Draft Scout Snapshot: A closer look at the Lions' picks: Round 1/5 - Ziggy Ansah, DE, 6-5, 271, BYU...The Lions may have preferred one of the elite offensive tackles, but this is hardly a consolation prize. The need at defensive end is acute and this guy is an athletic marvel - body by LeBron James, with 4.6 speed, a 35-inch arm span, 34-inch vertical, and 10-inch hands. QUOTE TO NOTE: "I don't know if I want to use the word hate because you can't concentrate if you hate somebody. You've got to love them. If you love somebody, you want to grab them. So, I love quarterbacks." -- DE Ziggy Ansah on whether he hates quarterbacks. - The Sports Xchange
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Draft Scout Ezekiel Ansah News
05/09/13 - DE Ziggy Ansah, the fifth overall pick in the 2013 draft, agreed to a four-year contract worth an estimated $19 million with the Detroit Lions.
The Lions were able to sign their nine rookie draft picks to contracts before the start of a minicamp for first-year players began Friday.
Ansah, a native of Ghana and football neophyte who opened the eyes of Lions coaches and scouts at the Senior Bowl, has played football for only three seasons. But coach Jim Schwartz, Ansah's coach at the Senior Bowl, said his progress indicates he's well beyond beginner levels.
He's a rare athlete for his 6-5, 274-pound frame, running the 40-yard dash in 4.62 seconds. He came to BYU for other reasons but gravitated to football having known little about it -- and never so much as watched a football game -- before coming to the United States. When he failed to make the basektball team in 2008 and '09 at BYU, Ansah joined the track team briefly before joining the football squad.
He played a total of 18 career games and was a starter only in 2012, posting 4.5 sacks and 13 tackles for loss.
As raw as he is, Ansah figures to be asked to play a significant role for Detroit.
04/28/13 - A closer look at the Lions' picks: Round 1/5 - Ziggy Ansah, DE, 6-5, 271, BYU...The Lions may have preferred one of the elite offensive tackles, but this is hardly a consolation prize. The need at defensive end is acute and this guy is an athletic marvel - body by LeBron James, with 4.6 speed, a 35-inch arm span, 34-inch vertical, and 10-inch hands. QUOTE TO NOTE: "I don't know if I want to use the word hate because you can't concentrate if you hate somebody. You've got to love them. If you love somebody, you want to grab them. So, I love quarterbacks." -- DE Ziggy Ansah on whether he hates quarterbacks. - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - Lions bet on potential of neophyte Ansah...The Lions might have preferred one of the can't-miss left tackles to still be on the board when they picked at No. 5 Thursday? They might have preferred to trade down a few notches and maybe pick up another pick or two. But when it was all said and done, they feel like they added an immediate impact defensive end in a 24-year-old from Ghana who didn't even know how to put on football pads in 2010.
The Lions took BYU defensive end Ziggy Ansah at No. 5, after offensive tackles Eric Fisher (CMU), Luke Joeckel (Texas A&M) and Lane Johnson (Oklahoma) went first, second and fourth, respectively. "You can't worry about what happened in front of you," coach Jim Schwartz said. "All we worried about was getting a good player, one that we had our hands on and had a feel for who fills a great need for us.
"There were other players who would have fit in, but none of that tempers the excitement we have for Ziggy." General manager Martin Mayhew said he made calls inquiring about the possibility of moving up and moving back Thursday, but in no way did he consider Ansah a consolation pick. "I see him being an impactful player right away," he said. "He's is a guy who will play a big role for us on defense. He will be on the field. ... He was the best player available and he fills a need. This is a time where the grade matched up with the need." - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - Ansah, a Mormon who attended BYU on an academic scholarship and was cut twice by the basketball team and ran track before joining the football team in 2010, is a physical marvel. He's 6-5, 271 pounds, ran the 40-yard dash in 4.63 seconds and has a 35-inch arm span and 10 1/2-inch hands. "You are looking at a guy with great size, great length, who runs good, who's tough, who plays all across the line," Schwartz said. "At some point or another we saw him do everything we need him to do in our defense."
Ansah has answered questions about his lack of experience since before the combine, so he was prepared Thursday. "If you would have told me a few years ago (he'd be the No. 5 overall pick in the NFL draft) I'd be like, 'I don't know what you're thinking, man,'" he said in a teleconference. "But this is the reality. I know how hard I had to work to get here and I know I truly earned it. "I have been playing for a few years now and I know this coaching staff. I know my work ethic and I know they will be able to work with me and they will bring out the potential they see in me. I am ready to put in the work." - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - Schwartz and his staff had the advantage of coaching Ansah for a week leading up to the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. It was during that week that a lot of their concerns about his lack of experience abated. "He had never played (the wide-9 formation) before and it was an adjustment period for him," Schwartz said. "He didn't know very much at all in the beginning. But every practice you seen him get better and then the game came and he dominated the game. "And it wasn't just his playing ability. You saw what a serious guy he was, saw how important it was for him to do well, how he wanted to please his coaches and that was an important part of the evaluation. It was a week well spent in Mobile." - The Sports Xchange