Fantasy Football Week 8: Matt Camp's Fantasy Big Board
Week 8 of the 2017 NFL season will test your depth.
We head into the halfway point of the fantasy season without the services of the Arizona Cardinals, Green Bay Packers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Rams, New York Giants and Tennessee Titans.
In some cases, the bye is good news. Leonard Fournette (ankle), Sterling Shepard (ankle), DeMarco Murray (shoulder/hamstring) and Delanie Walker (ankle) have been dealing with their respective injuries for multiple weeks and could use the rest to get healthier for the second half of the season.
The Cardinals and Packers will need the bye to figure out how to solider on without Carson Palmer and Aaron Rodgers. The B.S. Meter covered the sinking ship in Arizona, but Green Bay will try to stay afloat with Brett Hundley until Rodgers (hopefully) returns in Week 15.
You'll need to test your depth without those six teams, which is another reason it's important to stay active on your waiver wire regardless of where you sit in the standings. As always, make sure to gather as much information as you can before setting your lineups. You don't get extra points for finalizing your lineup Friday. Unless you have obvious decisions like playing A.J. Green against the Indianapolis Colts, be patient.
Here's the first look at points-per-reception (PPR) rankings for Week 8. These will change throughout the week and up to Sunday's action as we get more information about injuries and limitations, so make sure to bookmark this page for my full rankings in both PPR and non-PPR formats.
I present my top 100 players (minus quarterbacks) for the week as a way to help determine your flex spots. You may favor a certain position or player over another based on his role and/or your scoring rules.
As an additional tiebreaker, here are the teams I like as a whole this week based on their matchups:
- Philadelphia Eagles (vs. San Francisco 49ers)
- Los Angeles Chargers (at New England Patriots)
- Carolina Panthers (at Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
- Cincinnati Bengals (vs. Indianapolis Colts)
Week 8 Top 100 PPR Rankings
|1||Antonio Brown (PIT)||at DET|
|2||Le'Veon Bell (PIT)||at DET|
|3||A.J. Green (CIN)||vs. IND|
|4||Julio Jones (ATL)||at NYJ|
|5||LeSean McCoy (BUF)||vs. OAK|
|6||Ezekiel Elliott (DAL)||at WAS|
|7||Mike Evans (TB)||vs. CAR|
|8||Keenan Allen (LAC)||at NE|
|9||Michael Thomas (NO)||vs. CHI|
|10||Dez Bryant (DAL)||at WAS|
|11||Kareem Hunt (KC)||vs. DEN|
|12||Brandin Cooks (NE)||vs. LAC|
|13||DeAndre Hopkins (HOU)||at SEA|
|14||Rob Gronkowski (NE)||vs. LAC|
|15||Mark Ingram (NO)||vs. CHI|
|16||Doug Baldwin (SEA)||vs. HOU|
|17||Zach Ertz (PHI)||vs. SF|
|18||Michael Crabtree (OAK)||at BUF|
|19||Amari Cooper (OAK)||at BUF|
|20||Demaryius Thomas (DEN)||at KC|
|21||Devonta Freeman (ATL)||at NYJ|
|22||Jarvis Landry (MIA)||at BAL|
|23||Alvin Kamara (NO)||vs. CHI|
|24||Melvin Gordon (LAC)||at NE|
|25||Chris Thompson (WAS)||vs. DAL|
|26||Travis Kelce (KC)||vs. DEN|
|27||Alshon Jeffery (PHI)||vs. SF|
|28||Pierre Garcon (SF)||at PHI|
|29||Adam Thielen (MIN)||at CLE|
|30||Chris Hogan (NE)||vs. LAC|
