Posted: 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013
By Dan Ciarrocchi
The Jacksonville Jaguars have been a godsend for fantasy owners who have grown accustomed to streaming defenses from week to week. The Rams and the Colts had the privilege of racking-up fantasy points versus them in Weeks 4 and 5, but with the heavily-owned Broncos slated to face them next, fantasy owners will need to look for another source of fantasy gold. Fortunately, there are a few options available:
Philadelphia Eagles (vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers): With many of the anemic offenses facing off against high-profile defenses this week, the Eagles have a good matchup that slipped through the cracks. Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon will make his second career NFL start and will face am Eagles defense which, despite giving up plenty of points, has also taken the ball away nine times over five games.
With their own high-powered offense going against the Bucs defense, the Eagles can put pressure on a young quarterback that could be forced from his comfort zone and have to air it out. That spells trouble for the Bucs, but good things for fantasy owners who take a flier on a defense that is owned in just nine percent of Yahoo! fantasy leagues.
Carolina Panthers (vs. Minnesota Vikings): Somehow, 66 percent of Yahoo! leagues still have this defense on waivers, and they have allowed an average of just 14.5 points per game. This week, while they are surely not looking forward to having to face Adrian Peterson, they certainly possess the front seven to keep him in check. If that happens and Matt Cassel is forced to beat them through the air, it won't bode well for him against this defense that has generated such consistent pressure this season. Cassel has not been tested much yet, but in 2012, he completed just 41 percent of his passes under pressure according to Pro Football Focus and threw five interceptions. Expect the Panthers to get a few bounces in their favor in what ought to be a close game.
Cleveland Browns (vs. Detroit Lions): The Lions are an entirely different animal without Calvin Johnson in the lineup, but not a particularly intimidating one. There's a good chance that he could return to action versus the Browns, but he won't be without his share of challenges since Joe Haden will be lined up across from him. Haden already limited A.J Green to 51 yards in Week 4, and quarterbacks have a rating of just 60.1 when throwing his way this season. The defense as a whole has quietly been a dominant unit thus far, and it is more than capable of neutralizing a talented Lions offense on its better days. The Browns defense is surprisingly still available in 76 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and would do in a pinch as a spot starter in Week 6.