Auburn DL Marlon Davidson more than ready for 2018 after frustrating sophomore season

  • Lauren Shute
  • SEC Country
Jan 03, 2018

ATLANTA — Playing alongside NFL draftees Carl Lawson and Montravious Adams didn’t stop Marlon Davidson from breaking out during his freshman year at Auburn.

Expected to shine once again as a sophomore, Davidson dealt with nagging injuries throughout the 2017 season.

While the Greenville, Ala., native was an important piece along the Tigers’ stout defensive line, his second year didn’t play out like he planned. As coach Gus Malzahn’s team prepared for the Peach Bowl in Atlanta in the final days of December, there were few as ready for New Year’s as Davidson.

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“Yeah, I was really frustrated throughout the year,” Davidson said following Auburn’s loss to UCF. “But everything’s about to change. I mean, I come out here and fight for the team always and I always will.”

Davidson dealt with a non-contact knee injury during preseason camp. Despite the timing, he set a career high with 2 sacks in Auburn’s opener against Georgia Southern.

A couple of weeks later Davidson didn’t play in Auburn’s win over Mercer while dealing with an undisclosed injury.

Yet when November rolled around, Davidson was a factor in Auburn’s upset of two undefeated, top-ranked teams (that are playing for the national title).

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“Both those guys (Nick Coe and Davidson) are so flexible and both of them are very athletic,” Malzahn said. “It gives us flexibility and anytime you can do that, especially on passing downs, put a little bit more speed inside, it definitely helps.”

During the opening minutes of the second quarter of the SEC Championship Game, Davidson left the field with an injury.

When all was said and done, Davidson finished the year with 43 total tackles (6.5 for loss), 3.5 sacks, a forced fumble and 5 quarterback hurries. Things improved for Davidson during the weeks leading up to the Peach Bowl.

The sophomore didn’t have any idea whether or not Jeff Holland and other teammates would return for another season in the locker room after the Peach Bowl. Regardless of those decisions, however, Davidson is prepared to have a monstrous junior year.

“Yeah, I’m feeling much better now,” Davidson said. “I’m just ready to get ready to go back and work in the offseason and get bigger, faster and stronger.”

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