|31||Kelvin Benjamin (CAR)||at TB|
|32||Devin Funchess (CAR)||at TB|
|33||Golden Tate (DET)||vs. PIT|
|34||Tyreek Hill (KC)||vs. DEN|
|35||T.Y. Hilton (IND)||at CIN|
|36||Marvin Jones Jr. (DET)||vs. PIT|
|37||DeSean Jackson (TB)||vs. CAR|
|38||Nelson Agholor (PHI)||vs. SF|
|39||Christian McCaffrey (CAR)||at TB|
|40||Stefon Diggs (MIN)||at CLE|
|41||Ted Ginn Jr. (NO)||vs. CHI|
|42||Jerick McKinnon (MIN)||at CLE|
|43||Tyrell Williams (LAC)||at NE|
|44||Jermaine Kearse (NYJ)||vs. ATL|
|45||Carlos Hyde (SF)||at PHI|
|46||Joe Mixon (CIN)||vs. IND|
|47||Jordan Howard (CHI)||at NO|
|48||Jay Ajayi (MIA)||at BAL|
|49||Robby Anderson (NYJ)||vs. ATL|
|50||Doug Martin (TB)||vs. CAR|
|51||Jimmy Graham (SEA)||vs. HOU|
|52||Mohamed Sanu (ATL)||at NYJ|
|53||Danny Amendola (NE)||vs. LAC|
|54||Kenny Stills (MIA)||at BAL|
|55||James White (NE)||vs. LAC|
|56||Will Fuller V (HOU)||at SEA|
|57||Dion Lewis (NE)||vs. LAC|
|58||Jordan Reed (WAS)||vs. DAL|
|59||Josh Doctson (WAS)||vs. DAL|
|60||C.J. Anderson (DEN)||at KC|
|61||Kyle Rudolph (MIN)||at CLE|
|62||Austin Seferian-Jenkins (NYJ)||vs. ATL|
|63||Hunter Henry (LAC)||at NE|
|64||Tyler Lockett (SEA)||vs. HOU|
|65||Duke Johnson (CLE)||vs. MIN|
|66||Ameer Abdullah (DET)||vs. PIT|
|67||Jamison Crowder (WAS)||vs. DAL|
|68||Jalen Richard (OAK)||at BUF|
|69||Bennie Fowler (DEN)||at KC|
|70||Javorius Allen (BAL)||vs. MIA|
|71||LeGarrette Blount (PHI)||vs. SF|
|72||Brandon LaFell (CIN)||vs. IND|
|73||Latavius Murray (MIN)||at CLE|
|74||Tevin Coleman (ATL)||at NYJ|
|75||Bilal Powell (NYJ)||vs. ATL|
|76||Jordan Matthews (BUF)||vs. OAK|
|77||Frank Gore (IND)||at CIN|
|78||JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT)||at DET|
|79||Marquise Goodwin (SF)||at PHI|
|80||Donte Moncrief (IND)||at CIN|
|81||DeAndre Washington (OAK)||at BUF|
|82||Jeremy Maclin (BAL)||vs. MIA|
|83||Lamar Miller (HOU)||at SEA|
|84||Theo Riddick (DET)||vs. PIT|
|85||Cameron Brate (TB)||vs. CAR|
|86||Jared Cook (OAK)||at BUF|
|87||Jason Witten (DAL)||at WAS|
|88||Tyler Kroft (CIN)||vs. IND|
|89||Matt Forte (NYJ)||vs. ATL|
|90||Marlon Mack (IND)||at CIN|
|91||Willie Snead IV (NO)||vs. CHI|
|92||Jack Doyle (IND)||at CIN|
|93||Paul Richardson (SEA)||vs. HOU|
|94||Terrelle Pryor Sr. (WAS)||vs. DAL|
|95||Kenny Golladay (DET)||vs. PIT|
|96||Ricardo Louis (CLE)||vs. MIN|
|97||Isaiah Crowell (CLE)||vs. MIN|
|98||Wendell Smallwood (PHI)||vs. SF|
|99||Giovani Bernard (CIN)||vs. IND|
|100||Taylor Gabriel (ATL)||at NYJ|
Better Than Usual
Philip Rivers, LAC (at NE)
After an 0-4 start, the Los Angeles Chargers have won their last three games and head into New England with an advantageous matchup against the Patriots. Even though Matt Ryan failed to break out of what's felt like a season-long slump last Sunday against New England, the Patriots still rank fifth in most fantasy points allowed per game to quarterbacks over the last four weeks thanks to 1,237 yards and seven passing touchdowns to just three interceptions.
Rivers has six touchdowns to just one interception during his three-game winning streak and has reconnected with Hunter Henry. Even though he hasn't been a weekly starter, you should feel good about using Rivers in Week 8.
