Even though Fairley is only in his second season, we're inclined to agree with him. Ndamukong Suh quietly might have enjoyed his best NFL season last year. Fairley was a big playmaker in the second half of the year. Keep in mind that we left 3-4 teams out of the mix. Here are our top five tandems:
2. Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus, Buffalo Bills: Like the Lions' duo, they are better at disrupting plays rather than stuffing the run. Look for Buffalo to show more 3-4 looks this year under new coordinator Mike Pettine.
3. Paul Soliai and Randy Starks, Miami Dolphins: There's a reason why both players have received franchise tags in recent years. Starks' versatility is especially impressive. This is a tough duo to run on.
5. Henry Melton and Stephen Paea, Chicago Bears: Paea still has room to grow; you get a sense he doesn't use his incredible strength just yet. Melton emerged as one of the NFL's best interior pass rushers.
Notes: Haloti Ngata needs a tag-team partner with the Baltimore Ravens. Terrence Cody has only been so-so. ... Ahtyba Rubin and Phillip Taylor merited consideration, though the Cleveland Browns are moving to a 3-4 defense. ... J.J. Watt plays defensive end, so the Houston Texans didn't count here.Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.