Fred Davis on the difference between sleeping and dozing

(Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post) (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

1) I used to sometimes fall asleep during college courses on 20th century Russian history.

2) I stopped driving home from North Carolina work-related road trips because I would get sleepy on the road and it scared me.

3) Even now, I frequently get so sleepy after eating lunch that I maybe close my eyes for a few minutes while listening to some athlete talk about some topic on some radio station.

4) All that said, if I were Fred Davis, I would never, ever, ever, ever talk about sleeping, dozing, napping, cat napping, catching some z’s, resting, or having a siesta during team meetings. Never. Ever.

5) And if I were Fred Davis’s agent, I would tell him to never, ever, ever, ever talk about sleeping, dozing, napping, cat napping, catching some z’s, resting, or having a siesta during team meetings. Never. Ever.

6) Never.

7) Ever.

But I’m not in charge. And if he’s talking about it, I’ll type. Thus, this happened Tuesday afternoon, during Davis’s regular appearance on 106.7 The Fan.

“We go back several years,” beat reporter Grant Paulsen said to the exiled Redskins tight end, who can’t get off the inactive list. “I know you pretty well. We’ve got a decent relationship. Do you feel like you are to blame for any of this?”

“No, I don’t really feel that way,” Davis said. “I mean, I feel like, if anything, I came back here for less money. I’m unselfish. I came back here, I worked hard off an Achilles injury, played through preseason, didn’t ask for no days off. I don’t know. I don’t see where it would be my fault.”

“I think that’s all legit,” Paulsen said. “I think you worked your butt off. What I’m asking you is, you admit that at times you’re gonna sleep during a meeting….”

“No, I wasn’t saying that,” Davis pointed out. “See, people take things and twist what I said. What I said was, you doze off sometimes in meetings. Sometimes you could be a little tired from the morning. A lot of people do it. You doze off. I’m not saying you sleep through a whole meeting. What you do is, you doze off a little bit, you stand up, make sure you’re good, go get a drink of water or something. You know what I mean? Just make sure you stay up. I’m not saying I just sit there and just sleep through a meeting. Some people take things – oh, you sleep through meetings. No. If you ask anybody, if you ever watched a meeting, people doze off.

“Even we make fun of people, we laugh at them and tell them hey, I seen you doze off earlier. It’s just a joke. Sometimes you just do it. You wake yourself up, though. It’s not like you just stay asleep the whole meeting. Your teammates won’t even let you do that. There’s times that your teammates [will say], ‘Hey, I seen you doze off, just get a drink of water.’ You know what I mean? Just stuff like that. It’s just helping your players and teammates out. It’s not like you just sleep through a whole meeting. So I don’t feel from any of that that I would not be playing. Because that’s something that’s happened since I’ve been here. I’ve dozed off a couple times, but it’s not like I’m just sleeping through the whole meeting, you know, snoring while I sleep. Nah. Nothing like that.”

I totally believe him. I believe that other players might nod off. You practice in the heat, you eat a big meal, you sit in a dark room. I get it. But dude. To a lot of people, all of those words just add up to “Fred Davis falls asleep during meetings.”

“It seems like what you’re talking about is maybe you’re taking a long night trip and you start to pass out and you slap yourself in the face?” Chad Dukes asked, trying to help pull Davis out of the fluffy and enticing bed he had made for himself.

“Yeah,” Davis agreed. “You know, you get that little crooked eye, and it goes down, and back up a little bit. That’s what I’m talking about as sleep. Dozing off, not sleep sleep, like, deep sleep.”

“Did the coaches say anything to you about those comments you made?” Dukes asked.

“Yeah,” Davis said. “They didn’t know why I commented on it. Should have just left it alone.”

Note: YES YES YES. Yes.

“But I was like, but I was just being honest, I’m not gonna sit here and lie,” Davis continued. “I’ve dozed off before. Never slept through a meeting.”

“This is a tough spot for you now, though,” Paulsen pointed out. “Because often times you can kind of speak with your play. And you don’t have the ability to do that. You still have to answer questions. So where does this thing go from here?”

“If I was able to speak with my play, trust me, there would be no questions,” Davis said. “But I don’t feel I’m getting the opportunity to do that yet, so hopefully I do. I feel like that’s the reason why, if I did get released, if I did go somewhere, and I played somewhere, I would take all this aggression there. And it would be known that, ‘Why wasn’t he playing there?’ So I don’t know. I don’t really feel like I got a chance to do that.”

(Read a fuller transcript and listen to the audio here.)

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.

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Sarah Kogod · November 6, 2013