Nick Fairley

Nicholas Lachester Fairley (born January 23, 1988) is a former American football defensive tackle. 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.

Nick Fairley
refer to caption
Fairley with the Detroit Lions in 2012
No. 90, 98
Position:Defensive tackle
Personal information
Born:January 23, 1988 (age 31)
Mobile, Alabama
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:308 lb (140 kg)
Career information
High school:Williamson (Mobile, Alabama)
NFL Draft:2011 / Round: 1 / Pick: 13
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2017
Total tackles:170
Forced fumbles:4
Fumble recoveries:4
Defensive touchdowns:1
Player stats at

Early years

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

Copiah-Lincoln Community College

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

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

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

Fairley was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the first round as the 13th pick overall.[9][10] 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,[11] he was troubled by inconsistency.[12]

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.[13]

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.[14]

St. Louis Rams

On March 13, 2015, Fairley signed a one-year, $5 million contract with the St. Louis Rams.[15][16] 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.[17] On December 31, 2015, Fairley was placed on injured reserve.[18]

New Orleans Saints

On March 28, 2016, Fairley signed a one-year, $5 million contract with the New Orleans Saints.[17][19] 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.[20]

On June 26, 2017, the Saints placed Fairley on the reserve/non-football-illness list regarding a lingering heart condition, ending his 2017 season.[21]

On February 5, 2018, Fairley was released by the Saints.[22]

NFL statistics

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


Personal life

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.[24] The charges were dismissed in December 2012.[25]

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.[26]

On June 3, 2017, it was revealed that Fairley was diagnosed with a heart condition that could threaten his career.[27][28]


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b Mandel, Stewart (January 7, 2011). "Slowing Newton won't be easy, but stopping Fairley equally daunting".
  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".
  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".
  8. ^ Dagger. "2011 NFL Combine Results". Retrieved June 19, 2011.
  9. ^ "2011 NFL Draft Listing". Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  10. ^ The Detroit Lions draft Nick Fairley of Auburn with the 13th-overall selection
  11. ^ "Ndamukong Suh, Nick Fairley providing stout presence in the middle of Detroit's defensive line". November 13, 2013.
  12. ^ Smith, Michael (November 12, 2013). "Fairley makes big plays, but Schwartz wants to see it consistently".
  13. ^ Rogers, Justin (December 19, 2012). "Detroit Lions place DT Nick Fairley on injured reserve, sign Ogemdi Nwagbuo". Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  14. ^ Birkett, Dave (October 27, 2014). "Nick Fairley out 4-5 weeks with knee sprain, per report". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved October 27, 2014.
  15. ^ Wesseling, Chris (March 13, 2015). "Nick Fairley leaves Detroit Lions for St. Louis Rams". Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  16. ^ Alper, Josh (March 13, 2015). "Nick Fairley signs with Rams". Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  17. ^ a b "Saints sign DT Nick Fairley to one-year contract". Retrieved March 29, 2016.
  18. ^ "Rams place Nick Fairley, Doug Worthington on injured reserve". Retrieved January 1, 2016.
  19. ^ "New Orleans Saints reach deal with DT Nick Fairley". Retrieved March 29, 2016.
  20. ^ Sessler, Marc (March 9, 2017). "Saints bringing back Nick Fairley on $30M deal".
  21. ^ Patra, Kevin (June 26, 2017). "Saints place Nick Fairley on NFI list, ending his season".
  22. ^ Williams, Charean (February 5, 2018). "Saints cut Nick Fairley with non-football illness designation".
  23. ^ "Nick Fairley Stats". ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved April 29, 2015.
  24. ^ "Detroit Lions' Nick Fairley arrested on drug charges". CBS News.
  25. ^ Seifert, Kevin (December 4, 2012). "Nick Fairley has drug charge dropped". ESPN. Retrieved December 4, 2012.
  26. ^ "Report: Nick Fairley arrested again". May 27, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2012.
  27. ^ Garafolo, Mike. "Nick Fairley's NFL future in question due to medical issue". NFL. Retrieved June 3, 2017.
  28. ^ Boren, Cindy (June 4, 2017). "Saints' Nick Fairley reportedly has a career-threatening heart condition". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 4, 2017.

External links

2010 All-SEC football team

The 2010 All-SEC football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) chosen by the Associated Press (AP) and the conference coaches for the 2010 Southeastern Conference football season.

The Auburn Tigers won the conference, beating the South Carolina Gamecocks 56 to 17 in the SEC Championship game. The Tigers then won a national championship, defeating the Pac-12 champion Oregon Ducks 22 to 19 in the 2011 BCS National Championship Game. Auburn led the conference with four consensus first-team All-SEC selections by both the AP and the coaches; LSU was second with three.

Auburn quarterback Cam Newton, a unanimous AP selection, won the Heisman Trophy and was voted AP SEC Offensive Player of the Year. Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley, also a unanimous AP selection, won the Lombardi Award and was voted AP SEC Defensive Player of the Year. LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson won the Bednarik Award.

2010 Auburn Tigers football team

The 2010 Auburn Tigers football team represented Auburn University in the 2010 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Tigers, led by second-year head coach Gene Chizik were members of the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference and played their home games at Jordan–Hare Stadium. The Tigers completed a 12–0 regular season record and defeated South Carolina in the 2010 SEC Championship Game.

