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Rookie DL Angelo Blackson Off to Solid Start in NFL

Posted Nov 12, 2015

Titans rookie defensive lineman Angelo Blackson is off to a solid start in the NFL.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Angelo Blackson’s introduction to the NFL was a bit of an eye-opener, and he’s not afraid to admit it.

Known for his athletic ability, Blackson found out quickly the league plays at a different speed, even for a guy who played in the SEC, at Auburn.

“Everybody here is the strongest guy, the fastest guy,’’ Blackson said. “But you adjust, and it’s about playing with technique. The lowest pad level wins, the guys with the hands inside win. So it’s a matter of trying to do everything the best you can do.”

Blackson, just eight games into his rookie season, is adjusting well.

In Sunday’s game against the Saints, Blackson sacked quarterback Drew Brees. He now has two sacks in eight games, along with nine tackles. He tied a career high with three tackles in the team’s 34-28 win despite playing just 20 defensive snaps.

Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey called it the best game of Blackson’s young career.

“What he can do along the line of scrimmage,’’ Mularkey said of the 6-4, 318-pound Blackson, “I think he is more athletic than a lot of the guys he is going up against. He is extremely good with his hands.  The combination of that…I think he is going to be a good player.”

Blackson, a fourth round pick out of Auburn in the 2015 NFL Draft, said he’s feeling good, and focusing on improving.

“It is a matter of getting better, and each day trying to improve at something, that’s the biggest thing,’’ he said. “Just getting tendencies. And being able to put yourself in a place to make a play before the snap, that’s important.”

The low-key Blackson said his personality keeps him grounded.

But there’s one thing that would get him hyped in a hurry on Sunday – sacking Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, who also played at Auburn.

“Once you get a hold of him, you better wrap him up,’’ Blackson said of Newton. “If I could (sack) him, it would be good. I know it would be all over the Internet -- two Auburn Tigers. It’s a great challenge this week.”