Streaming Defense: Week 2
Sometimes it’s hard to see a big week coming. We could have hardly guaranteed John Ross would go off, Austin Ekeler would find the endzone three times, or that Sammy Watkins would put the Chiefs on his back. Other times it’s easy. Patrick Mahomes, Saquon Barkley, and Deandre Hopkins also had big weeks. When streaming defenses week-to-week, it all depends on the matchups. Some times they look good and other times they fall a little flat. Still, there is almost always something we can take advantage of. Here is a quick reminder of our streamers from last week: the Buffalo Bills (stream of the week), New York Jets, and Kansas City Chiefs. Here is a look at the top-12.
|Team||% Owned||Fantasy Points||Sacks||Interceptions||Fumbles|
|3||New York Jets||24%||18||1||2||2|
|11||Los Angeles Rams||98%||9||3||1||2|
So, six of the twelve teams were heavily owned. The odds are you couldn’t get to them. However, that also left 6 sleepers and we found two of them: Buffalo at tenth with 10 points and New York at third with 18 points. If you targeted that game, things went well this week. Some other takeaways from this chart:
- We can target Tampa Bay’s offense thanks to the turnovers created by Jameis Winston.
- Tennessee looks to have a legit defense. Consider adding them now and riding with them.
- Green Bay can also be added as a speculative hold. They looked really good.
- San Francisco’s offense could be a good target–let’s be cautious for the moment though.
So with this information how does the coming week look?
New England Patriots (@ Mia, 80%)
If the New England Patriots are available in your league, grab them right now. Here’s the recipe for success this week: take a team that looked really good on defense (the Patriots), mix with a team that looked incompetent on offense (the Dolphins), add in a dash of player dissent in the Miami locker room, and stir until ready. The Patriots stymied the Steelers offense in week one and should have no trouble against Ryan Fitzpatrick, Kalen Ballage, and DeVante Parker. Miami’s top players have reportedly been asking for trades after their humiliating loss to Baltimore. I highly doubt the Dolphins come out with their A-game this week. New England is my #1 play this week and it’s not close.
Note: each streamer is followed by their opponent and their percent owned.
New York Jets (@ Cle, 24%)
It’s worth mentioning that I list our streamer candidates by percent owned rather than by my personal preference. The Jets defense was excellent in week one, though Josh Allen certainly helped their cause. They tallied 2 interceptions (C.J. Mosley and Neville Hewitt) along with two forced fumbles and a sack. Every turnover, however, came from Allen himself. Looking at the Browns, they were hardly careful with the ball. Baker Mayfield threw three interceptions and was sacked five times on the day. Basically, the Browns collapsed in the second half. Personally, I think the Browns will turn things around and handle the Jets. This is not my favorite option. If you doubt the Cleveland offense, however, then look no further. The Jets should be your week 2 streamer.
Indianapolis Colts (vs Tenn, 15%)
This game has the look of a defensive battle all the way. Indianapolis has a good young running back who they would love to use to control the clock. Tennessee has a good young running back who they would love to use to control the clock. Indianapolis has a quarterback they would hope to not lean on too much. Tennessee has a quarterback they hope to not lean on too much. See where I’m going here? Indianapolis has a solid defense in their own right, and this looks to be a good matchup. I don’t buy into Tennessee as a high powered offense and I never will with Marcus Mariota at the helm. Factor in the stats from last week (Indy forced a fumble, an interception, and 4 sacks) and I like this option. Much like the New York vs. Buffalo game last week, you’ll have to pick the side you prefer.
Tennessee Titans (@ Ind, 9%)
Let’s not overlook what the Titans did last week. The Cleveland Browns were supposed to be the new hotness in the league and early on it looked that way. The Browns marched down the field on the game’s first drive for a touchdown, and I thought they were off to the races. The Titans had other plans. They were persistent in harassing Mayfield on the way to three interceptions, five sacks, and only one passing touchdown allowed. As long as Tennessee can keep games close, they look like a tough opponent this year. I will not only stream them, but I am happy to roll with them for the foreseeable future. Tennessee is my favorite team this week if you are looking for someone to hold long term, but they are only my second favorite option this week.
Carolina Panthers (vs TB, 7% Stream of the Week)
The Panthers did a good job pressuring Jared Goff last week in their 30-27 loss even if they only racked up one sack. It felt like the game could have gone differently if only they managed to rack up a couple more sacks. The biggest weakness appeared to be stopping the run, which is always a tough task against Todd Gurley and the Rams. This week the Panthers get to square off against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jameis Winston was a mess last week and I’m hardly intimidated by the rushing duo of Peyton Barber and Ronald Jones II. I expect a bounce-back this week in the Panthers home opener, and we know how readily Winston will turn the ball over. The Carolina Panthers are my favorite streamer of week 2, and I expect them to cruise to a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
If you are desperate here are a couple quick hits on some other options you could look at:
- San Francisco looked strong on defense last week, though it was against Tampa Bay to be fair. If you believe in the 49ers, they get a decent matchup this week in Cincinnati. Joe Mixon is banged up, and San Fran might just be able to steal a win. Do you really trust Andy Dalton to have back-to-back stellar weeks?
- The Buffalo Bills and New York Giants are facing off in a game that surely won’t have playoff implications. Both appear very beatable and both have reasons to be liked. The Giants get to face turnover-prone Josh Allen. The Bills get to face the lowly Giants offense. Both teams look like decent options here.
- I mentioned the San Francisco 49ers, so it’s only fair I also mention their opponent: the Cincinnati Bengals. Cincinnati played hard in a tough week 1 draw (@ Seattle) recording four sacks and a fumble on the day. They look like a decent team, and a breakout from John Ross could actually make them good. Jimmy Garropolo was far from spectacular in week one, and the entire 49ers backfield appears to already be banged up. If you believe in Cincy, this looks like a great game to take advantage of.
(Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)