Welcome to Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em Defense Edition for Week 4 of the NFL season. This week we feature a unit growing into one of the most feared in football. Plus, the second-highest scoring D/ST in fantasy met with a horrendous matchup.
* Reminder: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em is intended to present you with the non-obvious choices for your fantasy lineup. We dig deep into player matchups, scoring trends, and other factors to best help you with your fantasy decisions. Be sure to also check out our weekly fantasy football defense rankings to better gauge where these start-sit options compare to the rest of the options at the position.
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DEF: Start ‘Em
Start of the Week: Ravens DEF vs. WAS
Even with surrendering 34 points to the Chiefs this past Monday, Baltimore still managed to collect 7.0 fantasy points. Expect that number to skyrocket against a Washington offense that has surrendered an average of 11.5 fantasy points and a total of seven turnovers over the past two weeks.
49ers DEF vs. PHI
The 49ers showed that even with injuries, their defense can still get the job done, finishing Week 3 has the DEF5 in fantasy. After manhandling the Giants last Sunday, they stay within the NFC East for yet another mouth-watering matchup. The Eagles lead the NFL in giveaways with 2.7 per game, in return surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to defenses this season.
Rams DEF vs. NYG
The Rams defense hasn’t been the homerun play that they were last season post-Jalen Ramsey trade. With that said, we’ve already slightly touched on the Giants’ struggles. New York lacks any real firepower on offense, and it’s led to Daniel Jones being careless with the football, logging two giveaways in every game this season. Each of New York’s past two opponents has finished with 12.0 fantasy points.
Colts DEF at CHI
Every defensive unit is looking up at Indianapolis at the moment. The No. 1 total defense in football, the Colts have averaged 20.5 fantasy points over the past two weeks and currently outscore fantasy stars such as DeAndre Hopkins and Austin Ekeler on the season in standard-scoring formats. The Bears offense has been somewhat stingy to opposing defenses this season, but that tends to happen when you play the Jets and Lions. Chicago has also allowed four sacks and turned the ball over four times over their last two games.
Sleeper: Broncos DEF at NYJ
The no-fly zone is no more in Denver, as the Broncos allow nearly 380 passing yards per game. However, Jets QB Sam Darnold hasn’t topped 179 passing yards in each of the past two weeks. They are also fresh off of surrendering 26.0 fantasy points to the Colts D/ST in Week 3.
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DEF: Sit ‘Em
Sit of the Week: Washington DEF vs. BAL
Through the first two weeks of the season, Washington was tied as the third-highest scoring fantasy D/ST in football, thanks largely to a 15-point outing in Week 1. Since then, they’ve collected 5.0 total points over their last two games. They’ll be lucky to reach that number this week against a Ravens offense that allowed a total of four fantasy points to defenses in two of their first three games.
Steelers DEF vs. TEN *GAME POSTPONED
Pittsburgh’s ability to get after the passer keeps them fantasy relevant. Yet, Tennessee’s o-line is tied for the third-fewest sacks allowed this season (3). No opposing defense has eclipsed 4.0 fantasy points against the Titans in 2020.
Buyers Beware: Patriots DEF at KC
It’s hard to tell you to bench a defense who is fresh off a 15.0 point outing and has scored 11-plus points in two of the first three weeks. However, if we’re being honest, you should probably bench the Patriots defense and opt for a streamer. D/STs averaged just 3.33 fantasy points this year against the Patrick Mahomes-led Chiefs.