With the 2020 regular season in the rearview mirror, which players were selected on defense for our NFL All-Pro team? Let’s take a look at the players making up our All-Pro defensive starters and backups from the 2020 regular season. If you are a loyalist towards the offense, no worries, PFN has its nominations for All-Pro offense as well.
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NFL First-Team All-Pro Defensive Tackle: Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams & Leonard Williams, New York Giants
Aaron Donald was a simple first selection for the first of our defensive players in the 2020 NFL All-Pro team. He led the position in sacks with 13.5 and added 14 tackles for loss. He missed just 3 tackles all season, racking up 45 tackles and an impressive 45 pressures.
Leonard Williams is somewhat of a surprise inclusion as part of the defense on our NFL All-Pro team. His performance in 2020 was a big step up on the rest of his career, with 11.5 sacks, 41 pressures. He has also missed just 2 tackles while making 59, including 14 tackles for loss.
Second Team | DeForest Buckner, Indianapolis Colts & Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs
The biggest example of just how good DeForest Buckner was this season was Derrick Henry’s performance when Buckner was missing. Henry performed well in the first matchup, but he was incredible in the game Buckner missed.
Chris Jones finished the season with 7.5 sacks and 43 pressures. However, he missed 10 tackles compared to 36 made tackles, a missed tackle rate of 21.7 percent.
Edge Rusher: T.J. Watt, Pittsburgh Steelers & Shaquil Barrett, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
T.J. Watt was another simple selection on the defense of our 2020 NFL All-Pro team. Watt led the league in sacks with 15 and pressures with 56. He added 20 QB knockdowns and 20 hurries with 53 combined tackles.
Barrett backed up a superb 2019 season with 8 sacks and 41 pressures. He blitzed an incredible 124 times, tied for first in the league with 24 hurries, resulting in 9 QB knockdowns. He added 57 combined tackles, including 11 tackles for loss.
Second Team | Trey Hendrickson, New Orleans Saints & Joey Bosa, Los Angeles Chargers
Hendrickson turned in the best season of his career with 13.5 sacks. He tied for 15th in the league with 32 pressures. However, he managed just nine hurries and QB knockdowns, as well as just 25 tackles. Despite only playing 12 games, Bosa managed 7.5 sacks, 43 pressures, 18 hurries, and 17 QB knockdowns.
NFL First-Team All-Pro Linebacker: Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers & Eric Kendricks, Minnesota Vikings
Warner had an impressive all-around season. He totaled 125 combined tackles, adding 7 QB hits, 16 pressures, and a single sack. In coverage, he had 2 interceptions, while allowing a completion rate of 62.3 percent.
In 11 games, Eric Kendricks had 107 combined tackles and missed just 8 tackles. When it comes to coverage, Kendricks allowed a 71.4 percent completion rate with 3 interceptions on 42 targets. His pass-rush numbers are somewhat lacking, but he was on pace for over 150 combined tackles this season.
Second Team | Darius Leonard, Indianapolis Colts, Demario Davis, New Orleans Saints & Bobby Wagner, Seattle Seahawks
The linebacker position was one of the most loaded positions on defense in our 2020 NFL All-Pro team. Leonard had 132 tackles, 3 pressures, and 7 tackles for loss. Demario Davis had 10 tackles for loss, 119 combined tackles, and 4 sacks. Bobby Wagner had 138, 3 sacks, 11 pressures, and allowed a 64.2 percent completion rate.
Cornerback: Xavien Howard, Miami Dolphins, Jaire Alexander, Green Bay Packers & Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams
To match the modern NFL, we expanded the cornerback position on our 2020 NFL All-Pro defense to include three names. Howard led the league in interceptions with 10, while also allowing just a 51.5 percent completion rate on 101 targets.
Alexander allowed just a 51.3 percent completion rate on 80 targets. He allowed just 4.7 yards per target and held opposing QBs to a passer rating of 67.4.
Ramsey allowed just a 50.7 completion rate on 71 targets. Opposing QBs had a 68.6 passer rating, and Ramsey allowed 5 yards per target.
Second Team | Tre’Davious White, Buffalo Bills & L’Jarius Sneed, Kansas City Chiefs
The gap between the top three corners in our 2020 NFL All-Pro defense and the next tier was surprisingly larger than expected. While White allowed just a 56.9 percent completion rate, he also allowed 7 yards per target and 4 touchdowns.
Sneed was the surprise package of the 2020 NFL season and deserved recognition in our All-Pro team. The rookie corner made an impact right from Week 1. Snead finished with 3 interceptions in 9 games, allowed a 59.6 percent completion rate, and 4.8 yards per target
NFL First-Team All-Pro Safety: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh Steelers & Jessie Bates III, Cincinnati Bengals
Fitzpatrick had another impressive year, with 4 touchdowns, a forced fumble, and 79 combined tackles. At this point in his career, he is a defender that opponents have to game plan around, and he was an easy selection among eligible players at safety on the defensive side of our 2020 All-Pro team.
Jessie Bates III had another super season in 2020. The Bengals’ safety added another 3 interceptions, 109 combined tackles, and 2 tackles for loss. He deflected 15 passes, which tied for sixth in the league, and added a forced fumble for good measure. He has the potential to be a stalwart on defense in All-Pro teams over the coming years.
Second Team | Tyrann Mathieu, Kansas City Chiefs & Rodney McLeod, Philadelphia Eagles
The selection for the third option behind Fitzpatrick and Bates on the defensive side of our 2020 NFL All-Pro team was also a simple choice from the remaining players available. Mathieu pulled in 6 interceptions but just missed out on an All-Pro selection with his 11.4 percent missed tackle rate.
Additionally, McLeod had an impressive season for the Eagles. He allowed a completion rate of just 48.6 percent at 4 yards per target with just 1 touchdown allowed. He racked up 66 tackles, with a missed tackle rate of 8.3 percent.
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