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Cowboys’ Micah Parsons highest rated LB in Pro Football Focus ranking

2021 Rookie Defensive Player of the Year Micah Parsons is already making a name for himself as one of the best players in the league ahead of the 2022 season.

DALLAS — Micah Parsons may be the best linebacker in the NFL.

According to Sam Monson from Pro Football Focus, the Dallas Cowboys' 2021 first-round pick landed at No. 29 on their list of the top 50 players in the league.

"Parsons drew comparisons to Lawrence Taylor during his rookie season, and they weren’t crazy — that’s how much of an impact he made during a season in which he was a real Defensive Player of the Year candidate. Parsons ended the year with the best pass-rush win rate (25.3%) among pass rushers and was only doing that to fill in when injuries hit Dallas' defensive line," Monson wrote. "Parsons has special ability, and if he can develop his play off the ball a little further, he will be one of the NFL's best players."

There was no other linebacker ranked higher on the list. The only other linebackers that made the top-50 were the San Francisco 49ers' Fred Warner (No. 30) and the Indianapolis Colts' Darius Leonard (No. 43).

What helped Parsons earn last year's NFL Rookie Defensive Player of the Year award was his ability to provide support at all three levels of the defense. Parsons had the ability to drop back into coverage, which generated three pass breakups. The former Penn State product gathered 84 combined tackles and 20 tackles for loss.

However, it may have been as a pass rusher where Parsons made his biggest impact. The rookie led the Cowboys with 13.0 sacks and 30 quarterback hits.

Heading into his second season, Parsons knows that he has to make blockers fear his game and capitalize on the respect.

"The best thing La’el Collins told me early on when I was learning how to pass rush, he was like, ‘You’ve got to make them fear one thing,'" Parsons told reporters during organized team activities on June 2. "I make them fear the speed and everything else can go off that. They’ve got to respect you in some aspect. They’ve got to fear the speed, fear the power, they’ve got to fear something about you that’s going to make them set just a little bit different. Once you show that, then you can do all your counters and all your moves and things you want to show."

So far, Parsons has shown that he is entering the ranks as an elite linebacker. If the Cowboys are able to get more out of Parsons, it may be what the defense needs to lead Dallas to a conference championship berth for the first time since 1996.
Do you think Micah Parsons is already the best player on the Cowboys? Share your thoughts with Mark on Twitter @therealmarklane


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