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O'Brien Schofield agrees to re-sign with Falcons

Veteran outside linebacker O'Brien Schofield has agreed to a one-year deal to return to the Atlanta Falcons.

Schofield took a physical at the team's facility Wednesday morning and met with the coaches. He is expected to sign the deal later in the day.

"It's great to be back with the organization,'' Schofield told ESPN. "I'm ready to get back on the field and start competing.''

Schofield, known as a vocal leader, is expected to fill the same strong-side linebacker role he played at the end of last season. Vic Beasley Jr. is the starting Sam linebacker right now, but he moves to edge rusher in nickel situations. Beasley is not known for stopping the run, and Schofield showed the ability to consistently set the edge last season.

The Falcons are likely to use Schofield in some pass-rush situations as well, perhaps even as a blitzer. Last year, he had two sacks and was second on the team with 13 quarterback hits. Schofield worked on his pass-rush skills this offseason in Hawaii alongside former Seattle Seahawks teammate Michael Bennett.

After two weeks, the Falcons have just one sack. They were last in the league with 19 sacks a year ago.

Schofield generated strong consideration from the New England Patriots, New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, New Orleans Saints and Seahawks during the free-agent process. He said arthritis in his left knee is not a concern, although it cost him a two-year, $8 million contract with the New York Giants in 2014. The 29-year-old pointed to the fact he played in all 16 games last season, with 10 starts, as proof.

The addition of Schofield might mean a different role for reserve linebacker Philip Wheeler, currently the backup Sam linebacker. Wheeler could move back to inside linebacker, particularly with rookie starting weak-side linebacker De'Vondre Campbell recovering from an ankle injury.

The Falcons have to make a corresponding roster move to make room for Schofield on the 53-man roster.

Schofield is unsure if he'll be active for Monday night's matchup against the New Orleans Saints.