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Ulbrich may have to help find Campbell’s replacement

Falcons assistant head coach Jeff Ulbrich addresses the changes on defense and the evaluation process of last season. (Video by D. Orlando Ledbetter/AJC)

Falcons linebacker coach Jeff Ulbrich is coming to grips with the fact that he may have to part ways with linebacker De’Vondre Campbell and that his daughter may have to find a new baby-sitting job.

“Of course, I’m hoping that we get De’Vondre back,” Ulbrich said on Tuesday. “Here’s a guy … that’s what’s unique about this franchise, you know we build deep connections with our players. To spend four years with De’Vondre and to have him as a rookie, you get to know him at such an intimate level.

“He’s a guy where my daughter watches his kids, babysits his kids and we have a deep connection in that way. To see him grow as a player and as a man, it’s a guy that I would love to continue on with.”

However, the Falcons are going to allow Campbell to become a free agent next week. The team is hoping that they can still somehow retain his services.

“But at the same time, I recognize this business and you can’t pay everybody. … We understand the cap restraints that you can’t sign everybody. So, ultimately at the end of the day, selfishly, I want him here, but the reality is that I want the best for him and his family. It may not be here, and that’s the truth of it.”

Falcons assistant Jeff Ulbrich takes questions during press conferences at the team training facility on Tuesday, March 10, 2020, in Flowery Branch.  Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com
Falcons assistant Jeff Ulbrich takes questions during press conferences at the team training facility on Tuesday, March 10, 2020, in Flowery Branch. Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

Credit: Curtis Compton

Credit: Curtis Compton

Campbell led the Falcons in tackles (129) in 2019 and (94) in 2018.

Campbell, who was drafted in the fourth round (115th overall) in 2016 out of Minnesota, wants to return to the Falcons.

Campbell’s agent Drew Rosenhaus expects a robust market for his client.

In addition to his tackle total, Campbell had two sacks, six tackles for losses, two quarterback hits, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery last season.

Campbell had a base salary of $2.025 million last season. He made $4.2 million over his rookie contract.

Ulbrich has been scouting potential replacements in the draft.

“It’s deep,” Ulbrich said of the linebackers in the 2020 NFL draft. “We covet speed, which is reflective in all of the guys that we’ve drafted and signed as free agents and (the 2020 draft) is deep.”

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