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
Jets 7 3 21st
Lions 6.5 7 14th
Eagles 6.5 12 5th
Steelers 5 3 21st
Texans 5 20 2nd


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.


Defense Opponent Streaming Score
Green Bay Packers New York Jets 6.5
Houston Texans Oakland Raiders 6
Washington Jacksonville Jaguars 5.5
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.


Defense Opponent Streaming Score
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.


Defense Opponent Streaming Score
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
Jacksonville Jaguars Washington 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.



10 Responses

  1. MisterMammoth says:

    I have to go with Tampa. The low Over/Under .. horrible Rams Offense. Zero redzone activity last week. Seems like a cheap and safe bet. I don’t expect anything amazing out of them though.

  2. Matt says:

    I only count 26 teams here. what about the rest, where do they slot in?

  3. B-Real says:

    I am going back and forth between Washington and Tampa Bay. I noticed you didn’t provide any feedback regarding Washington in this post. Why do you like them over the Bucs?


  4. Cam says:

    I love TFF. Last year it was my favorite and most trusted resource for streaming advice and draft ranks. I must extend some constructive criticism though.

    First, this writeup came out a day late. Not a good way to start the season.

    Second, this whole “Streaming Score Machine” thing sounds suspect to me. Last year it was all about common sense and your guys’ gut feelings backed up with facts, stats and reason that us lesser fake football beings cherished. I loved that approach.

    This whole notion of, “Here is the streaming machine score, but I don’t necessarily agree with it” sounds lazy. I’m not sure what’s behind it, but it feels a bit empty and I have serious questions about some of the rankings this week, and so does C.D. apparently. He likes the Titans as his top 7 but they are ranked 29th. That is odd.

    Anyways, I am a huge supporter of TFF. Keep up the hard work fellas, I know it isn’t easy and you are providing a free product. Again, trying to offer some feedback in a helpful way. Keep fighting the good fake fight, and I hope that this new system proves to be better.

  5. James says:

    What do your thoughts on think about Miami? They seem to have a very good pass rush and are playing EJ Manuel this week as well as KC and OAK in the following weeks.

    • Adam says:

      This is just my opinion, but I think they could be a team to keep your eye on, especially with that kind of schedule coming up. Will have a better guage after this weekend. Wonder how much the sweltering heat affected the Pats, in addition to them having a fairly unstable offensive line. If you have room for two defenses, I would pick them up for sure the following week, another heat game at home vs KC.

  6. Adam says:

    Good article, I find it interesting. I also agree with the Jags, but only if Jonathan Ciperion(SP?) is playing. He is their version of Cam Chancelleor playing in Gus Bradley’s Seattle based defense. If you watched the Eagles game, their def started to fall apart after he left in the 2nd quarter. Then his backup also left with an injury. So most of the Eagles points came against a 3rd string safety. Jags will be a much better defense this year.

  7. Seth Gordon says:

    My league deducts for points against over 20. Does that affect any of your rankings?

  8. Eric Belair says:

    Quick suggestion: Can you list the full name of each team (i.e. “Tampa Bay Buccaneers”/”Washington Redskins”) so that FantasyPros My Playbook Research Assistant kicks in (also PickemFirst)?

  9. Anthony says:

    Why do ypu like Washington so much? Didn’t see a writeup on them.

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