The Weekly Stream: Defense; Week 11

We made it. Well, at least I did. I can’t speak for you.

You may be asking yourself, “what is he talking about?”

The worst of the bye weeks are over!

Over the past two weeks, there have been 12 teams on the bye. Not only does it force the offensive studs from your lineup, but your reliable defensive units as well. Although streaming your defense is a sound strategy, there are several defenses that are indeed matchup-proof. It’s nice to be able to set it and forget it, you know? The Philadelphia Eagles have surely been one of those defenses. They induce lots of sacks and strips, and have a unit that can score at any time. Whether it be on a turnover or a Darren Sproles run-back, this unit has been putting up monster numbers. Through 10 weeks, the Eagle defense has nine touchdowns. Nine!

Wait, how many touchdowns again?

How the Eagles defense is unowned in over 35% of leagues is a mystery. Although they have a tough matchup against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers this week, they have a favorable schedule throughout the remainder of the regular season.

Enough about the Eagles, how did I do last week?

Last Week’s Results:

The Cowboys took care of business in London Sunday, beating the Jags 31 to 17, en route to 11 standard fantasy points. Blake Bortles struggled once again and Dallas took full advantage. While the Cowyboys only managed one interception, they were able to record four sacks and recover two fumbles. The Cowboys are on a bye in week 11 but may be usable when they return in week 13 against Eli Manning and the G-men. Even though the Steelers were a letdown against the Jets, allowing them 20 points, they may be worth another look this week against the Titans. The black and yellow recorded four sacks on their way to a 6-point fantasy day. Not horrible, all things considered. Finally, I recommended Buffalo at the end of last week’s column, and they ended up performing well. The unit is now 75% owned in fantasy and are the 5th highest scoring defense in the fake game. They were able to get to Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith six times and rack up 11 fantasy points. It would be hard not to use them this week in Miami, as they have scored double-digit points five times this year.

Week 11 Targets:

This week, we are going to take a look at three teams that did not play in week 10. All three teams are coming off a week of rest and should be ready to face their opponent. They have had an extra week to look at film and prepare and hopefully putting them on your team will lead you to a win in week 11.

  • Minnesota Vikings: The Vikings are one of the few teams who have had positive fantasy value every single week this year. They have also produced 41 fantasy points in the past three weeks. This week, they get a Bears team that was just humiliated on Sunday Night Football against the Packers. Jay Cutler is a turnover machine right now and the Vikings should be ready to take full advantage on Sunday. The purple people eaters defense is my play of the week.
  • San Diego Chargers: This unit was brutal the two weeks before their bye. They allowed Denver and Miami to score a combined 72 points. Seventy-two, yikes. Still, both games were away and now they get to come home and see the Raiders and Rams in back-to-back weeks. Owned in just 23.6% of ESPN leagues, the Chargers are a great defensive add if you need a filler for a couple of weeks. After that, they have a date with the Ravens, followed by games against Manning and Brady. Ouch.
  • Houston Texans: Houston’s bye week came after a 12-point fantasy performance against the Eagles, who looked like one of the best teams in the NFL in week 10 with Mark Sanchez under center. Still, the Texans are owned in half of ESPN leagues and are ranked #7 at the position so far in 2014. Over the next month they face the Browns, Bengals, Titans and Jaguars before heading to Indianapolis for week 15. If available, the Texans are a big boy add considering their schedule as we head into the fantasy playoffs. I smell a Brian Hoyer pick-6 and a nice fantasy point total for Houston this week.

There you have it! Good luck and happy streaming.

Jared “Minnesota Nice” Hines is a fantasy football contributor at The Sports Script. Follow him on Twitter @Jared_Hines27!