We continue coast to coast on CBS Sports Radio inside of Radio Row in the Phoenix Convention Center. One of the better linebackers in the NFL right now, Lavonte David joins us. I guess we still say he's a part of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. I know he's a free agent, but I still look at you right now as a Buccaneer until you switch teams or maybe go back to Tampa. Yeah, I agree with what you said. You know, I'm going to buck until something tells me otherwise. But thank you for having me on.
How about this process for you? Because I feel like ever since you guys won the Super Bowl, and whenever you win a Super Bowl, right, it's tough to bring back everyone, even if you don't win a Super Bowl. But it seems like a lot of people, right, start to leave the picture in Tampa Bay. Does that make you feel, all right, I love Tampa, I want to stay in Tampa?
Or does it maybe make you say, maybe it's time to move on? You know, obviously it's different right now. You know, after we won the Super Bowl, everybody was, you know, happy and everybody was, you know, high, high of life, especially after winning the Super Bowl the way we did. And then the next year we got a chance to get a lot of guys back. And then ended up making the playoffs again, you know, and lost in the division round, which was a tough way that we went out.
And then this year, you know, the way we went out, the way the season went, obviously you didn't want it to go that way. But, you know, now, you know, guys, you know, guys, it's time for guys to, you know, try to, like, look forward to their future, you know, taking care of their families and stuff like that, obviously with free agency and getting a chance to make money and stuff like that. But, you know, me personally, you know, I've been there, done that already. And for me it's just all about, you know, being in a situation where I want to win. And, you know, when you get a taste of winning, you know, you want to continue to do it.
And that's for me right now. You know, obviously, you know, I've spent 11 years in Tampa. I would love to stay in Tampa.
But the business side of things, you never know what's going to happen. So I'm not naive to that fact, but definitely love Tampa to the fullest, and I obviously want to be there. Still to this day, I know it was only a few years ago. Yeah. What's the lasting image for you or memory for you winning that Super Bowl? The last image was me, you know, hugging my dad, you know, for him to be able to experience that moment with me.
Obviously, you know, since Little League football he's been there with me, and he got me started in football, and for him to see me winning at the ultimate level was a great image that I won't never forget. That's always the neat thing about the Super Bowl afterwards, because you always envision, like, celebrating as a team. Yeah. After the NFC title game, you celebrate as a team. Right, right, right. And I know that's an extension of your family, but after the Super Bowl, you celebrate with your blood.
With your blood, with your blood. Like you said, man, that NFC title win, that was like a party with your friends, you know what I'm saying? Yeah. You know, everybody in the locker room having a great time and joining with your teammates.
That was a fun experience you'll never forget as well, but obviously, you know, obviously after winning the big thing, you know, you get those split seconds with your teammates and stuff like that, but then enjoying the moment with your family is one of something that you'll never forget. Does this equal defense at all? Yeah. Lavonte, David, remind you of the defense that you guys won a Super Bowl with? I agree wholeheartedly.
I agree wholeheartedly. You know, they're a team who's clicking. You know, their pass rush is really working, and I think that's something that you have to have in these type of football games.
You know, going against a guy like Patrick Mahomes, obviously in the playoffs, and they playing great complementary football right now, so you definitely got to be able to have a stout defense, a defense who's all clicking on all cylinders and playing, you know, complementary football. Who's the toughest quarterback you've ever had to prepare for? J'Breeze.
Really? J'Breeze, man. I faced J'Breeze twice a year since my rookie year, and he's a guy you never know what you're going to expect, man. He's the only one in our division who I haven't picked off.
You know, I dropped some. I should have had some, but he's the only one who I haven't picked off. It was so hard to get the ball out quick. He's so precise. He's so accurate with the football, and then, you know, just him, you know, being a technician, you know, just running the offense that they run, and they don't give you the opportunity to, you know, make plays on the football, and he was a guy who I definitely, you know, had a sleepless night for.
