Charles Davis

Charles Davis

Charles Davis joined NFL Media in 2006 and currently serves as an analyst on NFL Network's "NFL Total Access" and "Around the League." A former defensive back at the University of Tennessee, Davis also provides in-depth college football and draft analysis for the network's "Path to the Draft" show.


With the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine coming to an end Monday, here's a look at five prospects who helped their draft stock the most with their results from Indianapolis. Vic Beasley , OLB, Clemson NFL teams will have to figure out which edge rusher they... more

INDIANAPOLIS -- We've already discussed some of the tough questions top prospects will be asked during interviews at the NFL Scouting Combine, but what impact could on-field results at the combine have on some of this year's top talents? Here's a look... more

While events like the 40-yard dash have become a spectacle for fans to enjoy during NFL Network's coverage of the NFL Scouting Combine, some of the most important moments for prospects this week in Indianapolis will take place away from the cameras, when... more

The widespread belief that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are primed to take a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick in this year's draft grew even stronger Wednesday with the release of Josh McCown. Yes, it certainly appears as though the Bucs will be... more

While there's a constant desire in the NFL to get bigger, faster and stronger , Super Bowl XLIX showed yet again that you don't have to be a tall target to make a big contribution in a big game. Three of the six touchdown catches in the Super Bowl were... more


MOBILE, Ala. -- The full-contact practices at the Reese's Senior Bowl wrapped up on Thursday, and I've had an up-close look at the draft prospects competing here this week. Plenty of players have flashed in practices, but which players have stood out... more

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- After getting an up-close look at players competing in practice this week for Saturday's East-West Shrine Game, here are 10 players that grabbed my attention. I'll be keeping a close eye on all of these players in Saturday's game... more

Ohio State's Urban Meyer doesn't need to win the national championship game vs. Oregon to prove to me that he's a great coach. I already believe he's one of the best. Is he the best, though? Before last week's playoff semifinal, it seemed the... more

Matthew Emmons/USA Today Ohio State coach Urban Meyer has voiced concerns about the length of the college football season. We've yet to crown a national champion in the first year of the four-team College Football Playoff, but it already... more


Michigan made a home-run hire by landing Jim Harbaugh . Anyone saying it's not a great move is nitpicking. Sure, I hear people voicing concerns about whether he'll go running back to the NFL after just a few seasons with the Wolverines. Here's the thing... more

The NFL head-coaching carousel will begin to spin next week after the regular season concludes, and there are some coaches at the college level worthy of NFL franchises' consideration. UCLA's Jim Mora and Auburn's Gus Malzahn are a couple of the names... more

It's well-established that winning the Heisman Trophy does not guarantee long-term NFL success. We only need to look back at Heisman winners of the past decade or so, whether it's Matt Leinart, Tim Tebow or Robert Griffin III, for evidence of that. Why... more

With about a month to go before the Jan. 15 deadline to declare for the 2015 NFL Draft, decision season is already in full swing for many underclassmen. Schools are applying for feedback from the NFL Draft Advisory Board and some highly talented players... more

We've suspected for some time that Ohio State would have a great dilemma on its hands this offseason, setting up one of the most intriguing storylines heading into the 2015 season. The team's looming QB quandary added another layer this past weekend,... more

We finally know this year's finalists for the Heisman Trophy , and it's a group with plenty of pro promise. » FSU's Fisher: Taxing month ahead of Mariota Winners of the Heisman Trophy haven't always found success in the NFL. Troy Smith, Tim Tebow,... more


Ears perked up around the room last week when Baylor coach Art Briles made an interesting comparison for Bears QB Bryce Petty during a meeting in advance of the Oklahoma State-Baylor FOX broadcast I was a part of Saturday. Briles said Petty is this... more

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports Todd Gurley tore the ACL in his left knee during Georgia's win over Auburn last week. When Todd Gurley was suspended earlier this season, there was a school of thought that it was actually a blessing in disguise... more

Sometimes we take for granted how difficult it is to replace a rare talent. We've seen that play out at Texas A&M in the past year as it's gone from Johnny Manziel to Kenny Hill and now to Kyle Allen at quarterback, experiencing the highest of highs and... more

