Week 1 of the 2011 fantasy football season is almost upon us, which means it's a perfect time to take a quick view at what the waiver wire has to offer, in particular, the excess amount of great defensive matchups.
Detroit could be one if you are in a 12-man setup, but the chances are not as great as you might think, so if they are available, grab them.
In a 12-man league, it is inevitable that a few quality defense will be left lingering around which means you could score yourself that diamond in the rough if you know what to look for.
Remember, it isn't just about how good the defense in question is, but also how the defense plays, and who they are facing that also factors into the equation; aspects that are often forgotten about.
Let's take a look.
Many fantasy football newbies tend to forget that OPPORTUNITIES play an important role in gauging fantasy football defense value, and the Buccaneers' matchup with Detroit in Week 1 will be chock-full of them.
The Detroit Lions will be coming out of the gate throwing the ball which will open up the flood gates for the Bucs' corners, but keep in mind that this Buccaneers team is also very capable of getting to the quarterback which will also help out those willing to take a chance on them.
The scare will be how many points the Lions are capable of putting up, which makes the Buccaneers' TEAM value less than individual IDP value.
The Houston Texans have got to be licking their chops at the chance to face the Indianapolis Colts without Peyton Manning in Week 1, and that can only mean big-time value for those in need of a defense off the wire.
The Texans always seem to give Indianapolis a hard time at home as it is, but with Kerry Collins having little time to prepare, one has to envision this game will be a solid source for potential defensive fantasy football points, for those in need.
The Atlanta Falcons are yet another team who is being undervalued this season, and their Week 1 matchup against Chicago could be a solid fantasy football point generator for several reasons.
The Bears are obviously a pass-first team, but their crop of receivers are not as reliable as some may think, and this Atlanta secondary is a little misunderstood in the sense that many feel as if they simply won't produce from a fantasy standpoint—not true.
Also, keep in mind that the Atlanta linebackers were a great source of fantasy points from an IDP standpoint in 2010 which is something that should only get better in 2011.
As a team, this defense makes for a solid waiver wire grab in Week 1.
The Cleveland Browns are a pretty good bet to come up with some good points in their Week 1 matchup against a now very offensively young, Cincinnati Bengals team.
The Bengals have struggled heavily to move the chains in preseason, and haven't shown too much ability in protecting the QB.
The Browns are a much better team on paper in 2011 with the addition of defensive coordinator Dick Jauron, and linebackers Chris Gocong and Scott Fujita, and their switch to the 4-3 alignment should offer more chances to accumulate fantasy points.
But Cleveland isn't the only team who is in line to score points here...
Mike Zimmer's defense is one that is very underrated, and that should show in the first few weeks of play for the Bengals, so long as the offense can at least do something more than what they did in preseason.
Remember, this defense was ranked fourth in 2009 and feel to 15th last year thanks largely to inconsistent play and a terrible offense that couldn't keep the defense off the field.
More fault on the offense here.
The contest between the Bengals and Browns features a lot of rookies (great for turnovers and fantasy point opportunities), and is potentially a contest that will be low scoring which also bodes well for owners looking to grab a viable waiver wire option.
The Bengals will also face the Broncos, 49ers, Bills and Jaguars in the weeks after, so one could conceivably make a case to hold on the Bengals through Week 5.
Hope this helps, and for more great, free advice start with my WR rankings and go from there.