Davon House: Will the gamble pay off?


Davon House was one of the big free agent signings for the Jacksonville Jaguars this offseason. He garnered a lot of early support because he has a competitive attitude and he has managed some decent success by many measurements during his limited playing time.

But that limited playing time is still a concern.

Like many of the Jags free agent signings, the front office is hoping that the play they saw during limited reps can translate to full time well. House hasn’t been a starter for an extended period of time, accumulating just 14 starts over four seasons with the Packers. The Packers weren’t a dominant secondary for many of those years as well. In that regard, it’s a big question whether House will be a gamble that pays off for the Jaguars.

I’ve written before that I believe Davon House is the “perfect corner” for the Jaguars. Here’s something I wrote a few months ago:

"House doesn’t even let some receivers touch the ball. Remember that 46.8% completion rate? Well, of the 25 targets that didn’t become receptions, eight of them were passes defensed by House. That’s an impressive 17% of the 47 targets going his way. I’d love to see him get more interceptions (just one in 2014) but he’s doing a great job limiting the opposition from even getting the ball in his hands, already. His eight passes defensed is 16th in the league, but he was targeted 11+ times less than his peers (some of them were targeted well over double what House was)."

I was extrapolating based on stats from Pro Football Focus, looking at whether House can be an effective player for the Jaguars. His numbers are superior to the other Jags corners, particularly Dwayne Gratz and Demetrius McCray, both of whom are his primary competitors for starting time.

What may be the most promising thing about House is his attitude. He brings a fighting attitude to the position. It’s vocal, it’s brash, and it’s much needed for the Jags. The stats are nice, but House isn’t relying on them to win the starting job. He’s coming here to start and he expects to beat out the competition. That was a bold pronouncement a couple of months ago and so far it sounds like his play is backing it up.

It also sounds like he has found a comfortable spot with the Jags, which could be critical in being successful with his new team. He’s called the move the best decision he’s ever made. Sporting that fighting attitude, House says he feels like a playmaker and can prove that with the Jaguars. To me, that sounds like the Jags have managed to bring in a player who is excited to be with the Jaguars and had something more to prove with the Packers but couldn’t get a chance.

I’ve mentioned many of these things in the past about Davon House in separate articles and in offhand comments in other articles. Overall, it’s important to judge House by more than his limited playing time. It’s a concern, yes, but it isn’t the only aspect of his game. He’s a strong player with the statistics to back his bold approach to the cornerback position. He’s excited to be here and it sounds like he’s ready to make plays.

Hopefully we see all of that come together under Gus Bradley’s tutelage. This gamble has a good chance of paying off.

Next: Is Blake Bortles underrated?

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