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Aidan Hutchinson Lions
NFL

How Does Aidan Hutchinson Compare To Other NFL Greats Through 10 Games?

  • Jack McKessy
  • November 23, 2022
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Detroit Lions rookie edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson is through his first 10 games after Sunday’s matchup with the New York Giants, which means we now have a big enough sample size to see how his career thus far stacks up against some of the other great players at his position. Ten games is still a relatively small sample size, but it does give us a point of reference we can use as a measuring stick against the first 10 games of other players.

There have been a lot of elite, young edge rushers entering the league over the last decade or so. J.J. Watt debuted in 2011, as did Von Miller. Then there’s Khalil Mack, who entered the league in 2014, Myles Garrett and T.J. Watt, who debuted in 2017, as well as Nick Bosa in 2019, and Micah Parsons last year. Through 10 games, Hutchinson looks like he could be the next name added to that list of elite rushers. 

In the sample size we have for him now, he has 16 pressures, 5.5 sacks, two interceptions, 31 total tackles, and a fumble recovery. How do his stats line up with those other names through the first 10 games of each of their individual careers?

From a sacks standpoint, Hutchinson has already surpassed J.J. Watt (2.5 sacks), Mack (1.0), and T.J Watt (5.0) through each of their first 10 games and is only half of a sack behind Garrett. Think about that for a moment. Hutchinson is off to a hotter start in recording sacks than the three players who have combined to win five of the last 10 Defensive Player of the Year awards when they were rookies themselves. That’s also 15 combined Pro Bowl appearances and 11 first-team All-Pro nods. T.J. Watt even tied the NFL record for most sacks in a single season just last year with 22.5, but it’s Hutchinson who held the edge in sack production through the first 10 games of their respective careers.

As a tackler, Hutchinson isn’t quite as strong compared to the others in this comparison exercise. In fact, he only beats Garrett (28) in the volume of combined tackles through their first 10 games. J.J. Watt and Bosa (32) were tied with exactly one more tackle than Hutchinson, though each of them had more solo tackles.

That isn’t necessarily a bad thing though. Tackles as a stat are more representative of opportunities than skill. A defensive lineman like Hutchinson might have fewer tackles because teams avoid calling plays to his side of the formation or because teams are passing the ball more than they are running it. Still, it’s notable that Hutchinson even has more tackles than Garrett and is so close to a couple of other great edge defenders.

Where Hutchinson stands out especially is in his takeaways, which are especially notable for him as a defensive lineman and not a player in the secondary. In his first 10 career games, the rookie has as many interceptions as the rest of the others had in their first 10 games… combined. And as far as interceptions go, by a defensive lineman or not, they’re seriously impressive shows of athleticism and good hands.

Aidan Hutchinson’s career is off to an excellent start. Even though he may trail some of the other elite pass rushers of today’s NFL through his first 10 games, the fact that his stats so far could fit in and stack up nicely against other premier athletes at the same position is a great sign. The Lions definitely got a good one when they drafted Hutchinson with the second overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. He’s trending in the right direction to be not only a cornerstone of their defense but one of the NFL’s top-tier edge rushers in the years to come.