NFL Top 5 Defenses After Week 3 | Eagles Record Nine Sacks In Dismantling Of Commanders, Body Bag Game Part II

In a league predicated heavily on offense, defense still plays a vital role in how far a team goes come playoff time. Take for instance the last two Super Bowl champions. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Los Angeles Rams were led by stout, game-changing defenses to accompany high-scoring offenses.

This year, the return of defense seems to be in heavy rotation, as offenses have struggled to get going around the league.

1. Philadelphia Eagles

Philly allowed 35 points in their Week 1 win over the Detroit Lions. In a game they thoroughly controlled, the final score isn’t indicative of the Eagles’ dominance. Since then the Eagles defense has put the hammer down, allowing just 13 points in wins over the Vikings and Commanders. Philly has also forced five turnovers the past two games as well.

Having three top flight corners in Darius “Big Play” Slay, James Bradberry and Chauncey Gardner-Johnson allows the pass rush to thrive. 

Edge rusher Brandon Graham was NFC Defensive Player of the Week for his 2.5 sack and five QB-hit performance on Sunday.

2. Dallas Cowboys

Led by reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year Micah Parsons, Dan Quinn’s defense is even better. The way teams have to account for Parsons is opening it up for others to flourish on the Boys defense. On Monday night they tallied 24 QB pressures, second-most in the NFL in the last two seasons. Quinn’s defense is active, aggressive and stingy, having held the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cincinnati Bengals to a combined 36 points the first two weeks.

3. San Francisco 49ers

Albeit in an ugly 11-10 loss to the Denver Broncos, the Niners defense was dominant, as they’ve been just about all season. Their pass rush led by Nick Bosa is hellacious, and they’re allowing just 148 yards per game. They’ve accrued eight sacks and forced three turnovers. They’re also allowing a league-low 2.8 yards per rush. This defense under second-year coordinator DeMeco Ryans is doing everything in its power to enhance his head coach possibilities.

4. Denver Broncos

As the offense struggles to find its identity under first-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett and Wilson, the defense continues to carry the team. They’re allowing just 170 yards passing per game and holding teams to a 26.5 percent third-down conversions. Edge rusher Bradley Chubb looks healthy and spry, and that should bode well going forward for the Broncos defensively.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Defensively they’ve looked like the unit that terrorized the league in 2020 en route to a Super Bowl win. They’re stopping the run, rushing the passer and shutting teams down vertically. Led by their all-world linebacker duo of LaVante David and Devin White, the two most complete linebackers in the league, this defense is special. And once Brady and the offense get healthy this team has a great shot at ending up in Glendale for Super Bowl 57.

Honorable Mention:

Green Bay Packers

Buffalo Bills

Los Angeles Rams

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