ESPN has recently named Aaron Donald the best Los Angeles Rams player from the 2010-19 NFL season as Todd Gurley was named as an honorable mention.
According to Lindsey Thiry of ESPN, she spoke very highly of Donald when highlighting the best player of the decade from each team in the NFC West.
“A two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Donald entered the NFL in 2014 when the Rams drafted him with the 13th overall pick. He was named the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year after he posted nine sacks and 18 tackles for a loss. In six seasons, Donald has 72.5 sacks, and in 2018 he set the NFL record for sacks by an interior lineman with 20.5, helping power the Rams to Super Bowl LIII.”
ESPN continued to rave about Donald and even took it a step further, pointing out the mark that he has left on the league despite only being 29 years old.
“A six-time Pro Bowl selection and a five-time All Pro, Donald’s production has earned recognition from players across the league who have not only vouched for his future in the Hall of Fame, but have proclaimed him as arguably the best defensive player in NFL history,” Thiry said about Donald’s impressive career.
While Donald might only be entering his seventh season, there is a legitimate argument that can be made towards him being the best defensive player ever.
Since entering the NFL, Donald has the most pressures (481), tackles for loss (117), and quarterback hits (173) of any defensive lineman in the entire league.
In terms of sacks, Donald has managed to rack up 72 throughout his six seasons, which is second to only Chandler Jones, who has recorded 78.5 during this time.
In fact, there have only been nine defensive players in league history to record at least 70 sacks in their first six seasons and Donald is obviously one of them.
Donald is also one of only seven players to win the Defensive Player of the Year award twice and there is still a very good chance he manages to win another one.
Combine that with the fact Donald set the record for most sacks by a defensive tackle in the 2019 season and it is not hard to see why he is ESPN’s choice.
If Donald continues to uphold this pace in the next few seasons, it might not even be a question as to who the NFL’s greatest defensive player of all time is.