This week will mark the end of the byes with only the Giants and Texans taking the week off. Last week’s matchups provided some interesting outcomes, and Seattle, my second plug-and-play pick, provided some big points by posting 2 sacks, 5 INTs, 1 forced fumble and a TD. The playoffs are fast approaching for fantasy leagues, and making a move on your defensive unit could pay huge dividends if you play the matchups well. With that said, here are my plug-and-play picks for Week 10.
Plug and Play Defenses:
Oakland (4% owned in Yahoo!): The Raiders host the Kansas City Chiefs this week. Both teams are struggling mightily on offense at this point. The RB situation for both teams is in shambles, which means this game will likely come down to the matchups in the passing game. Oakland currently ranks 13th in the NFL in passing yards allowed per game, while Kansas City is ranked 28th in the NFL in passing. On the flip side, Kansas City ranks 30th in the NFL in passing yards allowed per game while Oakland is 31st in passing. Oakland seems to have the advantage in the area that matters most. Projection: 13 points allowed, 2 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 forced fumble
Tennessee (33%): The Titans play host to the Buffalo Bills in Week 10. This defense was likely drafted by many at the start of the fantasy season only to be dropped into the waiver wire pool shortly thereafter. Tennessee’s defense still ranks dead last in the NFL in passing yards allowed per game at 278.4. However, since their bye week they have had somewhat of a resurgence. They’ve won two in a row and in those games the defense has recorded 8 sacks, 5 INTs, 4 forced fumbles and a TD. They allowed a total of 425 total passing yards (212.5/game) and only given up 2 TDs in that span. To top it off, they are getting yardage on the other side of the ball by running Chris Johnson. This plays into the hands of the Titans’ defense as the offense should control the clock, keeping Buffalo’s offense on the sidelines. Projection: 14 points allowed, 3 sacks, 2 INT, 1 forced fumble
Miami (47%): The Dolphins host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this week. The Bucs are coming off a huge upset win over the Packers in which their defense made a statement. Even with surprising effort by Josh Freeman, it was the defense that won this game for Tampa Bay. The offense for the Bucs is still far from being a juggernaut, and I don’t expect them to put up 38 points on Miami like they did on Green Bay. Projection: 14 points allowed, 2 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 forced fumble
There were a few injuries in Week 9, but this is football and injuries happen. One in particular that hurts my fantasy squad is Thomas Davis of Carolina, who is out for the year with a knee injury. Antoine Winfield owners need to watch the news carefully this week as well since it looks like there is a possibility of him missing yet another game. For those of you who have injuries or byes to deal with on your IDP squad, here are a few suggestions which hopefully will help.
David Hawthorne (7% owned in Yahoo!): The Seattle linebacker has been on a tear in his past two games, recording 13 solo tackles, 4 assists, 2 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 forced fumble and 4 passes defensed.
Calvin Pace (4%): The Jets LB is coming off of a bye and is another player who has had a very good season thus far. He is a top-five performer at his postion in terms of average points per game in many formats.
Tanard Jackson (3%): Perhaps I need to yell this from the mountaintop, but it seems nobody is paying attention to this guy in IDP leagues. He missed the first four games of the season while serving a suspension and since then he has done nothing but be the top fantasy player at his position. This is the fourth time this season I’ve plugged him, and I’ll keep doing so until people start to notice. Then again maybe you don’t like a guy that only had 6 tackles, 1 pass defensed and an INT returned for a touchdown in his last game.
Jairus Byrd (12%): The rookie for Buffalo hasn’t put up huge tackle numbers but is making a case for defensive ROY with 7 INTs in his past 4 games. Nice.
Cortland Finnegan (9%): I predicted a comeback for him last week, and he came through. If you listened and scooped him up for Week 9, you would have been rewarded with 8 tackles, 1 pass defensed and a pick-six.
Jonathan Joseph (6%): The 3rd year CB for Cincinnati has been steadily improving this season. In Week 9 he recorded his 4th INT of the season and also had a whopping five passes defensed, almost double his season total coming into the game.
Will Smith (16%): The DE for the Saints is having a great season. He recorded 4 tackles with 2 sacks and a forced fumble against Carolina in Week 9, and I like his matchup this week against the Rams.
Jonathan Babineaux (3%): The DT for the Falcons is having a very good season and went completely nuts in Week 9, recording 9 solo tackles, 1 assist and 2.5 sacks against a very good Saints offensive line.
Eli Ricke knows absolutely nothing about Fantasy Football that everyone else doesn’t already know. All of his success in Fantasy Football can be attributed entirely to dumb luck. He has been playing Fantasy Football since 1999 and is a habitual liar. You will occasionally run across him in the café forums under the name 204BC, a name that has no particular meaning whatsoever. He just made it up, the same thing he does with most of the advice he gives.
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