Everson Griffen ranked as one of the NFL’s best pass rushers for 2018

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) Everson Griffen
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) Everson Griffen /

NFL Media’s Willie McGinest recently ranked his top 10 pass rushers heading into the 2018 season and his list included a member of the Minnesota Vikings.

Since the Minnesota Vikings gave him the opportunity to be a starter in 2014, Everson Griffen has evolved into one of the NFL’s premier pass rushers.

In the past four seasons, Griffen has racked up a total of 43.5 sacks. Only Chandler Jones of the Arizona Cardinals has more sacks during this same time period among all NFL defensive lineman (46.5).

Recently, NFL Media’s Willie McGinest ranked who he feels are the league’s 10 best pass rushers heading into the 2018 season. McGinest, a former pass rusher himself, gave Griffen the number four slot.

Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings /

Minnesota Vikings

"“I expect Griffen to hit stride in 2018 and once again lead the best defense in the league. Entering his ninth season in the fall, Griffen has great edge, nice lean and good speed. Coupled with good balance and hands, he’s a huge challenge to contain even with help.”"

Ranked ahead of Griffen on the list is Oakland Raiders linebacker Khalil Mack, Los Angeles defensive tackle Aaron Donald, and Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller.

Last season, the Vikings defensive end got off to a blazing hot start and had 10 sacks in his first eight games. However, a foot injury he suffered in Week 8 slowed Griffen down a bit and he was only able to add three more sacks to his total for the remainder of Minnesota’s season.

Last July, the Vikings and their veteran pass rusher agreed to a four-year extension worth $58 million. Thanks to the extension, Griffen is currently under contract with Minnesota through the 2022 season.

Next: Grading the Vikings' 2018 offseason

With the addition of Sheldon Richardson to the defensive line this offseason, Griffen could see more one-on-one pass rushing opportunities in 2018. If that actually does end up being the case, the Vikings’ defensive end could be in for one of the most productive seasons of his NFL career.