The third-best fantasy defense/special teams so far this season is Detroit, with 88 points. Through the same stretch of games last season, that would have ranked eighth. No matter how you break it down, fantasy defenses this season are lagging way behind the same units of a year ago. To illustrate, the following chart shows the number of defenses scoring in each set of 10 through 10 weeks in 2013 and 2014:
The bulk of teams had scores in the 50s and 60s last year; this year they're grouping up in the 30s. This year's top defense would have been behind last year's No. 2, No. 2 behind No. 3, and so on.
I've been pushing this point for weeks. But I still regularly get questions like "I have X defense, is it time to stream?" The answer, with little exception, is "yes." Individual defenses aren't difference-makers over the course of the season. To wit, there have been 12 games this season in which a defense put up 20 or more fantasy points; only Miami and Philadelphia have done it more than once, and only Miami has paired those two outings inside of the same month.
Atlanta has put up 20-plus fantasy points in a game. Green Bay, Minnesota. If your defense is facing Denver, facing Indianapolis, facing Green Bay, just drop them. The upside just isn't there.
At the least, fantasy owners can stop stressing over the byes, as they relate to defenses. The teams on a bye in Week 11 -- the Pittsburgh Steelers and -- are average-to-below fantasy defenses. If you have any unit on that list, go ahead and cut them loose even more quickly., , and -- and Week 12 -- the
I'll try not to stress this topic again next week. I think I've made my point. On to the Week 11 rankings:
Defense/special teams rankings, Week 11
(DK: Daniel Kelley; DC: Dan Ciarrocchi; JD: John Daigle; SK: Scott Kaliska)
|11||San Diego Chargers||OAK||11||4||23||6|
|12||New Orleans Saints||CIN||15||13||6||12|
|15||Green Bay Packers||PHI||21||12||7||16|
|18||New England Patriots||@IND||17||22||9||22|
|22||New York Giants||SF||--||19||--||18|
|23||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||@WAS||25||25||15||25|