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Ziggy Ansah is the Hoss of the Week

The Lions defensive end is the proud new owner of Stephen White's Hoss of the Week award after shaking off a slow start to the season last Sunday against the Vikings.

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Lions defensive end Ezekiel Ansah was off to a slow start this season. He had one sack, which was actually two half sacks combined, through the first five games. A knee injury he suffered in the second game of the season against the Panthers appeared to be holding him back too. But on Sunday against the Vikings, he notched the fourth mutli-sack game of his career, looking damn good doing it.

The Lions use a rotation with their defensive linemen, but it wasn't hard to tell when Ansah was in the game for two reasons. First, the guy looks like he has been hooked up to a helium pump. Dude was always big, which was one of the selling points for drafting a raw player that high. Now, he looks ginormous on film, but he still moves with cat-like agility, which is crazy. Second, he always seemed to end up around the ball some how, some way.

I don't think he is going to keep the half of a sack they gave him along with Lions linebacker DeAndre Levy because Levy clearly got there first. However, I can definitely see why they gave it to him at the time because he hit Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater right after Levy, and there was no doubt that had Levy been a half second late, Ansah would have taken him down by himself. His teammate, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, had a sack prior to that and Ansah was right there behind him helping him to finish off Bridgewater. He evidently was going to make sure he got a piece of Bridgewater every time anyone else sacked him.

Ansah also made a couple nice plays after dropping back in zone coverage when the Lions called a blitz to the other side. On one occasion he saw fellow Lions defensive end Jason Jones wrap up Bridgewater for a sack and ran all the way in from his drop to help finish him off.

On another snap, Ansah dropped back and the Vikings ran a screen play for running back Jerick McKinnon. Not only did Ansah beat Vikings right guard Vlad Ducasse's block, he also reacted so quickly that he was able to tackle the shifty McKinnon for a loss. There are 230-pound linebackers that can't do that, and Ansah is every bit of his listed 280 pounds.

Back to the sacks, because even without that half a sack, Ansah still had two of his own. The first one came on a third-and-8 in the beginning of the second quarter. What I loved about it is that Ansah actually used great hand technique to get Vikings left tackle Matt Kalil to extend his arms at him. Then, he sank in a rip move under his Kalil's outside arm and ran around him. He finished by swatting Bridgewater's arm causing him to fumble; only someone with arms as long as the ones Ansah was blessed with could pull that off. The Vikings were able to recover the fumble, but they were forced to punt.

His second sack came on the Vikings' second to last drive of the game, ending whatever remote chance they had at a comeback. It might also be my favorite of the two because it was effort and not just some fancy move that got him free to get Bridgewater on the ground.

Ansah sack

With 2:21 left in the game and the Vikings down 17-3, they decided to go for it on fourth-and-9 from their own 41-yard line. Ansah came off and pushed Kalil back. Jones, who was lined up inside, looped around to the outside. Jones actually came free and clear to Bridgewater, but he was too off balance and too high to make the tackle. Instead, he ended up grabbing his helmet as he passed him. Ansah just kept pushing on Kalil, made his way inside and pushed left guard Charlie Johnson. When Johnson went looking for Jones, Ansah ran into running back Matt Asiata who was checking through the line to go on a pass route. Finally, after Asiata moved out of the way, Ansah could see Bridgewater ducking under Jones' tackle attempt and made a beeline for the quarterback, flattening him out like a steam roller.

He go down, he go boom!

I just love seeing a guy give great effort every play for his team, especially those guys who are also productive on the stat sheet. That's why Ezekiel Ansah is my Hoss Of The Week for Week 6.

hoss of the week