Jameis Winston's off-field issues are well-documented, but the reigning Heisman Trophy winner's play on the field hasn't always been up to standard this season, either. Winston acknowledged as much after last weekend's win over Virginia, when he told... more

There was a time, not long ago, when the draft evaluation of Marcus Mariota would have caused a great deal of hand-wringing in the NFL. The spread QB, as Mariota is, was once considered a foreign object in the pros. He'll no doubt be scrutinized to... more

Credit UCLA's Brett Hundley for being honest and saying what many had been thinking about his play earlier this season. Hundley, a redshirt junior and one of the top QB talents in college football, recently acknowledged that NFL pressure affected his... more


Each season it seems we see quarterbacks go from almost completely unknown on a national level to on the radar of NFL scouts, and this year has been no exception. Several QBs that had almost no name recognition before the start of the season are putting... more

Clemson's Vic Beasley, Michigan State's Shilique Calhoun, Nebraska's Randy Gregory and USC's Leonard Williams are well-established as the most talented pass rushers in college football. However, no one from that group ranks in the FBS' top five for... more

Tony Ding/Associated Press Michigan's Devin Funchess might be the nation's top TE prospect, and he's not even playing the position this fall. We've seen what a top-tier tight end can do for an NFL offense with stars like Jimmy Graham and Rob... more

AP Photo/Chris Jackson West Virginia's Kevin White had plenty to celebrate after leading the Mountaineers to a win over Baylor last week. West Virginia's Kevin White is emerging as one of the top wide receivers in college football. He's... more

Notre Dame is not supposed to be an undefeated team heading into Saturday's highly anticipated game at Florida State. This team lost both of its coordinators in the offseason and had to retool with less than expected in the preseason after the... more

Two NFL drafts have come and gone since we last saw a running back selected in the first round. Bishop Sankey, the first back picked in the 2014 draft, was chosen 54th overall, the latest the first back selected has ever gone. I suspect that first-round... more

Last weekend's upset-packed action shook up the outlook for the first-ever College Football Playoff , but the twists and turns in this race are far from over. Five of the teams ranked in the top 10 of the CFB 24/7 Top 25 Power Rankings fell -- Oregon,... more

LM Otero/Associated Press TCU coach Gary Patterson has his Horned Frogs off to a 4-0 start. Mayhem reigned supreme over the weekend in college football, as upsets shook up every poll and rankings as well as the outlook for the postseason.... more

Elaine Thompson/Associated Press Eastern Washington's Vernon Adams threw seven TD passes vs. Washington on Sept. 6. It's well established that a quarterback doesn't need to be from a major college program to find success in the NFL. The... more


With Michigan suffering through three September losses for the first time in the program's history, there's talk that Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh would be a potential candidate for the head-coaching job at the school if Brady Hoke is fired.... more

With about a month of the season in the books, it's time to reexamine who deserves to be mentioned when discussing the top quarterbacks in college football. The state of the race has changed. The list of deserving candidates has grown, and some of the... more

Mark Wallheiser/Associated Press Jameis Winston took the field in full uniform even though he was suspended from Saturday's game vs. Clemson. Florida State missed an opportunity to send a strong message to Jameis Winston after his latest... more

Week 4 of the college football season is here, and opportunities for draft-stock altering moments await some of the most intriguing prospects in the game. We realize one game doesn't necessarily make or break a prospect's future, but scouts will be... more

I'm not a proponent of creating rules to keep the game of football from changing. The game always evolves, and we have to do the same in coaching it and playing it. That's why I disagreed with Maryland coach Randy Edsall on Saturday when he said the... more

After an extremely shaky start to the season, I remain bullish on UCLA's prospects for the 2014 season, but it's time for the Bruins to start looking the part of a team many, including me, picked in the preseason to win the Pac-12 and make the College... more

Monday's announcement from the NCAA regarding Penn State was a big deal, and I was very happy to see it. In fact, I think the NCAA should have made the announcement a couple years ago. The NCAA revealed on Monday that it would lift the bowl ban against... more

Paul Sancya/Associated Press Michigan State defensive end Shilique Calhoun has a tough task ahead of him on Saturday. Saturday's Michigan State-Oregon game is a huge one. It's really the first big test of college football's new postseason... more

