Football fans in the Midwest may not know much about defensive end Ezekiel Ansah. However, one thing is for sure, the Detroit Lions certainly made the right choice with the No. 5 overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft.
If there was anyone who ever came out of left field to play in the NFL, it is Ansah. The native of Ghana only started playing football two years ago, and he had never made a start for BYU until this past season. In fact, he was far from an impact player as he only had recorded 10 career total tackles prior to his senior season. However, that means nothing know as he is certainly capable of performing at a high level at the next level.
Ansah is a naturally talented athlete who is widely regarded as the top defensive lineman in the entire draft, despite Dion Jordan being selected ahead of him. He posted 62 tackles, 4.5 sacks, eight quarterback pressures and 13 tackles for loss in 13 games in 2012. To say he exploded onto the scene is the understatement of the year.
The 6-foot-5, 271-pound defensive lineman is big, strong and very athletic. He is capable of accelerating quickly off the snap and has the power to overwhelm any blockers that get in his way. He will also take down any playmaker that gets within his grasp, which means he will be utilized to his fullest potential no matter what play the opposing offense runs.
Ansah may not be a top-notch pass rusher at first, but that does not mean he cannot get there one day. He has plenty of room to build muscle mass and get stronger in the weight room. More importantly, considering he has very little experience with the game of football, his mind is like a sponge ready to soak up everything Detroit’s coaches are willing to teach him. The sky is the limit for how good this young man can be.
With the ferocious Ndamukong Suh already on the defensive line, it will be interesting to see how opposing offenses will account for Ansah. There is no question quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler, and Christian Ponder have plenty to worry about in the ensuing years.