Defensive Team By Waiver Wire (DTBWW): Week 15
For those new to Defensive Team By Waiver Wire (DTBWW), the strategy goes like this: Each week, you target a mediocre defense on the waiver wire, looking for a good matchup, preferably at home. You will typically get good defensive production without having to burn a semi-valuable pick on draft day. Or if you do draft a DT and they start to disappoint, you can use DTBWW the rest of the way. The strategy is also called streaming defenses.
I have been writing a DTBWW feature for four years -- offering readers several available-on-the-waiver-wire DT picks each week -- and they averaged DT5, DT6, DT7 and DT10 numbers from 2009 to 2012. DT10 may not sound impressive, but I have been offering more picks each week which may account for the decline. Still, generating top 10 DT numbers off the waiver wire allows fantasy owners to basically ignore the position on draft day, instead focusing on more important areas.
Generally, defenses have to be available on the waiver wire in at least 40% of ESPN fantasy leagues to be eligible. This ensures that we are talking about defenses that are readily available.
Last week, I recommended the Raiders (3 fantasy points, DT22), Cardinals (21, DT3), Packers (5, DT18), Chargers (11, DT6), Eagles (6, DT14), Jaguars (7, DT13) and the Buccaneers (24, DT2). Obviously, it was a hit and miss day for DTBWW, but Week 14 was the lowest scoring week for defenses all season. Defenses have averaged 8.5 fantasy points on the season, but just 7.2 fantasy points in Week 14. On the season, DTBWW has averaged 9.8 fantasy points, which equates to DT9-type numbers.
Needless to say, if you’re holding the Chiefs (@ OAK) or the Panthers (vs. NYJ) from a previous DTBWW pickup, you should play them this week.
Let’s take a look at the top picks for Week 15:
Cardinals (@ TEN)
Arizona is still available in 45% of ESPN leagues even though they’re the #4 fantasy defense on the year. This week they face the Titans, and even though they’re a mediocre matchup, the Cardinals are talented enough to produce.