The Denver Broncos have one of the best defensive units in football, but their depth on the defensive line is particularly enviable…
It’s not unfair to say the Denver Broncos have the best defensive front in the entire NFL.
As a matter of fact, there are very few teams that can make an argument against the Broncos as the best defensive front in the NFL, and it all starts with the defensive line.
In the Broncos’ base 3-4 defensive look, the primary starters in 2017 were Derek Wolfe (left defensive end), Domata Peko (nose tackle), and Adam Gotsis (right defensive end).
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That starting unit led a resurgent defensive line that ranked among the best in the NFL in run defense metrics in 2017.
The defensive line in 2017 was even more impressive considering just how far they had fallen the season prior.
In 2016, the Broncos ranked in the middle of the NFL with 4.3 yards per carry allowed defensively. They gave up 15 rushing touchdowns (12th most) and gave up 130.3 yards per game (28th).
In 2017, those numbers skyrocketed.
The Broncos were the stingiest run defense in the NFL last season, ranking at the very top of the league giving up 3.3 yards per carry.
That would have been the best in 2016 as well.
They allowed just nine rushing touchdowns all season, good for sixth-best in the NFL, while also allowing only 89.4 yards per game (fifth-best in the league).
Denver’s defensive line was not just the beneficiary of teams throwing on the Broncos’ defense all the time, either. They faced 428 rushing attempts from opponents.
How did the Broncos do it?
The emergence of Adam Gotsis at defensive end along with key offseason pickups like Domata Peko, Zach Kerr, and Shelby Harris helped propel the Broncos’ defensive line back into the top five of the NFL statistically.
Here are the players that make up an even deeper group on the defensive line for the Broncos in 2018…