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Could CFL Gain a Former NFL First Round Pick, and First Team All-Pro?

Defensive End/Linebacker Vic Beasley was once an 8th overall pick in the NFL. He was able to appear in a Super Bowl, Pro-Bowl, and go on to be named First Team All-Pro in year 2. Then his career quickly fell apart over the next 4 seasons. He now finds himself gauging interest at the CFL level to continue playing football.

Vic Beasley is a fairly well known name in the football world. That’s what happens when you grow up as a 3 sport athlete in High School. Playing football, basketball, and running track. While playing football he primarily played running back, and linebacker.

He was later named All County, and All Area in his Junior and Senior Seasons of high school, putting his name on the map very early on. He amassed impressive stats on both sides of the ball showing he was destined for the college game. As a senior in high school Beasley racked up 120 carries for 828 yards and 7 touchdowns, while adding 102 tackles, 12 tackles for a loss, 1 interception. As if playing both ways wasn’t enough he also returned kicks and punts. He averaged over 17 yards per return on punts, and totaled 3 touchdowns on returns as a senior.

Considered as a 4 star recruit following high school, he was ranked as the 19th prospect in the Nation by ESPN, while Rivals.com ranked him 37th in the country. He would parlay this attention into scholarship offers from Clemson, Alabama, Auburn, and Stanford. He ultimately would choose Clemson. During his freshman season he was asked to redshirt. At the time Beasley needed to get in the weight room and add strength to play at the collegiate level. However during his freshman season he began working as a tight end, and was used as a scout team QB before games that would pit them against mobile QB’s due to his elite speed.

After a fast rise in high school, Beasley simply didn’t catch fire in the same way at the collegiate level. After redshirting as a freshman he came back in year two to play very little logging just 16 snaps in 9 games. He would log just two tackles all season long. Not exactly what Beasley had expected or worked so hard to achieve. I think this lit a fire under him prior to his sophomore year. Beasley came back with a vengeance, racking up 14 tackles, 8 of them for a loss and a team high 8 sacks. He was named as an honorable mention as a sophomore All American.

After finally breaking on the scene in college it stood to reason that he would only continue to improve as time went on. As a junior, Beasley lit the college game on fire, he had 13 sacks in his first 6 games. He would finish the season playing in 12 games. This time he would complete the season with 40 tackles, 22.5 of them for a loss, 13 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery, and 5 passes deflected. Quite the season considering where he stood on the roster just 2 seasons ago. Heading into his senior season Clemson was hoping to see him continue to improve, and put up double digit sacks once again.

However things didn’t end that way for the defensive end. He would play 11 games, with 28 tackles, 17.5 for a loss, 9 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 2 passes defended, 1 fumble recover he returned 16 yards for a touchdown. Still a solid season for the young lineman headed into the NFL draft.

He was ranked as a 2nd round pick following his senior season….that was until he participated in the combine. During the combine Beasley racked up numbers that had GM’s salivating at the possibility of him in their defense.

Thank you Mathbomb for the great visual

With the 8th pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons select Vic Beasley Jr. defensive end Clemson. Coming into the NFL he was regarded as a great pass rusher, but struggled to shed blocks at times in the run game. Some scouts even questioned his aggressiveness, and his desire to be the best. However he was never considered a character concern, which led Atlanta to select him under defensive head coach Dan Quinn who believed he could develop Beasley into a key playmaker on his defense. Originally Beasley was used as a defensive end, but was asked to start right away. He went on to start 16 games as a rookie. He had a mediocre season collecting 26 tackles, 2 for a loss, 4 sacks, 5 qb hits, 1 interception, 3 passes deflected, and 2 forced fumbles.

