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Vic Beasley ready to mentor Takk McKinley

Beasley learned a lot from Dwight Freeney last season, and now he’s ready to pay it forward.

Atlanta Falcons Media Availability Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Vic Beasley took a step forward as a pass rusher last season. Now he’s ready to share what he’s learned and be a mentor to new Falcon Takk McKinley.

“My main focus is to be a mentor for him. To lead by example,” Beasley said Tuesday, via Kelsey Conway of “Hopefully he can follow in my footsteps and see me as a mentor and then become a better player by watching me.”

Beasley had the benefit of Dwight Freeney’s mentorship last season, and Freeney’s influence was a factor in Vic’s transition into the league’s top pass rusher last year.

He spoke with The Falcoholic last season about what had changed for his game, and Freeney’s influence was a big part of it.

“Just hard work in the offseason, and coaches present different game plans to me, and me just being confident,” Beasley said. “Just taking those game plans and executing them on game day, and then the help of Dwight. He’s been a great help for our whole defensive front.”

Freeney’s gone, but the legacy of leadership he left will be carried on by Beasley, and McKinley will benefit. Beasley is eager to get to work with his new teammate.

“I’m very excited about Takk coming in here,” Beasley said. “I think he’s a great addition to our organization and our defense as a whole. I’m excited to get to work with him.”

McKinley is excited, too.

Beasley’s influence should help ease McKinley’s transition to the NFL, and McKinley’s presence should help the Falcons disrupt opposing quarterbacks next season.