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I will be going through the defenses that I think you should be picking up this week. These are only the defenses that are owned by 60% or less in leagues so if you have a solid defense option already, you shouldn’t be dropping them for these teams. This is for those that are streaming defenses or find that your defense is facing a tough matchup this week.
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||New Orleans Saints||3.1|
|Cincinnati Bengals||Arizona Cardinals||1.1|
|Houston Texans||Atlanta Falcons||34.5|
|Green Bay Packers||Dallas Cowboys||60.5|
|Carolina Panthers||Jacksonville Jaguars||30.1|
|Cleveland Browns||San Francisco 49ers||33.5|
|Philadelphia Eagles||New York Jets||42.1|
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Opponent: New Orleans Saints
Own %: 3.1
Believe it or not, the Buccaneers have the best run defense in the league in terms of yards per game at just 59.2 yards. Last week they held the Rams to 28 yards rushing. Jared Goff threw for 517 yards but the Buccaneers intercepted him three times. This week they are facing the Saints who are still without Drew Brees. Teddy Bridgewater will not be throwing 68 times as Goff did if even half of that, so it will be a lot more manageable for the Bucs this week. Their focus should be on stopping Alvin Kamara which they are fully capable of.
Opponent: Arizona Cardinals
Own %: 1.1
The Bengals are playing Monday night this week against the Steelers, so that game should give a good indication of what the Bengals’ defense is capable of. Next week, they play the Cardinals who are still struggling to get their fast-paced offense going. Kyler Murray hasn’t been the quarterback he was expected to be, mostly because of their offensive line who has allowed Murray to be sacked 20 times this season. Do the math and that is five per game. Starting a defense against them is perfect with all the sacks they allow along with Murray throwing a lot which gives plenty of chances for interceptions.
Opponent: Atlanta Falcons
Own %: 34.5
The Texans looked excellent in their game against the Panthers. Granted the Panthers were without Cam Newton, but they forced three fumbles and sacked Kyle Allen three times. Only Christian McCaffrey was really able to exploit them and the Falcons do not have that type of running back. Devonta Freeman has not looked as good as he has been in the past, especially in their last game against the Titans where he ran the ball 12 times for 28 yards. He did have 72 receiving yards which the Texans will have to be ready for.
Green Bay Packers
Opponent: Dallas Cowboys
Own %: 60.5
It is crazy the Packers aren’t owned in over 80% of leagues which is why I’m including them in this list. They had 8 turnovers through the first three weeks. They had an off week last week against the Eagles which will likely scare off some Packers owners which will only increase their availability. The Saints were able to completely halt the Cowboys’ offense last week which is a good sign for the Packers. This game will probably end up in the defensive struggle of the week with a very low final score.
Opponent: Jacksonville Jaguars
Own %: 30.1
I still don’t understand why the Panthers’ defense isn’t owned in many leagues. Depending on your scoring, they are just on the edge of being a top ten defense overall. They managed to totally shut down Deshaun Watson who was just coming off one of his best games the week before. As for next week, the Panthers look to take on the Jaguars who ran all over the Broncos. Leonard Fournette ran for 225 yards without getting a touchdown. The Panthers’ run defense is better than what the Broncos have to offer so there shouldn’t be that kind of production two weeks in a row.
Opponent: San Francisco 49ers
Own %: 33.5
The Browns shocked the Ravens last week in Baltimore. They managed to force Lamar Jackson into throwing two interceptions. It is hard for any defense to contain Jackson, but the Browns overall were able to keep him uncomfortable. Their next opponent is the 49ers who are coming off their bye week. They will be well-rested, but having not played can also lead to coming out cold. The 49ers don’t have any elite weapons offensively, so the Browns are looking to be in good shape.
Opponent: New York Jets
Own %: 42.1
The Eagles haven’t been the best defense as of yet, but their matchup this week is a very good one. The Jets have not looked good in any of their games so far, especially without Sam Darnold. Darnold is dealing with mono and could continue to miss games, so Luke Falk has had to take over. He still has yet to complete a touchdown drive after playing two games. Outside of three interceptions in Week 2, the Eagles have not shown anything too special, but the Jets are a good matchup for them to produce some numbers.
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