Streaming Defenses: Week 9 Targets

Streaming Defenses: Week 9 Targets

By John Paulsen (Senior Editor), last update Oct 28, 2014

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John was named the Most Accurate Fantasy Football Expert by FantasyPros for the 2010 and 2014 seasons, finished as runner-up in 2011 and 4th in both 2012 and 2015 for a total of five Top 5 seasons in the last six years. Cumulatively, John was the most accurate expert from 2010-15 while also winning the 2011 Fantasy Sports Trade Association award for the most accurate draft rankings. 

Follow John Paulsen on Twitter: @4for4_John.

For those new to Streaming Defenses (also called Defensive Team By Waiver Wire, or DTBWW), the strategy goes like this: Each week, you target a mediocre defense on the waiver wire, looking for a good matchup (i.e. bad quarterback, suspect offensive line, etc.), 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 defense and they start to disappoint, you can stream the rest of the way.

Note: For more on selecting a defense each week, read Chris Raybon’s excellent piece about what factors go into an attractive defensive matchup. I have come to some of the same conclusions over the years, but he added a few new factors to consider.

I have been writing this streaming feature for five years -- offering readers several available-on-the-waiver-wire defense picks each week -- and they averaged DT5, DT6, DT7, DT10 and DT8 numbers from 2009 to 2013. 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 Yahoo fantasy leagues to be eligible. This ensures that we are talking about defenses that are readily available.

Last week, our top two picks were the Dolphins (25.5 FP, DT1) and the Chiefs (21.5, DT2), so owners were in pretty good shape if they nabbed one of those two units. I also recommended the Vikings (18.5, DT3) and Browns (12.5, DT7), who did well, along with the Ravens (6.0, DT13), Cowboys (5.0, DT16) and Colts (4.0, DT20), who were mediocre to bad.

On the season, these streaming picks are averaging 9.3 FP or DT7-type numbers.

Let’s take a look at the top streaming picks for Week 9, also known as The Byepocalypse, since six teams are on bye:

Chiefs (vs. NYJ)
The Jets have given up (exactly) 16 fantasy points in four of their last six games and are averaging 12.3 FP in that span. The Chiefs just laid 21.5 FP on the Rams and are at home again this week. Michael Vick is likely to start at quarterback, but I don’t think it makes much of a difference from a matchup standpoint.

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