Week 8 Fantasy Football DEF/ST Strategy

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Another week, another Patriots dominating performance. As the world turns. Those looking for a respite from the hearing about how great the Pats are, check back after their Week 10 bye, I promise I won’t even mention them that week.

Week 7 was a great one for more than a few fantasy defenses. We had two shutouts, the Patriots and 49ers, but only one of those was good enough to crack the top-3, I’ll let you guess which one. We got to see eight DEF/ST touchdowns, the most on the season. We also saw seven defenses allow more points than the Patriots have all season long. All hail the Patriots.

Week 7 Top Performances

New England Patriots @ NYJ
There have been four shutouts in the NFL this season. New England has two of them. The Patriots destroyed Sam Darnold worse than mono ever had a chance to. They forced six turnovers and recorded their first safety of the season. The rich get richer.

Week 8 Matchup: vs CLE
The Browns offense has been a roller coaster but that doesn’t even matter. The Patriots are at home, just added another weapon to their offense, and should beat the brakes off of the Browns, who already give up the 6th most points to fantasy DEF/ST. Start. Of. The. Week.

Kansas City Chiefs @ DEN
The Chiefs defense was able to get after Joe Flacco all night long. They recorded nine sacks, most in the NFL this week and the 2nd highest total on the season. On top of that, they also took their lone turnover, a recovered fumble, back for a TD. Considering they only allowed six points, that means their defense matched the output of the entire Broncos offense. That usually leads to a good week for a fantasy D/ST.

Week 8 Matchup: vs GB
Aaron Rodgers is coming off of a six TD game and the Chief’s offensive dominance is all of sudden in question. Kansas City’s ability to force their opponents into “come from behind ” situations is the best ability their defense had going. They lose that this week and cannot be started.

Los Angeles Rams @ ATL
It’s official: The Falcons are awful. I’ve fought the idea for seven weeks, but no more. The Rams held them to 10 points at home and added three takeaways for good measure. One of those takeaways, a fumbled punt return late in the game, Los Angeles was able to recover it all the way to the endzone. Julio Jones was kept pretty quiet by Jalen Ramsey and the Falcons let Matt Ryan get sacked five times. It was ugly for the Falcons offense but a top-3 performance for the Rams DEF/ST.

Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Week 8 Matchup: vs CIN
The Bengals give up the 7th most points to fantasy defenses and the Rams just added the best CB in football. Expect a blowout.

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Week 8 Starts

Pittsburgh Steelers vs MIA
It’s Miami, so it’s a must-start matchup. The Steelers D/ST have scored 10+ fantasy points in four straight weeks and Miami has allowed 10+ in every game. If not for the Patriots, this would be your Start of the Week.

Minnesota Vikings vs WAS
The Redskins offense is comprised of Terry Mclaurin and not much else. The Vikings will steamroll the Redskins and be able to control the clock all game long. This one will get ugly. This is another Start of the Week candidate in a world where the Patriots do not exist.

San Francisco 49ers vs CAR
The Niners just shut out the Redskins and get the Panthers at home. The 49ers have scored 10+ fantasy points in each of their last 3 games and have only allowed 10 total points over that span. Carolina does give up the 10th fewest points to fantasy defenses but hasn’t faced anything like San Francisco yet.

Stream of the Week

Indianapolis Colts vs DEN
The Colts defense has been quietly solid all season long. They started slower but have gotten better in each of the last two weeks. Denver just gave up a top-3 performance at home and to a lesser defense in Kansas City. The going will be even tougher on the road vs Indianapolis. The Colts are available in 87% of fantasy leagues.
Other Streaming Options: Titans, Lions, Jets

Week 8 Sits

Jacksonville Jaguars vs NYJ
If you watched the Monday night massacre you probably think that I’m crazy but the Jaguars are not the Patriots. Jacksonville only has two top-10 performances this year and I expect the Jets to bounce back in a big way. If you held onto Robby Anderson, fire him up and enjoy. If you own the Jags D/ST, look elsewhere.

Philadelphia Eagles @ BUF
The Eagles have exactly one good fantasy defense performance this year and that was against Luke Falk. A road game in Buffalo is a very different story. The Eagles have struggled against the pass and Josh Allen just went for 202 and two TDs last week.

Green Bay Packers @ KC
I know this looks juicy with Mahomes out but do not trifle with Andy Reid‘s offense. The Chiefs still have a stable of RBs, Tyreek Hill, and Travis Kelce. Even with Matt Moore, they are going to score points. The Packers have not had a top-10 performance since Week 3.

Top DEF/ST Year-to-Date

All Stats and Scores from FantasyData.com, your league scoring may differ. Ranks vs Pass/Run are based on Yards per Game allowed.

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