The salaries for even mediocre quarterbacks (see: Dalton, Andy) continues to skyrocket, but they aren't the only ones making a good living in the NFL these days. Professional football teams still recognize the value of great defensive play, and they're willing to shell out the big bucks for the game's finest stars.

Among the notable top-earners are Richard Sherman, who elevated his profile during the Seahawks' title run last season. And you might recognize Greg Hardy, one of the infamous domestic abusers currently suspended from NFL action, who manages to crack the top 10.

Click on the slideshow below to see which NFL defensive players bring in the largest annual salaries, according to the data available at Spotrac.com.

NFL's 10 Highest-Paid Defensive Players