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DraftKings Sleeper Defenses – Week 7

After comparing earlier editions of the DraftKings Sleeper Defenses articles to a Monty Python classic film we are heading in a different direction this week.

While the results last week were marginally better than Week 5, we still took it on the chin. That got Old Uncle Waldo to thinking about another classic from the 70’s and that would be Rocky II. Ok, I may be stretching the term ‘classic’ a bit here but the message still holds.

Rocky finally agrees to a rematch with Apollo Creed and is getting pummeled early in the fight by a much more serious Creed in the rematch. Rocky gets knocked down (shocking right?) early and often and then finally gets mad. He returns to his corner and tells his trainer Mickey, “I ain’t going down no more!”

Yes, that is our mantra as we head into a week with quite a few nice bargain defenses to be had.

First let’s clean up the knockdown that was week 6.


Detroit vs. Chicago

1 sack, 1 int, 28-34 pts all= 2 pts

Ok, message received. This is a bad DraftKings defense.


Tennessee vs. Miami

2 sacks, 2 ints, 28-34 pts all= 5 pts

Gave up too many points but we do like the sacks and interceptions totals. Needed a big play to have paid off.


Minnesota vs. Kansas City

S sacks, 1 DFR, 7-13 pts all=8 pts

Everson Griffen being a late scratch due to illness cost this defense a lot of punching power.


Chicago at Detroit

2 sacks, 1 int, 2 DFR, 35 + pts all=4 pts

Meh. Gave up way too many points to a struggling Detroit offense.


Philadelphia vs. New York Giants

3 sacks, 2 ints, 1 DFR, 1 DTD, 7-13 pts all=19 pts

Yes! Bad Eli Manning made an appearance and the Eagles reaped the benefits.


Now we get to punch Apollo Creed in the mouth with this week’s selections…


CLEVELAND at St. Louis – cost $2,300: The Browns defense is in the top-15 for scoring fantasy points having racked up eight turnovers along with 10 sacks as well as a pair of D/ST touchdowns. This defense picked off Peyton Manning three times last week and posted a score. This week, they get to face a St. Louis offense that has given up four sacks, four interceptions and a defensive touchdown in their last 2 games. On the season, Nick Foles has turned the ball over seven times and the Browns should get their share this week. As you will quickly see, we like both defenses in this game.


ST. LOUIS vs. Cleveland – cost $2,400: This defense is hands down the DraftKings bargain of the week. The Rams boast perhaps the best defensive line in the league with Robert Quinn and Aaron Donald leading the way. Through five games, St. Louis has amassed 19 sacks and can flat out get after the quarterback. They have also forced nine turnovers and scored a D/ST touchdown. Last week, the Broncos defense showed what a hurried and rattled Josh McCown looks like and it is not pretty. McCown threw two picks and lost a fumble while being sacked four times in Week 6. In the past three games, the Browns have allowed 12 sacks while turning the ball over four times and have given up a D/ST score. The Rams are going to truck this offense in Week 7.


TAMPA BAY at Washington-cost $2,600: Anyone who has watched Kirk Cousins play quarterback knows that an untimely interception or two is very likely to happen. On the season, Cousins has thrown eight interceptions including four in his last two outings. The Buccaneers defense has quietly been productive this season and especially so in their last two games. Against Carolina and Jacksonville in Weeks 4 and 5 they put up eight sacks along with three turnovers and a defensive touchdown. The Redskins offense is struggling (I am being kind) to move the ball on the ground or through the air and the Buccaneers have had two weeks to prepare for this game. This is a prime matchup for the Tampa defense to roll up some fantasy points.


MIAMI vs. Houston – cost $2,700: After a miserable start to the season that saw them show head coach Joe Philbin and defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle the door, the Dolphins defense finally showed up last week. After posting only one sack in their first four games, Miami put up six last week against the Titans. They also forced four turnovers and had a D/ST touchdown. This is the defense we all thought Miami would be heading into the 2015 season. They are in a great position to build on last week’s big performance against a Brian Hoyerled Texans offense. Hoyer can be pressured into bad throws such as the one he lofted at the end of the Colts game and you can bet the Dolphins took note. Look for Cameron Wake, Olivier Vernon as well as Ndamukong Suh to be in Hoyer’s face all day long racking up fantasy numbers for the Dolphins defense.


PHILDELPHIA at Carolina-cost $2,700- The Eagles defense comes into this matchup on a hot streak having amassed seven turnovers along with eight sacks and a defensive score in their last two games. They manhandled a bumbling New York Giants offense last week and got us 19 points. The Panthers offense runs through Cam Newton and while they are undefeated, they can give up fantasy points. Through five games, the Panthers have allowed an average of two sacks per game and turned the ball over five times. What we really like here is the fact that when these teams played last season the Eagles used Connor Barwin to spy Newton and the Eagles defense steamrolled Carolina. They sacked Cam nine times with Barwin racking up 3 ½ of his own. Look for another big week from the Philly defense.


There we have it folks.

Just like Rocky Balboa rose from the canvas to take the fight to Apollo Creed in Rocky II, we too shall rise.

Lest you forget, let me remind you that Rocky won that rematch and went on to win again at the end of Rocky III and then again in Rocky IV and then again in Rocky V (yes, it was a street fight but he still knocked Tommy Gunn out) and again in Ro…you get the picture.

We are the self-proclaimed Rocky Balboa of DFS defense articles and will score a knockout this week.

As always…have fun…and good luck!

About Wally Spurlin

Wally Spurlin is a Fantasy Football Staff Writer at Fantasy Sharks and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writer Association (FSWA). Spurlin’s work has appeared in print publications, including the FSWA award winning 2014 USA Today Fantasy Football magazine as well as the 2015 edition. Wally is also a weekly co-host on the Fantasy Football Feeding Frenzy pod cast on Fantasy Sharks Radio at Blog Talk Radio.Follow him on Twitter @WaltonSpurlin