Dreaming of Streaming: Week 2
September 10, 2014 | C.D. Carter
Derek Anderson showed just how difficult this streaming defense business can be.
The journeyman backup quarterback started on the road, as a Vegas underdog to a defense that — by most accounts — is supposed to be something better than awful on the defensive side of the ball. It seemed like a prime opportunity to stream Tampa’s defense and let the points flow in by the bucket full.
It turns out that you could’ve started almost any other NFL defense on Sunday and your fantasy team would have racked up more points. The Bucs applied no pressure on Anderson — a critically important component when seeking the best streamers — and the backup sat back and picked apart of mediocre secondary.
The Bucs scored two fantasy points.
We’re going to continue with our weekly examination of Streaming Scores — a measurement that takes into account matchup, home field, Vegas point total projections, favorites, along with other factors. Here’s how our elite Streaming Score defenses fared in the season’s opening week.
|Defense||Streaming Score||Fantasy Points||Rank|
I never thought the Steelers were a very high-ceiling Week 1 play, but three points against a Browns offense that basically told the western world that it was going to run and run and run some more — well, that’s not great. The Steelers become a target for those who don’t hate running back fantasy points.
Two top-12 fantasy defenses out of five isn’t hateful though. I’m pleased with our first week of using Streaming Scores. Below are Week 2’s Streaming Scores, with a bunch of context underneath each grouping.
|Green Bay Packers||New York Jets||6.5|
|Houston Texans||Oakland Raiders||6|
|Arizona Cardinals||New York Giants||5|
|Denver Broncos||Kansas City Chiefs||5|
|Seattle Seahawks||San Diego Chargers||4.5|
* Denver, against a Chiefs team that managed to make the Titans look like world beaters, is an elite Week 2 play. There’s just no way Kansas City will be able to transfer their ultra-conservative game plan to 2014, and especially not against Peyton’s Perfect Machine in Denver. Alex Smith will be forced into another throw-fest, and with the much-improved Broncos defense showing their teeth last week against Andrew Luck, I don’t expect Smith to leave the Mile High City without a turnover or three. Play the Broncos with supreme confidence.
* The Giants, quite amazingly, are going to be a streaming target once again. I thought Ben McAdoo’s safer, more efficient scheme would limit Eli Manning’s propensity to turn the ball over seemingly at will. I was dead wrong. Eli is a wreck, the Big Blue offensive line is a disaster, and the team’s pass-catching unit is among the worst in the NFL. The Cardinals are a clear top-7 Week 2 unit.
* Green Bay’s defense could be an elite Week 2 option and Geno Smith could post dandy fantasy numbers. I say that because there’s no possibility New York’s rag-tag secondary will be able to defend against Aaron Rodgers and company, forcing the Jets to air it out on the road against a secondary that isn’t horrible.
|Tampa Bay Bucs||St. Louis Rams||4|
|New England Patriots||Minnesota Vikings||4|
|New Orleans Saints||Cleveland Browns||4|
* I tweeted quite a bit during the preseason about how the Patriots had become a must-avoid defense for those who stream quarterbacks. After Week 1’s drubbing at the hands of the Dolphins, it appears the Pats are targets for those seeking favorable running back matchups. That worries me against that guy — Adrian Peterson, if I recall — in a road game against an offense that seems reasonably functional. New England is not my favorite Week 2 option.
* I understand that everyone is chomping at the waiver wire bit to secure Tampa’s defense and stream them against a hapless Rams’ offense. My one reservation: St. Louis turned to a Stone Age offense last year when Kellen Clemens took the lead, and I don’t expect much less for the rest of this season. In fact, the Rams allowed just 5.2 points to opposing defenses in the final seven games of 2013. I don’t think the Bucs have a sky-high ceiling here, though their floor is nice.
|Indianapolis Colts||Philadelphia Eagles||3.5|
|San Francisco 49ers||Chicago Bears||3.5|
|Baltimore Ravens||Pittsburgh Steelers||3.5|
|Carolina Panthers||Detroit Lions||3.5|
|Cincinnati Bengals||Atlanta Falcons||3.5|
|Oakland Raiders||Houston Texans||3|
|Miami Dolphins||Buffalo Bills||3|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||Baltimore Ravens||3|
|Minnesota Vikings||New England Patriots||3|
|Dallas Cowboys||Tennessee Titans||2|
|New York Giants||Arizona Cardinals||2|
|Atlanta Falcons||Cincinnati Bengals||2|
|San Diego Chargers||Seattle Seahawks||1|
|Tennessee Titans||Dallas Cowboys||.5|
|Detroit Lions||Carolina Panthers||0|
|New York Jets||Green Bay Packers||0|
* I’m going to be up front with you: I’m going to have the Titans’ defense ranked as a top-7 unit, despite their horrendous Streaming Score. I could’ve tweaked their score, but I didn’t because this is what the Streaming Score machine spit out. Everything about Dallas is a radioactive toxic landfill — that doesn’t factor into the Streaming Score. Capitalize on Tennessee as a home team facing off against the Cowboys in the waning days of the Jason Garrett era.
* I sort of like the Jaguars against Washington this week. I actually thought Jacksonville’s Streaming Score would be a little higher. The Jags’ ultra aggressive front seven should give RGIII fits. I’ll have Jacksonville ranked as a top-12 defensive option this week.