IDP Rankings by the best in the business, Bee and Houdini writting the details.
IDPw/BEE 2012 DEFENSIVE LINEMAN RANKINGS
1. JASON PIERRE-PAUL, GIANTS – Exploded onto the scene last season with 65 solo tackles, 21 assisted tackles and 16.5 sacks in his second season.
2. JARED ALLEN, VIKINGS – Allen is the reigning Sack King and has no look of slowing down and is also ferocious forcing fumbles.
3. JUSTIN TUCK, GIANTS – Coming off a down year where he missed some games, but he is steady pass rusher and also great at forcing fumbles.
4. CALAIS CAMPBELL, CARDINALS – Has raised his sack and tackle totals every year since he arrived in 2008 and looking to be a double digit sacker this season.
5. MARIO WILLIAMS, BILLS – Has been injury prone in his career, but he is back lining up on the line and is always a threat to make sacks.
6. JABAAL SHEARD, BROWNS – Had a standout rookie season with 8.5 sacks along with 5 forced fumbles.
7. TRENT COLE, EAGLES – The Wide 9 was good for Cole who gathered 11 sacks and a second year in the system should yield better results.
8. ELVIS DUMERVIL, BRONCOS – Dumervil is a beast when healthy and should be able to increase his sack totals this season with more consistent play from the Bronco offense.
9. JASON BABIN, EAGLES – Babin was the player who used the Wide 9 to find the quarterback 18 times last season, which will be hard to repeat, but Babin can do it. He had 3 sacks in 3 different games last season.
10. JULIUS PEPPERS, BEARS – Peppers faces double teams more than other defensive lineman and is still productive. The Bears have added depth which should help him this season.
11. CARLOS DUNLAP, BENGALS – Dunlap is a pure pass rusher who is looking to regain his rookie form when he had 9.5 sacks.
12. CLIFF AVRIL, LIONS – Avril is an active defensive lineman who is coming off his first double digit sack season and who also makes plays in pass defense.
13. CAMERON WAKE, DOLPHINS – Wake moves from LB to DL and got a new contract which makes him a better play this season.
14.OSI UMENYIORA, GIANTS – Had 9 sacks in 9 games played last season. He is playing for a contract which is always good.
15. JJ WATT, TEXANS – Plays in the 3-4 so he is good for pass defenses but will not put up a ton of sacks. He is also dealing with a dislocated elbow suffered in training camp.
16. ROBERT QUINN, RAMS – Coming off a strong rookie season and showed his potential with 4 sacks in a 5 game stretch.
17. HALOTI NGATA, RAVENS – Ngata is the rare inside lineman who just finds himself making plays all over the field. He does not get a lot of sacks, but he fills out the stat sheet.
18. ADRIAN CLAYBORN, BUCS – Had a good rookie season with 7.5 sacks including 4.5 between weeks 11 and 15.
19. JEREMY MINCEY, JAGUARS – Made a major leap in production last season which earned him a new contract. He is capable of double digit sacks but contributes in all scoring categories.
20. CHRIS LONG, RAMS – Long is mostly a pass rusher, but he showed his potential last season with a career high 13 sacks.
21. GREG HARDY, PANTHERS – Not big threat for sacks but Hardy showed he play in space making 50 total tackles and 11 pass defenses.
22. NDAMUKONG SUH, LIONS – Suh saw a dramatic fall in his stats in 2011 and will look to regain his rookie form.
23. DERRICK MORGAN, TITANS – Morgan was coming off a torn ACL last season and did not put up great numbers but with the addition of Kamerion Wembley this year he should have more opportunities.
24. PERNELL MCPHEE, RAVENS – McPhee was not a starter as a rookie, but proved to be effective notching 6 sacks, a forced fumble and 2 pass defenses.
25. JUSTIN SMITH, 49ERS – Smith is a veteran who will give you consistent production with around 65 total tackles, 7 sacks and a few pass defenses.
26. CHANDLER JONES, PATRIOTS – The Patriots moved up in the draft to take Jones and he will gets lots of opportunity as the Patriots defense was horrible last season.
27. BRUCE IRVIN, SEAHAWKS – He is a pure pass rusher entering the league, he might end up being listed as a LB which would kill his potential.
28. JOHN ABRAHAM, FALCONS – This veteran is getting old in the tooth but he has averaged 10 sacks a year over the past 3 seasons.
29. DWIGHT FREENEY, COLTS – Freeney looks like he will be moved to LB in the 3-4 which hurts his value, but as a DL he is mainly just a sack artist and he does not have enough sacks to warrant the attention.
