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Nick Fairley
refer to caption
Fairley with the Detroit Lions in 2012
Free agent
Position: Defensive tackle
Personal information
Born: (1988-01-23) January 23, 1988 (age 30)
Mobile, Alabama
Height: 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight: 308 lb (140 kg)
Career information
High school: Mobile (AL) Williamson
College: Auburn
NFL Draft: 2011 / Round: 1 / Pick: 13
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2017
Total tackles: 170
Sacks: 20.5
Forced fumbles: 4
Fumble recoveries: 4
Defensive touchdowns: 1
Player stats at NFL.com

Nicholas Lachester Fairley (born January 23, 1988) is an American football defensive tackle who is currently a free agent. He played college football for Auburn University, where he was recognized as an All-American and was a member of a BCS National Championship team. Fairley was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He has also played for the St. Louis Rams and the New Orleans Saints.

Early years[edit]

Fairley was born in Mobile, Alabama. He attended Williamson High School in Mobile, where he was a two-way lineman and also lettered in basketball. Regarded as a three-star prospect,[1] he was projected as an offensive guard. He committed to Auburn, but was not able to qualify academically.[2]

College career[edit]

Copiah-Lincoln Community College[edit]

Fairley attended Copiah-Lincoln Community College from 2007 to 2008. After being redshirted in 2007, he played in seven games in 2008. He recorded 63 tackles and seven sacks in the 2008 season.[2]

Auburn University[edit]

Fairley transferred to Auburn University, where he played for the Auburn Tigers football team in 2009 and 2010. He finished the 2009 season with two starts in 13 games and recorded 28 tackles. Surprisingly quick for his size, his tendency to be flamboyant following a successful play placed him as a person of concern for officials. In 2010, he became the 2nd player from Auburn to win the Lombardi Award. He was coached by Lombardi winner and former Auburn player Tracy Rocker, and became the first player to win the Lombardi and be coached by a winner of the award.

During the 2011 BCS National Championship Game against the Oregon Ducks, Fairley had five tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble. Three of his tackles were made behind the line of scrimmage. Fairley was selected as the defensive player of the game award.

Professional career[edit]

Only four days after the 2011 BCS National Championship Game, Fairley decided to forgo his final year of eligibility, entering the 2011 NFL Draft.[3] He was initially projected to be the first pick in the draft.[4] His measurements at the combine showed him to be 6 feet 3 7/8 inches tall and 291 pounds, somewhat less than his listing of 6-5 and 300 pounds at Auburn.[5] After the NFL Combine, he was projected in the 8-12 range.[6][7]

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt Arm length Hand size 40-yard dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert jump Broad
6 ft 3 78 in
(1.93 m)
291 lb
(132 kg)
34 34 in
(0.88 m)
9 34 in
(0.25 m)
4.84 s 1.72 s 2.76 s 4.56 s 7.14 s 31 in
(0.79 m)
9 ft 5 in
(2.87 m)
All values from NFL Combine[8]

Detroit Lions[edit]

Fairley was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the first round as the 13th pick overall.[9] He signed a 4-year contract with the Lions on July 28, 2011. The contract was for four years and worth $10 million with a $5.7 million signing bonus.

In Detroit, he joined All-Pro Ndamukong Suh on the interior of the Detroit defensive line. Though at times his play was stout,[10] he was troubled by inconsistency.[11]

In his second season in the NFL Fairley recorded 5.5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and 26 tackles. However, on December 12, 2012, Fairley was put on the injured reserve list, ending his season.[12]

Fairley's fourth season had been productive for the most part. However, on October 26, 2014, Fairley sustained a Medial collateral ligament sprain against the Atlanta Falcons at Wembley Stadium in London.[13]

St. Louis Rams[edit]

On March 13, 2015, Fairley signed a one-year, $5 million contract with the St. Louis Rams.[14][15] Fairley played in 15 games for the Rams in 2015 along their defensive line rotation and recorded 29 tackles (18 solo), a split sack, a pass defended, and one fumble recovery.[16] On December 31, 2015, Fairley was placed on injured reserve.[17]

New Orleans Saints[edit]

On March 28, 2016, Fairley signed a one-year, $5 million contract with the New Orleans Saints.[16][18] After recording career-highs in tackles and sacks in 2016, Fairley signed a four-year, $30 million contract extension with the Saints during the 2017 off-season.[19]

On June 26, 2017, the Saints placed Fairley on the reserve/non-football-illness list regarding a lingering heart condition, ending his 2017 season.[20]

On February 5, 2018, Fairley was released by the Saints.[21]

NFL statistics[edit]

