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ravensdan

Top 5 AFC North by position - Defensive Front 7

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Interior Defensive linemen (NT/DT)

 

1. Geno Atkins - Should be no argument here, this guy is absolutely dominant, the best Bengal player.

2. Haloti Ngata - While slowed a bit with injuries he is still one of the most powerful and athletic interior linemen in the game.

3. Chris Canty - Has been a consistent force in the interior of the Giants line, strong against the run and the pass, should do the same in Baltimore.

4. Phil Taylor - This will be his third year with the Browns and he will play the nose in their new 3/4 defensive scheme.  While he missed have of last year, he graded well once he returned.  Still has alot of potential to reach.

5. Steve McLendon - He has been the best interior D-lineman for the Steelers while only seeing limited time recently.  This year he gets the start and should fill in nicely for Hampton.

 

Inside linebackers

 

1. Lawrence Timmons - Graded out in the top 5 in every important category for an inside linebacker last year.  The most consistent linebacker for the Steelers.

2. Larry Foote - The veteran may only have a few years playing at a high level left, but is currently better than any other in the division - or at least proven himself.

3. DQwell jackson - While struggling quite a bit last year, he has played well in the past, and could possibly return to that form this year.

4. Jameel McClain - If he is fully recovered from his injury he should start at the mike once again.  Despite getting off to a shaky start last year, he has played quite well here in the past.

5. Arthur Brown - Has the potential to shoot all the way up to number 2 next year, but has alot to prove and is already hindered with an injury. 

 

*This was tough to even come up with a top 5 right now... Talent lacking here throughout the division.

 

Outside Linebacker / Defensive Ends

 

1. Terrell Suggs - Defensive player of the year in 2011 and still drew double teams after miraculously returning so quickly from the achilles injury last year.

2. Carlos Dunlap - Disruptive end that can blow up a run play and get after the passer for cincy

3. Elvis Dumervil - Now back in his more natural 3/4 OLB position he should be a terror opposite of Suggs. 

4. Michael johnson - up and comming star on the other side of the Cincy D- Line has done quite well so far.

5. Courtney Upshaw - Graded as the number 2 3/4 OLB against the run in his rookie year.  is fantastic at the dirty work, jus needs to improve his pass rushing skills at this point.

 

* Had to leave out Woodley due to really down year, Burfict decent but not game changing, Kruger - close with Upshaw , but more of a one trick pony here, Rookies Mingo and Jones yet to prove what they can do. 

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I like Canty but what about Rubin? He's a beast. He's got a ridiculous amount of tackles and is a highly productive player. Canty is very talented and so is Taylor but I think Rubin is an exceptional talent.
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I'd put Burfict above McClain. He played very well last year. He plays as more of an inside Linebacker than outside.
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I'd put Burfict above McClain. He played very well last year. He plays as more of an inside Linebacker than outside.

 

Agreed.  Burfict played very well last year.  He's still lazy, but pretty good considering.

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DT: Desmond Bryant, should be #3 on this list pushing McClendon out. The rest I agree with.

 

ILB: Larry Foote is one of the worst ILB in the NFL. He misses a ton of tackles and is basically a waste of space. He doesnt do anything well. I would Burfict at #3 and Brown/McClain as 4/5.

 

Pass-rusher: I think I would put Woodley ahead of Upshaw even though he had an awful season. He has a much better track record.

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I would have made the DEs and OLBs separate. Players like Sheard, Kiesel, and Art Jones deserve some recognition.
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DT: Desmond Bryant, should be #3 on this list pushing McClendon out. The rest I agree with.

ILB: Larry Foote is one of the worst ILB in the NFL. He misses a ton of tackles and is basically a waste of space. He doesnt do anything well. I would Burfict at #3 and Brown/McClain as 4/5.

Pass-rusher: I think I would put Woodley ahead of Upshaw even though he had an awful season. He has a much better track record.


I forgot about Bryant signing with Cleveland he should be included.

I didn't want to include foote, but I counted burfict as an olb. Where he played ok, but not spectacular by any stretch.

I considered woodley over upshaw, but his reported lack of effort is a bit disturbing. Although that could be overblown. He probably still belongs there.
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DT: Desmond Bryant, should be #3 on this list pushing McClendon out. The rest I agree with.

ILB: Larry Foote is one of the worst ILB in the NFL. He misses a ton of tackles and is basically a waste of space. He doesnt do anything well. I would Burfict at #3 and Brown/McClain as 4/5.

Pass-rusher: I think I would put Woodley ahead of Upshaw even though he had an awful season. He has a much better track record.

Wow I forgot about Bryant. Good call. He was one of Oakland's best players. Still don't see why they let him go. Bryant, Ngata, Rubin (IMO), Atkins, and Taylor should make up the DTs.

I didn't even notice Foote and while I'm not fond of placing rookies on the list I could make an exception here due to how poor the division is right now. I would say I agree regarding your list of ILBs.

I also agree regarding Woodley over Upshaw. One year is a bit early.
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I forgot about Bryant signing with Cleveland he should be included.

I didn't want to include foote, but I counted burfict as an olb. Where he played ok, but not spectacular by any stretch.

I considered woodley over upshaw, but his reported lack of effort is a bit disturbing. Although that could be overblown. He probably still belongs there.

Burfict played 4-3 OLB which is usually 3-4 ILB.

Also James Harrison is a Bengal and should possibly be included on this list of you remove Burfict.
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Wow I forgot about Bryant. Good call. He was one of Oakland's best players. Still don't see why they let him go. Bryant, Ngata, Rubin (IMO), Atkins, and Taylor should make up the DTs.

