Defensive Team By Waiver Wire (DTBWW): Week 8
For those of you 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 Panthers (18.5 fantasy points, DT1), Dolphins (6, DT20), Packers (8.5, DT16), Chargers (15, DT3), Ravens (5.5, DT21) and the Vikings (10, DT12). It was a solid week for DTBWW, which included two of the top three fantasy defenses. On the season, DTBWW is averaging 10.6 fantasy points, which equate to DT8 numbers.
Note: If you picked up the Chiefs a while back, keep them in your lineup. Their ownership level makes them ineligible for DTBWW at this point. They are our #2 rest-of-season defense, so keep riding KC.
Let's take a look at the top picks for Week 8:
Panthers (@ TB)
The Panthers were our top streaming pick last week and we see no reason to go away from them after their 18.5-point outburst against the Rams in Week 7. Carolina is averaging 12.4 PPG on the season, which is the 4th-highest in the league. Tampa has been better with Mike Glennon under center, but the Bucs have still yielded 9.3 points in his three starts. Remember, this is a Thursday night game, so the Bucs will be hard pressed to replace an injured Doug Martin on a short week.