Re­port: Saints free agent Tyeler Dav­i­son signs with NFC South ri­val At­lanta Fal­cons

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL SPORTS - By Ad­vo­cate Staff Re­port

Tyeler Dav­i­son is stay­ing in the NFC South, but it won’t be with the New Or­leans Saints.

The NFL Net­work’s Ian Rapoport re­ported last Satur­day af­ter­noon that Dav­i­son signed a 1-year deal with the At­lanta Fal­cons, New Or­leans’ big­gest ri­val. Dav­i­son re­port­edly vis­ited with the Fal­cons ear­lier this week on Mon­day.

Dav­i­son played for the Saints for four sea­sons, serv­ing as a starter for the past three. In 2018, Dav­i­son played in 14 games, start­ing in 12. He recorded 23 tack­les, in­clud­ing two tack­les for loss. He also had three quar­ter­back hur­ries and a pair of sacks.

The Saints se­lected Dav­i­son in the fifth round of the 2015 draft out of Fresno State.

The pos­si­ble loss of Dav­i­son has been a big part of the Saints’ thought process in free agency. It’s a big rea­son the team signed Mal­com Brown , who spent the past four sea­sons with the New Eng­land Pa­tri­ots. The team also signed Mario Ed­wards Jr., who can play both de­fen­sive tackle and end. Ed­wards spent last sea­son with the New York Giants.

“We just had to ad­dress the de­fen­sive line po­si­tion,” Sean Pay­ton said at the NFL own­ers’ meet­ings in March. “Part of that was, Tyeler is a free agent and Shel­don (Rank­ins) is go­ing to be up against the time­line when we start the year. Put that with Tyeler and it was a must-po­si­tion. We signed a cou­ple of play­ers there. We just felt like if the sea­son were to start as we came out of last year, Shel­don’s un­healthy, Tyeler’s a free agent and you re­ally had our young player (Stall­worth) and Onye­mata.”

Rank­ins will miss the first part of the sea­son af­ter suf­fer­ing a torn Achilles in the play­offs. Onye­mata’s status for the start of the sea­son is un­known af­ter he was cited for al­legedly hav­ing mar­i­juana de­liv­ered to his home.

The loss of Dav­i­son would be the sec­ond key piece of the de­fen­sive line. De­fen­sive end Alex Okafor signed a 3-year deal worth $18 mil­lion with the Kansas City Chiefs.

New Or­leans Saints de­fen­sive tackle Tyeler Dav­i­son (95) on the field be­fore kick­off against the Pittsburgh Steel­ers in De­cem­ber at the Mercedes-Benz Su­per­dome in New Or­leans, La.

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