University of Central Florida WR Gabriel Davis is the latest offensive weapon to join the Buffalo Bills. The fourth-round draft pick for Buffalo constructed a productive career while in Orlando, ending his career second in school history in touchdowns (23), seventh in receiving yards (2,447), and tenth in receptions (152). In addition, he was selected for multiple All-America and all-AAC teams along with being a member of the 2017 National Champions, depending on who you ask.
The Bills appeared to be conservative in their draft approach with this selection and others in the 2020 Draft. This was likely due to the inability to perform medical checks and in-person interviews due to COVID-19, but this also shows the Bills’ game plan in not taking risks in the draft—which fits in line with recent history. As such, let’s review Davis’s injury history.
Thankfully Davis has no known medical issues during his college career. He was able to appear in 34 games over three years, missing only the Gasparilla Bowl to prevent injury and preserve his draft stock.
The only injury concern that could be found was a hard fall in 2018 against Temple while attempting an end zone catch. According to the tweet below, he got up slowly, jogging to the sideline.
Pretty easy defensive PI call on an end-zone ball to Gabriel Davis. However, Davis was really slow to get up and just jogged off to the sideline. #UCF— Brian Murphy (@Spokes_Murphy) November 2, 2018
According to the game film, which starts at 17:45, he landed on his left elbow/shoulder trying to haul in a touchdown catch that resulted in a defensive PI call. Reports on Rotoworld later indicated that he had difficulty throwing the ball on the sideline later in the second half. He was assessed by trainers and did not appear to return later that game. Considering he did not miss the next contest indicates that this may have been minor.
Hard to really state what he suffered whether it was a shoulder sprain, contusion, or simply got the wind knocked out him. Whatever it was, it cost him the second half of a game that UCF ended up winning.
Bills Injury Impact:
Davis comes in incredibly clean from a medical perspective. There are always concerns for groin, hamstring, or knee injuries based on the positional demands, but this is impossible to predict. He can come in not expected to have an instant impact, finding his way on special teams and in certain packages as he adjusts to the NFL. This isn’t a pick that has all the bells and whistles, but this is a pick that addresses a depth need without injury concerns moving forward.