Cam Newton, CAR (at TB)
If Newton were playing well, he wouldn't need to be in this category because he'd be a must-start, but after such an up-and-down season, he's someone you must make a decision on each week. In Week 8, he should have every chance to get back on the good side of his fantasy owners with a tremendous matchup in Tampa Bay. Over the last four weeks, the Buccaneers yielded the sixth-most fantasy points to QBs by giving up eight total touchdowns (one rushing) to just two interceptions and 1,142 passing yards.
Even though he has struggled at times, Newton is completing more than 64 percent of his passes, which is more than two points better than his previous career high of 61.7 in 2013 and far better than the 52.9 percent he had in 2016. Expect Newton to bounce back in this NFC South showdown.
Matthew Stafford, DET (vs. PIT)
Before the Week 7 bye, Stafford put up 312 yards with three touchdowns and three interceptions on 25-of-52 passing in what amounted to a bunch of garbage-time production to save what was otherwise a pretty ugly game for the Detroit Lions offense. It was the first time this season Stafford threw for at least 300 yards and the first time since Week 1 that he had at least three touchdowns. Seven of his 12 scores came in Weeks 1 and 6, so it's not like he's been coming through on a weekly basis for fantasy.
He'll come off the bye to face the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers at Ford Field. Despite the off-field drama on the Steelers offense, the defense continues to play well and give the team a reliable strength it can bank on to keep itself in games. Over the last four weeks, it's held QBs to the fourth-fewest fantasy points per game by allowing just 716 yards and four touchdowns to five interceptions.
Stafford's best WR, Golden Tate (shoulder), was able to practice Wednesday, according to Kyle Meinke of MLive.com. But that doesn't mean he's a lock to play or that he will be at 100 percent. If Tate is out there, it's easier to justify playing Stafford, although expectations shouldn't be high.
Alex Smith, KC (vs. DEN)
Smith is in the midst of his best fantasy season ever, so you might be rolling your eyes at the thought of benching him. However, you must acknowledge how tough his matchup is Monday against the visiting Denver Broncos. In the last four weeks (three games), they've limited quarterbacks to just 560 yards and four touchdowns to one interception while giving up the ninth-fewest fantasy points per game during that span. No QB has thrown for more than 230 yards against Denver in any game this season.
While Smith has three games with at least three touchdowns, he also has three contests with just one through the air. As usual, continue to avoid any QB playing the Broncos.
Andy Dalton, CIN (vs. IND)
Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals come off the bye with a favorable matchup at home at Paul Brown Stadium against the Indianapolis Colts. In their last four games, the Colts allowed quarterbacks to throw for 1,284 yards and six touchdowns, which amounts to the seventh-most fantasy points allowed per game during that span. That came against Blake Bortles, Marcus Mariota, Brian Hoyer and Russell Wilson, so the competition certainly varied.
While Dalton's been far from reliable, he does have seven touchdowns over his last three games and has played well in good road matchups with the Green Bay Packers (Week 3) and Cleveland Browns (Week 4). If you're hurting at QB because of the byes, Dalton is a good streamer.
Week 8 Quarterback Rankings
|1||Tom Brady (NE)|
|2||Carson Wentz (PHI)|
|3||Drew Brees (NO)|
|4||Dak Prescott (DAL)|
|5||Kirk Cousins (WAS)|
|6||Russell Wilson (SEA)|
|7||Cam Newton (CAR)|
|8||Philip Rivers (LAC)|
|9||Derek Carr (OAK)|
|10||Deshaun Watson (HOU)|
|11||Tyrod Taylor (BUF)|
|12||Matt Ryan (ATL)|
|13||Andy Dalton (CIN)|
|14||Jameis Winston (TB)|
|15||Matthew Stafford (DET)|
|16||Case Keenum (MIN)|
|17||Ben Roethlisberger (PIT)|
|18||Alex Smith (KC)|
|19||Josh McCown (NYJ)|
|20||C.J. Beathard (SF)|
|21||Trevor Siemian (DEN)|
|22||Joe Flacco (BAL)|
|23||Jacoby Brissett (IND)|
|24||Matt Moore (MIA)|
|25||Mitchell Trubisky (CHI)|
|26||DeShone Kizer (CLE)|
Better Than Usual
Joe Mixon, CIN (vs. IND)
In one of the oddest stats of the season, Jeremy Hill has the first touch in Cincinnati's backfield in each game this season. Last week, Mixon had his most efficient contest with 48 yards on seven carries and three receptions for 20 yards on three targets. According to Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer, head coach Marvin Lewis explained the situation by saying, "Whatever plays are called are called."
