Chicago PD performer of the year: Patrick John Flueger

CHICAGO P.D. -- "True or False" Episode 606 -- Pictured: Patrick John Flueger as Adam Ruzek -- (Photo by: Matt Dinerstein/NBC)
CHICAGO P.D. -- "True or False" Episode 606 -- Pictured: Patrick John Flueger as Adam Ruzek -- (Photo by: Matt Dinerstein/NBC) /

Chicago PD’s best performer in 2018 was none other than Patrick John Flueger, as Adam Ruzek in Chicago PD season 5 and Chicago PD season 6.

It’s time to name our Performers of the Year, and from Chicago PD the honor goes to Patrick John Flueger for his work as Adam Ruzek.

After the fourth season saw Ruzek missing in action for several episodes, the series brought him back in a big way during Chicago PD season 5 and his storylines have barrelled along for the rest of the year.

2018 got off to a rough start for Ruzek, who thought he was going to be killed by Hank Voight (Jason Beghe) after being exposed as a mole within Intelligence.

But instead he ended up trying to use his connection to Denny Woods (Mykelti Williamson) to help Voight, and was able to redeem himself by the end of the season. Not to mention, he briefly rekindled things with ex-fiancee Kim Burgess (Marina Squerciati).

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After the death of Alvin Olinsky (Elias Koteas), Ruzek has been the character who has stepped into the void. Not that anyone can replace Olinsky, but losing Olinsky seemed to give Ruzek a renewed sense of purpose.

He’s now become an outspoken defender of the team, a long way from being willing (albeit under duress) to spy on them. And he’s gotten his anger issues under control for the most part, too.

That’s fleshed out his character more, and it means he’s stopped falling into the “hotheaded young cop” stereotype, too.

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Patrick John Flueger has taken full advantage of the opportunities that these plot twists have given him. Ruzek has seen a lot recently, between losing a friend and almost being turned, and he’s working all of that into his performance. It’s clear that fans are seeing a more hardened, more complicated Adam Ruzek—and that’s made him so much more interesting, too.

Ruzek was a good character before, but now we’re seeing layers to him that weren’t there before, and Flueger feels like he’s playing on a whole new level. Ruzek’s jaded, maybe a bit protective, he’s been burned by the system and possibly had his heart broken (depending on how you interpret the end of his relationship with Burgess).

And Patrick John Flueger is bringing all of this baggage onto the screen, often in subtle ways, whether it’s just how he carries himself in a scene or the way Ruzek reacts to someone else. It’s been a pleasure to see him unravel the character in 2018, and it’s not over yet; this feels like it’s just the start of him getting to reach new heights. Chicago PD has unleashed him in 2018.

Next. Where will Chicago PD take Ruzek now?. dark

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