This is it folks. We have reach the halfway point of the 2018 NFL regular season, and with that comes more D/ST streaming philosophy. Not much to cover today, but it is still worth mentioning. As usual, if you are here just looking for a D/ST to stream then feel free to scroll down. If not, stick around. You might just learn something.
So, heading into Week 8 we will start seeing a few more things come to light. The first being D/STs that were perceived as “good” heading into Week 1 that are now either rounding into form, still struggling, or just not good altogether. A prime example of this phenomenon in 2018 is the Houston Texans. After a middling scoring average of four fantasy points through the first three weeks, the Texans D/ST has rebounded nicely to score double-digit points in 3-of-4 games since Week 3. Overall, a great example of a D/ST that has rounded into form and is likely paying dividends for the owner who picked them up if they were dropped after their slow start to the season. In contrast, the Jaguars D/ST has underwhelmed for a few weeks now because of their poor offensive counterpart. The Jags could certainly rebound, but the owner who spent an early draft pick on them is likely biting the bullet and sticking with their investment for the long haul. Not a good feeling when you could have strategized differently to maximize your D/ST’s weekly scoring potential if your main D/ST is struggling.
The second thing that is set to become more common is teams now starting their second round of matchups with each of the teams in their division. This week’s example being the Arizona Cardinals playing their second division game against the San Francisco 49ers. For those who paid attention, we streamed the Cards against the Niners in Week 5 and, well, the results spoke for themselves. More on that later, but the point being that the 49ers were a great D/ST matchup then and, to no surprise, they still are now. Here at BDGE, we don’t condone bullying in school, but we do have a knack for picking on poor NFL offenses by streaming D/STs against them. With that said, here are the D/STs to stream in Week 8:
“I Just Need Some Points” (D/STs Owned In 70-20% Of 10-Team Yahoo Leagues)
Pittsburgh Steelers – VS Cleveland Browns
In a rematch from Week 1, I’m taking the Steelers D/ST that has been a bit of a mixed bag so far but did notch seven sacks and an interception in the first meeting of these teams. Despite a change at quarterback and running back for the Browns, I still like an improving Steelers unit to take advantage of an NFL offense that is based in Cleveland, Ohio in the year 2018. To further build my case, ya boi Nicholas:
Indianapolis Colts - @ Oakland Raiders
Hey, two out of three isn’t bad and that is what we are going for with the Colts D/ST this week. After taking full advantage of the Bills horrid offense last week, the Colts will be playing against one of the few NFL teams that can give the Bills a run for being the worst team in football. Also, worth mentioning: The Raiders just sent their lead RB to I.R., traded their best WR for a draft pick, and their QB isn’t playing well. Sounds great. Where do I sign up?
Arizona Cardinals – VS San Francisco 49ers
Yes, there are quite a few bad teams for us to pick on this week. The adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” applies here. After five turnovers, four sacks, and a touchdown on the road against the Niners in Week 5, I’ll bet again on this Cardinals unit that is ripe with talent despite their offense’s weekly woes. A solid D/ST outing, incoming.
Washington Redskins - @ New York Giants
With solid outings every week this season (outside of their sleepwalking against the Saints on MNF), I’m not afraid to pick on this Giants offense that has scored 20-plus points only three times and allowed three-plus sacks five times through seven weeks. The Skins are on the road, but their opponent isn’t an overly scary one. Having allowed more than 17 points only twice this year, I think the Redskins have a respectable outing this week against the Giants.
“So, You’re Saying There’s A Chance” (D/STs Owned In 20-10% of 10-Team Yahoo Leagues)
Cincinnati Bengals – VS Tampa Bay Buccaneers
After a great two weeks to start the season, the Bengals only have one solid outing to their name in the five weeks since. However, this week the Bengals play a Buccaneers team that does two things that we look for in streaming D/STs: give up sacks and turn the ball over. I am probably higher on the Bengals than most, but I think they can take advantage of some sloppy play by the Bucs at home. Only a desperation play, as there are much safer plays this week.
Miami Dolphins - @ Houston Texans
Another move for the bold as you are chasing sacks and turnovers with the Dolphins play here. While the Texans offensive line has played better in recent weeks and Deshaun Watson is coming off his first game in 2018 without an interception, the Dolphins do boast an underrated secondary which could lead to those sacks and turnovers you would be looking for here. Look elsewhere if possible, but there is at least a slide shade of projected upside.
“You Might Want To Look Away” (D/STs Owned in <10% 10-Team Yahoo Leagues)
New York Giants – VS Washington Redskins
A desperate team also requires a D/ST streamed out of desperation. Assuming you find yourself down this dark path, the faintest of lights can be found via the Giants D/ST if you look hard enough. The Skins will be on the road with a banged up receiving corps and backfield against a Giants team at home that needs to both win and play well ASAP. With the Redskins looking to play right into the hands of the Giants defensive strength by running the football, this game could feature some turnovers if the Redskins offense is forced to be aggressive to stay in the game. Avoid this matchup if you can since the upside potential is slim.