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This weekend projects to be one of the better weeks for fantasy defenses. The Steelers continue to be an elite fantasy option and have consistently ranked in the top-nine for Lineups.com’s defensive rankings. One of the bolder fantasy predictions this week is that the Buffalo Bills will be a better fantasy defense than the New England Patriots. If your team is competing in the fantasy football playoffs, it’s paramount for you to read the list below and find one of the leaders on this list. If you are looking for player rankings for Week 16, you can find them here, as well as waiver wire adds. Anything fantasy football related can be found here.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. New York Jets
For the fourth straight week, the Pittsburgh Steelers have qualified as a top-nine fantasy defense. Last week, they eclipsed the San Francisco 49ers to become the second-best fantasy defense this season in terms of scoring fantasy points. This is due in large part to the fact that they have generated the second-most turnovers and sacks this season. This week the Steelers have a favorable matchup against a weak Jets offense that struggles to score 17 points weekly, thereby Pittsburgh is projected to be the league’s best fantasy defense.
Buffalo Bills vs. New England Patriots
Throughout this season, the Bills D has been an elite unit that is holding opponents to the second-fewest points this season. This week, the Bills will take on a Patriots offense that struggles to run the ball, and has failed to throw for 200+ yards in back to back games. Recently, the Patriots have struggled to gain separation with their receivers, and are now dealing with Julian Edelman’s injury. The last time the Bills played the Pats, they held them below 20 points and limited Tom Brady to 150 yards and an interception. Therefore, they are primed to be an elite defense for the fantasy football playoffs.
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Chicago Bears
Surprisingly, the Kansas City Chiefs have been a top ten fantasy defense this year. Since week 12, the Chiefs are averaging 13.7 fantasy points per game and holding opponents to the fewest points allowed per game. This week, the Chiefs defense will go against a lackluster Chicago Bears offense that ranks in the bottom ten pertaining to points per game. Given that the Bears are coming off a game in which they struggled to score 13 points, the Chiefs are a safe option for playoff fantasy owners.
Baltimore Ravens vs. Cleveland Browns
Right now, the Ravens have been the NFL’s fourth-best fantasy defense, rank in the top ten for points allowed, fumble recoveries, and defensive touchdowns. Over their last eight games, the Baltimore Ravens defense has been extremely productive, by averaging more than 13 fantasy points per game. This week, Baltimore takes on Baker Mayfield and the Browns, who have been turnover-prone with 17 interceptions and seven lost fumbles this season. As a result, the Ravens should easily handle Cleveland on Sunday.
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New England Patriots vs. Buffalo Bills
The New England Patriots have also made the top-nine defense list because of their elite production this season. Last week, the Patriots soundly handled the Bengals, by limiting them to only 13 points and picking off Andy Dalton four times (20 total fantasy points). Given that this matchup will most likely be dominated by defenses, both the Bills and Pats will be beneficial for playoff fantasy teams.
San Francisco 49ers vs. Los Angeles Rams
Throughout the majority of this season, the 49ers have been an elite fantasy defense, which ranks in the top three for points allowed, sacks, and fumble recoveries. This week, they will compete against the LA Rams and Jared Goff, whom they limited to a measly 78 passing yards and seven points in week six. Due to San Fran’s recent issues over the last three weeks, the 49ers ceiling is lower relative to other quality defenses. However, they are still worth starting as a tier two defense this week.
Seattle Seahawks vs. Arizona Cardinals
Since week 10, the Seattle Seahawks have made fantasy owners extremely happy by scoring 12 fantasy points per game. This week, they are going against an Arizona Cardinals offense that they scored 16 fantasy points against in week four. The last time they played Kyler Murray and the Kards, the Seahawks harassed him into allowing four sacks and tossing one interception. Given that Seattle is amongst the top-three when it comes to forcing turnovers, they are likely to have another field day this Sunday.
Atlanta Falcons vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Over the past six weeks, the Falcons defense has been a great fantasy option that is averaging 11 fantasy points per game. Since week 14, they have been a particularly opportunistic unit that has generated six sacks, two interceptions, four fumble recoveries, and one TD. This week, they have a very generous matchup against a Jacksonville Jaguars offense that is scoring the fewest points per game since week 13. Therefore, the Falcons are a great fantasy sleeper this Sunday.
Denver Broncos vs. Detroit Lions
Over the past two weeks, the Denver Broncos defense has been a solid unit that is averaging ten fantasy points per game. Since week 13, the Broncos have accumulated nine total sacks, while forcing four interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Conversely, the Detroit Lions offense is only generating 14.7 points per game throughout that same timespan. As long as David Blough continues to flounder as the Lions’ signal-caller, the Lions will assist fantasy defenses like the Broncos.
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