Ranking Chicago Bears in NFC North EDGE Rushers
1. Minnesota Vikings: Danielle Hunter, Za’Darius Smith, DJ Wonnum, Patrick Jones
There are some serious questions with Danielle Hunter entering the 2022 season. In 2018 and 2019, he had 29 combined sacks, 14.5 per season. He was elite. He missed all of 2020 and then played in just seven games and posted just six sacks.
That is fine on a per-game basis, but seven games in two seasons is not going to get him ahead of Rashan Gary. It could get him in the conversation with some big names and keep them high.
From there, the fact that Za’Darius Smith is the best second edge rusher makes you realize that they could still be number one. When Smith was with Preston Smith, there was no debate about which of the two was more impactful. He has injury questions of his own, and it will be what makes them a close decision.
That is when you look at the rest of their depth. Wonnum posted eight sacks last season in a rotational pass rusher role. He is what the Bears hope Robinson becomes. If Hunter and Smith can stay healthy then Wonnum can stay in his pass-rushing role, and that will make him productive as he has been.
Patrick Jones has not proven much, but can be trusted more than Garvin or Robinson at this point in their careers. With the best depth and a duo that could certainly be the best if they can stay healthy this group just slightly edges out the Packers for the top spot.