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Clayborn Looking To Jumpstart Career In Atlanta


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By drafting Vic Beasley Jr. and Grady Jarrett, the Falcons took two important steps toward improving a defensive front that has struggled in recent years. The pair of Clemson graduates arrived in Atlanta with loads of potential and, if all goes to plan, will enjoy success here for a long, long time.

But they alone cannot turn the pass-rush into a genuine strength. Rare exceptions notwithstanding, NFL teams need a deep rotation of linemen — like the rotation Dan Quinn had in Seattle — to consistently pressure the quarterback.

This is where Adrian Clayborn comes into play. While the contract he signed in March didn’t receive much fanfare, he has the skillset needed to be a crucial member of the Falcons in 2015.

“It’s a new coaching staff and you have to impress them,” he said during mandatory minicamp. “Everybody’s starting fresh.”

Clayborn’s recent departure from Tampa Bay had less to do with talent than injury troubles. The former 11th overall pick was largely effective for the Bucs when on the field — especially during his rookie campaign. That season, he led the Bucs in sacks with 7.5, and his 13.6 pass rush rating on Pro Football Focus was nearly twice as high as any of his teammates’. In total he’s earned 121 tackles (72 solo) and 13.5 sacks in 36 professional appearances.

However, Clayborn missed all but one game in 2014 and sat out most of 2012. So while there are plenty of reasons to believe he can be a successful edge-rusher, he needs to prove he can stay healthy.

"I just want to come in and help the Falcons get back to playing good defense," Clayborn said. "I've just been out for a year, and last year was supposed to be my best year of my career, so I'm just looking to get back on track, and I'm very hungry to get back at it.”

As far as coaching goes, Clayborn knew what he was getting himself into when he signed with Atlanta. Raheem Morris, now an assistant working with the Falcons’ secondary, was Tampa’s head coach when he was drafted in 2011; Bryan Cox, who’s working directly with Clayborn on the D-line, was on that staff, too.

Additionally, the University of Iowa product has been spending one-on-one time with former Falcon DE Chuck Smith, now a private instructor.

“Clayborn has come in and has added a dimension with a little bit of speed inside,” Cox said. “He can play multiple positions.”

In regards to scheme adjustments, Clayborn is feeling right at home in the 4-3. It’s what he’s played his entire life and, while he’s still learning the new playbook, he’s already familiar with many aspects of Quinn’s system.

"I think when you play hard and just get after the quarterback you help the offense, and we'll be fine,” he said. “Because we are good players. It just takes the right gel and takes the right coaching. We'll be great.”

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/news/blog/article-1/Clayborn-Looking-to-Jumpstart-Career-in-Atlanta/b7c4657c-c1a8-40de-903f-73c8e60e2d39

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Not trying to derail the thread, but with Clayborn, Hageman, Schofield, Babineaux, Soliai and Beasley, where does Tyson Jackson fit....? Possible cut?

Out of those, only Clayborn and Tyson are obvious LE's. Hageman could probably swing it if need be too, but i'd rather him on the inside.

As for the topic, glad to hear he's focused. I agree we've taken a lot of health risks this offseason, it could either pay out huge or end up in a train wreck. We'll see what happens.

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Not trying to derail the thread, but with Clayborn, Hageman, Schofield, Babineaux, Soliai and Beasley, where does Tyson Jackson fit....? Possible cut?

hes no lock for sure, but he could play LE in base in rotation with Clayborn. He is competing with Goodman and Matthews for a spot IMO.

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Yes let's only carry 6 Defensive Lineman on our roster (5 if you count Beasley as a LB)

He would be REALLY expensive depth. If he isn't considered a solid piece by the staff, I don't see him staying. I know we will carry more than 5-6 d-lineman, but if T-Jax is just depth, we can replace him with a much younger, cheaper player.

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He would be REALLY expensive depth. If he isn't considered a solid piece by the staff, I don't see him staying. I know we will carry more than 5-6 d-lineman, but if T-Jax is just depth, we can replace him with a much younger, cheaper player.

When the guy in front of you, who's starting, has missed half his career so far with injuries, you need good (expensive) depth.

If Clayborn lasts the entire year and proves he can stay healthy and take the bulk of snaps, we could very possibly move on from T-Jax next year. This year he's important though.

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Man, every time somebody starts one of these threads, I realize there's yet ANOTHER reason to be excited about our prospects. We need a lot of parts to gel, but with Schofield, Durant, Reed, Clayborn as well as Beasley and Jarrett (to say nothing of Hageman's development and bounce back years from Jackson and Soliai, we honestly have potential for a studly front seven. And yes, I remember Babs, who should do well with a lot of help.

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Man, every time somebody starts one of these threads, I realize there's yet ANOTHER reason to be excited about our prospects. We need a lot of parts to gel, but with Schofield, Durant, Reed, Clayborn as well as Beasley and Jarrett (to say nothing of Hageman's development and bounce back years from Jackson and Soliai, we honestly have potential for a studly front seven. And yes, I remember Babs, who should do well with a lot of help.

And don't forget about Kroy..he will look good in the leo spot.

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Not trying to derail the thread, but with Clayborn, Hageman, Schofield, Babineaux, Soliai and Beasley, where does Tyson Jackson fit....? Possible cut?

More like Biermann could be the cut, since he's gonna eventually fall behind Beasley and I'd imagine Schofield showing more at the LEO as well.

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Kroy is going to surprise some of his haters. He will play much better now that he doesn't have Nolan touting him as the savior and more talent around him. We also have a good looking young prospect in Mbu who may start out on the PS but looks to be a keeper. This is how you should do it in the new injury riddled NFL. We have quality depth to rotate and keep DL's fresh, we can actually play "NEXT MAN UP" I'm proud of the FO it is a strong deep unit. I just wish they would sure up some other positions.

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Not trying to derail the thread, but with Clayborn, Hageman, Schofield, Babineaux, Soliai and Beasley, where does Tyson Jackson fit....? Possible cut?

Schofield is Leo and strong side linebacker, Hageman and Babs are playing the same position, Soliai is in the middle, Beasley is a Leo and WLB, clayborn will start at LDE and jackson will be the backup. He won't be cut. The dline is deep with depth, which is what we need to apply constant pressure.
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