Welcome to the NFL DFS DST Coach, where we identify the best defenses for our DraftKings and FanDuel lineups!
What’s up y’all? It’s Week 16 of this year’s NFL regular season and we are inching closer and closer to the NFL playoffs. In addition to seeing teams bringing their “A-game” to the table, in the hopes of making the postseason, you’ll see teams going into complete “tank mode,” with the intent on securing a high draft pick.
If you’re new to daily fantasy, you’ll soon realize defensive production is hard to predict on a week-to-week basis. Your best option is to come up with a process you follow week in and week out. In the long run, you’ll come out on top. Let’s take a look at the team defenses that make this week’s “wish list.” Here’s a list of the “boxes” you’re looking to “check off”:
• home favorites
• facing an opponent with an implied point total less than 18.0 (although points allowed shouldn’t deter you from choosing a team defense)
• facing a team with a bad offensive line (and preferably a poor run game)
• going up against an opposing quarterback that is turnover prone (facing a rookie/inexperienced quarterback also helps)
DFS DST Coach
Indianapolis Colts (IND) $4800 on FanDuel / $3300 on DraftKings: The Colts are -7.0 home favorites and take on the Carolina Panthers, who have an implied team total of 19.8. This pick isn’t so much based on the Colts defensive line (ranked 22nd in adjusted sack rate at 6.4%, as per Football Outsiders), however, it’s because of their opponent. The Panthers have the fifth-highest adjusted sack rate allowed at 9.1% (as per Football Outsiders) and have allowed a whopping 51 sacks on the season. Over the past six games, with Kyle Allen (CAR) under center, the Panthers averaged 3.0 turnovers per game and 4.2 sacks per game (as per Pro Football Focus). This weekend, Will Grier (CAR) will get his first snap as a professional NFL quarterback. I’ll give the advantage to the Colts.
Denver Broncos (DEN) $5000 on FanDuel / $3500 on DraftKings: The Denver Broncos defense checks off all the boxes this week. It seems like it’s been a while since we’ve been able to say that. They are -6.5 home favorites and take on the Detroit Lions, who have a slate low team total of 15.8 points. Over the past four weeks, Detroit has given up elite high 13.5 fantasy points per game to opposing defenses (as per Pro Football Focus) and will continue to put David Blough (DET) under center. He’s averaging 3.0 sacks and 2.0 turnovers per start (as per Pro Football Focus). In case you were wondering, that’s not good. There’s a good reason why the Broncos are the top projected fantasy defense on the slate.
Pittsburgh Steelers (PIT) $4900 on FanDuel / $3900 on DraftKings: The Steelers are -3.0 road favorites and take on the New York Jets, who have an implied team total of 17.8. This pick is all about mismatches. The Steelers have the second-highest adjusted sack rate in the league at 9.7% (as per Football Outsiders), while the Jets have the third-highest adjusted sack rate allowed at 9.7% (as per Football Outsiders). That’s almost the highest mismatch you can ask for. You can expect the Steelers to add to their league-leading 49 sacks this weekend. Under pressure last weekend against the Baltimore Ravens, New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (NYJ) threw an interception and lost a fumble. It wouldn’t be unrealistic to expect similar results this time around.
Washington Redskins (WAS) $3800 on FanDuel / $2800 on DraftKings: The Redskins are -2.5 home favorites and take on the Giants, who have an implied team total of 19.8. It looks as though Daniel Jones (NYG) will regain his role as the starting quarterback for the Giants this weekend. That’s great news for the Redskins defense, as Jones is averaging 2.5 turnovers and 3.3 sacks per game, as per Pro Football Focus. Jones has lost seven fumbles in his last six games and threw three interceptions the last time started (Week 13 versus Green Bay). Their combination of matchup and salary should make the Redskins a popular defensive unit this weekend, and for good reason.
Baltimore Ravens (BAL) $4500 on FanDuel / $2800 on DraftKings: The Ravens are -10.0 road favorites and take on the Cleveland Browns, who have an implied team total of 19.3. Baltimore is looking to wrap up home field advantage throughout the playoffs and will be heavily motivated this weekend. To say that the Browns won’t be as motivated is an understatement. To make matters worse, Baker Mayfield (CLE) has thrown at least one interception in four consecutive games and could keep that streak alive this weekend. The Ravens have been one of the most consistent fantasy defenses this season, putting up 8.0 or more fantasy points in eight of their last nine games (13.0 or more fantasy points in five of those contests). I’m considering having a hefty dose of Baltimore’s defense this weekend in tournaments.
Other defenses worthy of consideration include the Seattle Seahawks (SEA) and Dallas Cowboys (DAL).
Miss any of our NFL DFS Coaching Articles? Here’s the full list:
NFL DFS QB Coach – by Vlad Sedler
NFL DFS RB Coach – by Ted Schuster
NFL DFS WR Coach – by Tyler Buecher
NFL DFS TE Coach – by Benny Ricciardi