Anytime a participant bursts onto the scene in any skilled sport making an instantaneous influence, you possibly can rattling effectively guess comparisons to an all-time nice are certain to comply with. After 19 common season video games within the NFL, we’ve reached that time for Dallas Cowboys star linebacker Micah Parsons. Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor is the very best bar for a linebacker to attempt for on the sphere. And that’s the extent some really feel Parsons is approaching, not even midway via his sophomore marketing campaign.
There’s no denying that Parsons is a beast, however at any time when so many individuals concurrently make any such comparability, it ought to give trigger to pause. It’s nothing towards Parsons, however we see this on a regular basis.
J.J. Watt was presupposed to be the following huge factor within the evolution of move rushers within the early 2010s, and he was that for a couple of years. Watt recorded 20.5 sacks in 2012 for Houston, then did it once more in 2014. Watt was chosen to the All-Pro workforce and Pro Bowl in 4 of his first 5 seasons. He additionally received back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year awards in ‘14 & ‘15.
Unfortunately, the injury bug got a hold of Watt, and he’s made one Pro Bowl and All-Pro workforce since ‘16. He’s undoubtedly an all-time nice, however Watt’s profession actually took an sudden detour. He received’t even go down as the best defensive participant of his era. That honor is reserved for Aaron Donald, thought-about by many to be the most effective inside defensive lineman in league historical past. Watt and Donald primarily play completely different positions on the D-line, but when we’re speaking general accomplishment and influence on the defensive aspect of the ball, it’s Donald with out query.
What Parsons has achieved up to now is wonderful. He was Defensive Rookie of the Year, All-Pro, and a Pro Bowl choice final season. All issues Taylor did his rookie 12 months however even went one step additional than Parsons by taking residence the league’s Defensive Player of the Year award in his first season. Taylor would win two extra DPOY awards and was named NFL MVP in ‘86.
Yes, a defensive player won the MVP award. LT won the award in a year where Dan Marino threw 44 touchdown passes and over 4,700 yards. No other QB went over 25 TDs, and only one other threw for 4,000 yards in ‘86. For Taylor to win that MVP over Marino that year when QBs weren’t sometimes posting these numbers is spectacular. Taylor’s additionally a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
That’s the type of domination Parsons is up towards when in comparison with Taylor. We typically hear coaches and executives speak about how necessary it’s to seek out a fantastic left deal with to guard the QBs blindside. LT is the rationale why the left deal with place has turn into so coveted. After he broke Joe Theisman’s leg in ‘85, teams realized the importance of protecting their QBs blindside.
In no way is this meant to diminish what Parsons has accomplished so far in his professional career. But this constant rush to crown someone the next so and so is always funny. Everyone wants to claim they were “first” to say this or that. But too many times, we go straight to the top when it isn’t but warranted.
Some of the speaking heads within the sports activities media universe have tempered their Parsons hype and gone a bit of decrease on the checklist, saying he reminds them of Von Miller. Another all-time nice move rusher who’s additionally a future Hall of Famer continues to be going sturdy in Buffalo. That comparability could be a bit of extra apt for Parsons at this stage. It’s not a knock on anybody, however the LT comparability is a bit a lot proper now.
Taylor isn’t solely thought-about the most effective defensive participant in NFL historical past, however some have referred to as him the most effective participant the league has ever seen. Of all the good QBs, RBs, and WRs we’ve seen, some of us say LT (an LB) is the most effective soccer participant ever. Parsons is nice and might be the most effective defensive participant within the league right now. But let’s chill with all of the LT speak and let this child’s profession play out previous 20 video games.