Week 6 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts: 2017 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

This article first appeared on RotoBaller.com

By Bill Dubiel (@Roto_Dubs)

 

Below are RotoBaller’s Week 6 defense tiers and rankings, or which defenses to stream and start for Week 6 of the NFL and fantasy football season. Our tiered defense rankings are your guide to drafting defenses, making waiver wire pickups/adds to improve your lineups, and to decide which defenses to start, sit, target, avoid or stream for Week 6.

I’ve been trying out a new format lately, touching briefly on each team that I have ranked instead of picking just a few to analyze in depth. Let me know what you think on Twitter (@Roto_Dubs).

Starting the right defense every week can be a difference-maker, so we have broken out our defense rankings into tiers with analysis on each matchup. Some of these Week 6 defenses have good matchups and are not widely owned, representing fantasy scoring opportunities if they are available on your league’s waiver wire for a Week 6 pickup or add. Good luck in Week 6 RotoBallers!

 

Week 6 Defenses To Start & Stream: Tiers & Rankings

Teams on bye: Buffalo Bills, Seattle Seahawks, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys

Tier 1 Defenses (The “Duh” DSTs)

1. Denver Broncos (vs. NYG)

The Broncos haven’t been as elite as in recent years, but in a home game against the utterly crippled (and possibly tanking, at this point) Giants, they are easily the top DST for me this week. Good? Good.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. LAR)

Speaking of elite defenses, this Jaguars unit just might be one. While the five-interception game in Week 5 had a ton to do with Ben Roethlisberger being booty, this team is undoubtedly loaded with talent. A.J. Bouye and Jalen Ramsey are currently the best cornerback duo in the game IMO, and Calais Campbell leads a lethal front seven. They’re going to be in the top tier for most matchups, and the Rams don’t scare me enough to knock them out.

3. Houston Texans (vs. CLE)

The Texans lost J.J. Watt and Whitney Mercilus, true. But this is still the Browns, and the Texans have enough talent left to shut them down. Home team against the Browns…pretty simple here.

Tier 2 Defenses (Rock-Solid Starts)

4. Baltimore Ravens (vs. CHI)

This article has been written prior to Monday night’s Vikings/Bears tilt, so I haven’t seen Mitch Trubisky yet. However, I just don’t see him doing much against any team given his lack of weapons. Tarik Cohen and Jordan Howard are the real concerns here (the Ravens rank in the bottom half of the NFL in rushing defense) but the Ravens are second in takeaways, and I think they get a few more from the inexperienced rookie.

5. Atlanta Falcons (vs. MIA)

The Dolphins literally can’t move the ball. Through four games, they have 925 total yards of offense. That’s 231 yards of offense per game–Kareem Hunt is averaging 173 yards of offense per game BY HIMSELF. Stream against this team…especially when it’s a team like the Falcons at home. #Bloodbath

6. Los Angeles Rams (@ JAX)

So the Jaguars offensive line is almost as legitimate as their defensive line. They are helping Leonard Fournette have an exceptional year on the ground, but Blake Bortles is still Blake Bortles. I fully anticipate a slobberknocker of a game, with a final around 16-10, so there is a nice high floor for the Rams here.

7. Washington Redskins (vs. SF)

The 49ers continue to flash some brilliance on offense, but unfortunately flashes are all they are. The Redskins had back-to-back four-sack games prior to their Week 5 bye, and they’ll be able to get through the 49ers offensive line, which is currently tied for ninth overall in total sacks allowed.

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Tier 3 Defenses (Decent Streamers)

8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@ ARI)

This one has everything to do with the Cardinals offensive line being cheesecloth. Gerald McCoy should be able to lead this unit into Arizona and put Carson Palmer down at least four times, and if the offense continues to struggle like they did against the Eagles in Week 5, the Buccaneers could end up in the top five this week.

9. Kansas City Chiefs (vs. PIT)

This is a very hesitant ranking. On the one hand, the Steelers are on the road and Ben Roethlisberger “might not have it anymore”. On the other hand, I never want to discredit a team with Le’Veon Bell on it, especially considering the Chiefs are allowing 4.6 YPC. In this case, the potential for turnovers outweighs the risk of a LevBell eruption–I’m firing up the Chiefs this week.

10. Detroit Lions (@ NO)

After an unreal start to the season, the Lions DST came back to Earth in Week 5 against Cam Newton and the Panthers, yielding 27 points and forcing no turnovers for the first time this season. They’ve got another rough matchup heading into New Orleans, but given all their success with takeaways this year, I’ve got them just inside Tier 3. This will be a “show me” game for this DST–prove that the Panthers game was an outlier and not the beginning of a downslide.

Tier 4 Defenses (Deep Streamers)

11. Philadelphia Eagles (@ CAR)

The Eagles just held the Cardinals to seven points in a blowout win, but they managed just two sacks against a pretty bad offensive line. They’ll like have less luck against Cam Newton, although the Panthers are tied for ninth in sacks allowed this year. There is some mild interest here, but I’m not excited if the Eagles are my only option in Week 6.

12. Carolina Panthers (vs. PHI)

The Panthers have performed right along with their schedule this year. After a hot start against two subpar offenses (SF and BUF), they have caved to three excellent offenses (NO, NE and DET). The Eagles fall closer to the latter than the former, but given that the Panthers are at home and their defense should be kept off the field given their recent offensive success, I could see my way to starting the Panthers in deep, deep leagues.

13. Oakland Raiders (vs. LAC)

The Raiders have done a lot of bending but not breaking this year, but the counting stats have just not been there. They have only four total takeaways, and zero interceptions. The sacks haven’t been there either, as they’re 23rd in the league. I foresee a very mediocre day here barring a Philip Rivers meltdown, which is certainly possible.

14. Arizona Cardinals (vs. TB)

The Cardinals were positioned to be one of the better DSTs coming into this season, but that simply hasn’t come to fruition. They are coming off a terrible performance against Carson Wentz and the Eagles, in which they allowed 34 points, forced just one interception and tallied a single sack. Jameis Winston has been especially careful the last few weeks, so I will continue to leave the Cardinals in the “Deep Streamers” tier–look elsewhere if possible.

15. New England Patriots (@ NYJ)

BOOOOO PATRIOTS DST. They have been positively awful this year, but it IS still the Jets offense we’re talking about here, so there is some deep streaming appeal. I’m willing to bet there are better options on the waiver wire.

Tier 5 Defenses (Desperation Plays)

16. Green Bay Packers (@ MIN)
17. Tennessee Titans (vs. IND)
18. Chicago Bears (@ BAL)
19. Indianapolis Colts (@ TEN)
20. Pittsburgh Steelers (@ KC)
21. San Francisco 49ers (@ WSH)

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