by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of Kentucky Wildcats.
The NFL Draft talk never ends and we here at Draft 412 will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars. From today until draft night 2024 we will bring you mocks, profiles, team needs, and everything else related to the 2024 NFL Draft.
Today’s Spotlight - Kentucky, Running Back, Ray Davis
Name- Ray Davis
HT/WT- 5’10” 216 lbs.
Home – San Francisco, CA
Ray Davis started out at Trinity-Pawling High School in New York, before spending a post-graduate year at Blair Academy due to academic grades. He finished his high school career with 4,815 yards and 48 touchdowns. Davis committed to Temple to play football for the Owls.
Davis was named a freshman All-American by the PFF after rushing for 936 yards and 8 touchdowns, while catching 15 passes for 2 more touchdowns. In 2020, he ran for 308 yards in 4 games before entering the NCAA transfer portal. He ultimately decided to play football in 2021 at Vanderbilt.
In 2021 for the Commodores, he ran for 221 yards in 3 games before missing the rest of the season with an injury. Last season he rebounded from his injury to lead Vanderbilt in rushing with 1,042 yards and 5 touchdowns and also hauling in 29 passes for 169 yards and 3 touchdowns. After the 2022 season, Davis entered the transfer portal for the second time, choosing to play for Kentucky in 2023.
In 2023 so far, Davis is on pace to break his career rushing mark and already has 990 yards in 11 games. He has 12 rushing touchdowns and 5 receiving touchdowns for the Wildcats.
Davis runs with low pads and aggression, making it hard for defenders to square up on him. In the passing game, he has reliable hands and quick feet, making him exceptional on screens. He runs very precise routes and knows how to let his blocks set up before attacking the second level. He’s got adequate straight line speed and has an instinctive feel for when to cut. He is an above average blocker that will add to a running or passing game with his outside blocks. He projects as a 3-down back at the next level.
Davis will not create pure separation in the open and isn’t considered a homerun threat. He will struggle with his power at the NFL level and will have trouble moving piles. His vision and anticipation has been improving, but still needs work on letting blocks develop before attacking. In the past, he has had fumble problems and at times will give the ball up when trying to extend plays. He has average size and average speed and teams will have to look at his overall skill package to see what he can bring to the NFL.
Ray Davis has a lot of similarities to Dameon Pierce, who was a 4th round pick in 2022 out of Florida. They have a similar running style, though Draft 412 thinks Davis has a more polished receiving game. Pierce has a bit more speed, but Draft 412 thinks Davis will go a bit lower in the draft than Pierce went.
Patience at times
Ray Davis has the potential to be a quality 3-down back as part of a running back rotation. He will give a team quality play while being an effective part of a passing game.
Draft 412 Draft Prediction - 6th or 7th round