NFL Playoffs 2012 Fantasy Football: Team Defense, Kicker Wild Card Rankings

Sean E. DouglasSenior Writer IIIJanuary 3, 2012

PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 08:  William Gay #22 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates with teammates James Harrison #92 and Cameron Heyward #97 following his interception in the endzone in the second half against the Cleveland Browns during the game on December 8, 2011 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

For those of you who are new to playoff fantasy football, the name of the game is not to select simply the highest-scoring players for this week.

You want to choose players who have better odds to advance to the next round.

Some websites will put a salary cap for your squad, with dollar values for each player. Other sites may allow you to pick anyone available, but you have to decide which players will advance to the next round, as you will get bonus points for their production in future weeks.

Heading into the Wild Card Round of the playoffs, if I had to put my money down on teams that I felt were locks to advance, they would be the New Orleans Saints and the Pittsburgh Steelers.

With that said, you will notice that my top-ranked kicker for this week is New Orleans Jon Kasay and my top defense is Pittsburgh.

With Tim Tebow's struggling to handle his recent opponents' defensive schemes, in part designed to take away his outside running lanes, the Broncos had to backpedal into the playoffs, with a three-game losing streak.

After an embarrassing blowout loss to the Buffalo Bills, Denver came back home and could manage to score only three points with the division title on the line.

Fortunately for the Broncos,  the Raiders lost, so Denver won the division.

But if the Bills defense can intercept Tebow four times and, combined with special teams, total three touchdowns, why shouldn’t the Steelers defense be the top group to start this week and be thought of as likely to advance to the next round?

As for Jon Kasay, the Saints are likely to get into another shootout with a hot Lions passing attack, so fantasy owners could see over 100 points scored in this game.

In the end, the Saints will be too much at home. Make sure you look to New Orleans players not only as great players to start (excluding the defense), but as those who should advance to the next round and could go all the way to the Super Bowl.



1 Jon Kasay Lions
2 Shaun Suisham @ Broncos
3 Neil Rackers Bengals
4 Lawrence Tynes Falcons
5 Matt Bryant @ Giants
6 Mike Nugent @ Texans
7 Jason Hanson @ Saints
8 Matt Prater Steelers

Team Defense

1 Steelers @ Broncos
2 Texans Bengals
3 Bengals @ Texans
4 Broncos Steelers
5 Saints Lions
6 Giants Falcons
7 Lions @ Saints
8 Falcons @ Giants

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