The SEC is blessed with outstanding defensive linemen every year, and this season is no exception.
Here are the conference’s top five defensive linemen.
Robert Nkemdiche, Ole Miss (6-4, 296) — He was a highly recruited defensive end coming out of Grayson High School, but he beefed up to nearly 300 pounds, moved inside and has become not only a dominant run stopper, but also a tackle who can pressure QBs.
A’Shawn Robinson, Alabama (6-4, 312) — He’s been making an impact since his freshman year — not many DTs can do that — but he’s used his size and versatility to cause havoc for Alabama’s opponents the past two years.
Myles Garrett, Texas A&M (6-5, 262) — One year was all it took for Garrett to display his pass rushing skills and become one of the SEC’s top sack masters. He finished with 11.5 sacks. As a freshman.
Carl Lawson, Auburn (6-2, 257) — You can’t blame Lawson for Auburn’s poor defensive performance in 2014. He missed the entire season while returning from ACL surgery. The Tigers are glad he’s back.
Derek Barnett, Tennessee (6-3, 257) — Like Garrett, Barnett was dominate as a freshman, finishing his first year at Tennessee with 10 sacks to go with his 20.5 tackles for loss. Look for more of the same this season.