Year Team GP COMB SOLO AST SACK FF FR FR YDS INT IR YDS AVG IR LNG TD PD
2011 DET 10 15 9 6 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2012 DET 13 34 27 7 5.5 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
2013 DET 15 35 22 13 6.0 1 2 4 0 0 0 0 0 1
2014 DET 8 14 8 6 1.0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2015 STL 15 29 18 11 0.5 0 1 -5 0 0 0 0 0 1
2016 NO 16 43 29 14 6.5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Career 77 170 113 57 20.5 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 3

[22]

Personal life[edit]

Since entering the NFL, Fairley has had a number of run-ins with the law. On April 3, 2012, Fairley was arrested in Mobile, Alabama for marijuana possession.[23] The charges were dismissed in December 2012.[24]

On May 27, 2012, Fairley was arrested by Alabama State Troopers for driving under the influence and attempting to elude police. He was also ticketed for reckless driving, having an open container of alcohol in the vehicle and no proof of insurance.[25]

On June 3, 2017, it was revealed that Fairley was diagnosed with a heart condition that could threaten his career.[26][27]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://sports.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/recruiting/player-Nick-Fairley-46796
  2. ^ a b Mandel, Stewart (January 7, 2011). "Slowing Newton won't be easy, but stopping Fairley equally daunting". SI.com. 
  3. ^ "Auburn Tigers' Nick Fairley to enter NFL draft". ESPN. January 14, 2011. 
  4. ^ Banks, Don (January 27, 2011). "2011 NFL Mock Draft 1.0". SI.com. 
  5. ^ McShay, Todd; Weidl, Kevin (February 26, 2011). "Nick Fairley smaller than expected at NFL combine". ESPN Insider. 
  6. ^ Lande, Russ (March 2011). "NFL mock draft: Mallett, Liuget and Sherrod moving up draft boards". Sporting News. 
  7. ^ Banks, Don (March 9, 2011). "2011 NFL Mock Draft 3.0". SI.com. 
  8. ^ Dagger. "2011 NFL Combine Results". postgameheroes.com. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  9. ^ The Detroit Lions draft Nick Fairley of Auburn with the 13th-overall selection
  10. ^ "Ndamukong Suh, Nick Fairley providing stout presence in the middle of Detroit's defensive line". 2013-11-13. 
  11. ^ Smith, Michael (November 12, 2013). "Fairley makes big plays, but Schwartz wants to see it consistently". 
  12. ^ Rogers, Justin (December 19, 2012). "Detroit Lions place DT Nick Fairley on injured reserve, sign Ogemdi Nwagbuo". mlive.com. Retrieved December 19, 2012. 
  13. ^ Birkett, Dave (October 27, 2014). "Nick Fairley out 4-5 weeks with knee sprain, per report". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved October 27, 2014. 
  14. ^ Wesseling, Chris (March 13, 2015). "Nick Fairley leaves Detroit Lions for St. Louis Rams". NFL.com. Retrieved March 13, 2015. 
  15. ^ Alper, Josh (March 13, 2015). "Nick Fairley signs with Rams". Retrieved March 13, 2015. 
  16. ^ a b "Saints sign DT Nick Fairley to one-year contract". www.neworleanssaints.com. Retrieved 2016-03-29. 
  17. ^ "Rams place Nick Fairley, Doug Worthington on injured reserve". Retrieved 2016-01-01. 
  18. ^ "New Orleans Saints reach deal with DT Nick Fairley". NFL.com. Retrieved 2016-03-29. 
  19. ^ Sessler, Marc (March 9, 2017). "Saints bringing back Nick Fairley on $30M deal". NFL.com. 
  20. ^ Patra, Kevin (June 26, 2017). "Saints place Nick Fairley on NFI list, ending his season". NFL.com. 
  21. ^ Williams, Charean (February 5, 2018). "Saints cut Nick Fairley with non-football illness designation". ProFootballTalk.NBCSports.com. 
  22. ^ "Nick Fairley Stats". ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 29 April 2015. 
  23. ^ "Detroit Lions' Nick Fairley arrested on drug charges". CBS News. 
  24. ^ Seifert, Kevin (December 4, 2012). "Nick Fairley has drug charge dropped". ESPN. Retrieved December 4, 2012. 
  25. ^ "Report: Nick Fairley arrested again". ESPN.com. May 27, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2012. 
  26. ^ Garafolo, Mike. "Nick Fairley's NFL future in question due to medical issue". NFL. Retrieved June 3, 2017. 
  27. ^ Boren, Cindy (June 4, 2017). "Saints' Nick Fairley reportedly has a career-threatening heart condition". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 4, 2017. 

External links[edit]

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