This week, we take a look at the defense and special teams. Whether you’re in a super-competitive league or one of those leagues that doesn’t really matter, here’s all you need to know about the top 30 defensive units in the game of fantasy.
– These are the teams that should be gone in the late rounds of almost any league. In my opinion, these are the only D/ST’s that are worth drafting before the last two rounds of any draft. (BW = Bye Week)
1.) Pittsburgh Steelers (BW: 11) – It doesn’t get better than the Steelers when you’re talking fantasy defenses. They’re pretty much a sure thing to end the season near the top of the league in sacks and fewest points allowed.
2.) New York Jets (BW: 8) – All this off-season talk about Nnamdi Asomugha, but the Jets’ Darrelle Revis is still the best defensive player in the world. You know you have something great when opponents consider benching their elite wide-outs against the man.
3.) Green Bay Packers (BW: 8) – The Super Bowl champions have arguably the best defensive coordinator in Dom Capers, but what they don’t have is another proven linebacker opposite the beastly Clay Matthews.
4.) Philadelphia Eagles (BW: 7) – The so-called “dream team,” looks unstoppable on paper, but is it really that easy to plug in so many new guys and succeed right away?
5.) Baltimore Ravens (BW: 5) – As long as Ray Lewis is roaming the field, the Ravens will remain an elite fantasy option.
Fantasy Second Tier
– These units are on the brink of becoming elite and may be a season or two from getting there or just recently leaving their elite status. Fantasy-wise, these defenses can get you through the year and quite possibly bring you greatness at the position.
6.) Atlanta Falcons (BW: 8) – They don’t have the biggest names on this side of the ball, but the dirty-birds are for real and rarely screw up like they did in the playoffs versus the Packers.
7.) Chicago Bears (BW: 8) – Julius Peppers turned out to be a great deal in 2010, watch his impact increase even more this season.
8.) New England Patriots (BW: 7) – It’s all about experience and the Patriots young squad is working to get more.
9.) San Diego Chargers (BW: 6) – It wasn’t the defense that let them down in 2010, but rather the special teams.
10.) New Orleans Saints (BW: 11) – After a turnover feast in 2009, the Saints struggled in 2010. Follow a trend and expect the Saints to bounce back with more turnovers.
11.) Detroit Lions (BW: 9)
12.) New York Giants (BW: 7)
13.) Miami Dolphins (BW: 5)
14.) Kansas City Chiefs (BW: 6)
15.) Dallas Cowboys (BW: 5)
16.) Cleveland Browns (BW: 5)
17.) Oakland Raiders (BW: 14)
18.) Minnesota Vikings (BW: 9)
19.) St. Louis Rams (BW: 5)
20.) San Francisco 49ers (BW: 7)
21.) Seattle Seahawks (BW: 6)
22.) Houston Texans (BW: 11)
23.) Tampa Bay Bucs (BW: 8)
24.) Tennessee Titans (BW: 6)
25.) Buffalo Bills (BW: 7)
26.) Cincinnati Bengals (BW: 7)
27.) Indianapolis Colts (BW: 11)
28.) Arizona Cardinals (BW: 6)
29.) Washington Redskins (BW: 5)
30.) Denver Broncos (BW: 6)
Just For Completion
– It’s quite possible that the following defenses may see no fantasy action in your league this season, they are that BAD!
31.) Jacksonville Jaguars (BW: 9)
32.) Carolina Panthers (BW: 9)
Do you disagree with any of my rankings? Let me know by commenting below!
Nick Grays is a senior writer at the Sports Bank where he covers the Wisconsin Badgers, Green Bay Packers, and Milwaukee Brewers. He also enjoys to share Fantasy Advice from time-to-time. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here or visit his blog Nick Knows Best.
Fantasy Research Archive:
2011 Fantasy Football Top 30 By Position (Quarterbacks)
2011 Fantasy Football Top 30 By Position (Running Backs)
2011 Fantasy Football Top 30 By Position (Wide Receivers)
2011 Fantasy Football Top 30 By Position (Tight Ends)
2011 Fantasy Football Top 30 By Position (Kickers)