Lavonte David here with us. You guys just did something to Mahomes that outside of Cincinnati last year I've never seen done before, and that's contained him pretty much. Yeah. Well, you guys, the Cincinnati game, they only contain them for half. You guys contained them the entire game. I know they were without both their tackles, but that speaks to the athleticism that you guys had on defense.
Yeah. What is the key? Because I guess you guys have, like, the secret sauce.
What's the key in trying to contain 15? Yeah, man, the key is just, you know, obviously, you know, getting in the pass windows, getting hands on the receivers down, you know, getting bodies on, rerouting them, and then obviously keeping him contained. You know, he's dangerous when he's outside the pocket. You know what I'm saying? He's a magician outside the pocket, you know, finding guys, leaking out late, finding, you know, Travis Kelce down the field, and they do a great job of, like, knowing that.
You know what I'm saying? And I think, honestly, I'd be thinking that's a part of the play, you know, the way they do it so precisely and so effortlessly. And, you know, I think the thing that we did was just try to, you know, keep him from going a certain way, you know, keep him rolling out to his right, and keep him contained as long as we can, and making sure everybody got a body on the receivers downfield because that's the main thing. You know, you're looking in the backfield, and the guys leak away, and you miss him, and he finds him, and those turn into explosive plays, and that's going to hurt you in the long run throughout the game.
So I think we did a good job of just trying to keep him contained and keep him from going to his throwing arm, and, you know, getting bodies on the receiver downfield. You have a reputation of not only being a great player, but also being a great locker room leader and a classy guy. You come here, and you're very calm, the complete opposite of the way that you play on the field, Devontae, David. Are you a big trash talker? Sometimes I am.
It depends, man. You got to get me riled up. Who's the guy you love talking trash the most to? At the time, it was Cam Newton because he gave me something back.
And then, shoot, who else? I feel like Travis Kelce, right? I didn't talk much to Travis Kelce. Devin White did a lot of talking to Travis Kelce. That's a guy who's nonstop trash talking.
Devin White. It just varies for me. Once you say something to me, then I'll give it to you, but I ain't going to initiate it most of the time. But I will initiate it if I feel like I'm being disrespected on the field, you know what I'm saying?
But it's definitely fun, trash talking on the field. When you said that, that's crazy. A lot of people say, man, you're nowhere near the way you are on the field, outside the field. I'm like, yeah, I mean, I hope I'm not.
A lot of people wouldn't like me. You got to turn that off eventually. Yeah, exactly. The trash talking part of the game is fun.
Obviously, they slowed it down a bit, but you definitely sneak something in. Were you shocked that Brady retired and walked away? I was not shocked that he retired.
I was not shocked. I knew eventually it was going to happen. There was a lot of speculation going on about it all year.
Obviously, after all season, that was the number one question. Was he going to retire? When he said it, I'm like, okay, yeah, this is official. Definitely wasn't shocked, wasn't surprised, but I do appreciate him. I remember I told him. I didn't know, obviously, at the time, but after the Dallas game, I went to him in the locker room and talked. I just told him how much I appreciate him and stuff like that. Not just for what he did, obviously, on the football field, but how he is.
A lot of people wouldn't expect him to be the way he is because he's basically a superstar. He's a great dude. He cares about you. He loves having fun. He loves competing.
Just a guy who genuinely cares about your well-being outside of football. I wasn't shocked, if this makes sense, but I was surprised. Because most of the conversation throughout the year was that Brady was going to return, but he was going to leave Tampa. You guys had to hear that, right? Yeah, you obviously did hear it.
You heard it, obviously. I want to say he did have probably a year left on the contract. Nice free agent coming out. Oh, he was a free agent.
Okay, well, yeah. But you did hear that, obviously, him pairing up with Joshua Danza, with the Raiders, and then obviously trying to go back home to San Fran where he grew up. But I wouldn't have been surprised if that happened more than when he retired. Well, the funny thing about that is, you're right, the whole conversation was Niners, Raiders. Some people even said the Jets, which I would have threw up at because of being a Patriot fan. Some even said maybe he's going back to Patriots.