That pointless statement from Lewis doesn't make any sense, but what would make sense is featuring Mixon in Sunday's matchup with the Colts. In the last four weeks, only the San Francisco 49ers have allowed more fantasy points per game to running backs than Indianapolis.
During that four-game span, RBs have rushed for 546 yards and five touchdowns on 110 carries and caught 18 of 22 targets for 198 yards and two scores. Mixon and A.J. Green are easily the most talented skills players in Cincinnati and should be featured as such this weekend.
Dion Lewis/James White, NE (vs. LAC)
If you checked out this week's B.S. Meter, you know that Lewis jumped in front of Mike Gillislee in the last two weeks as the lead ball-carrier in New England. Even though predicting what will happen in head coach Bill Belichick's backfield is never easy, the Patriots should have every reason to stick with Lewis in that role and keep White as the primary pass-catcher of the running back group.
Lewis and White should be strong fantasy plays when they take on the Los Angeles Chargers this weekend. While initially considered a potential strength of the team, the Los Angeles defense has been underwhelming, as it's allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to RBs in the last four weeks. The Chargers gave up 453 yards and two touchdowns on 95 carries during that time, and running backs also got them for 29 receptions and 230 yards on 40 targets. There's more than enough to go around for Lewis and White to both be considered solid RB2s for Week 8.
Lamar Miller, HOU (at SEA)
If you average more than 16 carries and three targets per game, that should be enough volume to be a reliable fantasy running back. For the season, Miller is the No. 18 running back in total fantasy points, which is solid but not great considering how busy he is every week.
In fact, Miller has survived on his volume, as evidenced by his 3.8 yards-per-carry average and just two total touchdowns. He doesn't have a game with more than 75 rushing yards and has just one with at least 100 total yards.
While the Texans have been rolling right along with an improved offense under Deshaun Watson, they could have a rough time in Seattle at CenturyLink Field this weekend. Miller will be facing the top fantasy defense against running backs. No team has allowed fewer fantasy points per game to the position over the last four weeks. Even though Miller is typically a solid RB2, he should be more of an RB3/flex against the Seahawks.
Isaiah Crowell, CLE (vs. MIN)
Many of you already know to avoid Crowell, but if you hung on to him and saw what he did last week, it may have opened the door to give him another chance in your lineup. In the overtime loss to the Tennessee Titans, Crowell tied his season high with 17 carries, but he managed just 35 yards. He had his busiest day as a receiver with six targets, four receptions and 36 yards. The random uptick in his targets isn't reason enough to play him Sunday against the Vikings in London. Over the last four weeks, the Vikings held running backs to just 3.4 yards per carry. They allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points per game to RBs during that time. Don't be fooled by Crowell.
Javorius "Buck" Allen, BAL (vs. MIA)
The Baltimore Ravens have a boring offense and no players you must have in your starting lineup on a weekly basis, but by Week 8, you probably already know that fact. If you are considering a Raven, Allen is your only decent option. He leads the team in targets (39), receptions (31) and carries (82), so volume is his best attribute as it relates to his fantasy value.
On Thursday night, he'll face a Dolphins defense that allowed 28 receptions for 195 yards and a touchdown on 36 targets to running backs in the last four weeks.
According to Garrett Downing of the Ravens' official website, the team listed Mike Wallace (concussion), Breshad Perriman (concussion) and Jeremy Maclin (shoulder) as questionable, while Michael Campanaro (shoulder) is doubtful. So this group is far from healthy on a short week. That could mean another busy game for Allen, who had eight receptions on 11 targets in Week 7.
