'13 Player Rankings Defense: 30-21

ESPN.com is ranking NFL players and counting them down (follow on Twitter -- @ESPNNFL) from No. 100 to No. 1 on offense and on defense, 10 per day for 10 days. The top 10 on both sides of the ball will be revealed on Aug. 30.

What is #NFLRank?

#NFLrank is the Twitter hashtag to use if you want to get involved in the discussion or just follow along.

You can also follow along here: @ESPNNFL (NFL on ESPN) and on Facebook.

How did we rank the players?

We polled 63 experts to rate each player on a 0-to-10 scale, with 10 being the best regardless of position in the NFL. Ties, as denoted by an asterisk, were broken by determining which player had more ballots with the highest number. (If players were tied, the player with three 10s was ranked higher than the player with two 10s. If the tied players had the same amount of the highest number -- each with two 10s -- we moved to the next number; three 9s beat two 9s.)

Here is the full list of voters from ESPN.com, ESPN TV, ESPN Radio, ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Insider (including Football Outsiders and Pro Football Focus), ESPN Fantasy, ESPN Boston, ESPN Chicago, ESPN Dallas, ESPN New York and ESPN Stats & Information.

Tillman led the NFL with 10 forced fumbles last season. He also tied Janoris Jenkins for the league lead with three interceptions returned for a touchdown.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Luke Kuechly | Team Twitter: @Panthers
Carolina Panthers | LB | Age: 22 | NFL experience: 2nd year
ESPN Fantasy rank: LB1; overall 2

Kuechly led the NFL with 164 tackles as a rookie last season. He was the only player in the league to make at least 10 tackles in 10 different games.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)

Kuechly, though only a second-year player, should already be considered one of the best in the game.
-- Football OutsidersInsider



Terrell Suggs | Team Twitter: @Ravens
Baltimore Ravens | LB | Age: 30 | NFL experience: 11th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: LB31; overall 68

Suggs has 84.5 sacks since he entered the league in 2003, ranked seventh in league. In the past two seasons, the Ravens' defense has averaged a sack every 12.6 drop-backs with him on the field and one every 19.5 with him off.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Eric Weddle | Team Twitter: @chargers
San Diego Chargers | S | Age: 28 | NFL experience: 7th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: DB2; overall 20

Since the start of 2008, Weddle has broken up 15 passes when lined up as a safety, tied for second most during that span. Thirteen of those were thrown at or beyond the first-down marker, third most.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Champ Bailey | @champbailey
Denver Broncos | CB | Age: 35 | NFL experience: 15th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: NR; DEN D7

Only Ed Reed and Darren Sharper have more interceptions than Bailey's 52 since he entered the league. Bailey has an NFL-high 171 pass deflections during that span and has made the Pro Bowl in 12 of 14 NFL seasons.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Jairus Byrd | @jairusbyrd
Buffalo Bills | S | Age: 26 | NFL experience: 5th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: DB13; overall 55

Since entering the league in 2009, Byrd has 15 interceptions on passes more than 10 yards downfield as a safety, most in the league during that span.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Lance Briggs | @LanceBriggs
Chicago Bears | LB | Age: 32 | NFL experience: 11th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: LB38; overall 90

Since the start of 2008, Briggs has broken up seven passes on throws at least 10 yards downfield in between the painted numbers, most in the league among linebackers during that span.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Brian Cushing | @briancushing56
Houston Texans | LB | Age: 26 | NFL experience: 5th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: LB14; overall 19

Since the start of 2009, Cushing has seven interceptions, tied for the third most among linebackers in the league.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Elvis Dumervil | @EKD92
Baltimore Ravens | LB | Age: 29 | NFL experience: 8th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: DL10; overall 40

During the past five seasons, Dumervil has averaged a sack every 74.3 snaps played, the sixth-highest rate in the league among players with at least 3,000 snaps.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)



Tamba Hali | @TambaHali91
Kansas City Chiefs | LB | Age: 29 | NFL experience: 8th year
ESPN Fantasy rank: LB64; overall 145

Hali has 29.5 sacks in the past three seasons as part of a four-man-or-fewer rush. Only Jared Allen (36) and Aldon Smith (33) have more.
-- ESPN Stats & Information (@ESPNStatsInfo)