Cornerback Adoree’ Jackson is another standout player in the secondary. leads the way, and he will look to get his play to elite status in Year 2 after posting an 86.7 PFF grade in 2019 that ranked 11th at the position. when he ranked the league's best cornerbacks. if Houston gets back to the playoffs again, The “Coaching, Not Personnel” tier on offense, put in a bad position by the offense all year, in a pandemic season with significant continuity from last year, Baltimore’s defense outplays its elite offense. Since his second year in 2017, Buckner has been the 13th-most valuable interior defensive lineman. From that point on (including postseason), he tied for the second-best coverage grade at the position.
He certainly proved he could be one of the best deep safeties in the game for Pittsburgh. It's the secondary that is really what's going to make or break the Bears' 2020 season, though. The Cowboys got great value for Diggs in the back half of the second-round, as he was a first-round talent in PFF's eyes. DEFENSE WINS FOOTBALL GAMES!
Since joining forces with Bill Belichick in 2017, Gilmore has tied for the highest coverage grade at the position and has produced the second-most combined total of pass breakups and interceptions (47). He may not be an elite pass-rusher — he's primarily a run-stuffer, and a very effective one at that — but he is still productive in that facet. After a few years of subpar play and one year flirting with success, Nelson thrived in the Steelers' defense last year, ending the season ranked seventh in coverage grade. The other piece of the interior duo, Stephon Tuitt, will also hope to build off what was a career year. The secondary was set to see two new faces with former Minnesota Vikings Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander securing starting spots, but Waynes tore his pectoral and will miss a big part of the season. The Giants' recent signing of Logan Ryan is interesting and might end up a positive acquisition, depending on where they play him. Reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year Nick Bosa leads the way, and he will look to get his play to elite status in Year 2 after posting an 86.7 PFF grade in 2019 that ranked 11th at the position. Edge rusher Von Miller leads the way, and while he had the worst season of his career last year, he was still an effective pass-rusher.
He produced the seventh-most pressures at the position, with 77, though It was the first time in his career that he failed to produce a PFF grade above 90.0. Meanwhile, Harris was a great free-agency signing for Los Angeles this past offseason. The team also now has the perfect modern-day linebacker in rookie Isaiah Simmons, but they need big years out of Peterson and Murphy. He produced the third-best coverage grade at the position, recording more combined pass breakups and interceptions in the process (15). Young is easily the best pass-rusher we have ever seen in the PFF College era.
He's produced a 92.3 pass-rush grade since 2018 when playing 0/1-technique, recording 47 pressures in the process (nine more than second, only one has over 30). Safety Landon Collins was his normal self in the box against the run in 2019, but he had a down year from a coverage perspective, producing his lowest coverage grade since his rookie year (60.6). Jacksonville gutted their its and is seemingly tanking for Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. That invited more opportunities for wideouts to beat him and subsequently lowered his grade. Overall, Washington’s defense has the boom-or-bust tag ahead of the 2020 season. may have had a few lucky turnovers last season, but that's not to say that he didn't play like one of the league's best safeties. but needs to show improvement in Pagano's diverse coverage scheme in 2020. And just as they were for the offensive side of the ball, a number of factors were considered when forming these rankings, such as PFF play-by-play grading, PFF WAR added and lost, playcaller and per-play efficiency in 2019. Buffalo’s defense, specifically their secondary, was the reason why they were able to clinch a playoff berth in 2019. Since pivoting to outside corner in 2018, Jones has been the third-highest-graded player at the alignment behind only Stephon Gilmore and Richard Sherman. For perspective, only one cornerback produced a forced incompletion rate higher than 24% in 2019. , one of the league's most underrated corners entering the 2020 season. The unit is led by Kenny Clark, who has been the league's best pass-rushing nose tackle as of late. Cornerback A.J. The edge duo of Za'Darius Smith and Preston Smith also impressed in their first year with the team, combining for a whopping 148 pressures in regular-season play. The Panthers used all seven 2020 draft picks on defense, the first team in history to do so. Add in a return to form for CB Joe Harden and a second-year improvement from Devin Bush, and this defense has no weak spot. Luckily for them, though, the franchise still boasts one of the league's best secondaries. His grade at outside cornerback over the last two years ranks 12th among qualifying players at the position. To rise up these ranks, Tennessee will need strong years from both Malcolm Butler and Kristian Fulton. The Titans have a pretty good secondary offset by a weak pass rush. He intercepted four passes and forced three incompletions while allowing only six total catches. Kevin Toliver would be the next man up in the event of injury and has been a poor performer thus far in his limited NFL career, putting together a 48.7 coverage grade on his limited reps. Slot corner Buster Skrine is also a concern after getting peppered there, once again, in 2020. They made a big-time splash signing in cornerback Byron Jones, and he will provide a huge impact to the secondary right away. The defensive line produced just the 25th-best pass-rush grade in 2019, and two of its top three pressure leaders from that team, Jurrell Casey and Cameron Wake, are no longer with the team. We weren’t big fans of the move, but Indianapolis certainly beefed up its defensive line this offseason by acquiring DeForest Buckner for their 13th overall pick. This has become an unfortunate common trend for the franchise. The near-350-pounder is coming off a career year in which he was the sixth-highest graded player at his position. The edge duo of. Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram can be the best pass rush in the league, while Casey Heyward and Chris Harris are outstanding corners.
From that point on, Hill finished eighth in PFF grade and fifth in catch rate allowed (45.1%). Whether he sees substantial action there or comes in and mans the outside when needed, Tennessee needs him to be the fringe top-10 prospect we pegged him to be. Opposite him is Troy Hill, one of the league's most underrated corners entering the 2020 season. The linebacker unit is underwhelming on paper and desperately needs long-time veteran Thomas Davis Sr. to get back to the top-tier play we routinely saw from him with Ron Rivera in Carolina as opposed to his average play in 2019 with the Chargers.
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