Week 8 Running Back PPR Rankings
Better Than Usual
Kelvin Benjamin, CAR (at TB)
Benjamin and the Carolina Panthers had a rough outing in an ugly 17-3 loss in Chicago last week. The 2014 first-round pick caught three of his six targets for 65 yards. It was the first time since Week 3 that he didn't score at least 10 fantasy points in PPR formats. Luckily, he has a great chance to bounce back when the Panthers visit the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 8.
Targeting the Buccaneers—especially their pass defense—has been a wise decision for fantasy owners over the last month. During the last four weeks, Tampa Bay allowed the fifth-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers in matchups with the Buffalo Bills, Arizona Cardinals, New England Patriots and New York Giants.
In 2017, only the Eagles (101) have allowed more receptions to wide receivers than the Buccaneers and Patriots (96 each). Whether he sees Brent Grimes or Robert McClain at cornerback, Benjamin should dominate in this plus matchup.
Tyreek Hill, KC (vs. DEN)
It shouldn't come as surprise that Hill has been somewhat frustrating to deal with this season. Without a big play, he's an average fantasy wide receiver. His three touchdowns have gone for 75 yards (Week 1), 30 yards (Week 3) and 64 yards (Week 7). He went for 125-plus yards in two of those games (Weeks 1 and 7) and had 77 (Week 3) in the other, but he had just one other game with at least 50 receiving yards (68 in Week 5).
The boom-or-bust factor for Hill isn't enough to sit him in this week's matchup with the Denver Broncos, but it's something to consider when managing expectations. Last season, Hill had nine receptions for 52 yards and a touchdown along with a three-yard rushing score against the Broncos in Week 12. In Week 16, he followed that up with six rushes for 95 yards including a 70-yard rushing touchdown, but he didn't record a reception on five targets. In 2017, Hill has just nine carries for 22 yards.
In the last four weeks, Denver held WRs to the third-fewest fantasy points per game with just 20 receptions for 271 yards on 37 targets in three games. As always, you play Hill hoping for the big play, but know he has a tough matchup against a great secondary.
Will Fuller, HOU (at SEA)
The thought of benching Fuller probably sounds ridiculous since he's been so hot in the three games since returning from injury, but if there's a week for his amazing efficiency to end, it's in Seattle. Fuller has eight receptions for 154 yards on 14 targets, but five of those receptions have gone for touchdowns. He doesn't have more than four receptions in a game, and he topped out at 62 yards in Week 6 against the Browns.
Even though Seattle's offense has been inconsistent, the Seahawks pass defense remains one of the toughest to face in the league. In the last four weeks, no team has allowed fewer fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers, who had just 25 receptions for 255 yards and one touchdown on 58 targets in three games.
Fuller will either see a brutal matchup in Richard Sherman or just a tough matchup against Shaquill Griffin depending on what side of the field he lines up on, so you may want to consider benching him despite his hot streak. His efficiency isn't sustainable.
Tyrell Williams, LAC (at NE)
Even though 2016 was a surprise season for Williams, he hasn't been able to follow up on it in 2017. The presence of Mike Williams hasn't mattered much in the last two games, as the rookie has just one reception for 15 yards on three targets, but Tyrell hasn't done much more with four receptions for 38 yards on four targets. Opportunities haven't been there often this season, but they should be present in this week's game with the Patriots.
During its last four games, New England yielded the second-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers, who had 56 receptions for 828 yards and four touchdowns on 88 targets. Poor play and injuries have made this a secondary to attack, so while it's a no-brainer to play Keenan Allen, Williams is also worth a shot in this favorable matchup.
Week 8 Wide Receiver PPR Rankings
Better Than Usual
Kyle Rudolph, MIN (at CLE, in London)
Rudolph hasn't been able to follow up the career numbers he put up in 2016 with big output in 2017, but he hasn't been useless, either. After failing to produce a game with more than four receptions or 45 yards in the first four weeks, Rudolph has 16 receptions for 135 yards and a TD on 25 targets in the last three games. It's not huge fantasy production, but he's definitely trending up heading into a beatable matchup with the Cleveland Browns in Week 7.
