2021 NFL Team NEFF Ratings: Pass Defense & Run Defense

Alongside my full NEFF rankings (detailed explanation here), I have developed a pair of defense specific ratings and rankings, splitting out the pass defense and run defense metrics to break down the relative strengths of each team’s defense and how it can be useful for identifying edges in fantasy leagues and DFS.

Unlike DNEFF (Defensive NEFF rating), which generally produces a negative grade as it is the counterpoint to ONEFF (Offensive NEFF rating), the pass and run defense ratings are more of a measure of a team’s efficiency in relation to each other and so each team is ranked between 0% and 100%.

Alongside the ratings, I document the amount of fantasy points each defense allows to receiving or rushing so we are able to compare ‘real’ football performance to fantasy scoring, as the two can sometimes be vastly different and its important to understand why to get the edge.

With the last games of the 2021 regular season in the books, I can reveal the final pass and run defense ratings and rankings for 2021.

2021 Pass & Run Defense NEFF Ratings
TeamPDNEFF RATINGPDNEFF RankREC PPG AllowedREC PPG RankRDNEFF RATINGRDNEFF RankRUSH PPG AllowedRUSH PPG Rank
Bills65.0%1-16.95152.8%5-17.6822
Patriots63.1%2-22.02248.0%17-15.5411
Cowboys57.2%3-27.681147.3%19-15.8713
Buccaneers56.4%4-28.871454.2%4-13.142
Saints55.8%5-25.52357.3%2-13.584
Rams54.5%6-25.82450.4%10-16.6716
Packers53.9%7-29.391846.4%21-15.509
Dolphins53.5%8-27.821246.4%21-16.6315
Broncos52.7%9-26.68850.6%9-14.295
Steelers52.6%10-26.62741.8%30-20.6129
Browns52.0%11-27.38948.4%15-15.5110
Titans51.3%12-29.592054.3%3-13.403
Vikings50.7%13-31.712543.0%26-18.3625
Panthers50.6%14-25.87549.3%14-17.0318
Colts50.6%14-31.182450.1%11-14.446
Giants50.5%16-29.051645.2%23-18.1924
49ers50.1%17-26.26649.8%13-16.3514
Cardinals49.6%18-28.161352.8%5-15.017
Chargers48.7%19-29.021539.6%32-21.6530
Raiders48.4%20-30.512247.2%20-17.7823
Eagles47.7%21-29.081747.8%18-17.1420
Bears46.8%22-27.481044.8%24-17.4521
Bengals46.8%22-30.862351.5%7-15.5411
Chiefs46.1%24-31.752648.2%16-17.0519
Seahawks45.5%25-32.272851.2%8-17.0117
Football Team43.7%26-34.343150.1%11-15.388
Falcons43.6%27-32.112742.6%27-19.8926
Texans43.0%28-30.442141.1%31-23.0531
Ravens42.2%29-36.323260.6%1-13.041
Jaguars40.9%30-29.411942.3%29-20.2828
Lions40.2%31-32.962942.5%28-20.2127
Jets38.1%32-34.183043.4%25-23.7232