Opposing quarterbacks had tons of time to throw against the Falcons pass rush last season.
That’s why bolstering the defensive line was another important factor in this year’s draft. Atlanta may have found a gem in Round 5 with Jonathan Massaquoi, the 6-foot-2, 264 pound defensive end out of Troy.
Troy has produced some significant pass rushers in today’s NFL, like DeMarcus Ware and Osi Umenyiora. The Falcons have their fingers crossed that Massaquoi can be anywhere near as effective as these two monsters.
“Troy is a good program. Five conference championships. We went for our sixth one this year but fell short. With them producing defensive ends like Osi Umenyiora, DeMarcus Ware and, now, me, hopefully I can be put into that conversation of our powerful tradition,” said Massaquoi. “Only time will see. We have a great coaching staff with the Atlanta Falcons and I feel as though I’m just going to be a right fit with my mechanics and how I play ball.”
He started out at Butler Community College to get his grades up, and proved to be unstoppable while playing there. He was committed to attending Troy, and stuck with it despite receiving several other offers.
“What’s special about my game; my ability to use my hands, my ability to use my long arms. My first get‐off, my ball get‐off, my ball recognition. My ability to communicate and my motor. I have a non‐stop motor, said Massaquoi on what he brings to Atlanta. “I want to get to that ball no matter the depths of the field and I believe that the Atlanta Falcons see my relentless spirit and how bad I want to get to the quarterback.”
Scouts believe Massaquoi might be a better fit for a 3-4 scheme, like Ware, so he could be utilized in some new packages from Mike Nolan. He will likely be in the rotation at defensive end, but wherever the Falcons put him he will have one goal in mind: bringing opposing quarterbacks down.