IDPw/BEE 2011-2012 (DL) RANKINGS

If you love the guys in the trenches, those whose main job is to get after the quarterback then these 20 DE/DT players will get you going. You might also want to keep in mind that it’s ok to go after the studs in DL before some of the LB’s because there’s a big drop off between DE1 and somewhere around DE25.  They contribute a little in the tackles category but their forte is providing you sacks and forced fumbles, maybe a touchdown here and there because we all love it when those big boys score a touchdown and do their celebration.

*updated 04 AUG 2011*

  1. JUSTIN TUCK (GIANTS) – no changes here, still remains #1 DE in my book even IF Osi leaves, the Giants depth at the defensive line is ridiculous. (DE1)
  2. TRENT COLE (EAGLES) – you can argue Cole as the #1 DE as well with the additions of Jenkins and Babin.  Cole will not see rarely any double team’s now as opposing offensive lines can’t just contain Cole. If DLine can stay healthy, huge year from Cole. (DE1)
  3. NDAMUKONG SUH (LIONS) – the addition of Tulloch and Durant behind him helps a lot, not that Suh needs any. Suh has been a force to reckon with since day one and will continue on for the remainder of his career. (DE1)
  4. JARED ALLEN (VIKINGS) – strong 2nd half in 2010 made his owners less worrisome and the lost of Ray Edwards won’t hurt Jared one bit.  (DE1)
  5. CHARLES JOHNSON (PANTHERS) – Yes, Charles Johnson got his payday and he got PAID! now will he pull a Haynesworth and not show up? I doubt it, Panthers made a commitment to Charles and I feel he won’t let them down, just entering his prime. (DE1)
  6. CLIFF AVRIL (LIONS) – too high? perhaps, but can’t deny Avril’s upside especially since you should know whose lining up alongside him. (DE1)
  7. JULIUS PEPPERS (BEARS) – Peppers is aging but is still dominating on a balanced Bears defense.  Another stellar year from the Pepster. (DE1)
  8. CHRIS LONG (RAMS) – had a somewhat so/so year in 2010, will bounce back with new additions to team and another year under his belt with Spags. (DE2)
  9. JASON BABIN (EAGLES) – mentioned earlier he could join the Eagles and it happened, keep in mind Graham is still injured might start on PUP list.  Gives Babin ample opportunity to put up numbers. (DE2)
  10. RAY EDWARDS (FALCONS) – Edwards should be a beast in Atlanta, especially since he’ll be lining up alongside Bierman and Abraham.  A force in the run support and rushing the pasher, Edwards should reach double digit sacks in 2011 which would push him borderline DE1 status, for now he’s a solid DE2.
  11. CALAIS CAMPBELL (CARDINALS) – the best DE on the team had a solid year in 2010 and I look for Calais to raise his game once again, he has the skill set to do so.
  12. MATT SHAUGHNESSY (RAIDERS) – hardly anybody talks about this guy but he’s the stud on the Raiders front four/three and could easily out perform his draft position.
  13. ROBERT MATHIS (COLTS) – will the addition of Tommie Harris help or hurt Mathis? I say more help than hurt as offensive lines won’t have to entirely key in on Mathis.  Mathis has been consistent for a few years now and is easily the better choice between Freeney and him.
  14. JUSTIN SMITH (49ERS) – With Franklin gone that may hurt Smith but his skills would say otherwise.  Smith might struggle out the gate but soon as he finds his groove he’ll be hard to stop.
  15. OSI UMENYIORA (GIANTS) – asking for a trade, that usually never ends well but this ranking is based on if remains a Giant. Sure he has a hip problem, but the talent is there and this ranking could be too low for Osi.
  16. KYLE WILLIAMS (BILLS) – a solid DT for the Bills who also drafted Dareus and these 2 alone should wreck havoc for opposing RB’s.
  17. LAMARR HOUSTON (RAIDERS) – Lamarr is a sleeper of mines this year, could easily rise into top 10 with the numbers he had last year in spot starts and various playing time.  Now enlisted as the starter, and playing on an underrated Raiders defensive line, Houston will make noise this year.
  18. JOHN ABRAHAM (FALCONS) – with the addition of Ray Edwards it should provide a little bit of youth in John. Still a solid bet to have another solid year, maybe has 2 good years left in him. 
  19. CARLOS DUNLAP (BENGALS) – well this guy popped out of nowhere huh? Not in my book, Dunlap’s a freak and with the release of Odom it looks like the starting DE job is his to lose.  Dunlap can quietly put up a solid season, but you must pay attention even though they’re the Bengals.
  20. BJ RAJI (PACKERS) – with Cullen Jenkins now gone, Raji is the big boy in the middle, showed it during the playoffs in 2010 and was a beast.  Should he keep it up he might rise above 20, but you’re going to draft him as either your DE2 or a spot start here and there.
  21. HALOTI NGATA (RAVENS) – Arguably the best DT in the game but that doesn’t mean it translates well in the fantasy world.  Haloti is solid but means more to the Ravens in general than on your fantasy team.
  22. KENDALL LANGFORD (DOLPHINS) – Dolphins have a solid front 7 and Langford will have a solid season.
  23. JASON PAUL-PIERRE (GIANTS) – IF Osi leaves, and Giants insert Jason into starting lineup this ranking could go a little bit higher.  Jason Paul-Pierre is a stud in the making, especially since he’ll be playing next to Marvin Austin for years!
  24. DA’QUAN BOWERS (BUCS) – IF knee continues to test out right and positive, consider the Bucs got a steal in the 2011 NFL Draft.  Their DLine is shaping up just nice, and Bowers could be a force of nature against opposing QB’s for years. You may not draft him but surely keep an eye on this kid.
  25. ROBERT QUINN (RAMS) – another young buck entering his rookie season on an improving defensive team.  Quinn should start across Long and with his skill set to get to the QB should relieve most of the pressure off Long and have a balanced pass rushing attack.  Quinn should get nearly 7 sacks in his rookie season and could definitely find his way as an ever week starter.

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