AP Photo/Aaron M. Sprecher FSU's Jameis Winston didn't meet expectations in a season-opening win over Oklahoma State. One of the things that set Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston apart last year was that he played with such joy. He... more


Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports Steve Sarkisian led USC to a lopsided victory in his debut as the team's head coach. The turmoil at USC might not be completely over quite yet, but the Trojans have decided that they will not be disrupted by it.... more

Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press Marcus Mariota's Oregon team faces a tough test early in the season against Michigan State. We've had all offseason to identify the teams we expect to contend for a spot in the College Football Playoff,... more

AP Photo/Victor Calzada UCLA has its sights set on a national title with QB Brett Hundley leading the offense. Ohio State's hopes of making the first-ever College Football Playoff took a massive hit with the announcement that quarterback... more

Gerry Broome/Associated Press East Carolina's Shane Carden was among the most productive QBs in college football last season. College football has its share of well-established stars. Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota, Todd Gurley -- we know... more

Chris O'Meara/Associated Press Florida State QB Jameis Winston returns to sky-high expectations this season. We know which college quarterbacks NFL scouts will be watching the closest this season, but what will those scouts be looking to see... more


Nick Lucero / NFL UCLA QB Brett Hundley and his teammates are eyeing a berth in the College Football Playoff. We're about four weeks from the first game of the college football season, but with many fall camps set to open this weekend, the... more


The draft gives us a good look at the future of the NFL each year, but it also tells us something about the current state of college football. So, what did we learn about the college game this time around? Here are some of my observations: It's a... more

The draft is behind us, but I hope college football players followed the process from start to finish because there were some valuable lessons to be gleaned. Here's a look at six of those lessons the prospects of the future should carry with them as... more

Given the rare depth of this draft, teams that miss out on a first-tier player at a position of need early on might not have much reason to hang their heads -- second-tier prospects have plenty of promise to offer this year at most positions. Here's... more


After months of speculation, the finish line is in sight -- the NFL draft is just nine days away and teams are putting the finishing touches on their draft boards. The path to the draft has been perilous for some top prospects, though. Here's a look at... more

With 15 days to go until NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell officially puts the Houston Texans on the clock at Radio City Music Hall, it's high time I joined colleagues Bucky Brooks and Daniel Jeremiah with my own rankings of the top prospects in the 2014 NFL... more

Prospects are seeing their respective stocks rise, fall, and, in some cases, rise again as draft season unfolds. Just in the past couple weeks, Pitt QB Tom Savage has gone from also-ran to one of the most talked about players in this year's class and is... more

Intrigue about teams that might be willing to trade up in this year's draft is growing stronger as we get closer to the start of the first round, and there is speculation that we'll see a flurry of wheeling and dealing when the bell rings on May 8. With... more

We're hearing a lot of buzz about the tall trees at wide receiver in this year's draft. Texas A&M's Mike Evans (6-foot-5 ) could go in the top 10 and Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin (6-5) is a likely first-rounder. There are quite a few members of... more

The Patriots' visits with Johnny Manziel and Teddy Bridgewater raised eyebrows last week, but it made plenty of sense. While those two QBs might not fall into the Patriots' lap, Tom Brady isn't going to play forever, although he's still one of the... more

Even though they're all pouring over the same game film, workouts from the NFL Scouting Combine and pro-day performances, we're not going to get all NFL evaluators on the same page when it comes to certain draft prospects. There are always some players... more

My advice to Jadeveon Clowney on the eve of his pro day is to resist the temptation of trying to one-up the show Johnny Manziel put on at his workout last week. Jones: Chronicling Clowney's climb Jadeveon Clowney has enjoyed a meteoric rise -- but... more


The Texans might not have made up their mind about what quarterback they will draft this year, but we know they do intend to pick one -- Texans coach Bill O'Brien told "NFL AM" earlier this week there's no question Houston will draft a quarterback.... more

It appears we can't yet rule out the possibility that the Eagles are headed for a breakup with DeSean Jackson. Battista: Parsing the DeSean drama Chip Kelly's always guarded, so ambiguity on the DeSean  Jackson front is no surprise. Judy Battista... more

