Position breakdown: Defensive line

Each day, for the next week, NittanyNation will take a look at a different position and break it down. Today it's the defensive line.

The defensive line is one of the most talented groups at Penn State. Sean Stanley, Pete Massaro and Jordan Hill are all seniors, so they know what to expect. They're leaders, and junior DaQuan Jones is no slouch, either.

Hill led the defensive line in tackles last season with 59. He and Stanley combined for eight sacks, while Massaro rehabbed an ACL tear. He had 3.5 sacks in the 2010 season. Those three will be even better this year, and the line should give opposing offenses fits.


• Depth at defensive end. Deion Barnes can give Stanley and Massaro a breather without the line crumbling in their absence.

• Experience. A trio of battle-tested seniors won't see anything this year that they haven't already.

• Nonstop motors. If these guys fail to bring down someone in the backfield, they'll get him elsewhere. These guys don't quit.


• Massaro a slight question mark after taking a year to rehab.

Devon Still will be missed.