Daily Haze: Streaming Defenses for the Rest of the Season
The kicker might be the worst position in fantasy football.
By the end of the season, the difference between the best and worst kicker in fantasy football ends up being between 1-2 points per game on average. Fantasy owners generally chase the points every week with kickers, too, adding kickers coming off big games.
It almost always backfires the next week. And then the process begins again. Chasing points.
Fantasy defenses might be the next most head-scratching and frustrating position for fantasy owners. Fantasy owners who wasted early-round draft picks on the Ravens might think they are better off than the rest of us. But for every owner who got that one right, there were those who spent early picks on the Steelers, Giants, Saints or Eagles — all clearly middle-of-the-pack fantasy defenses this season.
The antithesis to those defenses, of course, are the ones which come out of nowhere. Ones that can be had on the waiver wire every week, mostly because they do not have that name recognition fantasy owners desire.
Streaming defenses is all about the matchups. Find the bad offenses, the ones with injuries, the ones which turn the ball over a lot, the ones on the road, or any combination of those factors, and the fantasy production could equal that of the Ravens on a week-by-week basis.
As a general rule of thumb, I almost always give the nod to a defense at home. Figure the crowd will be somewhat of a factor. Also, for the purpose of this story, Weeks 8 through 16 will be considered the rest of the fantasy football season.
Lions @ Broncos
Titans v. Colts
Bills v. Redskins
Falcons @ Colts
Raiders v. Broncos
Cardinals v. Rams
Chiefs v. Broncos
Jaguars @ Colts
Browns v. Rams
Falcons v. Titans
Bills @ Dolphins
Chargers v. Broncos
Cowboys v. Dolphins
Bills v. Titans
Vikings v. Broncos
Lions v. Vikings
Seahawks v. Rams
Bills v. Dolphins
Titans @ Colts
Bills v. Broncos
Chiefs v. Raiders
A few observations: The Broncos, Colts, Rams and Dolphins are the easiest teams to pick on this season. All have some combination of the factors listed above (bad offense, injuries and lots of turnovers). Also, the Bills have several good matchups down the stretch, including back-to-back good matchups at home during the last two weekends of the fantasy football playoffs. Might be a good time to add them and keep them around for good.
Andre Johnson returned to practice on Wednesday and has an outside shot to play this weekend … Philip Rivers has struggled to date this season, but the return of Antonio Gates in Week 7 should improve Rivers’ forecast for the rest of the year. He is a nice buy-low candidate right now … Peyton Hillis returned to practice Wednesday after a one-week hiatus due to a hamstring injury, but figures to share time with Montario Hardesty going forward. Avoid at all costs … Now that Tim Hightower is out of the season (knee), Ryan Torain figures to be the starting running back in Washington. Add Roy Helu, however, as Mike Shanahan loves to play musical chairs with his running backs … Sounds like LeGarrette Blount is on-track to return to the Bucs starting lineup for Week 9 at the Saints.
Here are today’s great reads:
- Speaking of streaming defenses … A few Ds to consider this weekend in fantasy leagues. The Saints finally got some takeaways against the Colts. Could it be a sign of things to come? Rams this weekend is a nice matchup to see if it is going to be a trend or an anomaly. [RazzBall]
- Mark Ingram’s rookie year has been average. There were high expectations as the short-yardage, power back in the Saints offense. Darren Sproles has sucked the fantasy relevance of the running back position away from Ingram. But now that Ingram is hurt and the Saints figure to win comfortably against the Rams this week, could it be time for a brief Pierre Thomas resurgence? [Roto Arcade]
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