30. QUINTON COPLES, JETS – The rookie is stepping into a good situation with the Jets and should be able to contribute right away.
31. ISREAL IDONJE, BEARS – Idonje benefits from having Peppers playing on the other side of him, but he will surrender snaps to the Bears first round pick Shea McClellin.
32. ANDRE BRANCH, JAGUARS – Should get the opportunity to start in his rookie season and the Jaguars defense needed a face lift and Branch could be a look to the future.
33. ARUTHYA RUBIN, BROWNS – Not a big sack guy with 5 last season but he did have 55 solo tackles to go along with 27 assisted tackles.
34. BRIAN ROBISON, VIKINGS – Playing opposite Jared Allen allowed Robison to have a career year with 8 sacks.
35. CAM JORDAN, SAINTS – Looking to improve in his second season with the Saints and needs to improve his pass rush.
IDPw/BEE 2012 LINEBACKER RANKINGS
1. DESMOND BISHOP, PACKERS – Finished with 115 total tackles (90 solo) in only 13 games last season.
2. D’QWELL JACKSON, BROWNS – Coming off his best professional season with 158 total tackles (116 solo).
3. PATRICK WILLIS, 49ERS – Had hamstring issues that caused him to miss 3 games late, but is healthy will be good for over 100 solo tackles.
4. DARYL WASHINGTON, CARDINALS – Broke out last season with 106 total tackles (94 solo) and contributes in all scoring categories.
5. JAMES LAURINAITIS, RAMS – He was the Rams linebacking corps last season racking up 142 total tackles (105 solo) and is entering the prime of his career.
6. DERRICK JOHNSON, CHIEFS – Scores in all categories and is coming off his best season of his career.
7. SEAN WEATHERSPOON, FALCONS – He is entering his 3rd year and showed last season that he was the best LB the Falcons had and is only going to get better.
8. NAVORRO BOWMAN, 49ERS – Gets the advantage of teams running away from Willis which helped him garner 143 total tackles (111 solo) and added 8 pass defenses.
9. COLIN MCCARTHY, TITANS – Will be the starter at MLB this season and proved he is capable of taking over as he finished with 63 tackles in his final 8 games.
10. DONALD BUTLER, CHARGERS – Consistent player last season finishing with 96 total tackles (78 solo) and contributing in all scoring categories.
11. SEAN LEE, COWBOYS – Burst onto the scene last season and took the job from Bradie James and finished with 105 total tackles (71 solo) and 4 INT.
12. LAWRENCE TIMMONS, STEELERS – Saw his numbers take a dip last season, but should regain his old form and contribute in all categories.
13. PERRY RILEY, REDSKINS – Entering his 3rd season Riley is expected to make the jump this season.
14. CURTIS LOFTON, SAINTS – Lofton is coming off his best season across the board and signed with the Saints who desperately needed some help on defense, so Lofton should continue to post good numbers.
15. BRAIN CUSHINGS, TEXANS – Cushing had a productive season scoring in all categories and with a second year on the inside should see his numbers increase.
16. CHAD GREENWAY, VIKINGS – Greenway is a ball hawking LB as evidenced by his 154 total tackles (89 solo).
17. JAMES ANDERSON, PANTHERS – After a strong season with 145 total tackles (98 solo) Anderson is primed for another year.
18. JEROD MAYO, PATRIOTS – Mayo is a solid LB and will finally get some help around him which should allow him to continue to post good numbers.
19. KARLOS DANSBY, DOLPHINS – Dansby had a good year scoring in all categories and will again be the MLB for the Dolphins, who should be on defense a lot.
20. KELVIN SHEPPARD, BILLS – Entering his second season with the Bills Sheppard will be a starter and have a chance to put up good numbers.
21. LUKE KUECHLY, PANTHERS – The rookie who is ready to step in and be something special.
22. STEPHEN TULLOCH, LIONS – Puts up stats across all categories and had 111 total tackles (84 solo) and plays on a defense where he is under the radar but just makes plays.
23. JON BEASON, PANTHERS – Returning from a torn Achilles Beason might be moved to the outside with Kuechly on the inside, but is still a productive LB.
24. RAY LEWIS, RAVENS – Amazing to believe but Lewis is still productive and if you need a guy for one year…why not Ray?
25. VON MILLER, BRONCOS – Miller is coming off a strong rookie season where he collected 11.5 sacks 3 forced fumbles, 4 pass defenses and 64 total tackles (50 solo) and the defensive rookie of the year.
