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Position Rankings : End

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/positi...ankings/DEF/DE Clark Judge ranks the NFL's top defensive players at each position. J. Peppers (US Presswire) 1. Julius Peppers, Carolina: He's always around the ball, producing a team-high 13 sacks, 38 quarterback hits, three forced fumbles and two recoveries. What ...

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Old 07-09-2007, 03:54 PM   #1
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Position Rankings : End

http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/positi...ankings/DEF/DE

Clark Judge ranks the NFL's top defensive players at each position.

J. Peppers
(US Presswire)
1. Julius Peppers, Carolina: He's always around the ball, producing a team-high 13 sacks, 38 quarterback hits, three forced fumbles and two recoveries. What I like most is that he never leaves the field. He can play the run. He's a top pass rusher. He can drop into coverage. And he's adept at batting down passes, with a team-high 12 last season.

2. Jason Taylor, Miami: The NFL Defensive Player of the Year at 32, and, yes, there's a reason. He's a ferocious pass rusher who disrupts everything. Tackles. Forced fumbles. Sacks. You name it. Hey, he even scored twice last year -- half the total of Chris Chambers. He has outstanding speed and quickness and has made himself into a decent run defender.

3. Dwight Freeney, Indianapolis: So he didn't have a great season. He has produced four in a row of double-digit sacks and led the club in pressures last year with 33. He's fast, quick and tenacious and hasn't missed a game in three years. One critic labeled him as one-dimensional, but so what? He explodes to the pocket and is brutal to defend.

4. Aaron Kampman, Green Bay: I love this guy's motor. He always, always is working. You have to love his productivity, too. He was second in the NFL in sacks in 2006 with 15.5 and was the Packers' third-leading tackler. Translation: He plays the run as well as the pass.

5. Will Smith, New Orleans: He was named to the Pro Bowl because he's the top defender on a club that didn't play much defense in 2006. I know, you want to talk about Charles Grant, and he's solid. But Smith is quick, pursues well, reads well, works hard and produces. Look at last year's stats: He led the Saints in sacks, not Grant.

Next best: Alex Brown, Chicago -- There is talent all around the Bears defense, with Brown and Tommie Harris the team's top linemen. He's quick, physical and accelerates to ball carriers. Plus, he's a two-way defensive end. He can rush the pocket and is solid against the run.
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