Chandler Jones is making a last-ditch effort to swipe the Defensive Player of the Year Award with a monster finish to an already game-wrecking season.
Sunday he almost single-handedly destroyed the Seattle Seahawks' offense. Jones set up shop in the backfield, destroying Russell Wilson time after time. He gobbled up four sacks on the day. Even when asked to drop into coverage, what happened? Oh, not much, just a forced fumble by Jones downfield on a receiver that the Cardinals recovered.
Jones' stat line makes the word outrageous seem tame: Four sacks, six tackles, six QB hits, two tackles for loss and two forced fumbles.
If Jones were on a team with a better record than 5-9-1, he'd likely be leading the DPOY discussion. Don't discount the pass rusher because his team is still a work in progress. If T.J. Watt is in the debate with his team teetering on missing the playoffs, so should Jones.
Jones' four-sack afternoon marked the second time he's gobbled up a quartet of QB takedowns. He's just the third player since sacks started being tracked in 1982 with multiple games of four-plus sacks in the same season. Others: HOF Reggie White 1986, DEN Karl Mecklenburg 1985.
Jones now has 19 sacks on the season and a whopping eight forced fumbles, both leading the NFL. If Jones has a third four-sack performance in Week 17, the Cardinals pass rusher would blast past Michael Strahan's 22.5 sacks for most all-time in a single season.
"I had no idea until I think Larry (Fitzgerald) was telling me, 'Hey, you're a few sacks away,'" Jones said, via the Arizona Republic. "I try not to think about the numbers. I just play."
Jones noted it would be "remarkable" to pass Strahan.
"Not just for me, but for my team, my family," he said. "A lot of guys have gotten close, so we'll see what happens."
He's already set a franchise record with 19 sacks, besting his own mark of 17 set in 2017.
Perhaps Stephon Gilmore is the frontrunner for the DPOY award as a game-changing defensive back on the best secondary in the NFL. But Jones deserves attention despite his team's record.
If he somehow gets that third four-sack game of the season, passing Strahan could warrant the hardware.