Start Em Sit Em

NFL Fantasy 2021 Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 8: Defenses

You have lineup questions. We have answers. At least we hope. Start 'Em & Sit 'Em has helped fantasy managers for years make those pressing lineup decisions. And you know what is a good decision? Starting Patrick Mahomes. But that's too obvious, so you won't see that here. Instead here are some of the most-pressing questions. And, if you can't find a player you are looking for, please check out latest NFL Fantasy lineup rankings right here.

Start 'Em

Cincinnati Bengals
2021 · 5-2-0
New York Jets
2021 · 1-5-0

I’m not necessarily a smart person. But as I scrambled on Sunday morning to pick up defenses to play in Week 7, I added the Bengals in all sorts of places. Not that I anticipated a ton of points against the Ravens. But because they had this game against the Jets who have allowed the most points to opposing DSTs this season. Zach Wilson is battling injuries. And yeah, it’s the Jets. I could have just stopped there.

Los Angeles Chargers
2021 · 4-2-0
New England Patriots
2021 · 3-4-0

The Patriots put up like 100 points when they went to SoFi Stadium last year. It was pretty ugly. But this is a new Chargers team. And Brandon Staley has had an extra week to put together a game plan against rookie Mac Jones -- who played really well against the Jets last week. But I expect the Chargers to do something special in this one.

Chicago Bears
2021 · 3-4-0
San Francisco 49ers
2021 · 2-4-0

I know a lot of you will be all, “Rank, how can you watch what happened last week and claim the Bears are a good play here?” The Bears aren’t terrible. They have a history of playing miserable in games and then returning the following week to win a game they have no business winning. And honestly, I could take the cheap way out and just list the Rams and Bills and teams like that. However, I don’t feel like it will do a lot of good for you.

New Orleans Saints
2021 · 4-2-0
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2021 · 6-1-0

The Saints were a pretty hot add in the week leading up to a game against Geno Smith, as you would imagine. This is one of those things where you’ll sleep on your defense for most of the week before you go and switch it up. But it is worth noting the Saints were great against the Bucs in two regular-season games against the Bucs last year. And allowed less than 200 passing yards to Brady in the playoffs. So I really don’t hate the play at all. Let’s rock and roll. I mean, the reasons why I thought the Bears could pull off the upset last week against Tampa Bay apply here. So let’s go.

Sit 'Em

Carolina Panthers
2021 · 3-4-0
Atlanta Falcons
2021 · 3-3-0

The Falcons have allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing DSTs this year. And I’m not sure how your league keeps the DST stats working, but the Falcons offense is starting to look pretty legit. The Kyle Pitts (that’s right, The Kyle Pitts) is starting to look like a stud. Calvin Ridley is having the best season for a guy who is having a bad season. I like the Panthers. I like their defense and everything. I just feel like this won’t be a great matchup for them.

Minnesota Vikings
2021 · 3-3-0
Dallas Cowboys
2021 · 5-1-0

The Vikings have played pretty well recently. And honestly, it’s just a bit of bad luck that has kept them from a record above .500 this season. Well, a bad kick or two. But it would be pretty risk to go against the Dallas Cowboys, who are one of the best offenses in the league. Even with Dak battling an injury, I’m not willing to take that risk.

Seattle Seahawks
2021 · 2-5-0
Jacksonville Jaguars
2021 · 1-5-0

You might be looking for a defense to stream this week. Your first instinct might be to look at who the Jaguars are playing. The Jaguars have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing defenses this year. I get the theory behind it. I really do. I’m just not sure the Seahawks have the squad to make the matchup worthwhile. You’re welcome to give it a shot. But if I was going to take a chance on one of these streamers, I would feel more comfortable with the Chiefs going against the Giants. But that’s me. I’m sort of a weirdo.

Tennessee Titans
2021 · 5-2-0
Indianapolis Colts
2021 · 3-4-0

The Titans were great against the Chiefs last week. And even made a huge stop against the Bills a few weeks ago. But is it weird to expect a bit of a letdown this week against the Colts? Not that I’m picking the Colts to win or anything. But the Colts have also allowed the sixth-fewest points to DSTs this year. 

Follow Adam Rank on Twitter.

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