SANTA CLARA CALIFORNIA DECEMBER 15 Defensive end Vic Beasley 44 of the Atlanta Falcons tackles quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo 10 of the San Francisco 49ers during the game at Levis Stadium on December 15 2019 in Santa Clara California Photo by Ezra ShawGetty Images

In year two Dan Quinn and company saw some things that led them to move Beasley to strongside linebacker. During his time with the Seahawks he had used several former defensive ends in this position with success as a stand up pass rusher. In Seattle it was often Cliff Avril another speedy small defensive end playing the “Leo” position. Now it would be Beasley one of the most explosive athletes ever drafted at defensive end. The Falcons went on to win 11 games in 2016, and make a trip to the Super Bowl, where they would ultimately lose to the Patriots. Beasley had a career season at any level while playing LB a position he knew well from playing it in high school. He started 12 games, playing 16 games he amassed 39 tackles, 11 for a loss, 16 QB hits, 15.5 sacks, 6 forced fumbles, 1 recovery that he returned 21 yards for a td, and 2 passes defended. He was named first team All-Pro, made the Pro-Bowl, and tied for the league lead in forced fumbles.He also was ranked as the 40th best player on the NFL top 100 players voted on by fellow players. It looked as though Beasley had found his footing and was going to begin being a dominant player.

During his third year he played in just 14 games starting only 8 due to a hamstring injury that affected his burst off the line. He had 29 tackles, 8 tackles for a loss, 5 sacks, 2 passes defended, and 1 forced fumble. This was a bit of a disappointment, but the Falcons opted to sign him to his 5th year option during the 2018 season.

In 2018 he was moved back to defensive end as a designated pass rusher. He followed up that announcement by playing in 16 games and starting 9 games. He had another down year, collecting just 20 tackles, 7 for a loss, 5 sacks, 3 passes defended, 1 fumble recovery he returned for 74 yards. He rebounded in 2019 his last season with the Falcons.

In 2019 He was able to play in 16 games, and start 15 of them. He was able to rack up 42 tackles, 8 for a loss, 8 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and 2 passes defended. This was something of a resurgent season for the man who had only flashed at linebacker so far in his NFL career. Playing defensive end, and being able to reach these heights actually helped him earn a free agent contract with the Tennessee Titans in the offseason.

Tennessee Titans defensive end Vic Beasley (44) smiles after the team’s 42-16 win over the Buffalo Bills at Nissan Stadium Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020 in Nashville, Tenn. Gw53088

In 2020 he had a very rough year with the Titans. It all started way back in July, when the Titans were forced to move him to the “Reserve: Did Not Report List”. He didn’t show up to camp until August 7th. Just 4 days later he was placed on the Non Football Injury List. He would just under a month of training camp. He was activated on September 5th. Playing in just 5 games, and starting no games. He was cut after collecting just 3 tackles, and 1 forced fumble, less than 2 months after being activated for the Titans. He landed with the Raiders under Paul Guenther, originally on the practice squad. He would go on to play in just 5 games before being let go by the Raiders as well. He has not signed another contract with the NFL.

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Vic Beasley 51 prepares to line up during the second quarter against the Miami Dolphins in an NFL football game Saturday Dec 26 2020 in Las Vegas AP PhotoJeff Bottari

That’s when in February of 2022 it was announced that Beasley’s name had been added to the Ottawa Redblacks negotiation list. The veteran NFL player, who was drafted in the first round, appeared in a pro-bowl, a Super Bowl, and named first team all pro at one point could now land in the CFL where he will attempt to revive a career that has gone dormant since the 2020 season. Beasley is the exact type of pass rusher that finds success in the CFL and I for one am excited to see him at this level.

Written by @SamShadySports, please check out my other content and sponsors at the links below. I produce content involving most teams, and several different leagues so stay tuned for the latest news about your team. Also I have teamed with Seat Geek to produce a $20 discount code. If you use the code SamShady at check out you will receive $20 off your next Purchase.

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Sam Just Reporter
I am a writer and content creator focusing on alternative football leagues like the UFL, CFL, AFL, IFL, NAL, and AIF. If you like alternative football leagues, check out my personal platform Shady Sports Network on YouTube and all your favorite social media platforms.
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