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Falcons want Vic Beasley playing more linebacker

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Last year's top pick may be slotted for a more diverse role in 2016.

Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons are looking to change Vic Beasley's role this season after he played primarily at defensive end during his rookie year. Dan Quinn reportedly wants to get Beasley on the move, running away from the quarterback.

D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution had the news first.

The plan is to use Beasley as more of a hybrid. He will rush the passer from defensive end in the nickel defense. The team will look at him playing more linebacker in the base 4-3 over the offseason.

While Quinn discussed working on new pass rush moves with Beasley, it sounds like the former Clemson standout will slide into the LEO spot. Bruce Irvin played it in Seattle, and was able to use his impressive speed on early downs, then attack the quarterback in obvious passing situations. The move should make Beasley more versatile, instead of having him add weight to help improve in the run game.

With some of the recent additions to the defense, there are still some question marks regarding where each new player will fit. If Beasley moves, the team would have way too many strong side linebackers to see the field, and a defensive line lacking defensive end talent. Additionally, Irvin was never able to consistently produce good numbers in the LEO spot. Beasley had an uneven rookie season, but showed more than enough to consider him a starting defensive end going forward.

Quinn must feel confident Beasley can play best at linebacker.