Danny Shelton has been much improved from his rookie season last year. Shelton committed himself to shedding thirty pounds in the offseason to get faster and more athletic along the defensive line.
Shelton’s hard work is paying off as he has been dominant in the middle of the Browns defensive line. According to Pro Football Focus, Shelton leads the NFL in two impressive categories.
Shelton’s solid performance has been overlooked due to the overall defense collectively playing below average. However, Shelton has developed into a great player, and will remain a huge piece of the defensive front for years to come.
On Sunday, Shelton recorded his first sack of the season and displayed his strength and improved speed to get to the athletic Marcus Mariota. On the play, Shelton is lined up in the middle at his natural nose tackle position. The Browns rush four on the play and Shelton is matched up in a one-on-one battle against Titans center Ben Jones.
Shelton displays his strength by quickly shedding him off with a swim move. Shelton easily wins at the point of attack and has a clear path to Mariota. Mariota tries to escape, but the quicker and lighter Shelton is able to track down Mariota and spin him down for his first sack.
Second-round pick Emmanuel Ogbah continued the solid play by also recording a sack Sunday. Ogbah has been a bright spot along the Browns’ defensive front since switching from outside linebacker to defensive end in training camp.
In the third quarter Sunday, Ogbah recorded a sack on Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota. On the play the Titans use play-action to allow Mariota to roll out to his left. Ogbah is lined up on the right end of the defensive formation and is unblocked on the play.
For whatever reason, the Titans don’t account for Ogbah, giving him a free release off the line of scrimmage. Ogbah does a great job of staying home and containing the outside edge. When Mariota begins to roll out, Ogbah is in perfect position to make a play and record the sack.