Thoughts about the Seattle Seahawks signing Pass Rusher Ziggy Ansah

It was apparent when Seattle traded Frank Clark tot the Kansas City Chiefs the day before the NFL Draft that Seattle had a plan to replace him. Many thought it would be through the draft, and while they did select a pass rusher in round one in TCU’s LJ Collier, he is a very different player than Clark. He’s more of an inside/out pass rusher like Michael Bennett was for the team. I suspect Seattle was also targeting a pure edge rusher in the draft, but the draft simply didn’t land that way for them, and they also wanted to add to other positions. That annoyed my tabby cat Earl, but as I explained to him, I also suspected that was okay because they had plans to replace Clark’s edge rush available on the veteran market.

Enter Ziggy Ansah, at 6-6 270 lbs, who Pro Football Focus listed as their top performing pass rusher in QB pressures last year despite him missing a bunch of games due to injury. He’s thirty years old, and coming off of a shoulder injury, but if healthy could also become a more productive player than Clark. He is also on a one year incentive laden  prove-it deal.

This really good be a smart move for the player and the team. Seattle needs a motivated Ansah to beat the Rams and 49ers, and Ansah needs a bounce back season in Seattle to reset his free agent market in 2020. Given Seattle’s history to bringing in veteran talent to it’s defensive line, I’m actually a pretty big fan of this move, and they might have made it anyways, even if they drafted an edge rusher along with Collier.

Moving forward, I don’t think Seattle is done adding veteran talent to it’s defensive line. They have the cap space, and could clear more up by cutting a few bubble players. I will say it now; don’t be shocked if the team adds Ndamukong Suh in the near future. He’s from the PNW, and reportedly wants to stay on the West Coast. It makes a ton of sense for him to agree to a similar deal with Seattle as Ansah just did. I also think that in play are defensive tackles Corey Liuget, Muhammad Wilkerson, and Gerald McCoy if he is released by Tampa Bay. Seattle has options available on the free agent market, and they might even sign a couple more players; a defensive tackle and another edge rusher.

Final thought; I think we might be seeing the future of how the Seattle Seahawks will deal beyond the mega contract extension of Russell Wilson. They simply can not afford to keep all their star players, especially the younger ones once their contracts are due. By trading Clark for a first round pick, and signing Ansah, Seattle seems to have taken a direct page out of the New England Patriots offseason play book. Clark was going to be expensive, and Ansah is more of a bargain. Both players offer similar production.

Personally, I think that’s okay, especially if it is on the defensive side of the ball. Pete Carroll knows what he wants on his defensive line, and with Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett, Tony McDaniel, Alan Branch, and a host of other vets, he has the track record for success.

Great move by Seattle signing this cat. Go get another one.

Go Hawks!


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