Linebacker Micah Parsons of the Dallas Cowboys was a revelation last season for "America's Team." The 12th overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft saw his rookie season end with an All-Pro nod as well as winning the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award.
Pro Football Focus recently listed Micah Parsons as number six on a list of the best NFL players under the age of 25 entering the 2022 NFL season. San Francisco 49ers edge rusher Nick Bosa is number one on the same list.
Skip Bayless, co-host of the FOX Sports One show Undisputed, believes that Parsons should not be listed below Bosa. Here's what he had to say about the PFF ranking:
"I was offended that he was ranked number six below Bosa. Now you can argue with the quarterbacks all you want because Justin Herbert was second on this list. It's not a fair fight because his position is so much more valuable."
He went on:
"But my point is Michael Parsons...I will take him any day or night longterm over Nick Bosa because I think he only scratched the surface. This is the tip of his iceberg. It's going to be the glacier-sized iceberg of a career."
He concluded by saying:
"He's much closer...I'm not saying he's Lawrence Taylor but he is far closer to Lawrence Taylor than Nick Bosa is."
Lawrence Taylor played linebacker for the New York Giants from 1981-1993 and is often considered the best defensive player to ever grace the NFL. Taylor was the NFL's MVP in 1986 and was a three-time winner of the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year Award.
It is the ultimate sign of respect for Bayless to put the Cowboys linebacker in a conversation with the great Lawrence Taylor. But if his rookie season in any indication of his future, then perhaps he could give the former Giants edge rusher a run for his money.
Micah Parsons' historic 2021 rookie campaign
Parsons' rookie campaign in 2021 was one for the ages. He was named an All-Pro and came in second all-time in sacks by a rookie player with 13. The first player on that list was former Tennessee Titans defensive end Jevon Kearse back in 1999 with 14.5 sacks.
Parsons was the ultimate utility player last season for Cowboys' defensive coordinator Dan Quinn. The former Penn State standout began the season as a linebacker. His impressive 4.39 speed in the 40-yard dash at the Penn State Pro Day allowed him to be used in coverage against linebackers and even receivers.
However, an early-season injury to defensive lineman DeMarcus Lawrence opened the door the star rookie to pull double duty and rush the passer. He did more than hold up his end of the bargain. He had a pass-rush win rate of 24.4% during his initial 2021 season.
If the sophomore matches or improves his production in 2022, we may be seeing the Cowboys represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.