Week 16 Defense (DEF/DST) Waiver Wire Pickups: Washington’s Defense Is Rolling

This may or may not be the fantasy football finals in your league, but congratulations on making it this far, and hopefully this article will help you win the championship. Last week, a couple of touchdowns were scored coming from the Bills, Ravens, and Cowboys. Also, and NFL record was broken for safeties on a single day with four safeties on Sunday coming from the Ravens, Lions, Cardinals, and Saints. The Bills took home the best score with their touchdown off a fumble along with three sacks and allowing just 19 points. Despite allowing 33 points, the Cowboys finished among the top with their touchdown paired with four turnovers. A notable team to watch is the Dolphins who have been rolling teams defensively. Apart from week 14 against the Chiefs, the Dolphins have held teams under 12 points since week 12. But against Patrick Mahomes, they picked him off three times which more than doubled his total on the season entering the game. For most leagues, this week marks the final week. Do not forget about how important your defense can be and pick up a solid one to help you win the championship. Here are some of the best options under 60% ownership.

TeamOpponentOwn %
Washington Football TeamCarolina Panthers52.2
Arizona CardinalsSan Francisco 49ers31.8
Carolina PanthersWashington Football Team12.5
Kansas City ChiefsAtlanta Falcons49.0
Philadelphia EaglesDallas Cowboys22.4

Washington Football Team

Opponent: Carolina Panthers
Own %: 52.2

washington football team 1Washington has been tearing apart teams defensively, but their offense has been the only thing holding them back. They have allowed 20 or fewer points in each of the past five weeks including games against the Steelers and Seahawks. In the span of five games, they have totaled 12 sacks, nine turnovers, and three touchdowns. As a top-5 fantasy defense, their ownership is low and a favorable matchup against the Panthers makes this a great pickup for the finals. Christian McCaffrey will likely sit out again seeing how the Panthers have no chance of the playoff and they do not want to risk a further injury. If that is the case, the Panthers will have trouble putting up points as has been the case for most weeks with McCaffrey. With his absence combined with how well Washington is playing defensively, Washington is a great stream this week.

Arizona Cardinals

Opponent: San Francisco 49ers
Own %: 31.8

Arizona CardinalsThe Cardinals had a tight game with the Eagles last week but held on in the end. Jalen Hurts was the entire Eagles’ offense with all of their touchdowns but the Eagles’ offensive line allowed six sacks along with a safety to put together a solid performance for the Cardinals’ defense. The 49ers will be another great matchup to exploit as they allowed four turnovers and a touchdown last week to the Cowboys who are ranked near the bottom of defenses. On the season, they have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to the opposing defenses. The 49ers’ offense has been dealing with injuries all season and against some decent defenses, they have struggled to put up points. The Cardinals have been solid lately against the Giants and Eagles in the last two weeks and should take care of business against the 49ers as their playoff hopes continue to live on.

Carolina Panthers

Opponent: Washington Football Team
Own %: 12.5

Carolina PanthersAfter having two great performances in weeks 11 and 12, a bye week in week 13 resulted in a poor week 14 against the Broncos even though it was a great matchup. But yet again, the Panthers turned it around against the Packers and actually handled them better even though they are a much tougher offense. The Panthers are back to a favorable matchup against Washington who put up just 15 points last week against the Seahawks. Looking back to weeks 11 and 12, the Panthers shut out the Lions and scored two touchdowns against the Vikings. Their ceiling is quite high for how they have played for the majority of the season. With a matchup like Washington, there is a real chance of another week 11 type of game for the Panthers.

Kansas City Chiefs

Opponent: Atlanta Falcons
Own %: 49.0

Kansas City ChiefsThe Chiefs have little to play for in week 16, but they still put up great numbers each week regardless. Their defense in particular has had a few great games recently. They had a touchdown against the Dolphins two weeks ago and have forced at least one turnover in each of the past five weeks. Their most significant problem is limiting points scored against them and will depend on which Falcons’ team shows up on Sunday that will determine the outcome for the Chiefs. Some weeks they can put up 40 points and some they barely manage 20. But despite giving up point totals in the high 20s, the Chiefs have found ways to produce in fantasy by creating turnovers and sacks.

Philadelphia Eagles

Opponent: Dallas Cowboys
Own %: 22.4

Philadelphia EaglesThe Eagles are a top-10 fantasy defense this season due in part to one massive week. That week happened to be against the Cowboys who they face again. Against the Cowboys back in week 8, the Eagles managed a safety, four sacks, two fumble recoveries with one being a touchdown, and only allowed nine points. Things have certainly changed since then, but the Cowboys are still without Dak Prescott for the remainder of the season and have not seen any improvement from anyone on their offense. The Eagles have also not had much success of defense since then, but do have five total turnovers in the past two weeks. If they can hold the Cowboys’ scoring opportunities to minimal points once again, they will have great success out on the field once again.

I am a student at the University of Michigan studying Sport Management. I have been involved in sports as long as I can remember, playing football, baseball, and basketball. I also love learning how to play songs on the piano and ukulele.

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