Over the last four weeks, TEs posted 29 receptions for 312 yards and three TDs against the Browns, which adds up to the fourth-most fantasy points allowed per game in that span. Rudolph's uptick in production could be tied to the absence of Stefon Diggs (groin), who isn't a lock to play, especially since the Vikings are off in Week 9. If Diggs is out, Rudolph is easily a top-10 option, and if Diggs does go, you can still roll with Rudolph since the matchup is so good.
Austin Hooper, ATL (at NYJ)
Hooper's busy role in the offense went away in Week 7 when Mohamed Sanu returned to the lineup. In the two games Sanu was limited and out, Hooper had 12 receptions for 98 yards on 16 targets. With Sanu back in the lineup, the veteran WR had six receptions for 65 yards on 10 targets, while Hooper had just a single reception for six yards on his only target.
If the Falcons offense were operating at a high level, it might be easier to give Hooper another shot, but that's tough to do with Matt Ryan looking like an average QB. The only reason to consider Hooper is the matchup with the New York Jets. In the last four weeks, the Jets allowed the fifth-most fantasy points per game to TEs. Having said that, the presence of Sanu back in the lineup makes Hooper nothing more than a desperation play with six teams on the bye.
Zach Miller, CHI (at NO)
If you're a believer in young QBs leaning on the TE, Miller may have gained some fantasy value when the Bears turned to Mitchell Trubisky. Since taking over the starting job, Trubisky's only two TD passes have gone to TEs. During those three games, Miller has seven receptions for 93 yards and two TDs on 13 targets, although one of those TDs came from Tarik Cohen on a trick play and the other was a tipped pass that Miller was lucky enough to catch. This week, Miller faces a New Orleans Saints defense that held TEs to the fourth-fewest fantasy points in the last four weeks. Look elsewhere for your TE.
Jared Cook, OAK (at BUF)
Believing in Cook has never been easy, as he's been far from reliable during his entire career with stops in Tennessee, St. Louis, Green Bay and now Oakland. That might give you reason to shy away from him even after he posted six receptions for 107 yards on seven targets in last week's win over the Kansas City Chiefs. There's more than one reason to believe he can follow that up with another solid fantasy performance in Week 8.
Cook is lucky enough to draw what's turned into a great matchup for TEs when he faces the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. Over the last four weeks, the Bills allowed the second-most fantasy points per game to TEs thanks to 25 receptions, 288 yards and two TDs in their last three games.
In addition to the matchup, Oakland's offense seemed to get back on track, mostly because Derek Carr actually looked healthy and the team found ways to get Amari Cooper more involved. If Carr is healthy and both Cooper and Crabtree are playing at their highest level, Cook can be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses, which Carr will recognize as he did last week. Give Cook another shot this weekend.
Week 8 Tight End PPR Rankings
|1||Rob Gronkowski (NE)|
|2||Zach Ertz (PHI)|
|3||Travis Kelce (KC)|
|4||Jimmy Graham (SEA)|
|5||Jordan Reed (WAS)|
|6||Kyle Rudolph (MIN)|
|7||Austin Seferian-Jenkins (NYJ)|
|8||Hunter Henry (LAC)|
|9||Cameron Brate (TB)|
|10||Jared Cook (OAK)|
|11||Jason Witten (DAL)|
|12||Tyler Kroft (CIN)|
|13||Jack Doyle (IND)|
|14||O.J. Howard (TB)|
|15||George Kittle (SF)|
|16||Zach Miller (CHI)|
|17||Ed Dickson (CAR)|
|18||Austin Hooper (ATL)|
|19||Ryan Griffin (HOU)|
|20||A.J. Derby (DEN)|
|21||Eric Ebron (DET)|
|22||Nick O'Leary (BUF)|
|23||Julius Thomas (MIA)|
|24||Benjamin Watson (BAL)|
|25||David Njoku (CLE)|
|26||Vernon Davis (WAS)|
|27||Coby Fleener (NO)|
|28||Seth DeValve (CLE)|
|29||Stephen Anderson (HOU)|
|30||Antonio Gates (LAC)|
|31||Jesse James (PIT)|
|32||Dion Sims (CHI)|
|33||Darren Fells (DET)|
|34||Nick Boyle (BAL)|
|35||Vance McDonald (PIT)|
|36||Luke Willson (SEA)|
|37||Virgil Green (DEN)|
|38||Demetrius Harris (KC)|
|39||Logan Thomas (BUF)|
Best Streaming Options
Cincinnati Bengals (vs. IND)
The hapless Indianapolis Colts have become a great target if you're looking for a fantasy defense. In the last four weeks, they're tied with the Cleveland Browns for fourth-most fantasy points allowed to defenses in the last four weeks. During that span, they've given up 18 sacks, two interceptions, two fumble recoveries and a pair of TDs while scoring just 58 points. Even though the Bengals haven't been a good fantasy defense this season, ignore that and focus on this attractive matchup.