26. PAT ANGERER, COLTS – Amassed a crazy 148 tackles (78 solo) and with the Colts moving to the 3-4 Angerer should be able to repeat his success. He just suffered a fractured foot in training camp and may miss the first 2 games of the season.
27. PAUL POSLUSZNY, JAGUARS – Is extremely productive when healthy, but if I have to say that then you need to beware.
28. LONDON FLETCHER, REDSKINS – Old veteran who just gets it done year after year and does not look like he is slowing down. He has at least one more in the tank.
29. LAVONTE DAVID, BUCS – David has a chance to step in and be a player as a rookie with the Bucs and their battered defense.
30. DEMECO RYANS, EAGLES – The move to the Eagles will help Ryans stats dramatically as he will be starting in the middle of that defense.
31. ROLANDO MCCLAIN, RAIDERS – McClain stepped up last year and posted 99 tackles (77 solo) and recorded 5 sacks and 14 pass defenses.
32. JAMES HARRISON, STEELERS – Harrison is healthy heading into this year and looking to post similar numbers to his career (70 tackles 10+ sacks).
33. DEMARCUS WARE, COWBOYS – Was a beast rushing the quarterback with 19.5 sacks and only looks to be getting better.
34. ALDON SMITH, 49ERS – As a rookie he showed he can dominate with 14 sacks. He should continue to excel.
35. DAVID HAWTHORNE, SAINTS – Signed with the Saints coming off of 3 seasons in a row with more than 100 total tackles.
36. BOBBY WAGNER, SEAHAWKS – If Wagner wins the job he has a chance to put up good numbers as a rookie.
37. BRANDON SPIKES, PATRIOTS – Has had injury issues but is assured plenty of opportunities on the Patriots defense.
38. NICK BARNETT, BILLS – Coming off a solid season with the Bills where he posted 130 total tackles (78 solo) and he scores across all categories.
39. BRIAN URLACHER, BEARS – Urlacher scores in every possible way and if he stays healthy all year is in line for good stats.
40. REY MAUALUGA, BENGALS – Maualuga has not lived up to his expectations coming into the league, but he is consistent at mid level production.
41. SAM ACHO, CARDINALS – Entering his second season he showed he could be productive with 40 tackles (35 solo) in 10 games while adding 7 sacks.
42. DEMARIO DAVIS, JETS – Has great size and speed and Rex Ryan is looking for ways for him to make an impact.
43. KAVELL CONNER, COLTS – Posted 104 total tackles (50 solo) and is going to move from the outside to the inside in the Colts new 3-4 defense.
44. LANCE BRIGGS, BEARS – Briggs had a solid year in tackles with 105 (86 solo) but had zero sacks and only 1 INT.
45. CLAY MATTHEWS, PACKERS – Matthews saw a slip in his numbers last year and if he is not getting the sacks he is not as strong of a play.
46. LAMAAR WOODLEY, STEELERS – Woodley is a pass rusher as he had 9 sacks in only 10 games last season.
47. MASON FOSTER, BUCS – Foster is entering his second season and should be in the middle of the Bucs defense. He needs to improve his pass coverage or he might get moved to the outside.
48. JUSTIN HOUSTON, CHIEFS – He showed his potential at the end of last season with 5.5 sacks in his last 5 games.
49. COURTNEY UPSHAW, RAVENS – The rookie will be given a chance right away with Suggs out for the season.
50. DEANDRE LEVY, LIONS – Had a career season last year with 109 tackles (73 solo) and looks to build on that this season.
51. BROOKS REED, TEXANS – Showed flashes last season with his 6 sacks all coming between weeks 7 and 12 with a bye week in there and had a sack in every game during that stretch.
52. ROBERT MATHIS, COLTS – Moves to the LB position but is strictly a rush LB.
53. DAVID HARRIS, JETS – He scores in all categories evidenced by his 4 INT, 5 Sacks, 9 pass defenses and 1 defensive TD last season.
54. BRUCE CARTER, COWBOYS – Carter needs to step up this year and prove he is worth his second round draft pick from last year.
55. MYCHAL KENDRICKS, EAGLES – Looks like the rookie will be the starting strong side LB for the Eagles and will have a chance to make an impression.
56. AKEEM DENT, FALCONS – Dent should be the starting MLB for the Falcons which gives him nice potential.
57. DONT’A HIGHTOWER, PATRIOTS – Will start as a rookie and with his versatility should be able to stay on the field for all downs.
