PFF’s top 101 NFL players has top five ranking for former Nittany Lion
Former Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons just wrapped up his second season in the NFL, and he continues to leave little doubt the Dallas Cowboys made the smart decision using a first-round draft pick on him. Although Parsons didn’t walk away from the 2022 season with hardware to show off for his accomplishments in 2022 the way he did in his rookie season in 2021, Parsons continues to cement himself as one of the top defensive players in the NFL. And according to a recent ranking of the top 101 players in the NFL based on performances in the 2022 season, Parsons is one of the best players overall in the entire National Football League.
PFF’s ranking of the top 101 players slotted Parsons at no. 5 overall in its assessment. This made Parsons the second-highest ranked defensive player on the list behind only Chris jones of the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs, who was PFF’s Defensive Player of the Year as well.
“It’s worth remembering that this was Parsons’ first full-time season as an edge rusher,” PFF notes in its brief summary of Parsons. “He was immediately one of the best in the game, dominating lesser opponents and beating some of the best tackles in the game for their first sacks allowed this season.”
Parsons was not the only former Penn State star to make the ranking from PFF. New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley was the no. 62 player on the PFF ranking.
“Barkley had a career year this past season and was one of the leading candidates for Comeback Player of the Year,” PFF said about Barkley. “Behind a terrible Giants offensive line, he was able to record more than 1,400 rushing yards and score 12 touchdowns. He broke 41 tackles overall and helped propel the Giants past the Vikings on the road in the playoffs.”
Parsons and Barkley each helped get their teams into the NFC playoffs as wild card participants, and each team advanced past the wild-card round before being eliminated in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs. While Parsons will continue to move into the third year of his rookie contract, Barkley is lining up for his first offseason without a contract in place. If the Giants cannot reach a deal with Barkley, the former Penn State star could be set to test the free agent waters for the first time in his career.
You can see the full list of PFF’s top 101 players here.
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