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AFC North: Best defensive division in the NFL

Is the AFC North the best defensive division in the NFL? One can definitely argue the the case. For the longest time the AFC north was a 2 team race between the Steelers and Ravens. The Browns and Bengals have been a step or 2, or even a flight of stairs, below the contenders each season save for an occasional upset. Both Pittsburgh and Baltimore were guaranteed to not only battle it out intradivision but also be competitive against any team in the league.  Now in 2012 all 4 teams boast formidable units. This division is always about bruising defenses and the run game. Some things are changing on the offensive side of the ball as we’ve seen but on the defensive side everybody can stake their claim to being in the real “black n blue” division.

Now enter into 2012 and the team defensive stats are impressive to say the least:

Total Defense:
Steelers – 1st
Ravens – 3rd
Bengals – 7th
Browns – 10th.

Pass Defense:
Steelers 1st
Browns – 2nd
Ravens – 4th
Bengals – 9th

Rush Defense:
Ravens – 2nd
Steelers – 8th
Bengals – 10th
Browns – 30th

Yardage Allowed:
Steelers – 1st
Ravens – 3rd
Bengals – 7th
Browns – 10th

You can make a strong case that the AFC North is hands down the best overall defensive division in footbal. Other teams have/had outstanding defenses in 2011, the 49ers come to mind as do the Texans & Giants but when you factor in that every team in the North was ranked in the top 10 in nearly every category, that’s pretty impressive. 3 teams in the post season tells you right there that defenses do still win championships because the offsenses in the AFC this season haven’t exactly been a model of efficiency.

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