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Even After Injury, Chandler Jones Still Top 5-Ranked Edge Rusher

Linebacker still highly regarded in new ESPN poll

Chandler Jones may have missed most of the 2020 season with his biceps injury, and he may have only had one sack in the five games in which he did appear. But the league has not forgotten about the Cardinals' outside linebacker when it comes to the best edge rushers in the game.

On a recent ranking – done annually – by ESPN, Jones was slotted as the fifth-best edge rusher in the game, despite his disrupted year. Jones came in behind the Browns' Myles Garrett, the Steelers' T.J. Watt, the Chargers' Joey Bosa and the Bears' Kahlil Mack. Jones had come in at No. 2 last year in the ranking, after his 19-sack 2019 season.

An AFC defensive coach is quoted: "His bend, hands and flexibility are still elite. Most guys his size aren't flexible, but he gets lower than you'd think and that tackles can't handle. And I don't think a bicep injury will change that."

It, of course, is a big year for Jones. He goes into the last year of his contract, he did not attend minicamp (and the assumption, although no one has said why exactly, is it was because of the desire for a contract extension), and the wait is on to see what happens with Jones in that regard as much as what he does on the field in 2021. Clearly, however, the perception is that Jones will get back to his production he had pre-injury.

LB Chandler Jones rushes the passer in a road game against the Panthers in 2020