As the 2012 season comes to an end for the Cleveland Browns, one unsung hero stands out on the defensive line. As a rotational linemen, Juqua Parker is the team leader in sacks through fifteen games. Who is this Parker guy?
Signed by Tom Heckert in the off season, Parker has served 12 years in the NFL. Originally signed by the Tennessee Titans as an un drafted rookie free agent in 2001, Parker spent the majority of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles. The 34 year old has been a mentor and a leader to the raw young Browns’ players. Up and coming rising stars Billy Winn and John Hughes are fortunate to have Parker, as well as others too.
In limited action, the Houston, TX native has six sacks, 22 tackles, and has forced two fumbles. Although I’m happy for Parker, it shows the Browns still lack that premier pass rusher. A player like Aldon Smith or Jason Pierre-Paul would be ideal. Jabaal Sheard was supposed to be that player, but he has had a mediocre season.
As a rookie last year, Sheard led the Browns in 2011 with eight and a half sacks. This year, Sheard is the second leader with a mere five sacks. The Browns are ranked 18th in the NFL with 32 sacks. Remember, six of those belong to Parker. Without Parker’s sacks, the brown and orange would be tied for 26th in the league.
Although, the orange helmets have a nice start to the defensive line, more is needed either through the draft or free agency. How nice would Jadaveon Clowney or Barkevious Mingo look on the d-line? It’s ok to dream isn’t it?
Ryan Ruiz – Cleveland Browns Writer
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