Dreaming of Streaming: Week 16 December 22, 2015  |  Chet


 

Championship week hangs over us like the most oppressive First World burden, and if you’re a proactive defensive streamer, you’ll have the Kansas City Chiefs’ defense dialed up and ready to deploy on your Week 16 opponent.

I think there are more than a couple viable options if you weren’t among the forward-looking streamers who nabbed the Chiefs and with them, a distinct competitive edge against whomever you’re facing this weekend. It’ll take real trust in matchups, as per usual, but there should be some borderline great defensive plays on your local waiver wire.

To review Week 15: we took Vegas’ hint and went the bearish route on the Bucs’ defense and the bullish route with Pittsburgh’s defense. A bunch of Denver points and three dropped interceptions later, the latter stance proved to be just barely better than the former. D/ST is a fickle beast/mistress. Perhaps a beastly mistress. It’s hard to say.

Here’s how defenses with top-5 Week 15 defensive streaming scores fared. Top streaming scores are averaging 9.4 fantasy points per game. My hope is to raise that to double digits before the year is out.

 

Defense Week 15 Streaming Score Week 15 Fantasy Points Week 15 D/ST Rank
Patriots 5.5 18 2nd
Rams 5 4 19th
Chiefs 4.5 21 1st
Seahawks 4.5 9 8th
Bucs 4.5 2 24th

 

Let’s get into Week 16 streaming scores, which, as a reminder, measure a defense’s matchup and nothing more. We seek home teams favorited by Vegas. Over/unders don’t matter. We’re looking for sacks and turnovers. If you don’t think a certain team can take advantage of a good matchup, go with another option. And please, for the sake of your mental health, do not have a results-over-process meltdown if Week 16 goes awry. It happens. To everyone.

 

Defense Week 16 Opponent Week 16 Streaming Score
Seahawks Rams 5.5
Chiefs Browns 5.5
Saints Jaguars 5
Texans Titans 5
Bears Bucs 5

 

  • A quick word on Houston’s defense, which is available on about 30 percent of waiver wires: They’re going up against Prince DGAF, Zach Mettenberger, and a Tennessee offense giving up the fourth most schedule-adjusted fantasy points to opposing defenses. They’re on the road here, which makes me a tad queasy, but they’re a top-flight option if you don’t have Seattle or KC.

 

  • Chicago’s defense isn’t anywhere close to good, but Tampa’s offense — while occasionally wildly productive — has been a streaming target throughout 2015. We look for teams that apply pressure to inaccurate quarterbacks. That’s precisely what we have here: the Bears average 5.6 quarterback hits per game — not a hateful frequency — while Jameis Winston is among the NFL’s least accurate passers. Only Andrew Luck and Nick Foles have worse completion rates on aimed throws. The Bears are neither at home nor favored here, so I would be cautious. They’re still an OK fallback option.

 

  • You probably can’t stomach deploying the horrid New Orleans defense in championship week. I get it. In fact, I just yacked on my keyboard a little bit. This much is undeniable: the Jags are giving up 12.4 adjusted fantasy points to defenses (second most), having allowed at least seven fantasy points in eight of their past nine games. Blake Bortles is wildly inaccurate with a 62.8 percent completion rate on aimed throws. He’s thrown 14 picks in 14 games. Vegas likes this game to be the highest scoring of Week 16, and for good reason. The hope is that this back-and-forth affair includes a few turnovers and, perhaps, the patented Bortles back-breaking pick for a touchdown. Bortles, who has been sacked more than any other signal caller, averages 1.27 interceptions in Jacksonville losses.

 

Defense Week 16 Opponent Week 16 Streaming Score
Lions 49ers 4.5
Eagles Washington 4.5
Broncos Bengals 4.5
Panthers Falcons 4
Steelers Ravens 4
Patriots Jets 4

 

  • The Steelers’ defense is still out there in 79 percent of leagues. They’re a must-get for championship week, as they face off against the purple-clad zombie of the Baltimore Ravens. Here are fantasy point totals given up by the Ravens since Week 10: 8, 6, 9, 15, 9, 21. Only five teams have more interceptions than Pittsburgh through 15 weeks. The Steelers are favored by double digits here. Baltimore will have to throw quite a bit — exactly what we’re looking for if we grabbed the Steelers last week and get to use them in this plus matchup. Baltimore has committed 13 turnovers since Week 10.

 

  • While streaming against Kirk Cousins and Washington’s offense is a decidedly bad idea when they’re at home, targeting them on the road has been a worthwhile strategy in 2015. Defenses are notching a healthy 10.2 fantasy points against Washington when Cousins and company are on the road. The Eagles are at home and favored by Vegas here. Cousins has averaged 1.67 interceptions in road contests over his career as Washington’s starter. I like Philly’s chances of forcing a turnover or three in this one.

 

  • I wouldn’t be hesitant to deploy Detroit’s defense, which plays at home against a collapsing (collapsed?) 49ers team that has given up an average of 10.8 fantasy points to its past four opponents. I expect the Lions’ front seven to put consistent pressure on Blaine Gabbert, who has been sacked 21 times in six games. Detroit recorded 11 hits against Aaron Rodgers a few weeks back. I wouldn’t be surprised to see similar pressure applied on Gabbert in this matchup. I don’t see Detroit as a high-upside play, but rather a solid floor option for Week 16. They’re available in 91 percent of leagues.

 

Defense Week 16 Opponent Week 16 Streaming Score
Bills Cowboys 3.5
Raiders Chargers 3.5
Bucs Bears 3.5
Vikings Giants 3.5
Falcons Panthers 3
Dolphins Colts 3
Giants Vikings 3
Bengals Broncos 2.5
Jaguars Saints 2.5
Titans Texans 2.5
Rams Seahawks 2.5

 

 

 

 

11 Responses

  1. Ryan says:

    Buffalo or Chicago? For the championship!

  2. bill slu says:

    Here we go Broncos!

    Merry Christmas.

  3. Jon says:

    For the championship

    I have Bengals but lions and saints are available.

    Who do I trust?

  4. Jonathan says:

    Haha, yes Craig. Hopefully we both get an answer from the genius behind this article, my favorite corn hater – Denny Carter.

    I just noticed how badly my last comment came out thanks to auto correct on my phone. Sorry everyone who read that. .

  5. Paul says:

    With the Championship on the line……
    Cincinnati or Detroit?

  6. craig says:

    I have both the Broncos and Steelers. Do you feel strongly about one versus the other?

  7. Jonathan says:

    I’m on the championship with 2 good options on defense. Should I trust Denver vs Cincinnati expecting a good showing at home vs a rookie QB or go with Pittsburgh on the road vs Classes?

Leave a Reply

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