Allen Park — Ziggy Ansah signed his franchise tag on Tuesday, ending any concerns about the Detroit Lions defensive end holding out this summer.
The tag, a one-year deal, will pay Ansah a guaranteed $17.1 million next season.
A first-round draft pick out of BYU in 2013, Ansah quickly developed into one of the league’s best defensive ends. After recording 15.5 sacks in his first two seasons, he fell just short of the franchise record with 14.5 sacks in 2015.
Ansah has battled a number of injuries the past two seasons, but he managed to finish last season strong, with six sacks the final two games.
With Ansah set to be a free agent this offseason, general manager Bob Quinn wasted little time selling the edge rusher to new coach Matt Patricia.
“To have an outside edge rusher that can be as dominant as Ziggy is something that was really appealing to Matt,” Quinn said at last week’s meeting with season ticket holders. “Matt has had a lot of great players in New England and I think Ziggy would rank right up there with some of the best edge players Matt has ever coached.”
Ansah skipped last week’s voluntary conditioning, opting to stay in his home country of Ghana to attend to a family matter. A team source confirmed to The Detroit News that the player remained in constant communication with the organization throughout the process, including Patricia.