PRO: Keith Davis's natural instincts for being around the ball - and his explosive ability to make the big hit - make him a dual threat as both a stellar special teams performer and a developing young safety. While starting 15-of-16 games at free safety in 2005, Davis teamed with Pro Bowl strong safety Roy Williams to form perhaps the hardest hitting duo of safeties in the NFL. The free agency addition of Marcus Coleman will provide Davis with a strong training camp challenge for the free safety spot along side Williams in 2006, but the experience Davis gained as a starter in '05 - combined with his reputation as one of the NFL's premier special teams performers - will make him a valuable member of the roster for the ensuing years in Dallas. He has recorded a team-high 37 special teams tackles over the course of the past two seasons. Davis is also one of the Cowboys best come-back stories in recent history. He originally earned a shot with the Cowboys as a rookie free agent in 2002, but he was released at the beginning of the 2003 training camp after suffering a gun-shot wound that June. After a year of watching the NFL on television in 2003, Davis jumped at the chance to earn a spot in training camp with Dallas in 2004 when the club signed him and allocated him to NFL Europe. Davis went on to earn All-NFLE honors as a safety in 2004 with the World Bowl champion Berlin Thunder and then became one of the Cowboys top special teams players in 2004.
2005: Davis wrestled the starting free safety spot away from a group of challengers in training camp and went on to finish the year fourth on the team in tackles with 68. In addition, he was the leading tackler among all Dallas special teamers with 16 stops in the kicking game. Davis played a key role in helping the Cowboys kickoff team finish sixth in the NFL in opponents' average starting field position following a kickoff (26.9-yard line). Dallas was also 11th in the NFL in punt coverage with an average of 7.6 yards allowed. At San Diego (9/11) in his first career start at safety, Davis had three tackles and broke up a Chargers third-down pass into the end zone as time was running out on their final possession of the game. In the loss to Washington (9/19), Davis had four tackles and recovered a Ladell Betts fumble just before halftime. In the win at San Francisco (9/25), Davis added five tackles and tied for the team lead with two special teams tackles, including one at the 18-yard line on kickoff coverage. At Oakland (10/2), Davis tied for third on the team in tackles with six stops. In the win over the N.Y. Giants (10/16), Davis added four assists. In the last-minute loss at Seattle (10/23), Davis recorded two tackles as the NFL's top ranked offense entering the game was limited to 289 total yards, 118 below their season average, and one touchdown. He had four tackles and broke up a pass in the win over Arizona (10/30) while helping limit the Cardinals to 213 total yards including just 142 net passing yards. He also led the team with three special teams tackles as the Cowboys limited Reggie Swinton to an 18.1-yard average on seven kickoff returns. In the Monday night win at Philadelphia (11/14), he had six tackles as the Eagles were limited to 178 net passing yards and an 8.7 yard-per-catch average. The Philadelphia wideouts had just one catch of over 10 yards (18-yard catch by Greg Lewis). In the win over Detroit (11/20), Davis was second on the team with a career-high seven tackles as the Lions were held to 226 total yards, including just 169 in the air. Davis also led the team with two special teams tackles against the Lions, including one at the 16-yard line as Eddie Drummond was limited to a 19.8-yard average on four kickoff returns and one return for -6 yards on punt returns. In the overtime loss to Denver, (11/24), Davis was third on the team with five tackles as the Broncos were limited to 149 net passing yards. In addition, he led the team with two special teams tackles including one on kickoff coverage at the Broncos 16-yard line. He also downed a McBriar punt at the Broncos two-yard line on a possession that ended two plays later with a fumble at the 10-yard line, setting up the game-tying touchdown. In the following week's loss at the N.Y. Giants (12/4), Davis recorded five tackles as the Giants were limited to 150 net passing yards. In the win over Kansas City (12/11), Davis recorded five tackles and had a big special teams stop of Dante Hall at the Chiefs 14-yard line on kickoff coverage. In the loss at Washington (12/18), he recorded four tackles and broke up his second pass of the season with a big hit on Robert Royal. In the season ending loss to St. Louis (1/1/06), Davis recorded five tackles and a tackle behind the line of scrimmage as the Rams were held to 147 net passing yards.
