Terrell Davis did not have a long NFL career, but he made the most of the years he played.
Davis, a sixth-round pick in 1995, played seven NFL seasons – all with Denver – and helped the Broncos to back-to-back Super Bowl titles in 1997 and 1998. He rushed for 3,758 yards and 36 touchdowns in those two seasons before playing just 17 games in his final three years combined, this after suffering a series of knee and leg injuries.
Those injuries, however, weren’t enough to keep him out of Canton. Davis will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Aug. 5.
“It’s really about the domination of the player during a certain era,” former Bronco Rod Smith said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “Of course you got to play more than a game or a season or two. In TD’s era, unfortunately it was cut short. I was mad because I’m like, ‘If I could have had him for three or four more years, we wouldn’t have been coming close so many times.’”
Smith, an All-Pro wide receiver, helped the Broncos to three playoff appearances after Davis retired. Denver lost in the Wild Card twice and advanced to the AFC Championship in 2005 before losing to the Steelers.
By that point, Davis was long gone. He retired with 7,607 rushing yards, 1,280 receiving yards, 65 touchdowns (60 rushing, five receiving) and averaged 4.6 yards per carry – with the bulk of that production coming from 1995-98.
“He dominated, man,” Smith said. “He wasn’t just like a good running back at the time. He dominated. Everybody hated that guy touching the football because at any moment, he’d make a cut-back run or something that would break teams’ backs. On 3rd-and-4, we had no problem handing the ball off. It made you play a different defense.”
Smith will be in attendance when Davis is inducted into the Hall of Fame.
“Honestly, I’m just so happy,” Smith said. “I can’t wait to get there next week and celebrate with him and his family and the Bronco family as well. All of them are flying in because it’s a big deal for the Broncos when somebody reaches that level of professionalism.”
Davis will be joined by kicker Morten Andersen, safety Kenny Easley, executive Jerry Jones, defensive end Jason Taylor, running back LaDainian Tomlinson, and quarterback Kurt Warner.