I didn't even notice Foote and while I'm not fond of placing rookies on the list I could make an exception here due to how poor the division is right now. I would say I agree regarding your list of ILBs.

I also agree regarding Woodley over Upshaw. One year is a bit early.


Rubin or Taylor in front of canty? I don't see that. Canty has been consistently good for a long time.
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As a unit:
1A. Ravens
1b. Bengals
3. Browns
4. Steelers

I really don't know If I should put browns in front of Pittsburgh though
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As a unit:
1A. Ravens
1b. Bengals
3. Browns
4. Steelers

I really don't know If I should put browns in front of Pittsburgh though

I will probably get some heat here but I like the Browns front 7 the best in our division. The Bengals have serious question marks at Linebacker. The Steelers have question marks across from Woodley and on the DL to an extent. We have question marks at inside Linebacker.

I think their front 7 is set outside of one ILB spot. Then again, I preferred them as a 4-3.
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I will probably get some heat here but I like the Browns front 7 the best in our division. The Bengals have serious question marks at Linebacker. The Steelers have question marks across from Woodley and on the DL to an extent. We have question marks at inside Linebacker.

I think their front 7 is set outside of one ILB spot. Then again, I preferred them as a 4-3.

The Bengals front 4 is nasty though, but the Ravens have better LBs and are deeper. The Browns have a strong front 7 unit as well on paper. As you know I am very high on Mingo and he should be a great asset opposite of Kruger on pass-rushing downs while Sheard will play SAM on run downs.

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I will probably get some heat here but I like the Browns front 7 the best in our division. The Bengals have serious question marks at Linebacker. The Steelers have question marks across from Woodley and on the DL to an extent. We have question marks at inside Linebacker.

I think their front 7 is set outside of one ILB spot. Then again, I preferred them as a 4-3.


I don't think Cleveland will be good stopping the run. Mingo and Kruger are both weaker in this area(despite what gave will say). They are rush specialists.
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Can we all agree it looks like Pittsburgh's got the weakest this year?

I wouldn't agree. Still very, very talented. They just have a few question marks from the eyes of outsiders ignorant of their team's depth. They lost a lot of long-in-the-tooth players & kept Foote & cut Harrison. People are always concerned about positions that are unproven, which a few pieces over there are. To be fair, they've invested quite a bit in those areas, so it's sink or swim and that's actually exciting. I'm interested in seeing what guys like Carter & Worilds can finally do to name a few. Same with Sly. 

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I wouldn't agree. Still very, very talented. They just have a few question marks from the eyes of outsiders ignorant of their team's depth. They lost a lot of long-in-the-tooth players & kept Foote & cut Harrison. People are always concerned about positions that are unproven, which a few pieces over there are. To be fair, they've invested quite a bit in those areas, so it's sink or swim and that's actually exciting. I'm interested in seeing what guys like Carter & Worilds can finally do to name a few. Same with Sly.


Not to mention up and comers like McClendon and Jarvis and heyward and ziggy.
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Not to mention up and comers like McClendon and Jarvis and heyward and ziggy.

Yep. Thank you. I liked Heyward a lot. Ziggy is a good player but he's my least favorite on their front 3.

I'm excited to see their defense this year. They went for a youth movement except ILB.
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Not saying theirs is bad at all, I'm just saying IMO, on paper they look the weakest.
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As a unit:
1A. Ravens
1b. Bengals
3. Browns
4. Steelers

I really don't know If I should put browns in front of Pittsburgh though

 

gah.....what do you think my opinion on this is lol

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gah.....what do you think my opinion on this is lol

I don't think it's an insult to be the "worst front 7" on paper in this division. Every team has an excellent front 7 now.
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I don't think it's an insult to be the "worst front 7" on paper in this division. Every team has an excellent front 7 now.

 

I don't think its an insult I just don't think its true.......our front seven is better than the browns for sure

 

now the other two are debatable.....but I have no problem with third....but we are not worse than the browns

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I don't think its an insult I just don't think its true.......our front seven is better than the browns for sure

now the other two are debatable.....but I have no problem with third....but we are not worse than the browns

Idk, Sheard, Taylor, Rubin, Jackson, Mingo, and others are pretty solid.
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I don't think its an insult I just don't think its true.......our front seven is better than the browns for sure

now the other two are debatable.....but I have no problem with third....but we are not worse than the browns

I can debate with you regarding the Browns. They are not a bad defense and I think they have one of the best front 7 in our division. Yeah, they have their share of problems but their biggest question mark is the other ILB spot next to Jackson.
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Idk, Sheard, Taylor, Rubin, Jackson, Mingo, and others are pretty solid.

I agree. Kruger and Bryant were great FA acquisitions as well, even if they overpaid they brought in talented players.

 

TImmons is probably the best LB in the division, but after him the front 7 in Pittsburgh really lacks stand out players. Ziggy Hood is a legitimate bust at this point, and while Cam Heyward is solid, he hasnt really been a difference maker. I like McClendon, but Kiesel is getting up there in years as well. I dont see much proven depth along the Dline and the OLBs are equally unproven. Worilds has yet to live up to his potential and Woodley is coming off a very dissappointing season. 

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I agree. Kruger and Bryant were great FA acquisitions as well, even if they overpaid they brought in talented players.

TImmons is probably the best LB in the division, but after him the front 7 in Pittsburgh really lacks stand out players. Ziggy Hood is a legitimate bust at this point, and while Cam Heyward is solid, he hasnt really been a difference maker. I like McClendon, but Kiesel is getting up there in years as well. I dont see much proven depth along the Dline and the OLBs are equally unproven. Worilds has yet to live up to his potential and Woodley is coming off a very dissappointing season.

You've said pretty much everything I would have said. Lol. Bravo.
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