Dan Quinn sure deserves plenty of credit for the Dallas Cowboys' defensive turnaround. They went from a bottom-feeding defense to one of the most electric units in the NFL within one year. But as much as Quinn helped, having Micah Parsons around sure did wonders as well.
Parsons was arguably the most versatile defender in the league last season. The Cowboys lined him up all over the field, and he excelled at every position he played, giving them a jack of all trades like the league hadn't seen in quite a while.
That, plus Trevon Diggs' unmatched ability to pile up interceptions, makes the Cowboys' defense an intriguing unit ahead of next season. And, to Parsons, they could be as good or even better than the Super Bowl-winning duo of Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey.
NFL News: Micah Parsons Says He And Trevon Diggs Can Be Better Than Aaron Donald And Jalen Ramsey
“It’s hard to say we’re the best because I know we’re young and we still make mistakes,” Parsons told USA TODAY Sports. “It’s hard to put us over [Los Angeles Rams defensive lineman] Aaron Donald, the greatest defensive player in history, with Jalen Ramsey. So I won’t do it yet. But I think we can become them or even better if we learn together and stick together."
He's Just Getting Started And Will Only Get Better
Parsons felt great in his first season in the league. He played linebacker, cornerback, safety, and defensive lineman. That's a lot to ask from a first-year player, yet he thinks he's only going to get better in year two:
“I would just say last year I was a fish in the water,” Parsons said of his rookie season. “I was still growing so much mentally and as a player, and I think when you’re a rookie first getting in the league, you’re trying to see if you belong or not. I think I kind of know where I want to be and where I’m at in this league. I believe in myself and my confidence.”
Diggs Was The True DPOY, Says Parsons
People criticize Trevon Diggs for the yards and touchdowns he gave up last season. Even so, Parsons believes he should've won Defensive Player of the Year because of his 11 interceptions:
“Without a doubt I thought he was the best defensive player in the league last year,” Parsons said. “We’ve seen 20 sacks before. But in this era, we’ve never seen anyone reach 10-plus interceptions. So it’s disrespectful to me, because I think he deserves all the credit in the world and deserves to be named a top-five corner if not the best corner in the league.”
At the end of the day, individual accolades mean nothing if the team doesn't win football games. Diggs and Parsons sure can help the Cowboys in that regard, so let's see if they can put their money where their mouth is.