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Lavonte David, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Linebacker

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb
The Truth Network Radio
September 19, 2023 6:55 pm

Lavonte David, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Linebacker

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb

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September 19, 2023 6:55 pm

Lavonte David joined Zach to discuss his impressions with Baker Mayfield's play through the first two games and how the team has remained locked in through a turbulent offseason. 

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Shop in store or visit today. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are 2-0 coming off a big win up against the Chicago Bears. On Monday night, there is a huge matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles, another 2-0 team. Welcome in long-time Buccaneers linebacker and captain in Lavonte. David, always great when we have you on.

Appreciate the time. How are you? Thank you guys for having me. I'm good. I can't complain.

How are you? Well I'm doing fantastic and I remember last week when you said right after the Justin Fields pick six that everyone knew it was coming. We've all seen the videos that they ran the play three straight times in a row. When you look back at that, is it still like amazing to you how they just kept on running the same thing up against your great defense?

I'm not sure. I can't really go on about what they're thinking or what their thought process was. Maybe back there thinking we're just going to send pressure, kind of get one out on us. But like you said, when you're playing this game for a long time, you kind of catch on to certain things, formations that kind of hurt you early in the game.

For them to run three screens in a row, that's on them. But we were able to capitalize on it. Shaq was able to capitalize on it and make a huge play for us.

I've always been a big fan of Shaq Barrett and we all know what he's gone through this offseason. I can't even imagine it. To see your teammate get in the end zone and make that big play, just what were you feeling for him knowing everything that he's been through? Yeah, man. It's amazing. It's amazing.

You can see that video. I always try my hardest to make sure he's getting the end zone. I know being out there means everything to Shaq, especially everything that he's been through this offseason, from the injury until the other personal issues that he went through, him and his family went through. I'm sure him being on the field kind of gave his mind off all that stuff, but to actually go out there and perform the way he did and to see him in his environment, having fun, playing a game that he loved and actually doing it for his daughter, kind of bring an extra response to everything.

We definitely have Shaq back. It's amazing to have him out there. He's a strong individual. He's a great dude.

He's a God friend. There's no surprise that he's been making plays. It seems like this group with the Buccaneers is just such a close-knit group. How do you kind of describe your locker room and the vibe and the synergy with this team so far?

Yeah, that's just something that we kind of want to retake that part. Getting one another on and off the field. You can't trust nobody on the field.

You can't trust them off the field. That's just something that we always try to do. We hang out a lot with each other. We hang out outside the locker room.

Everybody's close. Everybody knows each other's family and things like that. When you have that type of connection and bond with guys on the field, it makes you play harder for those guys even more.

It just brings a special kind of connection with guys. You go out there and play football with them. That's what we have. That's just something that we've been trying to build over time.

Keeping the continuity together, keeping the guys together, you can build that. That's basically what we have in that locker room. Lavonte David here with us for the Buccaneers.

They play the Eagles on Monday night, a battle of two 2-0 teams to start off the season. Just going back to last week in preparation for Justin Fields, what was your view of the Bears quarterback going into that game? Obviously, he's dangerous. Especially when he's got time and can take off and make plays with his legs. He's a young, dangerous quarterback. I think he's going to definitely continue to improve. He's just got to continue to trust himself.

That's all I can say about that. The Eagles got another dangerous quarterback. Jayden Hurston, he's got tremendous weapons around him, especially the offensive line. One of the best offensive linemen in the game. A great running game, as you can see what they did last Thursday.

Obviously, two dominant, number one receivers out there in a great tight end. We're definitely going to have our work cut out for us. It's definitely going to be a game about discipline. You definitely going to have to trust one another when we're out there on the field. That team, Camaraderie, and all that bun, they're going to have to pay off on Monday night. How do you even start preparing for the Eagles?

Because as you just said, they're loaded at every position. Yeah, man. You just got to be prepared whatever they throw at you. You just got to be able to play smart football or distance football. Don't fall apart. Things don't happen in this game, but you got to be able to stick together. Whether it's a storm, because we're always going to be the person that we're going to face, but we definitely got to be able to stick to the script and play our brand of football. Knowing the team, Lavonte, David, that you're going up against on Monday night, you know how this works. The last few years when Brady was there, everyone talked about you guys being the team in the NFC and the NFL. Do you feel as if this is a potential big statement that the Bucks could send on Monday night? I mean, honestly, the way we look at it, every week is a big statement. We always have that underdog mentality, no matter who we're going to be against, even when Tom was here. A lot of people looked at us as the haunted or whatever, but we always look at ourselves as the hunters. Everybody on this team still has stuff to prove. We have the mentality we try to have. We've got guys who are close-knit and guys who go in and put the work in.

We don't look at it as a challenge. We just look at it as another opportunity. I think playing on Monday night against a great opponent like the City of the Eagles would definitely be a great opportunity for us to propel ourselves through the season. What has Baker Mayfield, Lavonte, David, brought to this football team so far? Oh, man, we just want Baker to be himself. Baker got that swagger, as you can see on the field. He got that swagger.

He's a real competitor. That's something that we love, especially from a defense guy. We're going to get some practice. We're liking what he's doing so far. We're just trying to make an emphasis on playing comfortable in the football.