58. DARYL SMITH, JAGUARS – The veteran totaled 107 total tackles (74 solo) and scores in all categories and is a good value pick late.
59. JASPER BRINKLEY, VIKINGS – Should be the starting MLB for the Vikings and could be a surprise.
60. MELVIN INGRAM, CHARGERS – He is going to be a rush LB in the 3-4 but will get a chance to play as a rookie.
61. WHITNEY MERCILUS, TEXANS – The rookie is expected to step in and rush the passer from day one.
62. KOA MISI, DOLPHINS – He is entering his third season and is looking to make his first real impact on the league this season.
63. JAMAR CHANEY, EAGLES – He will be the starting WILL LB and that will limit his stats.
64. KEENAN ROBINSON, REDSKINS – He is starting behind London Fletcher but he is the heir apparent to the position and if he does start will put up nice stats as a rookie.
65. TAKEO SPIKES, CHARGERS – The veteran’s best days are behind him, but if you need consistent production and are in a really deep league he could be your guy.
66. KJ WRIGHT, SEAHAWKS – Showed he could contribute as a rookie with 65 total tackles (50 solo) and looks to improve this season.
67. ERIN HENDERSON, VIKINGS – Posted 70 total tackles (44 solo) in limited play last season and has a chance to start this season.
68. MILES BURRIS, RAIDERS – As a rookie will mostly be a special teamer, but will have a chance to see the field if anyone struggles.
69. DARYL SHARPTON, TEXANS – Sharpton is currently battling Bradie James for a starting spot.
70. DJ SMITH, PACKERS – Will be battling for playing time behind AJ Hawk, but could win the job.
71. CASEY MATTHEWS, EAGLES – Entering his second season is currently behind Brian Rolle on the depth chart.
72. SEAN SPENCE, STEELERS – He is behind Larry Foote, but that may not be for long as this rookie may get a chance to contribute this season.
73. JAMES MICHAEL-JOHNSON, BROWNS – Currently behind D’Qwell Jackson on the depth chart.
74. DAN CONNOR, COWBOYS – Expected to start alongside Sean Lee and Bruce Carter but don’t expect big numbers.
75. CHASE BLACKBURN, GIANTS – Has a chance to win a job in camp but most likely will be a special teamer or injury replacement.
IDPw/BEE 2012 DEFENSIVE BACK RANKINGS
1. KAM CHANCELLOR, SEAHAWKS – Broke out last year had 10 tackles in 2 different games and had 4 INT.
2. ERIC BERRY, CHIEFS – Coming off a torn ACL Berry will be healthy this year and proved his worth in his rookie year.
3. MORGAN BURNETT, PACKERS – Had 107 total tackles (78 solo) to go with 3 INT and 11 pass defenses.
4. JAIRUS BYRD, BILLS – Byrd scores in all categories, last year he had 3 INT, 1 sack, 3 forced fumbles, 8 pass defenses and a TD.
5. ERIC WEDDLE, CHARGERS – Weddle is consistent producer who finished with 7 INT and 12 pass defenses.
6. MARK BARRON, BUCS – The rookie will get a chance to start for a Bucs defense that is rebuilding and expect him to get a lot of action.
7. TYVON BRANCH, RAIDERS – Has had over 100 total tackles the past 3 seasons, but only 2 INT during that time.
8. JASON MCCOURTY, TITANS – Had 103 total tackles last season (83 solo), 2 INT, but a very impressive 13 pass defenses.
9. ANTOINE BETHEA, COLTS – Had an amazing 139 total tackles (80 solo) and playing for a bad team in Indy will get plenty of opportunities.
10. CHARLES TILLMAN, BEARS – Tillman scored everywhere last season with 3 INT, 4 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 12 pass defenses and 2 TD.
11. PAT CHUNG, PATRIOTS – Coming back after injury ended his season last year, a healthy Chung should be able to post good numbers.
12. EARL THOMAS, SEAHAWKS – Thomas has improved in each of his first two seasons and those were good for IDP, look for him to build on that this season.
13. ROMAN HARPER, SAINTS – Harper had a solid season with the Saints last year and adds sacks as he had 7.5 last season.
14. CHARLES WOODSON, PACKERS – Expect the 15 year veteran to get picked on this year, which is a good thing.
15. TJ WARD, BROWNS – Coming back healthy this season, if Haden gets the Revis treatment Ward will be busy.
16. GEORGE WILSON, BILLS – Had his best season last year with 106 total tackles (78 solo) and had 4 INT.
17. BRANDON BROWNER, SEAHAWKS – Was fantastic as a rookie notching 6 INT, 23 pass defenses and 2 TD.
18. LADARIUS WEBB, RAVENS – Webb scores everywhere evidenced by his 5 INT, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, 20 pass defenses and 2 TD last season.
