ALLEN PARK — If ever a fifth overall pick in the NFL draft needs coaching up, it’s Ziggy Ansah, the newest Detroit Lions defensive end.
It could be a perfect fit although that is yet to be seen.
The Lions chose the 23-year-old with their fifth overall pick in the NFL draft on Thursday night even though he’s only played football for three years.
In 2010 Ansah walked on at BYU where he was on an academic scholarship.
He’s played 31 games with nine starts, all in 2012.
Coaching? He’ll need plenty of it because they expect him to have immediate impact. A fifth overall pick can’t be a project, at least for the Lions coming off a 4-12 season.
Kris Kocurek, the Lions defensive line coach, is intense and has developed young guys like Cliff Avril, Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley.
Also, veteran NFL coach Jim Washburn has been added to the Lions coaching staff and will be working with the defensive line.
Defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham also appreciates young players and takes pride in their development.
The coaching staff knows Ansah because they coached him for a week at the Senior Bowl in January. Ansah also said he feels comfortable because he knows them.
“If we didn’t have the opportunity to coach him at the Senior Bowl that (inexperience) would have been a bigger issue,’’ general manager Martin Mayhew said. “We had the opportunity to work with him and teach him, and we saw the way he could learn, how quickly he picks things up and we saw the impact he had in the game so we feel very comfortable with him.’’