ACC football boasts a long list of talented defensive players heading into 2017, a fact reflected by the volume of players on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy watch list.
The ACC led the nation with 20 players among the 103, including Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins and Florida State defensive back Tarvarus McFadden — the only 2016 FWAA first-teamers on the list. The award is given annually to the nation’s top defensive player.
The full list of ACC representatives is as follows: Jaire Alexander, Louisville; DT Drew Bailey, Louisville; DB Quin Blanding, Virginia; DE Bradley Chubb, N.C. State; LB Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech; DE Duke Ejiofor, Wake Forest; LB James Hearns, Louisville; DT B.J. Hill, N.C. State; DB Derwin James, Florida State; LB Micah Kiser, Virginia; DE Harold Landry, Boston College; DT Dexter Lawrence, Clemson; DB Tarvarus McFadden, Florida State; DT Derrick Nnadi, Florida State; DT Kendrick Norton, Miami; LB Shaquille Quarterman, Miami; DE Josh Sweat, Florida State; DE Chad Thomas, Miami; DB Jordan Whitehead, Pitt; DT Christian Wilkins, Clemson.
Players may be added or removed from the watch list during the season. Players who win the national defensive player of the week award throughout the season will be added to the watch list..
The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the award on Nov. 16. The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner will be chosen from those five finalists.