Halfway through the 2021 NFL season, you start to figure out which teams are reliable and which ones play inconsistent football. One way to determine this is by looking at NFL defense rankings.
BetMGM’s latest NFL odds have the Buffalo Bills as the favorite to win the Super Bowl despite a devastating loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars last week.
Are they favorites because they have one of the best defenses in the NFL? Let’s take a look at the best of what the league has to offer.
Objectively speaking, this is one of the league’s best defenses, as they lead the NFL in almost every relevant defensive statistic. For example, the Bills lead the league in points allowed per game (14.8), total yards per game allowed (262.6), passing yards allowed (177), and turnover margin (+11).
Buffalo does not have any players that jump out at you, like T.J. Watt, but their secondary has been notably dangerous thanks to safeties Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer. They have six interceptions combined this season.
The Bills have not been perfect this season, but if their secondary continues to play at this level, they should be able to make a deep run in the playoffs.
This may not be a team that automatically makes you think defense, but the Cardinals have been putting up some of the league’s best numbers.
Arizona has a dangerous front seven, with linebackers Markus Golden and Chandler Jones taking the league by storm with 15 sacks between them. Recently, Jones became the franchise’s all-time sack leader.
On top of this pair, they had free-agent acquisition, J.J. Watt, in the first half of the season. But, unfortunately, he was placed on injured reserve.
The Cardinals are third in the NFL in points allowed per game (17.2) and are third in the NFL in takeaways (17). They could be a real Super Bowl contender if they keep getting this kind of support from their defense.
New England Patriots
This might come as a surprise, but Bill Belichick and the Patriots have put up some of the best numbers of any NFL defense this season.
The Patriots lead the NFL in interceptions (13), are fourth in takeaways (16), and are fourth in points per game allowed (18.9). Something notable about New England is that they have been up against some challenging offenses, like the Bucs, Cowboys, and Chargers, yet still put up these numbers.
It has been a great team effort in Foxborough, but two players that stand out are CB J.C. Jackson and LB Matthew Judon. Jackson is tied for second in the NFL in interceptions (5), and Judon is tied for second in sacks (9).
If New England can keep doing this type of damage on defense, they could become an interesting dark horse pick for the playoffs.
Who Are Your Best Defenses in the NFL?
Which teams do you think have the best defenses in the NFL? Do you plan to back the NFL’s top defenses in your future bets?
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