There are always a few defenses that surprise everyone and show huge marked improvement from the year prior. The teams listed below have the best potential to have one of the most improved defenses during the 2020 season and possibly be even one of the best in the league. The NFL defenses listed below are ones fans should keep an eye on this coming season.
NFL Defenses to Watch in 2020
The Indianapolis Colts ranked 16th in yards per game last year and 18th in point per game. They were a middle of the road defense but flashed instances of excellent play that shows they have potential to become better. The Colts have some young talent on defense, led by future superstar Darius Leonard. They also traded their first round pick in the 2020 draft for DeForest Buckner who will be a huge asset for their defensive line.
The Tennessee Titans defense helped slow down Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens in the playoffs in 2019. The defense played with the mentality of bend but don’t break all year. They were ranked 21st in yards per game but 12th in point per game. They have a lot of talent on defense and have added to it during the last few drafts and free agency. The Titans have enough players with potential to be a top five defense during the 2020 season.
The Cleveland Browns did not live up to the expectations in 2019. A big part of their disappointment came from the sub-par play of their defense. The Browns once again seem to have one of the best rosters in football, at least on paper. They lost a very solid starter when Nick Kwiatkoski left during free agency and they tried to replace him through the draft with Jacob Phillips out of LSU. The Browns have a very good pass rush led by former first overall pick Myles Garrett. Cleveland’s defensive backs have a lot of potential between Greedy Williams, Grant Delpit, and Denzel Ward. The Browns major weakness will be trying to stop the run and they need someone to step up and fill the hole Kwiatkoski left.
The Dallas Cowboys are coming off an above average year defensively where they finished ranked ninth in yards per game and 11th in point per game. Talent wise they have one of the best front sevens in football. Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith are two of the best young linebackers in the league. DeMarcus Lawrence, Tyrone Crawford, Dontari Poe, and Gerald McCoy form quite the fearsome foursome for the Cowboys. “America’s Team’s” biggest problem defensively was the play of the defensive backs in 2019 and that may continue to be a huge problem for them in 2020 as well.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may have had the biggest free agency in the NFL by signing Tom Brady in free agency and trading for the rights to Rob Gronkowski. Everyone is talking about their offense, and people will continue to do so, but the Bucs have a defense that might surprise some people this year. Last year they ranked 15th in yards per game but 29th in points per game. They struggled with inconsistency all season, but that is expected from a defense that is as young as they are. Similar to the Cowboys they have a spectacular front seven but their defensive backs are shaky at best and also very young. They will need to see a huge step up from their young defensive backs to be an elite defense in 2020.