NFL Draft 2022: Top-10 Positional Rankings – Defence

NFL Draft 2022: Top-10 Positional Rankings – Defence
Reading Time: 3 minutes.

Our first edition of the top-10 positional rankings in the 2022 NFL Draft is brought to you by our NFL Draft & College Football editor, Owain Jones. He takes you through the top 10 players at each position who could be on your team’s roster in 2022.

The 2022 NFL Draft will be loaded with defensive talent. If you are a team with problems on the defensive side of the ball and have multiple picks, then you will be rubbing your hands together!

That is true specifically of the trenches. defensive ends/edge rushers are plentiful and dominate our early Top-50 Big Board. Cornerback is also strong at the very top and we also have a much better safety class than we have seen in some time.

*Although we have started to see some prospects declare. some prospects included in these lists could still choose to return to school*

Here are our Defensive top-10 positional rankings.

POSITIONAL RANKINGS

DEFENSIVE TACKLES

Texas A&M's DeMarvin Leal flipped for football at a young age
Demarvin Leal can play anywhewre across the defensive line. Image Credit: Houston Chronicle
1.DEMARVIN LEALTEXAS A&M
2.JORDAN DAVISGEORGIA
3.DEVONTE WYATTGEORGIA
4.PHIDARIAN MATHISALABAMA
5.LOGAN HALLHOUSTON
6.PERRION WINFREYOKLAHOMA
7.TRAVIS JONESUCONN
8.TYLER DAVISCLEMSON
9.CALIJAH KANCEYPITTSBURGH
10.COLBY WOODENAUBURN

It has been the case now for multiple draft cycles, but the defensive tackle class again lacks some quality. DeMarvin Leal has the makings of a top prospect and Jordan Davis a juggernaut, the rest will be drafted later on. Perrion Winfrey has dropped since preseason after a rough 2021 season.

DEFENSIVE ENDS/EDGE RUSHERS

Kayvon Thibodeaux enters 2022 NFL draft: Where could the Oregon Ducks star  land? - oregonlive.com
Kayvon Thibodeaux is our #1 overall prospect. Image Credit: Oregon Live
1.KAYVON THIBODEAUXOREGON
2.AIDAN HUTCHINSONMICHIGAN
3.GEORGE KARLAFTISPURDUE
4.DAVID OJABOMICHIGAN
5.KINGSLEY ENAGBARESOUTH CAROLINA
6.NIK BONITTOOKLAHOMA
7.TRAVON WALKERGEORGIA
8.MYJAI SANDERSCINCINNATI
9.JERMAINE JOHNSONFLORIDA ST
10.ARNOLD EBIKETIEPENN ST

This defensive end/edge rusher class has star quality spread throughout. All 10 prospects feature on our first top-50 big board in a studded class. It appears Kayvon Thibodeaux and Aidan Hutchinson will be locked in a battle for the #1 overall pick, while we could see many others go in the first round.

LINEBACKERS

Linebacker Devin Lloyd leads Utah defense against Aztecs - The San Diego  Union-Tribune
Devin Lloyd has been colossal for Utah this season. Image Credit: San Diego Union-Tribune
1.DEVIN LLOYDUTAH
2.NAKOBE DEANGEORGIA
3.BRANDON SMITHPENN ST
4.HENRY TO’OTO’OALABAMA
5.CHRISTIAN HARRISALABAMA
6.LEO CHENALWISCONSIN
7.OWEN PAPPOEAUBURN
8.BRIAN ASAMOAHOKLAHOMA
9.PAYTON WILSONNC STATE
10.CHAD MUMAWYOMING

Both Nakobe Dean and Devin Lloyd are the headline acts and have first round potential. The others have quality too. You can expect starting calibre linebackers into day 3. There is something for everyone in this linebacker class who have great mental processing and athletic traits.

CORNERBACKS

Andrew Booth currently tops a good cornerback class at the top. Image Credit: Clemsonsports
1.ANDREW BOOTH CLEMSON
2.DEREK STINGLEYLSU
3.AHMAD GARDNERCINCINNATI
4.KAIIR ELAMFLORIDA
5.ROGER MCCREARYAUBURN
6.TRENT MCDUFFIEWASHINGOTN
7.MARTIN EMERSONMISSISSIPPI ST
8.DERION KENDRICKGEORGIA
9.KYLER GORDONWASHINGTON
10.MYKAEL WRIGHTOREGON

Ranking Andrew Booth over Derek Stingley may raise some eyebrows, but the Clemson Tiger has been a dynamic playmaker throughout his college career. Stingley has been impacted by yet another injury in 2021. Him being the first corner off the board may not be the slam dunk many thought it would be.

SAFETIES

Notre Dame's Kyle Hamilton reflects on finding success with Irish football  | NBC Sports
Kyle Hamilton is currently our #2 overall prospect. Image Credit: NBC Sports
1.KYLE HAMILTONNOTRE DAME
2.JAQUAN BRISKERPENN ST
3.DAXTON HILLMICHIGAN
4.JORDAN BATTLEALABAMA
5.LEWIS CINEGEORGIA
6.VERONE MCKINLEYOREGON
7.JALEN CATALONARKANSAS
8.BRANDON JOSEPHNORTHWESTERN
9.JALEN PITREBAYLOR
10.TYKEE SMITHGEORGIA

It will be repeated by all draft analysts here at NinetyNineYards.com, all draft season. Kyle Hamilton is a generation prospect. The rest of this safety group is also blessed with quality and we could see multiple players at the position taken higher than usual.

You can see our early 2022 NFL Draft Top-50 Big Board here.

What do you make of our current Top-10 Positional Rankings? Let us know over on Twitter @NinetynineYards and @Owain_Jones_

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