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Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson wins Pepsi Defensive Rookie of the Year

The former Wolverine has made a seamless transition into the NFL.



Nov 20, 2021; College Park, Maryland, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (97) rushes during the first half against the Maryland Terrapins at Capital One Field at Maryland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Another former Michigan football player is excelling at the next level. Just a month after the Detroit Lions’ 9-8 season wrapped up, its standout rookie, Aidan Hutchinson, is bringing home some major hardware.

In 2021, Aidan Hutchinson took Michigan football to a 12-2 season with a Big Ten title, a win over Ohio State, and a College Football Playoff appearance. His final season with the Wolverines was good enough to earn him Heisman runner-up honors and countless other personal awards before being taken by the Detroit Lions as the No. 2 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Aidan Hutchinson is a standout at the next level

Throughout Hutchinson’s rookie season in Detroit, the standout defensive end left fans in awe as he seamlessly adjusted to NFL play. Hutchinson recorded 52 tackles (34 solo tackles), 9.5 sacks, and a miraculous three interceptions during his initial NFL season.

Additionally, Hutchinson had an impressive resume of NFL records and head-turning stats last season:

  1. Lead all rookies in sacks (9.5)
  2. First rookie in NFL history to have 9-or-more sacks, thee interceptions, and two fumbles recovered. Joins Richard Dent as as the only players to accomplish this feat in NFL history.
  3. Second in tackles for loss among rookies
  4. Second in Season PFF grade among rookies (81.5).
  5. Lead NFL rookies in QB pressures and hits.

Hutchinson winning Pepsi Defensive Rookie of the Year in Detroit the season after coming in second in Heisman Trophy voting as a Wolverine is an incredible sight to see.

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CJ has covered college athletics in paid roles for around five years, including numerous sports and beats. His most recent work revolves largely around Penn State and Michigan football and basketball. Right now, CJ is the publisher of Blue by Ninety, where he also serves as the site's credentialed football reporter. Previously, CJ has made stops with Fansided, The Michigan Daily, and more.