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Fantasy Football Rankings 2024: IDP defensive line tiers

2T0YCN1 Las Vegas Raiders' Maxx Crosby and Adam Butler celebrate a stop for a loss during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers Monday, Oct. 9, 2023, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/David Becker)

• The volume and pass rush kings lead the way: Maxx Crosby and T.J. Watt continue to be the best bets to make for IDP this season.

• New names make their case for the crown: Aidan Hutchinson, Will Anderson and Jermaine Johnson, among others, ascend the ranks as they enter their primes and come off of encouraging seasons.

• Get a head start on fantasy football: Use PFF's fantasy football mock draft simulator to create real live mock draft simulations to get ready for your live draft!

Estimated Reading Time: 13 minutes

Breaking fantasy football rankings down into tiers helps fantasy managers better understand what separates each group and how to value each player at the position for this coming season.

Referenced scoring uses the settings below, with a link to all point leaders for 2022 and 2023 (min. 100 defensive snaps) here.

PFF-preferred IDP scoring:
DL 2.5 1.25 5 1 2
LB 1.5 0.75 4 1 2
DB 2 1 4 1 2

Tier 1: The elite eight

Rank Position Player Team
1 ED1 Maxx Crosby LV
2 ED2 T.J. Watt PIT
3 ED3 Aidan Hutchinson DET
4 ED4 Micah Parsons DAL
5 ED5 Nick Bosa SF
6 ED6 Myles Garrett CLV
7 ED7 Josh Allen JAX
8 ED8 Danielle Hunter HST

The top choices heading into this year all easily cleared double-digit points per game in 2023 thanks to high-end pass rushing and/or strong tackle production. When it comes to locked-in weekly starters along the defensive line, these are the clear top choices to not leave starting lineups. All eight players ranked in the top 10 in expected sacks in 2023 as well, which is the most stable predictive metric for future sacks. 

Both Maxx Crosby and T.J. Watt have been among the most productive players at their position for several years running. They each have the big-play upside to go along with workhorse playing time that allows for strong tackle floors. IDP managers can’t go wrong with either as their top choice on the board.

Aidan Hutchinson led the position in expected sacks last season (15.9) thanks to a combination of high-end playing time and elite pass-rush metrics. Hutchinson posted a 91.2 pass-rush grade, a 21.3% win rate and 101 total pressures in 2023, which all ranked top-five at his position. With Hutchinson coming away with only 11.5 sacks on the year — 4.4 below expected — IDP managers should expect him to come through this season with his best year yet. 

The usual top choices — Micah Parsons, Nick Bosa and Myles Garrett — continue to be among the best picks in IDP because they provide elite pass-rush upside along with a track record of high-end consistency as perennial Defensive Player-of-the-Year candidates. Parsons gets the slight edge here as the best tackler of the three.

Josh Allen and Danielle Hunter also provide the best combination of pass-rush metrics, playing time and tackling ability remaining to fit inside this top tier. While there are other top performers in these categories from last season, they are projected for a bit of regression this coming season. Allen and Hunter don't have the same concerns because they should continue to play a high majority of snaps while producing comfortable EDGE1 numbers for the year. 


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