Honorable Mentions: Michael Bennett, Stephon Tuitt, Jabaal Sheard
- Myles Garrett
2017 Stats: 11g, 1 FF, 7 Sacks, 19 Tackles
The #1 pick in last years draft started his career with an ankle injury that sidelined him for 5 games. His very first play back though, he sacked the quarterback with ease. I expect to see a better and healthier Myles Garrett this year as he looks to turn around this promising Browns team.
- Yannick Ngakoue \yah-NEEK-in-GAH-kway\
2017 Stats: 16g, 6 FF, 2 FR, 1TD, 12 Sacks, 24 Tackles
Ngakoue is just one of many scary defenders playing for the Jacksonville Jaguars and earned his first Pro Bowl appearance this year. While playing on the other side of Calais Campbell, opposing QBs have no chance to stand in the pocket comfortably. While he’s not a household name, he was rated 88th in the NFL players Top 100 Players. I definitely expect more big things from Yannick and the rest of the Jaguars.
- Melvin Ingram
2017 Stats: 16g, 1 FF, 2 FR, 1TD, 10.5 Sacks, 43 Tackles
Melvin Ingram, alongside Joey Bosa, make up one of the most disruptive pass rushes in the NFL. Ingram is not only very good at getting to the QB but also having enough football IQ to follow the ball and consistently make tackles. It was this type of play that allowed him to make his first Pro Bowl team in 2017. The Chargers have a very strong defense and a ton of offensive talent which could lead them to a playoff berth in LA.
- Everson Griffen
2017 Stats: 15g, 3 FF, 13 Sacks, 31 Tackles
Everson Griffen is a dominate defensive presence on one of the best defenses in the league. Griffen has been a Pro Bowler 3 years in a row. Unfortunately, the Vikings defense happened to fall apart against the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Conference Championship game. The Vikings look to repeat their success in this upcoming season with Griffen leading the way on defense.
- Chandler Jones
2017 Stats: 16g, 2 FF, 17 Sacks, 51 Tackles
Chandler Jones was surprisingly traded from the 2016 Champion Patriots to the Cardinals last offseason. Since then Jones has been the best RE in the league. With a league leading 17 sacks, Jones recorded his second Pro Bowl season and was added to his first All Pro team. As the undoubted leader of the Cardinals defense, Chandler has a lot of work in store for him to sure up their defense. Rookie QB, Josh Rosen and returning star RB David Johnson should help the offense but the loss of Tyrann Mathieu will hurt the overall Cardinals team.
written by: Jack Cashman