Redskins tight end Vernon Davis is no stranger to the camera, part of the reason why he attended the NFL's 13th annual Broadcast Boot Camp, which took place this week at Bowling Green University.
The Broadcast Boot Camp is one of several career and professional development programs that NFL Player Engagement offers to current and former players and their families. As an aspiring media personality once he hangs up his cleats, Davis felt attending this year was an important step for his future.
"I wanted to gain a better understanding about how this industry works," Davis said on NFL Network's Good Morning Football. "There's a lot that goes into it and I wanted to get that information."
Each offseason, Davis has been involved in multiple media projects – everything from cameos in blockbuster movies to hosting web videos overseas – and the Boot Camp continues that progress. As he reflected on the week, Davis explained that the experience, packed into such a short time frame, was more challenging than training camp.
"I think the biggest lesson I learned is that it's not easy, it's tough," Davis said. "I remember going to my room the other night and I was laying there and I was like, 'Wow this is like training camp.' There's a lot of information, there's a lot going on, there's a lot you need to know in order to be really good at this.
"So I'm laying on my bed and one of the guys calls my room," he added. "So he called me down, 'hey come down and come work on some stuff with me.' So I go down, he has his iPhone set up and I'm sitting on the bed and I'm actually broadcasting. He's giving me tips and reminders, he's talking about all of the three main points I have to hit, making sure I'm hitting my justification and clarification. And it's like 'Woah, this is training camp times 10.'"
Should Davis find on-camera work post-football career, he may be able to use Rob Gronkowski's recent retirement as one potential blueprint. The Patriots star has also involved himself in numerous entertainment properties and has the potential to jump right into the media fray.
"When Gronkowski retired, I was sitting in my room looking at the television, it came across my screen, and I just thought 'Wow, I didn't think this was going to happen,'" Davis said. "He's one of those guys that every tight end wants to be like. He's done a wonderful job making plays for Tom Brady throughout his career, and he's definitely on my list of top tight ends when it comes to being top all-time. So I just want to say it's been great watching Gronk and I wish him the best in his career."
While Davis has also mentioned, most recently on Fox's "Undisputed," wanting to emulate the career of Shannon Sharpe, he told the NFL Network morning crew there's another veteran he admires.
"I look at a guy like Michael Strahan," Davis said. "He's done a great job understanding the industry, understanding the business, the way it works. And he's a student. He's always studying to make sure he's on top of his game, and he's always on top of everything. I want to be just like that guy, I want to follow his career and he's laid out the blueprint. Now it's up to me to take on the challenge and try my best to be great and fill his shoes."