19. JOE HADEN, BROWNS – Haden has not yet become the next Revis island, but this may be his last viable year. The stat that stood out last year was his 19 pass defenses.
20. REGGIE NELSON, BENGALS – Had his best season since his rookie season of 2007.
21. DARIAN STEWART, RAMS – Entering his 3rd season he looks to build on his 2011 season where he posted 84 total tackles (67 solo) and 11 pass defenses.
22. KENNY PHILLIPS, GIANTS – Had career highs last year with 4 INT and 11 pass defenses.
23. PATRICK PETERSON, CARDINALS – Had a strong rookie season with 2 INT, 1 sack and 13 pass defenses. If you get credit for his punt returns he had 4 TD.
24. CORTLAND FINNEGAN, RAMS – He is a steady veteran who will give you consistent production, but not many INT.
25. TROY POLAMALU, STEELERS – Polamalu needs to stay healthy to be effective. He can score in all categories but he has to find the tackles as offenses try to avoid him.
26. JIMMY SMITH, RAVENS – Smith could see more action his way with Webb on the other side if he can stay healthy.
27. DANIEL MANNING, TEXANS – Manning had his best days in Chicago and don’t expect him to breakout and jump up this season.
28.RICHARD SHERMAN, SEAHAWKS – Had 4 INT and 17 pass defenses as a rookie last season.
29. DEVIN MCCOURTY, PATRIOTS – Another player who regressed after a nice rookie season of 2010 and needs to step it up this season.
30. KYLE ARRINGTON, PATRIOTS – Coming off his best season as a pro with 88 total tackles (66 solo) 13 pass defenses and 7 INT…had only 1 INT prior to last season.
31. DAWAN LANDRY, JAGUARS – Had solid tackle numbers with 97 total (71 solo), 4 pass defenses and 2 INT.
32. STEPHON GILMORE, BILLS – This rookie was selected 10th overall this year and will be thrown out there, which means the ball will find him…good.
33. BRANDON FLOWERS, CHIEFS – Does not get a lot of tackles but had 4 INT, 20 pass defenses and 1 TD.
34. ANTREL ROLLE, GIANTS – Another veteran who puts up solid tackle numbers and had 96 total tackles (82 solo) last season.
35. AJOR WRIGHT, BEARS – Wright is in a battle for his job and needs to step up this season.
36. BRANDON TAYLOR, CHARGERS – He should get a chance to play as a rookie this season and may be starting before long.
37. MORRIS CLAIBORNE, COWBOYS – He is the shut down corner, but this is a good year to get him, because quarterbacks and receivers will want to see just how good he is this year.
38. ALTERRAUN VERNER, TITANS – He needs to regain his rookie form of 2010 to be viable, all of his stats went down last season.
39. MICHAEL GRIFFIN, TITANS – Saw his numbers take a slide last season and has more competition this season.
40. JONATHAN JOSEPH, TEXANS – Joseph is a decent option as a bye week replacement, not great stats, but consistent.
41. QUINTON CARTER, BRONCOS – As a rookie last season he did a decent job making tackles, but did not record any other stats…0 Pass defenses.
42. JANORIS JENKINS, RAMS – Fell in the draft this year to the second round, but is expected to break camp as a starter and that could mean good upside this season.
43. DASHON GOLDSON, 49ERS – Goldson had a solid season last year with 6 INT, 9 pass defenses, 1 forced fumble and 1 fumble recovery.
44. TRAMON WILLIAMS, PACKERS – Posted a nice season with 4 INT and 22 pass defenses last year.
45. LARON LANDRY, JETS – If he stays healthy he could be a decent 3rd DB.
46. TIM JENNINGS, BEARS – Had his best season last year with 10 pass defenses, 2 INT, 1 forced fumble and 1 fumble recovery.
47. CHARLES GODFREY, PANTHERS – Puts up consistent numbers and can be considered a decent bye week replacement.
48. CHARLIE PEPRAH, PACKERS – Was cut with an injury, wait to see where he lands.
49. BRODNEY POOL, COWBOYS – Was dropped by the Cowboys wait to see where he lands.
50. TERRELL THOMAS, GIANTS – OUT FOR SEASON