Lavonte David breaks out
The Buccaneers star linebacker leads them in tackles this season with eighteen total, but he hasn’t made one of his trademark splash plays as of yet. That changes Monday night. David and the rest of Tampa’s linebackers face a tough task in slowing down Steelers running back James Connor, who ranks fifth in the NFL in rushing yards through two weeks of play.
Behind one of the league’s top offensive line I’m expecting a heavy dose of Connor, and subsequently a heavy dose of Lavonte David on defense. We will see at least twelve tackles from David, with multiple going for losses in the backfield.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
David’s textbook tackling and splash plays behind the line of scrimmage aren’t the only things that makes him an elite linebacker. Its David’s ability to create turnovers that truly sets him apart from his peers, though he’s on a curiously long cold stretch in that department; David didn’t record a sack or interception in 13 games played, though he did set career-highs in forced fumbles and fumble recoveries.
So, I’m essentially calling the end of a year long turnover drought this Monday. The opportunities will be there for splash plays, as Steeler quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has a habit of serving up turnovers on the road like they’re going out of style.
Roethlisberger thrives when the play breaks down and he’s able to escape the pocket, so David will get extra chances at chasing the quarterback. Tampa’s absolute best chance at winning starts with winning the turnover battle, and I think David will step up to the plate.