You read this title and you all thought well duh its Eric Weddle. I'm not going to argue that he is our best defensive player. Therefore the title should be 'Who is our best defender barring Eric Weddle' but oh well.
I was thinking* about who really is our best defender other than Weddle. It's really quite hard do we really have any other real high quality defenders?.
Firstly i ruled out anyone on the D-Line because I don't think there is anyone on the D-Line that's really great our capable of being our second best defender.
I thought about Shaun Phillips. He was a double digit sack artist only 2 seasons ago. However he only had 3.5 sacks last year and is he really that great an OLB anymore. I'm not sold on his health or ability anymore.
Is it Quentin Jammer?? A 10 year veteran at the CB spot. That is quite an accomplishment but realistically he can't be our second best defender. He's lost a yard of pace and really was never that amazing a player.
Antwan Barnes? 11 sacks hmmm NO I think that's more of a 1 year wonder. He's not even a starter just a 3rd down specialist
Is it Melvin "T-Rex" Ingram. Our new rookie. He's not a starter but he's bound to see a lot of playing time and may become a starter this year. (I'm looking at ur Pre-season play Jarrett Johnson). I really like this kid and I hate people's complaint about his short arms. He is clearly a capable NFL starter and could be much more. However he's only a rookie and has no regular season play to prove his capablity although it's obvious in my mind he will be great.
Takeo "TKO" Spikes popped into my head and then I thought no he's too old. Maybe 5 years ago and despite being a good player still I don't think he's as good as my choice for second best defender.
DONALD BUTLER. I witnessed his strip of Dustin Keller vs Jets on live TV and I thought it proved my thoughts about this guy. He's a really high quality player. He had 96 tackles, 2 sacks and 1 interception last season coming off his injury. That was a severe injury and for him to come back at that level is unbelievable. I can't wait to watch this guy this season as he will be immense**.
Just to clarify I'm not complaining about the lack of superstars on our defense. The salary cap and natural equilibrium ensures that not that many team have 2 or 3 defensive stars barring a few defences.
*I know it's dangerous
** if he can make it through Pre-season (Touch wood)!!