The Denver Broncos had the most feared front seven in the NFL just two seasons ago, but with the loss of Malik Jackson and Danny Trevathan teams found plenty of room to run in 2016. That is likely the primary reason why the Broncos front seven went from first on PFF’s front seven list to seventh.
7. Denver Broncos
Von Miller is as effective as any at getting to the quarterback, and he has graded at an elite level in every season of his career, while his pass rush productivity of 14.4 was surpassed by only Khalil Mack (15.0) last season. DeMarcus Ware retired, but young talents Shane Ray and Shaq Barrett provide a solid edge rotation. The interior of the defensive line was a weakness last season, and it remains to be seen if any of the journeymen acquisitions such as Billy Winn or Zach Kerr can step up their game on the inside.
Pro Football Focus, in my opinion, was rather generous to the Broncos here. There is no guarantee their free agent acquisitions will fortify the issues the front seven had last season, so to rank seventh overall and first out of all the AFC West teams is good to see.
Pairing solid defensive line play with the dominance of the No Fly Zone, the Broncos defense should again finish near the top of the NFL rankings in 2017. Which means all this team needs is for the offense to start scoring some points.
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