Miami Dolphins cornerback Will Davis refused to play football his first three years in high school.

Refused?

Yep, Davis focused on basketball and track instead. His no-football approach derived from wanting to avoid a sibling rivalry with older brother Shon, a talented running back before suffering an ACL injury.

"William was always so competitive, he wanted to be the best at whatever he did," Shon Davis Sr. said of his son. "He didn't want to be Shon's little brother and compete against his brother.

"After Shon graduated a year ahead of him, William decided to play football."

That was 2007 in Spokane, Wash., where Will played receiver and cornerback for Central Valley High School. Nearly 5 1/2 years later, Davis became a third-round draft pick of the Dolphins as a corner from Utah State.

"Obviously with his experience level, you would think that he may be a little bit of a developmental player, but I think the guy has the skill set to play in this league," Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland said on draft night. "I think that with the great coaching that we have and the players around him, he will develop fast."

Davis agrees.

"I'm just athletic and very natural to the game. I'm very fluid, a fluid player, and I'm a quick learner," he said. "I've haven't been playing the game for that long in a sense, but the years I have, I learned it quick and picked it up fast."

Friends and family say self-confidence is a Davis trait. So are a gregarious personality and strong character, something molded early as the son of a pastor.

"I think it was hard on him, being a pastor's kid, because we were strong on morals and values and instilling character," Shon Sr. said. "Will struggled with it, I know, because he is very outgoing.

"But experience allows him to see that I created a structure that will help him protect his future."

Davis decided to attend Division II Western Washington University. He redshirted as a freshman but was stunned when the school announced it was dropping football.

"Initially, there was the shock of them dropping the program and not knowing whether not he was going to get the chance to pursue football," Shon Davis Sr. said. "There was a setback there, and some disappointment, but after praying about and deciding what direction he wanted to go in, he really felt confident he would transfer and could still get back to the Division I."

Davis transferred to De Anza Community College in Cupertino, Calif., where he played in the same secondary as Seattle Seahawks 2013 seventh-round pick Ty Powell.

De Anza head coach Dan Atencio remembered a fun-loving kid who used to flick Atencio's ear while riding on buses to road games.