Top 10 DBs in the NFL – Best Defensive Backs in the NFL in 2012

Last Updated: August 30th, 2012 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist)
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Ed Reed RavensWhether it be the art of the interception, the thrill of the corner blitz, or the style involved with coming up to defend the run, defensive backs have to do just about everything in the NFL. Here’s our list of the Top 10 defensive backs in the NFL, including some of the best defensive players in the entire league.

1: Darrell Revis, New York Jets: Being on Revis Island definitely isn’t a place that you want to be. It happens to be that Revis’ numbers keep going down year after year, but that’s a testament to the fact that no one is throwing the ball his way. It is legitimately impossible for even the best quarterback to get the job done with his best receiver, and Revis really takes half of the field away. This is definitely one of the best corners in the league, and it is most certainly one of the most explosive defensive players in the NFL as well.

2: Nnamdi Asomugha, Philadelphia Eagles: Asomugha is another one of these players that just doesn’t get the stats that you would figure thanks to the fact that he just doesn’t get thrown at. It was a bit of a frustrating first season last year in the City of Brotherly Love for Asomugha, as he is under a lot more pressure now than he was when he was with Oakland. Still, this is a great corner that has massive shutdown skills, and he has a chance to become the best corner in the league with some more work.

3: Joe Haden, Cleveland Browns: There aren’t a lot of these draft picks that have worked out for the Browns over the course of the last few years, but Haden is most certainly one of them. The former Florida Gator is quietly becoming one of the best cover corners in the league, and he tends to have a nose for the football. We might be overrating Haden just a bit, but we think that he is one of the best kept secrets that the league has to offer.

4: Ed Reed, Baltimore Ravens: Reed is probably at the tail end of his career, but quarterbacks still think twice when they throw the ball in his direction. The former Miami Hurricane still has this uncanny ability to jump the snap count, and it feels like five or six times per year that he gets into the backfield before a quarterback is even able to take three steps. He’ll help in the run and the pass, and he has this swagger about him. Reed is still absolutely one of the best defensive backs in the NFL.

5: Johnathan Joseph, Houston Texans: For years and years, the Texans really struggled to get cornerbacks to be able to stick with some of the big receivers in the AFC South. Now, they finally have one. Joseph was a Pro Bowler last year, and he is already the best defensive back that Houston has ever had. Joseph had four interceptions last year, and though that wasn’t one of the best marks in the league, his corner skills are definitely out of this world at this point.

6: Kyle Arrington, New England Patriots: The New England secondary is a gambling unit, and it is a unit that has been taught to do whatever it can to get the ball back in QB Tom Brady’s hands. Not only did Arrington end up with 88 tackles last year, but he also tied for the league lead with seven picks to boot. In terms of sheer talent, Arrington might not quite bit there at this point. However, he is a gambler and really can change a game, and often times, he does just that.

7: Charles Woodson, Green Bay Packers: The Green Bay defense had a brutal year in 2011, and part of it might have been Woodson’s transition from corner to safety. Still, the Packers know that they are going to have to get the job done on this side of the ball at some point, and Woodson is likely the man that can turn the whole thing around. He is aging for sure, but his covering abilities are still outstanding, especially for a safety.

8: Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh Steelers: The Pittsburgh defense isn’t quite as good as it has been over the course of the last few years, but Polamalu is still the MVP of this unit, which is still one of the nastiest in the league. Just like Reed, Polamalu is a future Hall of Famer, and he is really one of the emotional cogs of this unit. The argument could be made that Ryan Clark is the best DB of the bunch, but we still think that Polamalu is the most important player this year for the Steelers.

9: Carlos Rogers, San Francisco 49ers: The 49ers took a massive jump last year to be one of the best defenses in the league. Rogers has been around now for a few years, but it looks like he really has a home now in San Francisco. He never really found a home with the Redskins, but playing next to a ferocious front seven, the former Auburn Tiger really has had the ability to get the job done.

10: Drayton Florence, Detroit Lions: The Lions haven’t had a great corner over the course of the last several years, but bringing in Florence is the hope that this franchise has to get the job done. He had 17 picks over the course of the first seven years of his career, and Florence is still one of the best cover corners that the league has to offer. He’ll be a key cog for Detroit this year, and if he doesn’t end up getting the job done, this could be yet another year in which the Lions really have no choice but to outscore everyone in shootouts.

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Posted in NFL Football - Last Updated on Thursday, August 30th, 2012 @ 7:18 pm (EST)
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