Atlanta Falcons strong safety Keanu Neal knows how to hit. In fact, at just 22 years old, he’s steadily growing into one of the league best’s enforcers. He gets too much flack for reckless play, and there’s no doubt the coaching staff loves him.
Yesterday The Mothership pointed out an interesting statistic on Instagram. (For those of you that aren’t “cool” or “with it,” Instagram is a social media platform, sorta like Facebook, except there’s more pictures, neat hashtags, and less old people.) Keanu Neal has forced 8 fumbles during his first two years in the league. No defensive back has ever done that, ever.
This speaks to how hard Neal hits, which is obvious if you watch him play for any length of time. He’s got a knack for stripping the ball when he needs to, but more often, the ball just pops loose thanks to a bone-jarring tackle that someone as relatively small as Neal shouldn’t be able to make. He’s a beast.
Neal has two years remaining on his rookie deal, but if he keeps playing like this, the front office will likely look to extend him around this time next year. There’s no reason to believe he’s going to stop playing like this, so prepare yourself for contract talk post-2018.