Top 5 NFC North edge rushers in 2023 ranked

Two Packers and Lions edge rushers make the NFC North top five.
Divisional Round - Los Angeles Rams v Green Bay Packers
Divisional Round - Los Angeles Rams v Green Bay Packers / Stacy Revere/GettyImages
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The NFC North is home to several excellent pass rushers. Well, not including the Chicago Bears, of course.

Having depth at edge rusher is crucial in today's passing league. If a team relies on one star player to deliver, it makes life far easier for opposing offensive linemen.

The Green Bay Packers strengthened their pass rush by drafting Lukas Van Ness in the first round. Meanwhile, the Minnesota Vikings lost Za'Darius Smith, who had double-digit sacks last season.

Who are the top five edge rushers in the NFC North in 2023?

5. James Houston, Detroit Lions

It's no coincidence that the Lions won five of their final seven games once Justin Houston debuted.

The fact he played seven games as a sixth-round rookie and still makes the top five shows just how dominant he was. Houston's numbers are hard to believe. In seven games with only two starts, he made eight sacks, 11 quarterback hits, and forced a fumble.

What an incredible way to start your NFL career.

The real test comes this season. Houston made at least one sack in every game he played, including four in the final two weeks. However, maintaining that level won't be easy. Teams are now prepared for him.

If Houston builds on that production over a full season, he will make double-digit sacks and go to the Pro Bowl. It won't be easy.

He needs to prove himself in year two, but it's hard to ignore how well Houston played as a rookie.