The key to a great defense starts with the defensive line. If you can win the battle at the line of scrimmage, it makes everyone on your defense better. The defensive tackles free up room for the defensive ends, who free up room for the linebackers, which allows the players in the secondary to hold their ground and stay in coverage.
The defensive linemen who made the FlaVarsity Top 160 are a combination of big, strong, fast, and agile ball players. There are prospects such as Jelani Hamilton, the 6-foot-5, 250 pound end from St. Thomas Aquinas, who are extremely quick off the ball and have a variety of moves to attack the quarterback. There are also prospects such as Dalvon Stuckey, the 6-foot-4, 305 pound defensive tackle from Walton high school, who are run stoppers that fill holes and command double teams, all due to their immense size.
There are also some very underrated prospects from this defensive line class that have yet to hit their recruiting peak. Tyler Drake, the 6-foot-2, 210 pound end from St. Thomas Aquinas, led his team in sacks last year, yet only holds one scholarship offer. Jordan Hinojosa, the 6-foot-3, 270 pound tackle from Miami Central, is someone that uses his hands well and is very quick off the snap, yet he only has 3 scholarship offers.
The top prospect on the defensive line is Dante Fowler Jr., the 6-foot-3, 232 pound end. He is very explosive off the ball and is very tough to slow down off the edge. His spin move is extremely impressive and he has the athleticism and versatility to even play linebacker.
The 2012 defensive line class is very, very good. There are at least 5 names on this list that I expect to be called in the NFL Draft, a few years from now. Let's take a look at which defensive line prospects made the FlaVarsity Top 160.