Inside the Article:
The 2023 season is only 36 days away when the Detroit Lions travel to Kansas City to face the defending Super Bowl champion Chiefs. Football games will also be played this week on Thursday when the Hall of Fame Game is played. Today we will break down and rank the top edge rushing units in the NFC North.
Ranking NFC North: Edge Rushers
Number Four: Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers return one starting edge rusher from last season in Kenny Clark, who recorded four sacks, 53 total tackles, ten hits on the quarterback, and five tackles for a loss. They are also expected to start Devonte Wyatt opposite Clark, who played in 16 games last season and recorded 1.5 sacks, had 15 total tackles, and three hits on the quarterbacks.
The Packers also have Karl Brooks, who they drafted 179th overall from Bowling Green, and last season he recorded 49 total tackles and ten sacks which put him tied for tenth in most sacks in the country. They also bring Chris Slayton, who has spent most of his time on the New York Giants practice squad.
Number Three: Minnesota Vikings
The Minnesota Vikings starting edge rushers are expected to be Dean Lowry and Harrison Phillips; they signed Lowry from the Green Bay Packers, last season he played in 15 games recording 43 total tackles, 0.5 sacks, and Phillips, after his first season with the Vikings last year played in all 17 games recording 59 total tackles and 1.5 sacks.
The depth behind Lowry and Phillips includes Ross Blacklock and James Lynch; Blacklock played 11 games for the Vikings last year, recording just two tackles and one sack, while Lynch played 15 games for the Vikings, recording 20 tackles and zero sacks.
Number Two: Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears edge rusher includes a combined 15 sacks from Trevis Gipson, DeMarcus Walker, Rasheem Green, and Dominique Robinson. Gipson played in all 17 games for the Bears last season, registering 31 total tackles and three sacks. The big pickup for the Bears to bolster their edge rush was signing Walker from the Tennessee Titans after he recorded seven sacks last year in all 17 games; he also had 16 hits on the quarterback, ten tackles for a loss, and 32 total tackles.
The Bears also added Green from the Houston Texans, in which he played in 16 games, recording 42 total tackles and 3.5 sacks. The last piece to the Bears' edge rush Robinson was drafted by the Bears 174th in 2022, and he played in 17 games last year, recording 30 total tackles and 1.5 sacks.
Number One: Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions' edge rush in 2022 saw some great production from rookies Aidan Hutchinson and James Houston, who combined for 17.5 sacks. The Lions can take pride in how talented they are on the outside on defense. They have the depth behind Hutchinson and Houston in John Cominsky and Charles Harris, who can also get pressure on the quarterback, which will benefit the Lions and their success in 2023 as they make life tough for any quarterback they face. They will face some good ones this season. Look for Hutchinson and Houston to record more sacks this season than combined last season.
Bottom Line: Edge Rusher's in NFC North
Last season the Detroit Lions recorded the most sacks in the division, but the Bears may have closed that gap by going out and adding Demarcus Walker and Rasheem Green. The Lions, however, still have the best edge rushers in the NFC North out of any team, and they should make life tough for opposing Quarterbacks within the division.