To some, Micah Parsons has what it takes to become one of the best linebackers in football history. With his ability on the field and off, he is already being compared to a pair of legendary NFL linebacker greats.
Dallas Cowboys Linebacker Micah Parsons is already being compared to a pair of the greatest linebackers in NFL history. The linebacker was drafted by Dallas with the seventh pick in the 2020 draft.
The Dallas Cowboys have a reputation for exceeding expectations. When Jerry Jones is your owner, it is just a fact of life. Jones, maybe even more than anybody else, couldn’t have predicted the kind of play that Cowboys rookie linebacker Micah Parsons has put up.
In 2021, Parsons has been a complete surprise for the Cowboys. He’s well outperforming his selection position, which is saying a lot since Dallas selected him No. 12 overall out of Penn State in the 2021 NFL Draft.
For Parsons, the stats are there, but so are the intangibles. Parsons would be the main story of the Cowboys’ 5-1 start if it weren’t for cornerback Trevon Diggs’ incredible season.
Parsons has been so excellent that one of his assistant coaches sees echoes of two former All-Pro linebackers in his game.
Micah Parsons, a rookie with the Dallas Cowboys, has been likened to Junior Seau and LaVar Arrington.
At the line of scrimmage during a game against the New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys’ Micah Parsons #11 | Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
George Edwards, a defensive assistant coach with the Dallas Cowboys, knows his way around the NFL. He’s coached in the NFL for 24 years, all on the defensive side of the ball. Edwards was a four-year starter at linebacker for Duke in college.
Edwards’ résumé is crucial to know because when he speaks, people pay attention. In his career, he’s seen a lot of football and a lot of great players. Sure, he’s prejudiced since he trains Parsons, but even the most optimistic coaches seldom compare rookies to legends.
Edwards, on the other hand, did just that. When asked about Parsons’ ability to play various defensive spots, the senior coach recalled two of the finest players in NFL history who have done so.
According to the Cowboys’ website, Edwards remarked of Parsons, “I’ll tell you when I coached LaVar Arrington in Washington, he had sort of that role.” “He was a Sam linebacker in basic defense, a Mike in sub defense, and a rusher on third down.” I’ve worked with several men that are capable of doing it in the past. When I was coaching Junior Seau in Miami, we did the same thing. He donned a wide variety of headgear.”
Any linebacker would be honored to be compared to Seau or Arrington.
Junior Seau and Lavar Arrington (L-R) | Getty Images/Brian Cleary; Mitchell Layton/Getty Images
As a Pro Football Hall of Famer, Seau is the more well-known of the two, but Arrington, who spent all but one of his seven NFL seasons with Washington, was no slouch.
As a linebacker, Arrington was a 6-foot-3, 257-pound battering ram. He was renowned for his big hits, but he was also a solid defense for the Washington Redskins. Arrington, a three-time Pro Bowl selection, finished his NFL career with 417 tackles, 44 tackles for loss, 23.5 sacks, six forced fumbles, seven fumble recoveries, 38 passes defended, and three interceptions.
Seau was a colossus of a linebacker in the NFL. His name is right up there with Lawrence Taylor, Dick Butkus, Ray Lewis, Mike Singletary, and Brian Urlacher when it comes to gritty, hard-hitting linebackers.
Seau, who was drafted No. 5 overall in the 1990 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers (now the Los Angeles Chargers), had a 20-year NFL career that included 12 Pro Bowl appearances and six first-team All-Pro honors. In the game, he was a living legend. He has 1,847 tackles, 56.6 sacks, 18 fumble recoveries, 18 interceptions, and 11 forced fumbles throughout his career. He was brutally taken from us much too soon.
To be honest, it’s unbelievable that Parsons is being linked to these two linebackers, even by his own coach.
Parsons has done everything for the Cowboys, much like Seau and Arrington did for their respective clubs.
Micah Parsons #11 of the Dallas Cowboys celebrates sacking Philadelphia Eagles’ Jalen Hurts #1 | Tom Pennington/Getty Images
The Cowboys’ use of Parsons thus far this season has been aptly described as “wearing a number of different hats.”
He’s played defensive end, middle linebacker, and even outside linebacker for Dallas. He’s been deployed by the Cowboys in both coverage and pass rush tactics, as well as setting the edge against the run.
The bizarre thing is that Dallas isn’t just moving him around for the sake of it, or to just take up space and force the offense to think. The Cowboys employ Parsons in all situations because he can play everywhere and do everything. He’s the prototypical modern-day linebacker, standing 6-foot-3 and weighing 245 pounds. He has the speed and strength that coaches need, as well as excellent awareness and the ability to play in space. He can go into the backfield just as easily as he can get back into a zone and play pass coverage. It’s really uncommon.
Even more exceptional is Parsons’ ability to play numerous defensive positions as a rookie. Even the greatest linebackers before him had never done it.
“Micah has really embraced the challenge of learning all of the many methods and position groups that we’ve wanted him to learn,” Edwards added. “All we want to do now is [keep] developing with him and watching his skill set [increase].” He’s the sort of guy who will put in the effort to improve, and that’s exactly what he wants to do. He wants to be the greatest, so he has to work hard and keep working through it, and I believe things will improve as time goes on.”
If you’re an opposition running back or quarterback, that’s the terrifying thing about Parsons. He’s already accomplished, and he’s well aware of it. He is, nevertheless, continuously striving to improve.
It’s exceedingly difficult to overcome the combination of exceptional skill and hard effort, which is what made players like Arrington and Seau outstanding.
ESPN and Pro Football Reference provided the statistics.
RELATED: Nick Wright Offers Jerry Jones Crucial Advice He Says Will Help the Dallas Cowboys Improve Even More
Micah Parsons is already being compared to a pair of the greatest linebackers in NFL history. He might not have the same accolades as some of the other players that are mentioned, but he’s still one of the best linebackers in football. Reference: micah parsons highlights.
- cowboys rookie linebacker 2021
- micah parsons 40 time
- micah parsons jersey
- cowboys depth chart