getting so close to it. You’re just kind of like — all you want to do when you get home is do your own thing and watch film. But she wants to wedding-plan.”
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