Lions throwing a lot at Ansah, hoping for quick results


The Lions were impressed enough with Ziggy Ansah’s raw talent to take him fifth overall in this year’s draft.

Now, all they have to do is teach him how to play football.

The BYU defensive end’s been playing the game for just three years, and has started nine games, so the work of the Lions coaching staff is still in the remedial phase.

It’s all new to him,” coach Jim Schwartz said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “We did talk about how Ziggy was an inexperienced player, but he was very instinctive playing things like screens and reverses and some trap blocks and draws and things like that that you would think an inexperienced player would struggle on. He did well on all those things.

“But our scheme is a lot different. It helped that we had him a week at the Senior Bowl. He got introduced to some of the techniques that we play. But all our rookies, their heads are spinning right now. A lot’s being asked of them.”

None more so than Ansah, who doesn’t have the luxury of a redshirt year, not with defensive end Cliff Avril gone to Seattle and elder Kyle Vanden Bosch released.

“I do think that’s a constant process,” Schwartz said. “I think if you asked veteran players along our defensive line, they’d always say they’re working on their technique. But, I mean, he doesn’t have a lot of time. None of our rookies have a lot of time.

“They’re not going to move our opener back because there’s a rookie that’s trying to get up to speed. And when you’re there, you’re not graded on the curve. You’re not graded on the rookie curve or the inexperienced player [curve]. The final score is the final score. So there is urgency for him to get everything, but he’s done a good job so far.”

Those lessons will have to be learned quickly, as the Lions don’t have many attractive options otherwise. But they drafted Ansah hoping he’d be a quick study.

10 responses to “Lions throwing a lot at Ansah, hoping for quick results

  1. It’s not only the Lions that had ziggy this high on their draft board….it was also every other team in the league! lol, so get over it pft. Had your beloved pack taken him you would be singing an entirely different tune….so so biased…smh

  2. The Lions, a joke. Is Millen drafting D-linemen now instead of Recievers? Oh yeah, you guys fired The Architect of the Greatest Season in the NFL. Is this kid a criminal like the rest of the D-linemen of recent years?

  3. This guy will be the biggest draft bust since JaMarcus Russell. What a joke. Just cause he’s big and fast and strong doesn’t mean you can teach a lifetime of football instincts in a short period. Reminds me of why Matt Millen and Al Davis failed their jobs for years.

  4. Throw a lot at a rookie, he starts cracking under pressure, turns to drugs and crime.

    This is what’s wrong with Detroit.

    Well, this is one of the many things wrong with Detroit.

  5. Ziggy may be raw, but Jason Pierre-Paul was even more raw than him and learned pretty quickly how to play defensive end in the NFL. With the addition of defensive line coach Jim Washburn and an improved roster, I see Ansah improving every week as the season goes on. He was absolutely dominant at the Senior Bowl in the Lions wide-9 scheme and I expect him to thrive in it.

  6. I don’t understand how a guy who’s played football for a mere few years with not a lot of knowledge is a top 5 pick. Maybe he turns out great, hopefully for them he will, but it doesn’t make sense when It’s a pick for a “can’t miss” player and you take a very raw talent. that’s what the later rounds are for.

  7. Im calling hokum on all this “boom or bust” stuff. He may be great or he may suck, but he can’t be good or above average? I don’t buy it. He has physical skill and size, and that leads me to believe his level of commitment will lead to what he becomes.

    Someone like Denard Robinson is boom or bust. He will either be able to utilize his speed on the NFL field or he won’t. Little middle-ground. I see middle-ground with Ansah.

    This isn’t a defense or criticism of the pick.

  8. its Washburn iirc. its not going to be that complicated…. get off the ball fast and get after the qb and stop the run 2nd.

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