With March Madness kicking into high gear this week and pro-day season in full bloom, here's a look at five 2014 NFL Draft slam dunks -- five beliefs about this year's prospects that I feel strongly about. Sammy Watkins will not be latest top-10 WR... more

The draft process has a way of turning conventional wisdom on its head multiple times before we actually get to the draft. It wasn't too long ago that Khalil Mack , Greg Robinson were relatively unknown -- now they are each considered the top player at... more

This year's draft could produce some highly intriguing NFL tandems, especially if the double-down strategy is the prevailing one early in the first round. The Texans, mulling their options with the No. 1 overall pick, have greater needs elsewhere,... more

I'm unveiling my defensive draft sleepers today after revealing my offensive sleepers earlier this week . These prospects might not hear their name called on the first or second day of this year's draft (perhaps not even on the third day), but NFL history... more

NFL history is rich with players that were mid- to late-round draft picks or undrafted free agents who went on to become stars in the league when they were given a chance to shine. With that in mind, I thought we should take a look at prospects that might... more


With the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine in the books, here's a look at five players who established momentum in Indianapolis and five who will need to use their pro day to alleviate concerns: 5 who helped themselves Aaron Donald , DT, Pitt Donald... more

It seems like everyone is riding the Sammy Watkins bandwagon this draft season, and I get it -- I think Sammy Watkins is a stud -- but I think Marqise Lee is being overlooked among this year's top wide receiver prospects. Lee could be the best... more

UCLA's Anthony Barr is the latest elite prospect to declare himself "the best player available " in this year's draft, and it's safe to say he won't be the last. I liked hearing it from Barr, though. No one expects him to have his name called first May... more

It's smokescreen season in the NFL, and we all know there will be some draft rumors over the next few months that we will be able to cast aside relatively quickly. The talk that Central Florida quarterback Blake Bortles could be the 2014 NFL Draft 's... more

As we move closer to the next big step in the draft process -- the combine (Feb. 19-25) -- I don't think anyone should underestimate what Dee Ford did for his draft stock at the Senior Bowl. He created plenty of buzz with his performance, and the high... more


No Senior Bowl quarterback has had a better week of practice than Derek Carr, and NFL evaluators are taking notice. He's answering the questions people had about his game. There were doubts about his arm strength coming into the week and I think he's... more

MOBILE, Ala. -- The buzz around Eastern Illinois QB Jimmy Garoppolo isn't dying down. It started during the season, when he threw for 5,050 yards and 53 touchdowns. It is continuing to build this week, as he earned a spot in the Senior Bowl with his... more

Indications are the Cleveland Browns are very interested in drafting Johnny Manziel , which makes plenty of sense. This situation isn't without its head-scratchers, though -- the Browns don't have a head coach at the moment. Of course, Cleveland's... more

AP Photo/Tim Sharp Missouri's Michael Sam and Kony Ealy combined to record 21 sacks during the 2013 season. Missouri defensive linemen Michael Sam and Kony Ealy wreaked havoc in the SEC during the 2013 season. Sam, who just wrapped up his... more

If Jameis Winston were eligible for this year's draft, it would be hard to not put him at the top of the prospect list for a lot of different reasons. He has the requisite arm strength. His decision making appears to be pretty good for a redshirt... more

Jeff Roberson/Associated Press Missouri defensive end Michael Sam has recorded 10.5 sacks in 2013. Two teams that were oh-so-close to winning their respective conference titles will battle Friday in the AT&T Cotton Bowl (7:30 p.m. ET) when... more


Soobum Im/USA TODAY Sports Oregon QB Marcus Mariota racked up 386 total yards in an Alamo Bowl win over Texas. As good as I thought Oregon QB Marcus Mariota was before Monday night's Alamo Bowl, I might be even more impressed with him now.... more

As we take a look at the prospects who could be available in the 2014 NFL Draft, it's not hard to see why teams with a need at wide receiver might be excited. We haven't seen more than four wide receivers selected in the first round since the 2009... more

Ohio State CB Bradley Roby encountered some turbulence during a season that was supposed to vault him to being an early first-round lock. He has taken his lumps, but I still wouldn't count him out of being drafted in the first round. He was widely... more

