CFN First-Team All-Americans
1. Quinnen Williams, Soph. Alabama
A solid part of the Bama defensive line puzzle as a freshman, few saw what was coming next. The 6-4, 295-pounder was a one-man wrecking crew at times, finishing third on the team with 66 tackles with eight sacks and 18 tackles for loss, showing off a frightening blend of interior pass rushing quickness and raw power.
Steady, he came up with at least one sack in each of the last five games, ruined LSU with play after play, and became the nation’s best defensive player.
2. Dre’Mont Jones, Jr. Ohio State
The Ohio State defense was a disappointment for stretches, got ripped apart by the Maryland running game, and wasn’t quite up to expectations, especially after Nick Bosa got hurt. Because of that, Jones was vastly under appreciated despite finishing with 40 tackles, 8.5 sacks, 13 tackles for loss, and with a key pick-six against TCU.
CFN Second-Team All-Americans
3. Christian Wilkins, Sr. Clemson
The future fixture of an NFL defensive front has the prototype size, quickness, and run stopping ability to be a top 15 overall pick, and he showed it off with 45 tackles, with five sacks and 13.5 tackles for loss – he even ran for two scores. He might have been surrounded by pro talent to keep him from being keyed on, but the rest of the Tigers were able to shine because of him, too.
4. Jeffery Simmons, Jr. Mississippi State
The amazing Mississippi State defense flew under the radar all season, but it finished No. 1 in the nation in scoring defense and third in total D, focusing around its great pair on the defensive line with Montez Sweat on the end and Simmons on the inside. The junior made 59 tackles with a sack and 14.5 tackles for loss as the anchor of the amazing front.
CFN Honorable Mention All-Americans
5. Dexter Lawrence, Jr. Clemson
6. Terry Beckner, Sr. Missouri
7. Lrki Fosu, Jr. Utah
8. Ed Oliver, Jr. Houston
9. Greg Gaines, Sr. Washington
10. Derrick Brown, Jr. Auburn