The Get with Morgan Fogarty: Thomas Davis

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – “You know, I struggled mightily with it when it first happened, and I first received the news,” says Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis.

Davis forced to sit out from the first four games of the regular season. He tested positive for a banned substance last season.

In April, Davis put out his own video, explaining what he says was likely a tainted supplement; not a steroid, but an estrogen blocker.

WCCB News @ Ten anchor Morgan Fogarty asked him if he thought there was a lesson to be learned through the experience. He says, “No question. You know, I’m now in a situation where I go and I get all of the products tested beforehand. I think that’s a ‘must’ and I encourage all of the players who are using supplements to the same.”

Davis is known as much for his hard hits on the field, as he is for his big heart off the field. The 2015 Walter Payton Man of the Year spends much of his free time giving back to at-risk kids in the Carolinas and Georgia. And when news of the four-game suspension broke, his own kids were top of mind. He says, “My kids know me. They understand that they have a father that has never had alcohol, never done a drug in his life, and they know this.” And, “It’s funny though because the first thing that TJ, my youngest son said, was, ‘Well, Dad, it looks like you’ve gotta come back and play another year.'”

Davis seems to agree with his son, saying that, now, he doesn’t want this year to be his last. He says, “As long as I’m healthy and I can still go out and contribute to the team and it’s not like, ‘We’re just keeping him around for moral(e) purposes or motivation,’ then I’m gonna go out, and I’m gonna compete, and I’m gonna still seek to play.”

In the meantime, he’s got four weeks (five, really, including the bye) to sit out. But sit out doesn’t mean do nothing. Davis says he’ll be working out, attending his kid’s athletic events, doing more with his Defending Dreams Foundation, and supporting his teammates from the stands.

You heard that right: fans will find Thomas Davis sitting in one of the seats at Bank of America Stadium, as a spectator.

He says, “I absolutely plan on attending the games. I know that you can’t really have access over there when you’re suspended, but I’m a PSL owner now, so I’m gonna go over there and I’m gonna attend the games, using my own tickets.” He continues, “You know, it’s kinda hard to say how my emotions are gonna be, and how I’m gonna do throughout the process, but I know that I’m gonna go support my teammates. And I know I’m gonna try to not get too emotional.”

Davis says he’ll keep a close eye on his fellow linebackers, and give the guys feedback. He says for them, it’ll be like having an extra coach.