No. 4. Brandon Jenkins, DE, Florida State
2011 stats: He started all 13 games in 2011 and led all FSU defensive linemen with 41 tackles (29 solo), and led the team with 12 tackles for loss and eight sacks.
Previous ranking: No. 25
Making the case for Jenkins: He finished spring practices playing the best the coaching staff has seen him play -- earning Jenkins the most outstanding spring defensive player award and the Hinesman, given to the spring’s top overall player. He’s a natural pass rusher who is quick with good instincts. He’s one of the top defensive ends in the nation and is on the watch lists for the Bednarik and Nagurski Awards. He was used in a variety of roles last year, from the traditional down position to a stand-up player with rushing and coverage responsibilities. He played some of his best football down the stretch, as he had 4.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks over the final three regular season games.