Streaming Defense Week 3 2019: A few fantasy D/ST options to consider this week, including a Packers defense that is undeniably better this year.
The Miami Effect
I was listening to some podcast the other day about fantasy and one of the guys was talking about the Miami effect. What it means is basically, anyone who plays the Miami Dolphins on either side of the ball is bound to have a great fantasy outing.
How true that statement is. I lost two leagues due to the Patriots’ defense scoring more touchdowns than Aaron Rodgers has this year. So for this article, I will never mention a streaming defense that is playing Miami because that should be obvious. A tip though: make sure you stash a defense or two for the next upcoming weeks so you don’t have to get lucky on the waivers to grab a defense playing Miami. Also, if you have anyone who is a Cowboy on your team, play them this week.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Tony Pollard, Jason Witten, an injured Michael Gallup, Emmitt Smith, or Jerry Jones. Everyone that wants a touchdown is getting a touchdown. Might as well call them the Miami Oprah’s from now on with the number of free giveaways they’re handing out.
My Fantasy Team
STUPID, STUPID, STUPID. I lost again, and to make it worse, it was by one point and I had 85 points sitting on the bench. I am one week away from taking my ball and going home.
For this week, I’m just going to start my bench and let my starters think about what they did last week. But hopefully they’ll get the message after the Thursday game and I can put them all back in.
One thing that I do want to mention is how rich the tight end position is this year. I know that it is only week three, but there have been some great numbers produced by tight ends this year. Mark Andrews (who I drafted in almost all my leagues) is blowing up and should continue to in the inevitable shootout that is happening this week against Kansas City.
Darren Waller is another TE that I targeted, and besides the lack of touchdowns, he is a very strong TE for PPR leagues. Besides those two, you also have Vance McDonald, Will Dissly, and Jason Witten who have already scored much more than anyone expected over the first two weeks.
While they could be anomalies, I think more teams are utilizing their TE’s more effectively, particularly in the red zone, making the TE position much more valuable for fantasy moving forward. Don’t be afraid to put two of them in your lineup, especially if you have some of the top ones.
Defenses to Stream in Week 3
The Big Cheese: Green Bay Packers
Maybe it is time for the defense to tell Aaron Rodgers to R-E-L-A-X. During the game against Minnesota, it looked as if Rodgers was in a heated conversation with Matt Lafluer over their last drive. With them struggling over the first two weeks, except for the first quarter against the Vikings which looked near All-Madden level, they have been lackluster in their drives and have left Rodgers with too many 3rd and longs.
But who cares? The defense is undeniably better this year and has put the hurt on both Chicago and Minnesota, averaging less the 10 points allowed and five turnovers over the last two games, which is nothing to turn a blind eye to. This defense could potentially be the difference-maker in the Packers’ postseason hopes.
Their next opponent is the Denver Broncos. This team is looking to rely on their defense and to keep mistakes to a minimum. That is a good plan unless you’re playing a potent offense led by an MVP quarterback. Scoring an average of 16 points per game will not be enough to overcome the Packers who just beat arguably two of the top five defenses in the league.
Derek Carr threw over 250 yards just over a week ago; expect Rodgers to easily surpass that. Joe Flacco will have to start airing it out more because the ground game is more in line with Chicago’s than Minnesota, and Chicago did not have much success on the ground. Flacco has been a steady quarterback in his career, but he is well past his prime and he will be forced to chase points at some point. Expect some turnovers and sacks.
Verdict: More times than not, a team that relies on their defense is going to limit their turnovers until they are forced to step out of their comfort zone and make plays. This will be the case with Green Bay, as it has with past years. But with a ramped-up defense, opposing teams will find it much harder to score.
Prediction: PA: 10-20, Total Yards: 250-300, Sacks: 3, Fumbles: 0, Interceptions: 2, TD: 0.3, Fantasy Points: 8-10
I’ll Do It Myself: Atlanta Falcons
After having a rough season last year, the Falcons’ head coach fired all of his coordinators and decided that he was going to do the defense for the next season. After the first game, it looked like maybe he should have fired himself along with the coordinators, but he rebounded a game later, holding the Eagles to 20 points and forced three turnovers.
It was a much-needed win for the Falcons fans that have seen nothing but failure since the first half of the Superbowl two years ago. Dan Quinn has had a good amount of success leading defenses, case in point the Seattle Seahawks.
During their Superbowl run, Quill was the defensive coordinator and developed one of the most memorable defenses in recent history. In 2016, he fired his defensive coordinator and took over the role himself. Some believed that his decision to replace the defensive coordinator with himself revived the Falcons’ defense, helping them earn a trip to the Superbowl. So his experience is adequate to produce good defensive outings with the right matchup.
After Andrew Luck retired, Jacoby Brissett has taken over at the helm. For the most part, he has been decent. Passing yards have been lacking, averaging less than 175 per game, but he is effective in the red zone, with five touchdowns over the last 2 games. He did, however, have two turnovers last game.
The Colts have tried to rely on the ground game, with Marlon Mack carrying the bulk of the load. In the first game, he had over 150 yards from scrimmage but only managed to rush for 50 yards against the Titans, averaging 2.5 yards per carry. Dan Quinn likes to run a 4-3 and disguise his pass rushers. This allows him to put extra guys in to stop the run and help with containment, as well as look for easy sacks on play-action passes.
Verdict: Brissett has done a good job controlling the pace of the game and limiting the number of costly mistakes during his first two games, but opposing defenses have seen what he can do, and more importantly, what he can’t. Dan Quill took over his defense for a reason, and with his resume and past success, I believe the Falcons will be a top-tiered defense this week.
Prediction: PA: 7-14, Total Yards: 150-200, Sacks: 3, Fumbles: 1, Interceptions: 2, TD: 1, Fantasy Points: 10-15