Wide receiver Trevor Davis grew up in the Bay Area surrounded by friends and family who supported the Oakland Raiders.
He was more of an Eagles fan.
“I had to be because my cousin is Donovan McNabb,” Davis said after his Raiders debut Sunday in Indianapolis. “My whole family became Eagles fans and then diverted back to the Raiders after he was done, but when I was young he was playing. I’m a straight Bay Area sports fan overall, though. My family is all Raiders fans other than my auntie and mom.
“But now they’re Raiders fans, too.”
The last two converts were made when Davis was traded to the Raiders from the Packers, where he spent the first three seasons of his career, for a sixth-round pick less than two weeks ago.
He’s already given them plenty to cheer about.
Davis, a special teams ace with limited experience on offense, paid immediate dividends for his new team with a 60-yard touchdown run on his first offensive touch for the Raiders on an end-around misdirection that sprung him down the left sideline.
The Raiders got great downfield blocking from wide receiver Tyrell Williams and tight end Darren Waller on the play. Then, Davis’s speed and athleticism took over.
He hopes to prove he can be more than a special teamer and should get plenty of opportunities to do so for a Raiders team desperate for playmakers on the outside.
“It’s always been a goal (to show I can do more),” he said. “What it really comes down to in this league is opportunity. At the end of the day, if you’re given that opportunity you have to take advantage of it. Whether it’s backing up some of the receivers or starting. It doesn’t matter what my role is. I’m going to find ways to help this team win. At the end of the day, it’s all I care about.”
His explosive play certainly got quarterback Derek Carr thinking about what Davis, a California alum who played high school football a 40-minute drive from Oakland in Martinez, can contribute in the passing game.
“You get a guy eight or nine days ago and he’s probably not going to be featured in the pass game,” Carr said of Davis. “That’s a little bit different timing and stuff. But now that he’s been around and has shown that he can make plays, now you get kind of excited. Man, what else can we do with him kind of thing? For a new guy, he didn’t have very many mistakes, and the ones he did are easy to correct.
“When it comes to pass game, he’ll be a big weapon for us.”
That’s welcome news for Davis, who caught just nine passes in three seasons plus the first two games of this year with the Packers in limited opportunities. His lone touchdown before Sunday came on a reception in his rookie season.
He liked the feeling of getting back to the end zone.
“I was just thinking, ‘I want to do this more often,’” he said. “That’s really what was going through my mind. It’s just surreal. It was crazy. I didn’t even think about the fact it was my first touch. I was just happy to be out there with my teammates. This is a great team here with great chemistry. I like to get out there and let these guys know who I am since I haven’t been here that long.”
Gruden joked he had barely even met Davis before the 26-year-old was thrust into duty Sunday, but he was pleased with the results.
“The kid came in there and not only scored a touchdown today, but he made some plays for us that didn’t show up on the stat sheet,” Gruden said.
Davis, 26, not only has a chance to take on an expanded role with the Raiders, but to do it in a place where his friends and family can watch him play.
“It’s a blessing,” he said of the homecoming. “I’ve watched the Raiders from afar, and I honestly joked to my friends this whole three years as a Packer about how crazy it would be if they could come watch me play all the time?
“It’s kind of a dream come true.”