On January 10, 2011, Auburn defeated Oregon in the BCS National Championship Game in Glendale, Arizona, 22–19, to win the second consensus national championship in school history. Auburn was selected national champion by NCAA-designated major selectors of Anderson & Hester, Associated Press, Bowl Championship Series, Berryman, Billingsley, CFRA, Colley, Congrove, Dunkel, Football Writers Association, FWAA-NFF Grantland Rice Super 16, Massey, National Football Foundation, Sagarin, USA Today (coaches), and Wolfe.

2010 Southeastern Conference football season

The 2010 Southeastern Conference football season began on Thursday, September 2, 2010 with South Carolina defeating Southern Miss on ESPN.

2012 All-Pro Team

There are three 2012 All-Pro Teams—one each named by the Associated Press (AP), Pro Football Writers Association (PFWA), and Sporting News—for performance in the 2012 NFL season. While none of these have the official imprimatur of the NFL (whose official recognition is nomination to the 2013 Pro Bowl), they are included (separately) in the NFL Record and Fact Book. Any player selected to any of the teams can be described as an "All-Pro."

The AP team, with first- and second-team selections, was chosen by a national panel of 50 NFL writers; the Sporting News selection process used a panel of 27 NFL coaches and executives, while the PFWA team is chosen by polling its 300+ members.

Brandon Mosley

Brandon Mosley (born December 21, 1988) is an American football guard who is currently a free agent. He played college football for Auburn University and was drafted by the Giants in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft.

Demond Washington

Demond Washington (born September 30, 1987) is a Canadian football defensive back.

Washington signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on April 24, 2012 as a free agent, after spending time with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2011 as one of their final preseason cuts. He signed with Hamilton on February 10, 2016.

Eliah Drinkwitz

Eliah Drinkwitz (born April 12, 1983) is an American football coach. He is the head football coach at Appalachian State University.


Fairley is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Barker Fairley (1887–1986), British-born Canadian painter and writer

Brian Fairley (b. 1959), former Scottish football manager

Caleb Fairley (b. 1974), American murderer

Darlene Fairley (b. 1943), Washington State Senator

Ian Fairley (b. 1964), former Australian rules footballer

Leonard Fairley (born 1951), American football player

Margaret Fairley (1885–1968), Canadian writer

Michelle Fairley, Northern Irish actress

Nathan Fairley, Northern Irish memer

Neil Hamilton Fairley (1891–1966), Australian soldier and physician

Nick Fairley (b. 1988), American football player

Peter Fairley (1930–1998), British science journalist

Sam Fairley (b. 1980), New Zealand cricketer

Josh Harris (long snapper)

Josh Harris (born April 27, 1989) is an American football long snapper for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Auburn University. He signed with the Falcons as an undrafted free agent in 2012.

Lee Ziemba

Lee Ziemba (born March 29, 1989) is a former American football offensive tackle who played in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Auburn University, and earned consensus All-American honors. The Carolina Panthers drafted in the seventh round of the 2011 NFL Draft.

Mario Fannin

Mario Fannin, Jr. (born December 4, 1987) is a former American football running back. He was signed by the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent in 2011. He grew up in Lovejoy, Georgia and was a four-star athlete at Lovejoy High School before being recruited to play football at Auburn.

He was released by the Denver Broncos on May 21, 2013.

NCAA Football 12

NCAA Football 12 is a college football video game created by EA Sports and developed by EA Tiburon. It is the successor to NCAA Football 11 in the NCAA Football series. It was released on July 12, 2011 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Ogemdi Nwagbuo

Ogemdi Sharron Nwagbuo (born December 24, 1985) is an American football defensive tackle of the National Football League (NFL) who is currently a free agent.

Nwagbuo was signed by the New York Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2008. He played college football at Michigan State. He has also played for the San Diego Chargers.

His last name, Nwagbuo, is pronounced new-ah-bo. His parents moved to the U.S. from Nigeria before he was born. He is the half-brother of former San Francisco 49ers running back Xavier Omon.

Philip Lutzenkirchen

Philip Lutzenkirchen (June 1, 1991 – June 29, 2014) was an American football tight end, who played at Auburn University, finishing his career as the school's all-time leading receiver in touchdowns among tight ends.

Ryan Pugh

Ryan Pugh is a college football player and coach. He is currently the offensive coordinator for the Troy Trojans football team. Pugh was a prominent center for the Auburn Tigers of Auburn University; selected All-Southeastern Conference in 2010. He is married to Cathey Lee (Dalton) Pugh.

Tracy Rocker

Tracy Quinton Rocker (born April 9, 1966) is an American football coach and former player. He played college football at Auburn University and professionally in the National Football League (NFL) for the Washington Redskins. He is currently the defensive line coach at the University of Tennessee.

Williamson High School (Alabama)

L. B. Williamson High School (WHS) is a public high school and middle schoolin the Maysville community in Mobile, Alabama. From 2010 to 2011 the school lost 29% of its students and was one of the two county public schools with the most severe population declines. The No Child Left Behind Act required the school, which was underperforming academically, to offer transfers to students, contributing to the population decline. It is a part of the Mobile County Public School System.

Zach Clayton

Zachary Alan Clayton (born January 1, 1988) is a former American football defensive tackle in the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in the seventh round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He played college football at Auburn.

Special teams
Special Teams

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