Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Vikings defensive line gets top billing

Posted by: under Vikings, Vikings players, Jared Allen, Kevin Williams, Pat Williams, Ray Edwards Updated: June 28, 2010 - 3:24 PM

Yahoo.com continued its position rankings and Jason Cole put the Vikings front four at the top of the list.

Cole ranked the Vikings defensive line No. 1 in the NFL, followed by Baltimore, New York Giants and Indianapolis.

Here is what Cole wrote about the Vikings:

"When you start with the best defensive end in the league (Jared Allen) and perhaps the best 4-3 defensive tackle (Kevin Williams), that’s a pretty impressive foundation. Throw in Pat Williams, who is one of the best run stuffers in the league even at 37, and complementary pass rusher Ray Edwards, and you have a group that can do just about anything necessary. The depth at end is lacking and the issue of whether the Williamses will ever serve their four-game suspensions as a result of the StarCaps case continues to hang over the team."

Here is a link to his rankings.

It's hard to argue with Cole's thinking. Allen has been named to three consecutive Pro Bowls and became only the second player in NFL history to post three consecutive seasons with at least 14 sacks.

Kevin Williams has earned four consecutive Pro Bowl trips and been selected five times in seven seasons. He has been chosen first-team All-Pro five times and named to the 2000s All-Decade team. 

Pat Williams made the Pro Bowl from 2006-08. He basically only plays on running downs now, but Williams showed late last season that he is still a force inside when healthy.

Edwards took a step forward in his development last season and is coming off a strong postseason when he posted a team-record four sacks, including three against Dallas. 

 

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