Ohio State QB Braxton Miller was not among the six finalists for this year's Heisman Trophy, but he was third on my ballot. Now, that doesn't mean I think he should go ahead and declare for the 2014 NFL Draft. In fact, I think it's clear that Miller... more

Jay LaPrete/Associated Press Ohio State's Ryan Shazier is one of college football's top linebackers. It is the new normal in the NFL to see pumped-up strong safeties playing outside linebacker. No one in that mold from the college ranks has... more

Brandt Brooks Davis Jeremiah Goodbread Greenspan Huguenin NFL Media analyst Charles Davis names his 2013 college football All-American and picks for the season's major awards: Award picks Heisman Trophy: Jameis Winston, QB,... more

Jim Cowsert/USA TODAY Sports UCF QB Blake Bortles played through difficult weather conditions in a win Saturday. In freezing, icy conditions in front of a sparse crowd, UCF QB Blake Bortles showed again why he's a rising prospect. His... more

Coming off his six-touchdown, 547-yards passing explosion vs. Fresno State, I'm very interested to see how things play out for San Jose State QB David Fales heading into the 2014 NFL Draft. He just outdueled Bulldogs QB David Carr, who is being mentioned... more

Stanford has a chance to secure a second-consecutive Rose Bowl berth Saturday in the Pac-12 championship game vs. Arizona State, and the Cardinal's old-school brand of football has led the team to this point. However, their star prospects aren't simply... more


Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press USC WR Marqise Lee's production has dipped, but he still is among the top prospects in college football. This season is turning out to be a big test for USC junior WR Marqise Lee. The game is not coming to him... more

Mark Zaleski/Associated Press Vanderbilt WR Jordan Matthews made a career-high 13 catches last week in a win over Tennessee. Vanderbilt WR Jordan Matthews is one of the most prolific players the SEC has ever seen, but I'm not sure he gets the... more

Michigan State senior CB Darqueze Dennard showed again Saturday that he's everything a team wants in a corner. Dennard had a team-high nine tackles and made his fourth interception of the season in the Spartans' 30-6 win, which secured the Big Ten... more

Three yards and a cloud of dust might be extinct as an offensive philosophy, but the big back still has its place in football. Take a look at some of the top college programs in the country, and you'll find them. There are big backs getting it done, and... more

Undefeated Baylor is fighting its way into the national-title conversation, but there is a formidable obstacle standing in the Bears' way this weekend. Baylor (9-0) visits Oklahoma State (9-1) on Saturday, and the Cowboys' defense has the ability to... more

Defense is not dead in college football. It has been reborn, in a way, and some of the nation's top teams are playing new-school "D" quite well. We can't define defensive success the same way we used to. Just because we see a team give up 35 points... more

Ohio State RB Carlos Hyde is a massive thumper, and Saturday he ran through Illinois. Hyde ran for 246 yards and scored five touchdowns (four rushing, one receiving) in the Buckeyes' 60-35 win. He is this year's Eddie Lacy, and Hyde might be better. An... more

The tight end position is changing in football to the point where it's almost a glorified wide receiver position now. Kellen Winslow Sr. changed that position forever in the 1980s with his athletic gifts. The Chargers could split him out wide, line him up... more

Auburn decided it was going to ride in the express lane this season, and no one really saw this team coming. The No. 7 Tigers snuck up on us because they were so bad last season, and it appeared they had a big talent deficit this year. I think most of us... more

Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports A knee injury has slowed Trojans WR Marqise Lee this season. USC's resurgence under interim coach Ed Orgeron continued in Saturday's 62-28 win over California, and, believe or not, the Trojans are back in contention... more

With one month to go before the conference championship game, we're looking around the Big Ten for a team that can match up against the Ohio State Buckeyes. They keep chugging along as the winners of 21 straight games. Usually we would say Michigan would... more

Fear of the young quarterback is becoming a thing of the past in college football, except for those defenses that have had a taste of Jameis Winston and a few of his standout inexperienced colleagues this season. Eleven teams entered the 2013 campaign... more

John Beale / Associated Press WR Allen Robinson is fourth in career receiving yards on Penn State's all-time list. Penn State needed overtime Saturday to beat Illinois, which has not won a Big Ten game since the 2011 season, but Nittany Lions... more


