Aaron Donald leads NFL in pressures over past 5 seasons by wide margin

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Aaron Donald has been utterly dominant since he arrived in the NFL and even in his age-30 season, he remains the best defensive player in the league. The amount of attention that Donald garners every week is astounding, yet he still finds ways to alter the outcomes of games for the Los Angeles Rams.

Even with opposing teams centering their game plans on containing Donald, the six-time All-Pro — soon to be seven-time — leads the NFL in total pressures by a wide margin in the past five seasons.

The fact that Donald has done most of his damage from the interior — and the fact he’s double-teamed nearly every play — makes this statistic even more impressive. If we’re speaking about interior defenders, Chris Jones is the next-closest to Donald in total pressures over the past five seasons with 325.

Some people may believe that Donald is having a so-called “down” season in 2021 due to him not leading the league in sacks. Contrary to that belief, Donald still has 12.5 sacks (tied for seventh-most in the NFL, most among interior defenders) and is second in the league in total pressures with 84, per PFF.

Aside from his 12.5 sacks and 84 pressures, Donald has also logged a career-best 77 tackles and has forced four fumbles. The Pittsburgh product just continues to find ways to improve his game and he isn’t showing any signs of slowing down beyond 30 years old.

Over the course of his career, Donald has accumulated 98 sacks, 149 tackles for loss, and 23 forced fumbles. Donald has reached LeBron James status for the Defensive Player of the Year award, where he won’t win it because the league wants to give other players chances to take home the prestigious trophy.

There have been plenty of special defensive players to come before Donald, but we are all getting a chance to watch one of the most dominant players in NFL history take the field every week.