Somehow, Maxx Crosby is still one of the most underrated players in the NFL. That’s never been more true as ESPN ranked their top 100 players going into the 2023 season and Crosby finished at 35 on the list, while someone like Joey Bosa came in at No. 17.
Crosby has been absolutely dominant over the last few seasons for the Raiders and is the best run-defending defensive end in the game. But for whatever reason, the national media only cares about sacks. That’s what drives rankings, awards, and fame. But playing defensive end is so much more than just getting sacks.
The good news is that Crosby’s game isn’t just racking up sacks. He’s been the most productive player in the NFL in racking up pressures over the last three seasons:
No player has pressured the quarterback more over the past three seasons than Crosby (177), not even Aaron Donald (149). Crosby’s 37.5 sacks are the most by a Raider through 66 career games since 1995.
Sacks are fantastic, but they can be a tad flukey from year to year as some quarterbacks take more sacks than others. But pressures are a much more stable stat as that just requires a defender to beat a block and impact the quarterback.
Crosby is as consistent as they come at the defensive end position as he is always impacting the game in some form or fashion. He might *only* get to 11 or 12 sacks this year, but his 100+ pressures are going to make him a handful to deal with every week.
Coming in at No. 38 among all NFL players going into the 2023 season is pretty disrespectful for a player of his caliber.