Essentially, this is a look at the NFL’s top 10 run-stuffing defensive linemen. This entails 4-3 defensive tackles, 3-4 defensive ends and nose tackles. Let’s jump right in.
1. Haloti Ngata, Baltimore Ravens
That dangerous combination of size and athleticism has created one of the most versatile and consistent players in the game. In fact, he might be one of the top 10 players in football, period.
2. Ndamukong Suh, Detroit Lions
The rookie sensation of 2010 is also a phenomenal pass rusher, which has me thinking he’ll be the best defensive player in the game before long.
3. Justin Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Smith might be the NFL’s most underrated player, mainly because his sack numbers have never jumped off the page despite the fact that he’s been a defensive end his whole career. But he’s been a running back’s nightmare in three seasons with the Niners.
4. Vince Wilfork, New England Patriots
Consistently dominates the middle. You hardly hear his name because he just doesn’t get beat.
5. Kevin Williams, Minnesota Vikings
After all these years, he’s still dominating. The Vikings took a major step back in 2011, and many of Williams’ cohorts struggled, but he somehow got better.
6. Kyle Williams, Buffalo Bills
He made big play after big play in 2010, saving an otherwise weak and confused Buffalo defense from looking completely foolish.
7. Sione Pouha, New York Jets
Forget about Kris Jenkins. The Jets had the third-best run defense in the league with Jenkins’ replacement consistently leading the charge up front.
8. Paul Soliai, Miami Dolphins
Another AFC East late-blooming nose tackle who was pretty much unbeatable in his first year as a full-time starter.
9. Fred Robbins, St. Louis Rams
Chris Long was able to break out in 2010 due in part to the work Robbins did on the inside. The 11-year veteran completely rejuvenated his career in his first season with the Rams.
10. B.J. Raji, Green Bay Packers
The 24-year-old gets extra credit for being one of the hottest names in the league. Green Bay’s Super Bowl run naturally coincided with Raji’s coming out party. The future is massively bright.