Coming off last weekend's inspirational debut by 4-foot-9 Rice running back Jayson Carter, let's take stock of the little guys getting it done in college football. We hear "bigger is better" all the time, but smaller players are finding success as much... more

Northern Illinois QB Jordan Lynch's numbers are eye-popping, but, as a MAC quarterback, naturally, NFL evaluators are going to be more suspicious of his statistics than those of power-conference signal-callers. Disregard him at your own risk, though.... more

Sue Ogrocki / Associated Press Texas Tech TE Jace Amaro has recorded eight or more receptions in seven straight games. Oklahoma handed Texas Tech its first loss of the season Saturday, and several top NFL prospects had standout performances... more

College football's Goliath -- the SEC -- is wounded, but a David-like contender has emerged within its ranks. Yes, Auburn is an extreme darkhorse in the SEC, but to me the conference is down to two teams with legitimate national title hopes -- Alabama... more

College football has never been a more quarterback-centric game than it is now. If a team doesn't have a good QB, it might survive for a while, but it's not going to contend for championships. These days, teams are not going to be able to hide a... more

As if Oregon didn't have enough going for it each week given its impressive array of talent. The Ducks have the added benefit of a talented trio of wide receivers with the ability to visualize the game from Heisman-contending QB Marcus Mariota's... more

We saw in explicit detail how much of a difference a talented, hardworking center can make when Dallas Cowboys rookie Travis Frederick pushed Joseph Randle, along with a couple of defenders, into the end zone for a touchdown on Sunday night. It wasn't... more

All eyes Thursday night will be on junior Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater as the Cardinals host Rutgers. I think everyone -- including the NFL evaluators in attendance  -- will like what they see. When I watch him play, I see a guy in charge of... more

Despite Baylor's ridiculous start to the season, it appears college football observers are not yet sold on the team. The Bears (4-0) rank first in the nation with 70.5 points per game and 779.5 yards per game; Oregon is a distant second in both... more

It was understandably overshadowed by Braxton Miller's impressive return from injury, but there was another intriguing development in the Buckeyes' backfield in last week's win over Wisconsin. Ohio State senior Carlos Hyde is a big back in the mold of... more

It may come as a bit of a surprise, given the high-profile shootouts that have highlighted the first five weeks of the college football season, but there are some cornerback prospects whose talents should not get lost in the mix. Here are five I am... more


Saints tight end Jimmy Graham is off to a dominant start once again, and breakthrough players such as the Broncos' Julius Thomas and the Browns' Jordan Cameron have burst onto the NFL scene this season. They are not the only tight ends worth keeping an... more

Ohio State's Urban Meyer is facing a quarterback dilemma that can be one of the best and worst problems for a head coach. So far, I think he's handling it the right way, and I expect he will continue to do a fine job of navigating the situation.... more

Mike DiNovo / USA TODAY Sports Washington running back Bishop Sankey is coming off a career day vs. Illinois. It's not as if Washington's Bishop Sankey is sneaking up on anyone this season. He burst onto the scene in 2012, rushing for 1,439... more

Bruce Thorson/ USA TODAY Sports - Kirby Lee / USA TODAY Sports QB Brett Hundley and LB Anthony Barr led the Bruins to a comeback win over Nebraska on Saturday. Whether they are playing offense or defense this season, the UCLA Bruins will... more

Two of the nation's brightest college stars are off to a slow start this season. Let's refrain from hitting the panic button just yet about USC WR Marqise Lee and South Carolina DE Jadeveon Clowney, though. With that said, we should have no doubt that... more

Given the way he is dominating college defenses now, it's hard to believe Baylor running back Lache Seastrunk wasn't even a feature back for the Bears less than a year ago. But that was Seastrunk's reality after transferring to Baylor from Oregon amid a... more

Miami has one of the nation's top backfield tandems in QB Stephen Morris and RB Duke Johnson, and they are going to need one of their best performances this weekend to beat Florida. Morris can excel in NFL Further analysis of Miami QB Stephen... more

AP Photo / Keith Srakocic) Florida State QB Jameis Winston became an instant star after a near-perfect college football debut. Florida State freshman QB Jameis Winston's performance against Pittsburgh Monday night was one of the more... more

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