That's what we're doing so far. Baker's a great dude. Looking at him outside in, I didn't know what to expect, but I actually get a chance to sit down and talk to him. He's just like any other human being. He's out here just trying to make the best for himself and his family. He plays the game that he loves and makes a difference. It's a pleasure to have him on his team. He kind of brought it into the locker room right away. He fit right where we need. He definitely got it. We're glad to have him in our locker room. Were you surprised this summer when Brady finally elected to hang it up and actually retire this time?

Honestly, no, not really. I knew this time there wasn't no coming back from that. It was the first retirement like last time.

I kind of had a feeling, especially how the season went last year. One of his best, obviously all the stuff that he was going through off the field. It definitely was part of the time for him, but every moment that we had with Tom was an amazing man.

Just to see the way he worked, to see the type of guy he is, the type of thing he is. It was amazing to be a part of that. Obviously, bringing up the Super Bowl ring, that was a moment I'll never forget.

I always appreciate Tom. Mike Evans is just incredible. I know it's his 10th year, but the first nine, he's been over a 1,000-yard receiver each and every year. We saw what he did on Sunday. At this point, does anything surprise you with what Mike Evans is able to do on a football field? No, not really. It gets to a point where Mike makes a play and you're like, okay, yeah, you respect that.

There's not really no excitement. That's just the type of player Mike is. You always ask your A-players to play like A-players. Mike Charlie would be the best A-player he can be each and every Sunday. Just the growth I've seen of Mike since his rookie year until now, it's just amazing to see the way he takes care of himself on and off the field, the way he studies, the way he prepares a man.

It's real great to see a man, and I'm not surprised at his success because he definitely worked for it. You've only played for one team. He's only played for one team. We know the contract is up in the air with his future. Just how much would that mean to you to see him continue after this year with Tampa Bay? It would mean a lot to me, man, just because of what Mike brings to the team and also to the city of Tampa. The people who love him and what he does in the community is amazing. He was maybe a two or three-time Walter Payton nominee for us, so that goes to show the type of guy he is and what he means to the city of Tampa and what he brings to the football team and how he uplifts everybody and how positive he is around everybody. It definitely would mean a great deal, but obviously that's just something that him and his team have to take care of.

I think all in all, it'll work out in both guys' favor. I'll tell you, I got a good chuckle out of Devin White, who's a heck of a player, saying that he was stupid for trying to leave and request a trade. How'd you react to that one? That was a good one.

Yeah, it was funny. Devin kind of wanted to be a little dramatic in going through his little antics over the offseason, whatever it was. But during that time, I did have a little talk with a man, but you can't blame him. Everybody's just trying to set their self up to feed their family for generations, so I can't blame him for that. But Devin don't want to go nowhere. Like he said, it's a tight-knit group that we have. When we're out there, we look out for one another and we have fun. Nobody's selfish. Everybody's up there looking for the ultimate goal, and that's winning the football game and being the top defense.

He definitely wants to be a part of that, and I'm sure, I don't think that's going to change. What did you say to him just once during this offseason? You had to talk with him. Just think things through, man. Everything's a little hectic right now, whatever.

A lot of people may have a lot of people in here about certain stuff, but just look at both sides. Just think things through and think before you put stuff out there, because in and out, everybody keeps hold, keeps receipts nowadays. Just be smart about how he goes about everything.

You never want to put something out there that you're going to regret later. So me being the vet, the big brother to him, I try to keep his head cool. Sometimes I feel like he's probably acting on emotions or whatever, but he definitely kind of calmed down and realized what was more important. All he can do is control. That was a great football player. He's a playmaker for us, and I'm sure he's a linebacker who I want to play beside as long as I'm playing football. He definitely understands what's at stake.

All he knows is that he can only control what he can control and go out there and be the best at it. On the way out with Lavonte David, so you guys are 2-0. It's a heck of a start. You've been around the league. Good teams, bad teams.

You've seen it from all over the place. What type of team do you think you guys have this year in Tampa? Man, team for the grit.

Team for the dog. Guys who are going to go out there and work four quarters no matter what happens. The past two games, that's what I've seen.

Guys who go out there and work and have fun. No matter what's going on in the game, up or down, he's going to go out there and play our hardest. That's a testament to the coaching staff and the roster that they put together. We've got a lot of young guys too on this team. Those guys are buying into what we're trying to accomplish.

The first two games are paying off, so we've got a lot more to go. We're going to see how it goes starting on Monday night because you're going to take this week to prepare and get ready for Monday. Last thing I'll ask you, and it's a selfish question here, and I'm going to go to your old stomping grounds in Nebraska, Lavonte David. I'm going to Lincoln next week for Michigan-Nebraska. What do I got to do when I'm in Lincoln? Anywhere you suggest to eat. Get there early.

I'm going to say that. Get there early because you want to experience all the Sea of Red walking across the bridge and seeing everybody. All the fans come out and get ready for the big game. I'll probably go somewhere downtown and grab something. You all don't know a specific place, but one of my favorite places is Old Chicago down there. As you go down there and eat a lot of Old Chicago, it's a peaceful spot. It's got a little Italian in it, so that's one of my favorite spots to go when I'm down there. Just enjoy the atmosphere.

That's the one thing. You're going to be blown away. If it's your first time, you're definitely going to be blown away. After you finish, you're going to hit me up and be like, man, you were right.

I'm trusting one of the best places to watch football. Well, good luck the rest of the season. Good health and good luck coming up on Monday night. We appreciate you doing this Lavonte, David. No problem. Thank you.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-30 21:54:22 / 2023-09-30 22:01:33 / 7

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