New Orleans Saints (vs. CHI)
Unfortunately, the Saints didn't work out as a fantasy defense last week. They held the Green Bay Packers to just 17 points but had just one interception and one sack. It's worth it to take another shot on them with an even better matchup this weekend at home against the Chicago Bears.
Last week, the Bears managed to defeat the Carolina Panthers 17-3 despite their only TDs coming by way of the defense. Over the last four weeks, Chicago yielded the sixth-most fantasy points to defenses thanks to 10 sacks, three interceptions, five fumble recoveries and two return TDs while scoring just 55 points. Expect the Saints to get to Mitchell Trubisky and limit the anemic Chicago offense.
Week 8 Defense Rankings
|1||Minnesota Vikings (MIN)|
|2||Cincinnati Bengals (CIN)|
|3||Philadelphia Eagles (PHI)|
|4||Baltimore Ravens (BAL)|
|5||Kansas City Chiefs (KC)|
|6||Pittsburgh Steelers (PIT)|
|7||Miami Dolphins (MIA)|
|8||New Orleans Saints (NO)|
|9||Denver Broncos (DEN)|
|10||Seattle Seahawks (SEA)|
|11||Houston Texans (HOU)|
|12||Carolina Panthers (CAR)|
|13||New England Patriots (NE)|
|14||Buffalo Bills (BUF)|
|15||Atlanta Falcons (ATL)|
|16||Tampa Bay Buccaneers (TB)|
|17||Detroit Lions (DET)|
|18||Oakland Raiders (OAK)|
|19||New York Jets (NYJ)|
|20||Chicago Bears (CHI)|
Best Options Widely Available on the Waiver Wire
Kai Forbath, MIN (at CLE, in London)
No kicker had a better Week 7 than Forbath. He connected on all six of his field-goal attempts to finish as the top fantasy option. For the season, he's the No. 4 fantasy kicker, yet you can get him in the majority of leagues as we come to the halfway point of the regular season. With a favorable matchup against the Cleveland Browns, Forbath should be in for another productive outing.
Ownership percentages: ESPN, 29.1; Yahoo, 39
Stephen Hauschka, BUF (vs. OAK)
Despite hitting three field goals and three extra points in Week 7, Hauschka remains widely available for those looking for a reliable fantasy kicker this week. For the season, he ranks sixth in total fantasy points and first in field goals of 50-plus yards. The Raiders have given up the ninth-most fantasy points per game to kickers in the last four weeks and are tied for the third-most allowed on the season.
Ownership percentage: ESPN, 26.5; Yahoo, 51
Week 8 Kicker Rankings
|1||Stephen Gostkowski (NE)|
|2||Jake Elliott (PHI)|
|3||Wil Lutz (NO)|
|4||Harrison Butker (KC)|
|5||Steven Hauschka (BUF)|
|6||Kai Forbath (MIN)|
|7||Justin Tucker (BAL)|
|8||Matt Bryant (ATL)|
|9||Randy Bullock (CIN)|
|10||Matt Prater (DET)|
|11||Chris Boswell (PIT)|
|12||Blair Walsh (SEA)|
|13||Graham Gano (CAR)|
|14||Nick Novak (LAC)|
|15||Nick Rose (WAS)|
|16||Adam Vinatieri (IND)|
|17||Giorgio Tavecchio (OAK)|
|18||Patrick Murray (TB)|
|19||Chandler Catanzaro (NYJ)|
|20||Ka'imi Fairbairn (HOU)|