To the untrained eye, 2016 could have been seen as a down year for Bucs linebacker Lavonte David.

David had been a previous First Team All-Pro in 2013 where he posted more than 100 tackles, and was a Pro Bowler in 2015 with 85 tackles, three interceptions and three sacks. In 2016, however, he only accumulated 67 tackles (lowest of his career) and just one interception.

So, a down year statistically speaking, but, in terms of coverage (an observation that can’t be measured by common stats), Pro Football Focus says David performed well, giving him the fifth highest coverage grade for outside linebackers.

There are plenty of reasons as to why David’s individual numbers were down with common stats. For starters, fellow linebacker, Kwon Alexander, led the NFL in solo tackles for 2016, which certainly took away some numbers that would have belonged to David. Alexander’s presence also allows David to be more of the read-and-react player, which doesn’t always allow him to be first to the ball, but would certainly show up in categories like coverage grades.

David and Alexander were both left off the NFL’s Top 100 players this year, which seems like a pretty big miss. As the defense rises in the coming year, expect both of those players to start to get back to the recognition they deserve.

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]
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Horse
Horse
4 years ago

Well they will be more appreciated in a few years.

GermCanBuc
GermCanBuc
Reply to  Horse
4 years ago

One can only hope. But do we really care if theyre under appreciated to the outside world? May fuel the fire some more. Kwon seems pissed about not getting any love. Thats a good thing in my opinion as long as hes able to control the emotions.

Tighe Fighter
Tighe Fighter
Reply to  GermCanBuc
4 years ago

His tweet about wanting to break facemasks scares me…

drdneast
drdneast
4 years ago

Why is that Tighe, you plan on suiting up for the Falcons this season.
Alexander definitely likes to play with an edge but I have never seen emotion get the better part of his game. He is like the second coming of Hardy Nickerson.
It seemed to me like the rest of the defense, David’s game got better as the season went on, culminating in a 2 sack game against the Panthers is the final game of the season.

Tighe Fighter
Tighe Fighter
Reply to  drdneast
4 years ago

Thankfully no but as Kwon says himself, fear no-one that also bleeds…

He has kept his emotions in check but he is going to be playing with an even bigger chip on his shoulder this year. As long as he doesn’t go head hunting I’m totally for it. He’s my favorite player on this team.

We are in for a good season guys. Go Bucs!