I never believed that. But then once he retires, Jeremy Fowler, who's been all over this, is pretty plugged in with Brady. He goes to decision, or maybe it was Darlington. It said it was either go back to Tampa or it was retire.
So it's just funny what we think we know and then what comes out and who knows if it's true or not. Yeah, I mean, like I said, man, the relationship that he built with guys across Tampa, and then obviously the year that he had in Tampa, that we had in Tampa, I'm sure he probably didn't want to go out in that type of way. He probably wanted to stay in Tampa if he did have the opportunity.
I'm sure he had other people just talking to him, getting the idea, getting their perspective. For me, I'm just like, if you come back, you come back. But at the end of the day, man, in my eyes, you're the greatest. So there's really nothing left for you to prove but just to be a competitive guy and try to win another ring. Lavonte, David, I know you believe in Todd Goltz as a defensive coordinator.
Yeah, of course. Do you believe in him, though, as a head coach? I do believe in him as a head coach.
I really do because his personality, a lot of people will see him as a smooth, calm, cool, demeaning type guy. But the way he leads, I really respect it, and a lot of guys across the locker room respect it as well. Just the way the season went, it just was unlucky for us, and I feel like a lot of things just didn't go our way. Obviously, with injuries and things like that, obviously, second day of training camp, we lost one of our best players on the team, losing our center.
People don't talk about it enough. Yeah, that was a huge piece of what we do on offense. And then on defense, we lost key pieces in Su, we lost JPP. And then there was a lot of turnover in the secondary guys getting hurt, guys getting injured, and stuff like that. So all that plays a part in it, but a lot of people, a lot of guys in the locker room respect Thabo for where he is and his daily approach. And sometimes I feel like he was kind of thrown in the fire, in a sense, with BA retiring.
He just had to pick up with that and not really taking control and doing things the way he wanted to do it and have everything go the way he wanted it to go. But as you can see, a lot of stuff is changing this year, so we're going to see how it goes. How much longer do you want to play? Oh, man. I always said, man, once I lose love for the game, I'll probably settle down. I'll slow down. Nowhere close yet.
Nowhere close to it. I love the game of football. I've been playing it since I was six years old. I'm feeling really good. I'm really healthy.
I played the whole season healthy. I'm having fun. I'm enjoying it with the guys, enjoying coming to work every day with the guys. Obviously, at the end of the day, you want to win, and I would definitely want to try to win another Super Bowl. Whatever that next step is, whenever you announce that you'll hang it up, I think of you as being a coach. But it's different of saying you think of someone being a coach and then wanting to put in the grind after a great playing career. Hey, you want to go live on an island and never be seen from again?
I don't blame you. I think that's actually a good way to go. Would you ever want to coach? I would want to coach.
I probably would want to coach maybe at a high school level, a developmental level. Just the simple fact that I'm all about the youth, and I just want to instill in them things that I missed out as a kid. Just letting people know that just try to have a positive impact in their life besides football. Just try to be a positive role model and just try to show them how to do it the right way. Even if football don't work out, let them know that there's other aspects in life that you could accomplish. Just don't put all your bread in one basket and just focus on football.
There's a lot of different things out there and walks of life that you could experience. I just want to try to do that to the youth because a lot of times kids get locked up in this, oh, I want to make it to the NFL, and then when things don't go their way, they kind of veer off. I just want to try to keep kids on the right track and just let them know that this ain't the only thing that you can do. Appreciate you doing this. Thank you. No problem.
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Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today. Evan Matt talks with Matt Hardy. There's nothing like a wrestling fan, you know, for better or for worse. How do you handle that, though? We're talking about people talking about your family, what they don't know about your family, or your brother, or you. How does one handle that from a day to day basis? Something I joke about with the young bucks all the time. I said, if you would vanity search Matt Hardy on Twitter, I said, after you got through 100 replies, you'd want to quit the business and never be seen again.
It's just, you just learn to deal with it, you know what I mean? It's the Kick Rocks Wrestling Podcast with Evan T. Matt. Subscribe now on the Odyssey app or wherever you get your podcasts.
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