Ndamukong Suh received the richest contract ever for a defensive player when he signed with the Miami Dolphins this offseason. His status as the No. 1 defensive tackle in Madden 16corresponds with that payday.
EA Sports revealed the top five at Suh's position on Wednesday, crowning the Detroit Lions' former No. 2 overall draft pick as the best of a supremely talented bunch. It takes a combination of massive size and quick-twitch athleticism to thrive, and Suh's skills offer the best blend.
Here is a complete look at the top five:
|Rank||Player||Team||Overall Rating||Notable Attributes|
|1||Ndamukong Suh||Miami Dolphins||96||98 Strength, 97 Power Move, 95 Pursuit|
|2||Gerald McCoy||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||95||98 Power Move, 93 Pursuit, 92 Strength|
|3||Marcell Dareus||Buffalo Bills||94||95 Tackle, 94 Strength, 92 Power Move|
|4||Kyle Williams||Buffalo Bills||93||94 Play Recognition, 91 Block Shedding, 90 Strength|
|5||Aaron Donald||St. Louis Rams||92||93 Strength, 90 Tackle, 82 Speed|
Tampa Bay Buccaneers star Gerald McCoy quietly racked up 8.5 sacks in 2014 overshadowed by a horrendous overall team that went 2-14. With a better offense to complement his unit in 2015 headlined by the top overall draft pick, quarterback Jameis Winston, McCoy figures to be in line for another big year.
One team that doesn't have a franchise QB in its immediate plans is the Buffalo Bills. But do they have a defense, courtesy of a front that features Nos. 3 and 4 Madden 16 DTs in Marcell Dareus and Kyle Williams, respectively.
New Bills head coach Rex Ryan has to be licking his chops at the opportunity to plug transcendent talents like Dareus and Williams into his exotic schemes. The level of play Buffalo gets under center will determine how far the team goes, but the rest of the roster seems playoff-ready.
Last and certainly not least is Aaron Donald, whose numbers from Pro Football Focus speak for themselves:
Madden creators made sure to respect Donald's rare speed for his position, making him the fastest defensive tackle in the video game.
Donald was the 13th overall pick in last year's draft and wasted no time making an impact. The young man himself couldn't believe his rapid rise in the pros that led to Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.
"It's so surreal," said Donald after receiving the award, per Myles Simmons of StLouisRams.com. "You always have goals for yourself and this was a goal of mine to try to reach. But you never know if it’s really going to happen, or how things are going to play out. And to see how everything played out for me—it’s amazing."
The Rams haven't had a solution to their own QB woes in recent years, but Nick Foles' arrival in a trade may be what St. Louis needs to return to the postseason.
With the likes of Robert Quinn and Chris Long coming off the edge to help his cause, there's no telling what Donald's ceiling is.
Donald's functional strength (285 lbs) and quickness make him a force against the run and pass. If the youngster doesn't reach his nine-sack total from 2014 again, it will be more due to Quinn's impact as a prolific pass-rusher aided in part by Donald's work in the trenches.