FLOWERY BRANCH — Defensive end Lawrence Sidbury turned in a strong performance against New England and may be ready to see more action against first and second string players.
He finished with four tackles and one sack.
“I can explain it in one word, progress,” Sidbury said. “In this camp I feel myself getting better. I feel my teammates around me getting better as a unit.”
Sidbury, a fourth round pick in 2009, played sparingly as a rookie, but showed flashes of the destructive and explosive player he was at Richmond. While he dominated for the Spiders, he’s had to work on his techniques and skills to get past NFL linemen.
The sack was particularly gratifying for Sidbury.
“That is one of the things the coach (Ray) Hamilton harps on, improving our pass rush from last year,” Sidbury said. “I was just doing the things that we’ve been working on in practice, trying some new stuff.”
If the Falcons can’t get the sack, they at least want to make the quarterback move and get out of his comfort zone.
If Sidbury keeps showing that he can get to the quarterback, he knows there is playing time to be earned in the defensive line rotation approach the Falcons use.
“The coaches try to keep us fresh,” Sidbury said. “He will have us on the field at any given time.”
Defensive John Abraham invited Sidbury to workout with him at Bommarito Performance Systems in south Florida this summer.
“He’s been doing this for a long time,” Sidbury said. “You’ve heard stories about things (not) working out. . . so I respect him for reaching out to me to help me out. That says a lot about him.”