Week 8 Defense (DEF/DST) Waiver Wire Pickups: Chargers Stand Out

I hit the nail on the head last week with the Chiefs as the top waiver-wire option. The Chiefs destroyed the Broncos on defense this week with three sacks, four turnovers, and two touchdowns. Their two touchdown week makes them the second defense this year to have two defensive or special teams touchdowns in a game and also ties them for the most in the league so far with three total. As the Chiefs play the Jets next week, they will be a keeper for two weeks in a row. The Redskins also showed that they can dominate tough teams as well. Sure, the Cowboys were without Dak Prescott, but Andy Dalton was a starting quarterback for a while, and they still had Ezekiel Elliott and all of their receiver threats. Only allowing three points to the Cowboys is no easy feat. They will get a break with a bye week next week, so you will have to look elsewhere if you are a person who follows the momentum. As we start going down the downhill slope in the fantasy football season towards the playoffs, it is important to still be picking defenses that will help you get the tough wins. There are very few good options here which make it important for you to quickly pick up your defense before they are all taken. Here are some options for you to pick up this week to give you the best shot.

TeamOpponentOwn %
Los Angeles ChargersDenver Broncos35.9
New OrleansChicago Bears42.3
Miami DolphinsLos Angeles Rams16.8
Green Bay PackersMinnesota Vikings9.2
Denver BroncosLos Angeles Chargers29.2

Los Angeles Chargers

Opponent: Denver Broncos
Own %: 35.9

Los Angeles ChargersThe Chargers were second on my list last week and they performed against the Jaguars. They get to face another low tier offense with the Broncos this week. They picked up five sacks last week with a fumble. Throughout the season, the Chargers’ defense has either looked bad against a good offense or good against a bad offense. The Broncos fall under the category of bad offenses as they gave the Chiefs’ defense the most points last week and have only scored above 20 points in a game twice this year. The momentum is far on the side of the Chargers who should be getting you that boost of points that will give you the edge in close games. With the playoff runs beginning to come down to the end, that little bit of extra points from your defense could be the difference-maker.

New Orleans Saints

Opponent: Chicago Bears
Own %: 42.3

New Orleans SaintsFor their past three games, the Saints’ defense has put up positive respectable points. Their touchdown in week one has been their stand out week, but since then, they have only had one bad week against the energized Packers’ offense. This week they face the Bears who have been a sub-par offense all season long. Last week, the Bears’ offensive line looked horrible at defending Nick Foles. The Saints have been consistently getting at least one sack per game and are due for the turnovers to start rolling in again. Since getting three turnovers in week 1, they have created two turnovers in the past five games. They have shown they have the ability to create them, it has just been a dry patch. Once those numbers pick back up, they can be close to a top 10 defense once again.

Miami Dolphins

Opponent: Los Angeles Rams
Own %: 16.8

Miami DolphinsAt this point, the playable defenses begin to slide off to the point where if you did not have a solid defense last week, you may be stuck in a bad place. The Dolphins are the go-to defense if you currently have a defense with a tough pending matchup. They were on their bye last week but came off a shutout against the Jets two weeks back. The week before that, they took care of business against the 49ers, making it two straight weeks of great performances for the Dolphins. They have an okay matchup against the Rams. It is hard to know which Rams’ offense you are going to see as they have put up 30+ points in some games and fail to score much in others. With how the Dolphins’ defense has played, I would expect it to be tough for the Rams.

Green Bay Packers

Opponent: Minnesota Vikings
Own %: 9.2

Green Bay PackersThe Packers made my list last week and put up a fair amount of points with three sacks and a turnover against a Texans’ team that is slowly developing. Outside of their game against the Buccaneers, the Packers have given a decent amount of points every week. They have their rematch against the Vikings, whom they played in week 1. Last time, the Vikings put up 34 points, but a safety, two sacks, and a turnover would help combat that for a couple of points. The Vikings do not look the same anymore, especially with Dalvin Cook battling an injury. A week’s rest for the Vikings could put them back on track as Cook grows healthier, but with how each team has been playing recently, this game is the Packers to lose. Their defense has been solid and their offense keeps the defense off the field. They are the last resort option on this list as it drops off from here.

Denver Broncos

Opponent: Los Angeles Chargers
Own %: 29.2

Denver BroncosI am only putting five options here because it is anyone’s guess who will out-perform expectations from here. The Broncos are the last feasible option here and that is a borderline claim. The Chargers have been playing without Austin Ekeler, but Justin Herbert has looked amazing, especially last week. The Broncos’ defense might stand a chance though as they were able to put up some points on the Chiefs last week. It was mainly because the Broncos’ offense gave up many of the points, but the Broncos managed four sacks on Patrick Mahomes and forced a fumble. Against an elite offense like the Chiefs, it is hard to pull that off, but the Broncos did it. Last week was the only outlier in a spree of good defensive performances in terms of the points allowed total which leads me to believe that the Broncos will return back to their average of just around 20 points allowed per game which would set them up to score decently again. Outside of this list, you are getting into a messy situation by relying on the waiver wire.

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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