Saturday, July 7, 2012

Falcons Got a ‘Monster’ in Lofa Tatupu

by Knox Bardeen on June 29, 2012

LB Lofa Tatupu (Photo courtesy of the Atlanta Falcons)

ATLANTA – Seattle Seahawks linebacker Leroy Hill spent time this week in Atlanta at the 2012 New Era Football Camp presented by France AllPro Athlete Management, a four-day event for area kids.

Hill and new Atlanta Falcons linebacker Lofa Tatupu were drafted by the Seahawks in 2005, Tatupu in the second round and Hill in the third. Hill shared some insight on just what Tatupu can bring to the table in Atlanta.

“They’re getting a monster,” said Hill. “They just don’t know it. [They're getting] a leader, a guy that’s going to be where he’s supposed to be every single play, a guy that doesn’t make mistakes, that makes tackles, he’s a complete linebacker. Losing him obviously hurt a couple of years ago, but the Falcons are getting a hell of a player.”

Hill and Tatupu still keep in touch regularly and Hill reported that Tatupu said OTAs and minicamp went well.

After arthroscopic surgeries on both knees, Tatupu sat out the 2011 season, but the reason wasn’t entirely injury related. The Seahawks wouldn’t restructure his contract—Tatupu took a hard-line stance.

After sitting away from the game for a season, Tatupu will battle with second-year player Akeem Dent for the middle linebacker position. Hill feels the decision could all boil down to health.

“We’ll see in training camp and preseason how he’s really feeling,” said Hill. “ If he’s healthy, he’s an All-Pro player.”

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