Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
Let's forget the 50-foot box jumps and the crazy workouts for a moment and reflect on Ziggy Hood's play from 2011. When I watch Hood, I see a lazy, sluggish player who gets knocked off the point of attack way to easy.
It didn't matter if he was rushing the passer or defending the run; his play stunk all season long.
In the run game, Hood's responsibility is to occupy blockers so the linebackers can shoot their gaps into the backfield. He does an okay job of taking up the blockers initially, but as soon as there is any kind of struggle, his foothold is gone, and offensive lineman free him with ease.
When a linebacker is trying to get into the backfield, his path to the ball-carrier is much easier if there isn't a 300-pound offensive lineman all over him.
As bad as his ability is in the run game, his ability rushing the passer is twice as bad. The number of pass-rush snaps Hood saw last season is 522. Of those 522, he only generated pressure on the quarterback 15 times by tallying one sack, four hits and 10 hurries.
To put that in perspective, his backup, Cameron Heyward, had just as many sacks and hits on 401 fewer snaps.
Ziggy carries a lofty status as a first-round draft selection, but so does Cameron Heyward. It might not be a bad idea to give the latter a chance at starting if Hood's offseason workouts don't magically turn him into an improved player.