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It can be hard to choose which defense to start each week especially if you are like me and stream defenses week to week. Who is the best option? In this article, I will be going through my top 10 defenses for Week 2. If one or more of these are available, I would suggest picking them up and sticking them in your starting lineup this week.
1. New England Patriots
Opponent: Miami Dolphins
The Patriots’ defense looked phenomenal in Week 1 against a good Steelers’ offense. They were able to stop Ben Roethlisberger from being productive and shut down James Conner who is coming off an insane year. They gave up the least amount of points among all defenses in the NFL, tied with the Green Bay Packers. They allowed the 3rd least amount of rushing yards. Now they face the Miami Dolphins who have the worst looking offense in the NFL. This game will be a blow out quickly and you can expect very little production from the Dolphins’ offense.
2. Chicago Bears
Opponent: Denver Broncos
The Bears entered the season as the top-rated defense in the NFL and they did not disappoint. They only allowed the high octane offense of the Packers to score 10 points. Aaron Rodgers was shut down to only 166 yards through the air. That ranked top-3 for passing yards allowed among all NFL defenses. The Denver Broncos are relying on a new quarterback in their system, Joe Flacco, and on Phillip Lindsay who set the bar extremely high last year but has not shown anything like that since. The Bears should easily handle the Broncos this week.
3. Baltimore Ravens
Opponent: Arizona Cardinals
The Ravens dominated the Dolphins last week in a brutal fashion, giving up only 10 points in a total blowout. Since the Ravens scored so many times, the Dolphins had plenty of time with the ball, yet the Ravens’ defense allowed the least amount of total offensive yards (200). This is the Dolphins defense though and the Cardinals have a far more up-tempo offense. The main worry for the Ravens this week will be conditioning. They have what it takes to stop the talent of the Cardinals, but they can’t get tired or they will get exploited just like the Lions’ defense last week in the 4th quarter. They need to hold on for 4 whole quarters.
4. Houston Texans
Opponent: Jacksonville Jaguars
The Texans’ defense faced a very difficult challenge against the New Orleans Saints last week. Drew Brees is not an easy quarterback to stop. Lucky for the Texans, their competition drastically dropped this week. The Jaguars already had questions about how Nick Foles would fit in this offense. But now that Foles is going to miss some weeks, they are in even more trouble. Gardner Minshew looked amazing in Week 1, but I highly doubt he will be as efficient and effective this week. I would guess that this game will be a low scoring affair or in favor of the Texans.
5. Denver Broncos
Opponent: Chicago Bears
There is nothing very special about the Broncos’ defense looking at Week 1, but their opponent this week looked terrible last week. The Bears offense put up 3 total points on the Packers who are also just an average defense. Adjustments will be made for the Bears, but I don’t see them being able to overpower the Broncos this week. This game will most likely be a mixture of the Bears shutting down the Broncos offense and the Bears failing to produce anything on offense, making the Broncos defense valuable.
6. Buffalo Bills
Opponent: New York Giants
The Bills looked impressive defensively in Week 1 against the Jets. They won’t have to travel anywhere to take on the Giants. The Jets were up 17-0 fairly early and the Bills shut them out the rest of the game and managed to form a comeback to win the game. They allowed the 2nd lowest amount of passing yards (155) which will be very important in shutting down half of Saquon Barkley’s game. If they only have to worry about his run game, they will have a much easier time out there. They also allowed the 3rd lowest amount of total offense (223 yards). The Bills’ defense is in good shape to shut down the struggling Giants offense.
7. Cleveland Browns
Opponent: New York Jets
The Browns are set to face off against a Jets offense that failed to put anything together in the 4th quarter of their first contest, losing them the game. Starting a defense against a cold offense is usually a good idea. Sam Darnold is struggling to establish the passing game and Le’Veon Bell is still adapting to his new team. The Browns are in good shape to win this game and get back up to the level of their preseason hype. The Titans totally embarrassed them last week. It is time for them to bounce back against a different team they should beat.
8. Dallas Cowboys
Opponent: Washington Redskins
I drafted the Cowboys in most of my leagues, knowing they have the easiest front part of their schedule. First, they dominate the Giants easily, and now they get the Redskins who just lost their top running back option in Derrius Guice. Their next week they play the Miami Dolphins, another bad offense. I think it is worth to pick up the Cowboys, despite not being a spectacular defense, based solely on their matchup. This is your best streaming option.
9. Cincinnati Bengals
Opponent: San Francisco 49ers
Despite losing the game, the Bengals’ defense looked great Week 1. They held Russell Wilson and the Seahawks to only 232 yards which ranked 4th best among NFL defenses last week. Now they find themselves up against the 49ers who are without Tevin Coleman this week. Jimmy Garoppolo did not look amazing against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, only throwing for 166 yards. After a solid first week performance and a very good matchup for this week, the Bengals are a good choice to start this week.
10. Los Angeles Chargers
Opponent: Detroit Lions
The Chargers are not a bad defense option, especially when facing the Lions who seem to not know if they want to be a run or pass kind of team. The Chargers posted the 5th lowest amount of pass yards in Week 1 with 173 yards allowed, but that was to Jacoby Brissett so that can only be taken with a grain of salt. They did allow Marlon Mack to run all over them in the 2nd half, sending the game into overtime. Kerryon Johnson has yet to really prove himself as a real threat in the run game, so there is not much to worry about there. There are better options at defense, but this wouldn’t be a bad selection this week.
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