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Falcons' pass rush flashes behind Beasley, Clayborn

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The Atlanta Falcons deployed one of the most listless defensive pass rushes in the NFL the last several years.

Enter coach Dan Quinn.

"I love this system," defensive lineman Jonathan Babineaux beamed Friday night, via the team's official website. "I think everyone in the system will play well to the best of their ability ... I want this year to be a special year."

Under Quinn's attacking-style front, players like Babineaux are able to get up field and cause havoc, as opposed to the two-gap system they employed in the past.

Through two preseason games the change has been conspicuous. No more so than the sub-packing rush tandem of rookie Vic Beasley and veteran Adrian Clayborn.

On Friday night, the Falcons' first-team defense swarmed early in an eventual 30-22 loss to the New York Jets.

Clayborn earned a sack and a pass break-up, and Beasley added a QB hit and pass broken up, both in limited snaps.


"It was good to see Vic play fast," Quinn said in a postgame radio interview, via ESPN.com. "It was good to see him and Adrian -- they're getting their timing and their chemistry together over on that right side."

As a whole, the Falcons' defense forced 10 quarterback hurries and three sacks.

Beasley looks like he will be a stud pass rusher in Quinn's system, especially as he diversifies his rush maneuvers and gains strength.

If the Falcons finally display consistent pressure on the quarterback, the defense could rise up and help an explosive offense overtake an up-for-grabs NFC South.

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