by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Things are constantly changing in the NFL, and what we knew at the time of our drafts is already “out of date” and irrelevant three weeks into the season though we are starting to get a grasp of the offenses we should look to pick on. With that in mind, which defenses that were likely ignored on draft day are worth considering for Week 8? Let’s take a look:
New England Patriots
CBS Sports – 36%, ESPN – 29.2%
The New England defense hasn’t been very good this season, but they draw a Broncos offense that is falling apart at the seams. Brock Osweiler is currently the starting quarterback, and even if they went back to Trevor Siemian or gave Paxton Lynch an opportunity would they scare you? Their running game has also dissolved into a lifeless three-man committee and there’s no guarantee that any of them produce big numbers.
The Patriots have allowed a lot of yardage against opposing running backs, but only 4 rushing TD. They’ve also been destroyed by opposing quarterbacks overall, but they’ve done better of late:
- Week 7 – Matt Ryan – 233 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
- Week 8 – Philip Rivers – 212 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Throw in the Broncos allowing the third most sacks in the league (28) and what’s not to like? The Patriots are a defense on the rise, coming off their bye week, while the Broncos offense is in shambles. As far as streaming options go, this is a good bet to exploit.
CBS Sports – 45%, ESPN – 24.2%
The Cincinnati Bengals’ offense has struggled, and a lot of it has been due to a poor running game. Everyone expected Joe Mixon to emerge, but it’s been a grind since Week 1 and it’s hard to imagine things suddenly changing now. Without having to focus there, will the Titans be able to silence Andy Dalton and company through the air?
Cincinnati has allowed 24 sacks (tied for 8th most in the league), so the hope would be that Tennessee could build on their meager 13 thus far in ’17. What they have done is generate turnovers, with 9 interceptions and 11 forced fumbles (though they’ve recovered just 3). The Bengals have thrown 8 interceptions and have fumbled the ball 13 times (9th most in the league), so this certainly plays into Tennessee’s hands. Throw in Cincinnati’s struggles to score points and it makes sense.
We wouldn’t call Tennessee an ideal plug and play, but if you need a streamer there are worse gambles to take.
New York Giants – at San Francisco
San Francisco 49ers – vs. New York Giants
We’re going to lump these two together, because on paper both should have a favorable matchup. However, given the performances of late do you really want to trust either one?
Sources – NFL.com, ESPN, CBS Sports
** PRE-SALE **
This weekend only, Pre-order Rotoprofessor’s 2018 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide for just $6.25!! Click here for the details, but don’t miss out on the best bargain in fantasy baseball preparation.