NFL Depth Chart Rankings

When the Panthers want to pound the rock, they have Jonathan Stewart (+14.0) and Mike Tolbert (+25.6) ready to run the ball with Hartsock and Richard Brockel (+7.4) ready to block. The depth at defense isn't nearly as strong, but there are a few decent players such as undrafted rookie Robert Lester (+5.3) and veteran linebacker Dan Connor (+3.0).

4. Minnesota Vikings

Backups grade: 35.4 | Deepest position group: Fullback
Shallowest: Wide receiver | Best non-starter: FB/TE Rhett Ellison (+21.5)

With Adrian Peterson on the roster, it's no surprise the Vikings have acquired depth with run-blockers. Both Jerome Felton (+15.0) and Ellison are among the better run-blocking fullbacks in the league, even though neither has topped 250 snaps this season. Rarely-used third tight end Chase Ford (+2.3) can be an asset run-blocking as well, and backup halfback Toby Gerhart (+5.7) is averaging 7.9 yards per carry this year. Outside of the defensive line, there isn't much proven depth at linebacker or defensive back.

5. Baltimore Ravens

Backups grade: 35.2 | Deepest position group: Inside linebacker
Shallowest: Offensive line | Best non-starter: OLB Pernell McPhee (+32.1)

The Ravens' depth is also mostly in their front seven. At inside linebacker, both Josh Bynes (+2.1) and Arthur Brown (+0.0) play well in their part-time roles with Albert McClellan (+4.4), who played well last year at the bottom of the depth chart. Young defensive lineman Brandon Williams (+3.4) has shown promise as a run-stuffer when the starters need a rest. The offensive line has been a trouble area for the Ravens this season, and part of that is due to the lack of depth.

6. Kansas City Chiefs

Backups grade: 32.4 | Deepest position group: Defensive line
Shallowest: Outside linebacker | Best non-starter: OL Geoff Schwartz (+28.0)

On 47.3 percent of snaps, the Chiefs have run a dime defense, which hasn't left nearly enough playing time for Mike DeVito (+31.2) and Allen Bailey (+2.8), who each typically get the best of the offensive linemen across from them. Throughout the season, the Chiefs have faced injuries on the offensive line, and Schwartz has filled in nicely at either guard position. He hasn't allowed a sack yet this season. As seen recently, there is a big difference between Tamba Hali and Justin Houston compared to the other pass-rushers on the roster.

7. Denver Broncos

Backups grade: 30.4 | Deepest position group: Tight end
Shallowest: Defensive tackle | Best non-starter: TE Jacob Tamme (+16.9)

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