The New York Giants seemed like a homerun destination for Micah Parsons last April. The team has lacked a surefire gamechanger on the defensive side of the football for quite some time and according to the Penn State product himself, the Giants “seemed pretty interested” in selecting Parsons during the pre-draft process, via New York Daily News. On draft day, the Giants were gifted the opportunity to do so, as the linebacker fell into their laps at No. 11 overall. However, instead of pulling the trigger, general manager Dave Gettleman pulled an unprecedented move — he traded down.
While the decision has set up the organization quite swiftly for the long-haul by stockpiling multiple assets, it also hand-delivered what some are calling the next Lawrence Taylor to their vaunted division rivals, the Dallas Cowboys.
Saquon Barkley Compares Parsons to LT
After the Giants passed on Parsons, the Cowboys quickly jetted to the podium, using the No. 12 overall pick on what is shaping up to be a franchise cornerstone for Dallas’ defense. The multi-faceted Parsons is in the midst of an absolutely dominant rookie campaign. Amassing 12 sacks, 17 tackles for loss, 28 quarterback hits and three forced fumbles, Parsons has essentially solidified himself as the NFL’s Defensive Rookie of the Year and has become a serious contender for Defensive Player of the Year honors.
“I’ve never really seen anything like him. (Parsons) really LT-like, to be honest,” Giants running back Saquon Barkley told Yahoo Sports. “It is what it is: He’s insane. Every week, [Parsons is] one of those guys that, even if I can’t watch his game, I’ll look and say, ‘What is he doing?’”
Of course, Parsons and Barkley go way back. Both Penn State alumns, the two remain close to this day, communicating on a fairly regular basis and “last chatting via FaceTime on Sunday after their respective games,” per Yahoo Sports’ Eric Edholm. However, Barkley assures that his lofty perception of Parson has nothing to do with their friendship.
“And I am not just saying this because we’re friends,” he proclaimed. “The sky is really the limit with him. If he keeps working hard and keeping his head on straight, he can be even better than he is now. That’s the scary thing.”
The latest Giants news straight to your inbox! Subscribe to the Heavy on Giants newsletter here!
Parsons: ‘Just Chill’
While Barkley is willing to toss around Taylor’s name, Parsons recognizes such a lofty comparison is far too premature. While the Cowboys rookie does admit there are similarities between him and Taylor’s games, he’d prefer if everyone would simply “chill” on comparing him to arguably the best to ever do it.
“It’s really too early. I could see the similarities, but LT was completely different. It’s an honor that people are doing that. But to be compared to a Hall-of-Famer so early on, I mean, it’s not ready to be in the conversation yet. I still have a long way to go. He had 142 [sacks] so, I got 130 more to go before we start saying that was LT,” Parsons said, via WFAA. “So, let’s just chill. Keep on enjoying the work I got to keep putting in to get there.”
“[Taylor] is arguably the best defensive player to ever play football. Very dominant. Fast. He kind of created that raw play with a lot of effort. He kind of created that linebacker position, that edge LB position,” Parsons added.