Despite starting the season with an 0-9 record, there was one player on the Cleveland Browns who warranted a spot on Pro Football Focus’ midseason All-Pro team: NT Danny Shelton.
Nose tackle: Danny Shelton, Cleveland Browns, 82.6
Nose tackle may be a dying position, but there are still enough of them out there to warrant recognition on the PFF Midseason All-Pro team, and the best this year has been Cleveland’s Danny Shelton. Shelton has begun to show the promise that his college career demonstrated, leading all defensive interior players with 30 stops on the season; he’s also been a force against the run.
As PFF alluded to, Shelton receiving the award is partially helped by there being fewer true “nose tackles” in the NFL these days. Nonetheless, his progress on run defense has not gone unnoticed. He didn’t have the best of preseasons, so I was fearful that we’d see a dropoff in production from Shelton as a sophomore. Instead, he’s held his own despite there not being very many other good defensive pieces around him.