The Falcons ranked around the bottom of the NFL in yards allowed (No. 28) and scoring protection (No. 25) in 2018, prompting the group to transfer on from defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel right after the year finished. Head mentor Dan Quinn has taken back again in excess of regulate of the defensive enjoy-calling obligations, but the complications from past yr can not absolutely be positioned on Manuel. Accidents, player regression and poor defensive coaching all experienced a hand in Atlanta’s 7-9 finish.
To get back again on observe, they could search to enhance their front 4 both in the NFL draft and in free company. Given that the draft is even now two months absent, we’ve been profiling some of the top edge rushers on the market, like Jadeveon Clowney, Dee Ford, Dante Fowler Jr. and Frank Clark.
Now, we’ll search at previous All-Professional defensive lineman Ziggy Ansah, who when nutritious has been just one of the most efficient 4-3 ends in the video game.
Situation: Defensive close
Size: 6-foot-5, 275 kilos
2018 Stats: 11 tackles, 4 sacks, 3 tackles for a reduction
Career Stats: 218 tackles, 48 sacks, 10 compelled fumbles, 110 QB hits
Why he helps make feeling: Ansah was regarded a massive chance when chosen fifth-overall back again in 2013, but he’s proven to be just one of the greatest players from that overall draft class. Ziggy is a freakishly athletic pass-rusher that could exchange what the Falcons defensive line has been missing due to the fact Adrian Clayborn still left. Following participating in just seven game titles past yr for the Lions, Ansah does not look to be in their very long-term strategies as they try to retool their protection less than Matt Patricia. Ansah has topped double-digit sacks in two of the past 4 several years — 14.5 sacks in 2015 and 12 sacks in 2017 — but coming off a down yr at practically 30 several years aged, he’s not probably to get a monster contract.
Why he does not: Ansah was dominant in 2015 and 2017, but he tallied just six complete sacks in 2016 and 2018 mixed. He in all probability will in no way be the player he once was and the Falcons in all probability don’t want to chance one more year plagued by accidents. With small cap room to enjoy with, Ansah could be out of the team’s value range even inspite of the injury concerns.
As with most of these top out there edge rushers, it is going to occur down to the cash. Ansah could be prepared to take a just one-yr contract to reprove his really worth but Atlanta may not be prepared to chance spending him. On the vibrant aspect, he’d be a excellent match as a true 4-3 edge in Quinn’s plan and has a thing to demonstrate right after a down yr.