Campbell told reporters that Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett may become a candidate for one of the biggest awards of the upcoming season.
“Grady [Jarrett] is about to have a monster year. He could have that DPOY [Defensive Player of the Year] year – at nose tackle,” said Campbell according to 92.9 The Game’s Joe Patrick.
“The system, and the way he works, how he knows how to take advantage of the moments that the system gives him – I think he’s going to have a monster year, a DPOY year.”
Jarrett has been one of the few bright spots for the Falcons defense over the past few seasons. He made his first Pro Bowl in 2019 with a career-high 7.5 sacks. Jarrett also made second-team All-Pro that year.
The following season, Jarrett made the Pro Bowl again with 4 sacks, 52 combined tackles and a career-best 21 quarterback hits.
The past two seasons, Jarrett hasn’t received any national recognition. But his production has remained steady. In 17 games last season, he had 61 combined tackles, including 12 tackles for loss, and 17 quarterback hits. He also had 6 sacks and 3 pass defenses.
With the arrival of Campbell and other defensive free agents such as Kaden Ellis, David Onyemata and Bud Dupree, opposing offensive lines can’t only focus on stopping Jarrett to stall Atlanta’s pass rush. That likely means fewer double teams and perhaps more opportunities for splash plays from Jarrett.
As Campbell mentioned, Jarrett could also benefit from a scheme change. Ryan Nielsen is entering his first season as Falcons defensive coordinator, replacing Dean Pees.
A Falcons defender has never won Defensive Player of the Year. The last time a Falcons defensive player even received votes for the prestigious award was cornerback Deion Sanders in 1993.