2004: Davis started the year by earning All-NFLE honors while leading the Berlin Thunder to the World Bowl title. He finished second in the league - first on the team - with four interceptions and second on the team with 65 tackles. Following that season. He jumped right into the thick of things with the special teams units for the Cowboys and went on to finish second on the team with 21 special teams tackles. He was part of a kickoff coverage unit that led the NFL with a 17.5-yard return average and did not allow a kickoff return of 35 yards-or-more all season. For his hard-nosed play on coverage teams, Davis was selected to the USA Today All-Joe Team. He tied for the team lead with two special teams tackles in the season opener at Minnesota (9/12) as the Vikings were limited to a 17.8-yard average on four kickoff returns. Two weeks later, he again tied for the team lead with two stops covering kicks at Washington (9/27). His performance helped limit Chad Morton to three punt returns for a 6.0-yard average on eight punts. He led the team with three special teams tackles and forced a fumble on the opening kickoff of the second half against Pittsburgh (10/17). His work with coverage teams helped Dallas limit the Steelers to a 13.6-yard average on five kickoff returns. He again led the team with three special teams tackles against Detroit (10/31) as Eddie Drummond, the NFL's third ranked kickoff returner entering the game (29.0 avg.), was limited to a 16.8-yard average on five returns. Davis also forced Drummond to fair catch a 50-yard Mat McBriar punt at the 13-yard line. A second quarter hip flexor strain at Cincinnati (11/7) kept him on the sidelines the second half and the following week against Philadelphia (11/15). He returned to action at Baltimore (11/21) and then was second on the team with three special teams tackles in the win at Seattle (12/6). The Seahawks were limited to a 17.3-yard average on seven kickoff returns. Against New Orleans (12/12), Davis led the team with three special teams tackles while helping limit the Saints to a 16.5-yard average on four kickoff returns. He had one tackle inside the 20 on a kickoff and also drew an illegal block penalty on another. Against Washington (12/26), Davis led the team with three special teams tackles and forced a fumble on punt coverage that was recovered by Keith O'Neil.
2003: Davis re-signed with the Cowboys March 7 but was released July 26 after suffering a gunshot wound as a bystander in an altercation. He remained out of football for the 2003 NFL season.
2002: Davis signed with the Cowboys as a rookie free agent and totaled eight tackles and an interception in preseason action. He was released Sept. 1 and signed to the Cowboys practice squad Sept. 2. He was released again on Sept. 10, but re-signed to the practice squad Sept. 16. He was then moved to the active roster Oct. 12 and recorded four tackles against Carolina (10/13) in his first NFL action. He recorded a tackle, two quarterback pressures and a pass defensed at Arizona (10/20). He was waived Oct. 22 and re-signed to the Dallas practice squad Oct. 23. Davis moved back to the active roster on Nov. 22 and went on to record at least one special teams tackle in each of the last six games of the season, including two in the Thanksgiving Day win over Washington (11/28).
COLLEGE: Davis finished his collegiate career by leading Sam Houston with 96 tackles while breaking up seven passes and forcing three fumbles. This effort brought All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association and All-Southland League honors. He finished his Bearkat career fourth on the school's career tackle list with 339 stops. As a junior, Davis was named Southland Football League Defensive Player of the Year and team Most Valuable Player after posting 99 tackles, a team-high 14 tackles behind the line of scrimmage and two interceptions while blocking two punts. Davis earned honorable mention All-Southland honors after recording 104 tackles, 11 passes defensed, three forced fumbles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries as a sophomore. He also blocked three punts during that campaign.
PERSONAL: Davis was a two-time all-state and all-district wide receiver and defensive back for Italy, Texas, High School. The four-year starter blocked five punts and caught 33 touchdown passes during his final two prep campaigns. Davis was a starter on the Gladiators basketball team that won the 1997 Class AA state championship. He was also a starter on the baseball team. As a member of the Cowboys 2002 Rookie Club - a program designed to introduce rookie team members to community service in the Dallas area - Davis participated in monthly charity visits to non-profit organizations helping children and adults. Just as he has done on the field, Davis has been an active contributor in the community since his return to the team. In 2004, he participated in the Cowboys Rookie Club Alumni visit to ChildCareGroup as the players carved pumpkins with over 140 pre-school children from low-income households. Davis also lent a hand serving meals in the Cowboys annual Early Thanksgiving Feast to over 300 deserving men and women at The Salvation Army. The 2005 season kept Davis busy in the community offering support during the team's annual NFL United Way Hometown Huddle Event. Davis and his teammates prepared and delivered meals to clients of Meals on Wheels and he also donated Christmas gifts for children in need through the team's support of The Salvation Army Angel Tree program. During the 2005 and 2006 offseasons, Davis attended the team's annual NFL Draft Day Party to sign autographs and interact with Cowboys fans in appreciation of their loyal support.