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Power ranking Raiders 2015 defensive roster

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Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

What I did here was list each potential Raiders starter on the current roster based upon their grades by Pro Football Focus to come up with power rankings. Listed are their grades from last season, their adjusted grade, and position rank with the adjusted grade as the deciding factor as to where they land in the rankings.

The adjusted grade is somewhat of a projection based upon factors explained under each player's name. The position rank is where their adjusted grade would rank them based on 2014 grades at their position. Team rank is where they rank among all Raiders players regardless of offense or defense. The offense can be seen here.

Here are the results for the defense.

1. LB Khalil Mack

2014 PFF grade: 55.3

Adjusted grade: 55.3

Position rank: 1

Team rank: 1

The rookie fifth overall pick graded second highest at any position last season behind only reigning 2-time Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt. Not much more to be said about that.

2. DT Dan Williams

2014 PFF grade: 11.5

Adjusted grade: 11.5

Position rank: 14

Team rank: 4

His grade has improved each of the past three seasons, but so has the Cardinals defense as a whole. Switching teams makes it hard to predict if that progress will continue at the same rate. I won't take progress away from him, though, so we'll go with his most recent grade.

3. LB Sio Moore

2014 PFF grade: -4.4

Adjusted grade: 6.3

Position rank: 12

Team rank: 5

He had an up and down season. Mostly it was good and some of the not so good was due to being hampered by injuries, but not all of it. His 2013 rookie season he had a 10.7 grade. The average of the two gives him 6.3.

4. DE Justin Tuck

2014 PFF grade: 6.5

Adjusted grade: 6.0

Position rank: 17

Team rank: 6

What the Raiders got last year is about what I expect from him next season. Not in his prime but not done yet.

5. S Nate Allen

2014 PFF grade: 3.9

Adjusted grade: 3.9

Position rank: 28

Team rank: 8

He has improved his grade each of the past three seasons. The last two being contract years culminating in his 3.9 grade from last season. It was his first ever positive PFF grade so I'm not ready to say he will continue his upward climb.

6. LB Malcolm Smith

2014 PFF grade: -9.0

Adjusted grade: 1.9

Position rank: 22

Team rank: 12

He took a big step back in his grade lasts season after having an impressive 12.1 grade in 2013 which was capped by his Super Bowl MVP. Since we can't really rely on either season to be more indicative of his talent, I took his average over the past three seasons which was 1.9.

7. CB T.J. Carrie

2014 PFF grade: 0.0

Adjusted grade: 0.0

Position rank: 42

Team rank: 15

While corners often struggled to adjust to the NFL early on, Carrie had no problems. He burst onto the scene as a rookie seventh round pick and surpassed anyone's expectations. Played 568 snaps to break even at 0.0. He could easily outplay this grade next season.

8. S Charles Woodson

2014 PFF grade: -3.9

Adjusted grade: -0.8

Position rank: 54

Team rank: 17

It sure feels like Woodson played better last season than his -3.9 grade. Even better than 2013 when he had a 2.4 grade. But there you have it. His average over those two seasons is -0.8.

9. CB D.J. Hayden

2014 PFF grade: -2.6

Adjusted grade: -2.6

Position rank: 61

Team rank: 18

He played the last half of last season and the first half of 2013. Though his first half of last season he was a rookie and still not back to normal from his surgery on his abdomen. So, his performance last season is the best grade we have.

10. DT Justin Ellis

2014 PFF grade: -3.5

Adjusted grade: -3.5

Position rank: 55

Team rank: 19

He had a decent season at a position which didn't have a strong class and was recognized for it by being named to the All Rookie team. Keep in mind his position rank includes all defensive tackles, not just nose tackles.

11. DT Antonio Smith

2014 PFF grade: -3.9

Adjusted grade: -3.9

Position rank: 57

Team rank: 20

Though he was second among defensive tackles in QB hurries (35) and the third best pass rush grade (18.3), his grade took a huge hit in run support (-20.0).

12. DE C.J. Wilson

2012 PFF grade: 0.2

Adjusted grade: -4.0

Position rank: 40

Team rank: 21

Last season he got his first positive grade ever. We can't assume anything off of one season. His three-year average is -4.0

13. DE Benson Mayowa

2014 PFF grade: -5.6

Adjusted PFF grade: -7.4

Position rank: 45

Team rank: 25

His grade last season was mostly formed over the final ten games. And that's really all we have to go on from this second year former undrafted free agent. Taking his grade and averaging it out over an entire season gives us his adjusted grade of -7.4.

14. LB Curtis Lofton

2014 PFF grade: -21.5

Adjusted grade: -9.7

Position rank: 48

Team rank: 26

He was the fourth worst rated inside linebacker in the NFL last season. Contributing to that was his 22 missed tackles which was worst among NFL linebackers and second worst at any position. The last time he had a positive PFF grade was 2011; his last season in Atlanta before he signed a big free agent contract in New Orleans. But that was a one year blip as he was at -13.2 the season before. His average over the past three seasons was -9.7.

Special teams

Sebastian Janikowski

2014 PFF grade: 11.3

Adjusted grade: 11.3

Position rank: 8

His grade has gone down each of the past three seasons, but not all of that is his fault. He struggled with Marquette King as his new holder in 2013, and was used sparingly in a struggling offense last season.

P Marquette King

2014 PFF grade: 4.4

Adjusted grade: 4.4

Position rank: 18

Improved in his second season. He could continue that improvement but nothing is assumed.

See the power rankings for the Offense