Baltimore Ravens at home vs Cleveland
Baltimore’s defense last week looked like the classic turnover heavy defense that we know and love in Baltimore. They forced Andy Dalton into 5 turnovers while allowing no big plays. When we look at what Cleveland did last week against Pittsburgh you see a team that isn’t ready for prime time. Kizer looked like a rookie and made some bad decisions. The Browns even managed to make T.J. Watt look like J.J. Terrell Suggs will have a monster of a game as will Brandon Carr and Lardarius Webb. Another note on Baltimore, it’s never too early to plan for the playoffs. During weeks 15 and 16 Baltimore has a strength of schedule advantage as they go to Cleveland and are then home for the Colts. It is feasible/likely that Indy will be playing out the string and will prove to be an easier match up at the end of the season. If you can hold on to Baltimore for the playoffs you can expect a couple of great games when you need them the most.
Pittsburgh Steelers at home vs Minnesota
When you think of all the great Pittsburgh defenses in the past they all had one thing in common, a big play linebacker. The latest one appears to be T.J. Watt. He was a force against Cleveland accounting for two sacks and an interception. Minnesota has one of the weakest offensive lines in the league and if Watt can cause havoc like he did Week 1, it will lead to big plays for the defense. You can expect two more sacks and constant pressure on Sam Bradford. This will lead to at least one big play and possible a defensive TD this week.
Oakland Raiders at home vs New York Jets
Last week the Raiders held the Titans to under 100 yards rushing and to only 256 yards passing. This week they get the Jets who are one of the least talented offenses in the league. It is shocking how bad the Jets are on offense and whichever team that has the fortune of playing them is a must start in fantasy. Looking ahead to the playoffs the Jets have the Saints and Chargers in those two big weeks for fantasy. If you are streaming defenses for the playoffs both the Saints and Chargers will be available and are worth considering.
Arizona Cardinals at Indianapolis
Until Andrew Luck returns from his injury the Colts are as good as the Jets on offense. No matter if it is Jacoby Brissett or Scott Tolzien they Colts are going to have little to no passing attack. Frank Gore is a shadow of himself and Marlon Mack has talent but is still raw. The Cardinals have a lot of talent in the secondary and that is going to lead to turnovers and sacks. The Cardinals are my pick for the top scoring defense of the week.
Cincinnati Bengals at home vs Houston
The Bengals gave up 20 points last week to the Ravens but it should have been much worse. Andy Dalton had 5 turnovers and if it wasn’t for the defense the Ravens could have easily put up 40 points. Dalton will not have another game like that again and the defense won’t have to deal with all of those short fields again. The Jaguars completely shut down the Texans last week and you can expect more of the same this week. I know Deshaun Watson is starting at quarterback but I don’t see a rookie making his first start on a short week of practice doing much. I think Watson will have his growing pains and they will start this week vs Cincinnati.
Dallas Cowboys at Denver Broncos (DK $2,600/FD $4,800)
The Cowboys did a great job controlling the Giants offense last week. This week they get the Broncos and Trevor Siemian. The Chargers were able to keep the Broncos under 200 yards passing for the game but did give up 140 yards on the ground. The Cowboys are much better in both pass and rush defense and should have a good game. If you can get a Top 10 defense for that value, it will go a long way towards winning the week.
New England Patriots at New Orleans Saints (DK $2,500/FD $4,300)
The Patriots were awful last week but if there is one thing I know for sure it’s that Bill Belichick knows how to adjust. The Saints looked totally out of sync on offense last week. This is due to the loss of both Brandin Cooks and Willie Snead and the other wide receivers not being on the same page as Drew Brees. For the value you are getting them at, it is a safe bet that the Patriots will out perform their low salary this week.
Detroit Lions at New York Giants (DK $3,300/FD $4,200)
The Giants have no running game at all. Paul Perkins continued his miserable pre-season into Week 1 and looked out classed. This has made them even more one dimensional than usual and without OBJ (check his status closer to game time) they will have a difficult time moving the ball against a very stout Lions defense.