Keanu Neal
Keanu Neal
23-Year-Old SafetyS
Atlanta Falcons
Injury Knee - ACL
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Neal suffered an ACL tear Week 1 last year, but he should participate in most of training camp and therefore is immediately back on the elite IDP radar. He isn't much of a threat to intercept passes given that he had just one pick in his first 30 games, but 222 tackles, eight forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries in that span more than make up for it. Neal is a notoriously hard hitter and probably brings high injury risk as a result, but he's capable of logging multiple 120-tackle seasons before his career is over. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $10.74 million contract with the Falcons in May of 2016. Falcons exercised team option for 2020 in April of 2019.
Nearing full health
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
June 19, 2019
Neal (knee) was on the practice field and spotted running during June minicamp, Matthew Tabeek of the Falcons' official site reports.
Neal is roughly nine months removed from surgery to repair a torn ACL, which parked him on injured reserve early last September. While it isn't clear if Neal participated in any team drills this spring, he's steadily ramping up his activity level and seems close to full health. He could be ready to go for training camp next month.
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2018 Keanu Neal Split Stats
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Measurables Review
How do Keanu Neal's measurables compare to other safeties?
This section compares his draft workout metrics with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average.
6' 1"
216 lbs
40-Yard Dash
4.62 sec
Shuttle Time
4.38 sec
Cone Drill
7.09 sec
Vertical Jump
38.0 in
Broad Jump
132 in
Bench Press
17 reps
Hand Length
10.68 in
Arm Length
32.75 in
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
There might not be a safety in the league that receivers fear more than Neal, who finds ballcarriers often and prevents plenty of completions by clobbering the intended target. It's unlikely that he'll ever be much of an interception source, and he's yet to post a sack in the NFL, but Neal has two seasons with triple-digit tackles in two tries. That's a remarkably high IDP floor for a safety, and it wouldn't be surprising if Neal approached 130 tackles at least once in his career.
If Neal's rookie season was any indication, he will be one of the league's top safeties in the near future. The 2016 first-round pick is already well above average, and he heads into his second season a strong candidate to go over triple-digit tackles. He did as much last year, and that was despite missing the first two games following a preseason knee scope. Neal isn't known for his playmaking in coverage and is unlikely to provide many interceptions, but he's already one of the league's most feared hitters after forcing five fumbles last year.
The 17th overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft is expected to slide into the starting strong safety role right away. Neal brings a physical presence to a defense that struggled to get off the field in 2015, as teams converted 43 percent of their third downs against the Falcons. He should be in a prime spot to rack up defensive statistics assuming he can hold off Kemal Ishmael for Atlanta's starting job, giving him good potential in IDP leagues.
More Fantasy News
Could be ready for training camp
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
May 11, 2019
Head coach Dan Quinn said that so long as Neal (knee) remains on the current trajectory he is on, it's "more than realistic" to believe he'll be ready to fully participate in team activities by the start of training camp, Kelsey Conway of the Falcons' official site reports.
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Fifth-year option exercised
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
April 24, 2019
The Falcons officially exercised the fifth-year option on Neal's (knee) rookie contract Wednesday, Will McFadden of the team's official site reports.
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Active in weight-lifting session
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
April 17, 2019
Neal (knee) was seen lifting weights Wednesday during the Falcons' voluntary workouts, D. Orlando Ledbetter of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
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Timeline for return unclear
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
March 31, 2019
Neal (knee) said Sunday that "(he doesn't) want to put a timetable on things" when asked if he expects to be ready in time for training camp, Zig Fracassi of Sirius XM Sports reports.
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Making progress in rehab
SAtlanta Falcons
Knee - ACL
February 13, 2019
Neal (knee) posted a video on his personal Instagram account in January featuring himself going through agility drills with no brace on his left knee.
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