The Defensive Line – Week 8 D/ST Streaming

Michael James (@MikeoftheFF) analyzes the Week 8 streaming D/ST situation for @TheQBList

With no teams on bye in Week 8, there’s a full allotment of games to pick from this time around. Some of our main highlighted picks stumbled last week.  In particular, I apologize for vastly underestimating the Bears’ third-string RB D’Onta Foreman as well as backup QB Tyson Bagent when recommending the Las Vegas Raiders.  The Tampa Bay Buccaneers got it done with sacks, turnovers, and limiting points allowed. However, they did not limit the yards allowed as the Falcons went over 400 on the day.  Finally, the Seattle Seahawks came through for us in their divisional matchup.  A nod to everyone bold enough to start one of the three “risk” defenses listed last week as nearly all three options came through with double-digit performances.

This week, a slate of great matchups for the more rostered defenses in the league leaves a lot of volatile risks left as streaming options.  Let’s go over some of those options as we look for teams that are rostered in around 50 percent of leagues or lower.

Please note: there’s a decent chance that better teams above this 50 percent threshold are out there in your league, but we cannot assume they’re out there for everyone; we have to draw the proverbial line somewhere. Stay active and monitor the league home page; someone might drop a desirable defense after the waivers clear.


Los Angeles Chargers

Opponent: vs. Chicago Bears

ESPN % Rostered: 3%

Yahoo % Rostered: 8%


Coming off their loss on the road, the Chargers host the Bears.  Last week Chicago only gave up two sacks, their lowest on the season.  Before that, they were allowing over four sacks per game, including five the week before against the Vikings, a game in which they also turned the ball over three times.  Chicago now goes on the road to face two of the NFL’s Top 10 sack leaders: Khalil Mack (T-4th) and Morgan Fox (T-7th). Los Angeles recorded multiple turnovers and a sack last week, but they also played Patrick Mahomes at Arrowhead so surrendered a lot of yards, to their detriment.  I believe the Bears will face a much stronger pass rush this week than they did last week against the Raiders.  Justin Fields is listed as doubtful for this game so Tyson Bagent will likely get his second start.  The Chargers have limited opponents’ star running backs to 3.4 YPC or less in their last three games, including the likes of Josh Jacobs and Tony Pollard.  Look for the Chargers to try to make the Bears one-dimensional as Rocschon Johnson remains in concussion protocol as of this writing.


New York Giants

Opponent: vs. New York Jets

ESPN % Rostered: 22%

Yahoo % Rostered: 3%

Don’t look now but the Giants have strung together three solid D/ST performances in a row including efforts against talented offenses such as the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills. Kayvon Thibodeaux and his 5.5 sacks on the year lead the Giants and their impressive blitz rate which ranks third-highest in the NFL; they will look to get after Zach Wilson early and often.  The Jets are coming off the bye but have been a steady source of sacks all year. They allowed nine in their last two games alone.  The Giants have now forced six turnovers in their last three games which include an interception in each.



Atlanta Falcons

Opponent: @ Tennessee Titans

ESPN % Rostered: 20%

Yahoo % Rostered: 13%


Atlanta now has back-to-back games of great streaming D/ST scores; they look to make it three in a row against a Tennessee team that is coming off a bye. This Falcons defense features Jessie Bates and is tied for second in the league for interceptions. Meanwhile, the Titans have thrown an interception in each of their last three games.  From today’s press release, Ryan Tannehill (Q) continues to deal with an ankle injury and will not practice until late in the week, if at all, so it’s looking like a strong possibility that rookie Will Levis may get the start. Atlanta now has eight sacks in their last two games while Tennessee coughed up six in their last game, plus three or more in five of their six. Atlanta is tied for second in QB hurry rate and have tallied the most knockdowns in the league. The Falcons’ defensive front, fifth in overall QB pressure rate, is primed to swoop down on a Titan offense that ranks fifth lowest in yards per game overall.


Bonus mention:

The Jacksonville Jaguars (ESPN:33% Y!: 26%) are quietly a top 10 fantasy D/ST in the league while leading the NFL in turnovers. They’ve amassed three fumble recoveries and seven interceptions over their last four games and travel to Pittsburgh to face a Steelers team that hasn’t generated more than 400 yards of total offense since 2020.



These teams did not meet the consideration threshold for the main highlight section, but you should check to see if they’re available in your league:


Miami  Dolphins ESPN: 66% Y!: 49% vs. Patriots

New York Jets ESPN: 52% Y!: 63% “@” Giants

Kansas City Chiefs – ESPN: 55% Y!: 70% @ Broncos


If you see something I don’t leave a comment or hit me up with feedback @MikeoftheFF on Twitter!



Photos by Zach Bolinger & Stephen Lew/Icon Sportswire | Design by Michael Packard (@designsbypack on Twitter @ IG)

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