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2015 NFL Draft defensive end rankings: Even more pass rushers

The Florida junior is a complete defensive end with power and athleticism. The rest of the class is impressive, giving teams plenty of pass rushers and ends to pick from.

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Much like the outside linebacker/pass rusher position, defensive end is a loaded class in the 2015 NFL Draft. It features numerous players who should get taken in the top 100 picks, headlined by Florida's Dante Fowler.

Fowler is the top defensive end for a number of reasons. He's physical enough to play end on a 4-3 defense and has the explosion to get to the quarterback. After a season of 15 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks, Fowler turned heads at the NFL Scouting Combine, firming up his status as a top 10 pick in the draft.

After Fowler, the quality is high, but the mix of players is murky. Oregon's Arik Armsttead checks in at No. 2, largely because of his size, athleticism and potential. He's far from a finished project, but is a perfect fit on a 3-4 defense. Don't discount his potential as a 4-3 left end, however.

Missouri's Shane Ray is listed among the defensive ends because I view that as a more natural position than end. Could he play linebacker in the NFL? Sure. But as an end he can use his first step to beat blockers. Ray's teammate, Markus Golden, is probably underrated by most because he was easy to overlook. But Golden is a steady player who should have a solid NFL career.

Under the radar: Memphis had a surprisingly good 2014 thanks in large part to a defense with few solid NFL talents. Among them is end Martin Ifedi, who was banged up last season with a knee injury. But in 2013 he had 11.5 sacks on the season, thanks to a combination of power moves and closing speed. If Ifedi's knee is fully healthy, he's at worst a high-end backup.

Position grade: B+

1. Dante Fowler, 6’3, 260 pounds, DE, Florida
2. Arik Armstead, 6’8, 290 pounds, DE, Oregon
3. Shane Ray, 6'3, 245 pounds, DE/OLB, Missouri
4. Owamagbe Odighizuwa, 6’3 1/2, 266 pounds, DE, UCLA
5. Preston Smith, 6’4 3/4, 270 pounds, DE, Mississippi State
6. Markus Golden, 6’2 1/4, 255 pounds, DE, Missouri
7. Mario Edwards, 6’3, 294 pounds, DE, Florida State
8. Trey Flowers, 6’2 1/2, 268 pounds, DE, Arkansas
9. Henry Anderson, 6’6 3/8, 287 pounds, DE, Stanford
10. Danielle Hunter, 6’5 1/8, 252 pounds, DE, LSU
11. Za'Darius Smith, 6’4 5/8, 270 pounds, DE, Kentucky
12. Cedric Reed, 6’5, 272 pounds, DE, Texas
13. Anthony Chickillo, 6'3 3/8, 267 pounds, DE, Miami
14. Corey Crawford, 6’5 1/4, 283 pounds, DE, Clemson
15. Shaquille Riddick, 6’6, 244 pounds, DE, West Virginia
16. Ray Drew, 6’5, 284 pounds, DE, Georgia
17. Martin Ifedi, 6’3 1/8, 275 pounds, DE, Memphis
18. Deion Barnes, 6'3 7/8, 260 pounds, DE, Penn State
19. Ryan Russell, 6’4 1/4, 269 pounds, DE, Purdue
20. Frank Clark, 6’2 7/8, 271 pounds, DE, Michigan
21. B.J. Dubose | 6'4, 284 pounds, DE, Louisville
22. Travis Raciti, 6'5, 285 pounds, DE, San Jose State
23. Jermauria Rasco, 6’3 1/2, 259 pounds, DE, LSU
24. Terrell Hartsfield, 6’3, 246 pounds, DE, Cincinnati
25. Ryan Delaire, 6’4 1/8, 254 pounds, DE, Towson
26. Brock Hekking, 6'4, 255 pounds, DE, Nevada