The Minnesota Vikings defensive end was one of 16 players to finish last season with double-digit sacks, hits, and hurries.
Eight games into the 2017 season, Minnesota Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen was in the middle of terrorizing opposing offensive lines. Griffen finished with at least one sack in each of the Vikings’ first eight matchups last year as blockers had no answer for his elite pass-rushing skills.
Unfortunately, the defensive end suffered a foot injury during Minnesota’s Week 8 win over the Cleveland Browns and it certainly had an effect on the rest of performance in 2017. The injury only caused Griffen to miss one game, but he managed just three sacks in the final seven weeks of the Vikings’ regular season.
Despite his nagging foot problem in 2017, the veteran pass rusher still ended up being voted to his third-straight Pro Bowl and earning a Second-Team All-Pro selection.Griffen was also one of 16 players last season to achieve what Pro Football Focus is calling the NFL’s pass-rushing triple-double.
Along with 15 other defenders from around the league, Minnesota’s defensive end finished last year with double-digit totals for sacks, hits, and hurries. In addition to his 13 sacks in 2017, Griffen also ended the regular season with 11 hits and 38 hurries.
According to Pro Football Focus, this was the third time in the last four years that the Vikings defensive end was able to achieve a pass-rushing triple-double.
This unique combination of statistics just goes to show that sack totals are not the sole factor in determining who the top pass rushers in the NFL currently are. Sacks are just part of the story as defenders are still able to make a big impact on the field by applying constant pressure to the opposing quarterback.
Griffen has been one of the league’s best when it comes to rushing the passer since Minnesota made him a full-time starter in 2014. A decision that has worked out pretty well for the Vikings.