Oct 20, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons safety William Moore (25) forces an incompletion by hitting Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Vincent Jackson (83) as he attempts to make a catch in the second half at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons won 31-23. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Football Week 8 Sleepers: Top 5 Emergency D/STs to Start

Sep 30, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94) sacks Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill (17) during the second half of their game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

One of the main things to consider when you’re picking your fantasy football defense is the team on the other side of the ball. Good matchups can make bad defenses usable and boost good defenses up to elite options. These defenses aren’t every week lineup options but can be used this week based on their matchups if you find yourself in a scramble for a starting option. All stats used are based on ESPN Standard scoring. If your league differs, adjust accordingly.

1. New Orleans Saints D/ST

The Saints defense has had some very effective games at home scoring 13 points agains tthe Cardinals and Dolphins in their last two games at the Superdome. Coming off a bye, they’ll host the Bills who have allowed seven or more fantasy points in their last four games and have yet to score more than 24 points in any game. The Saints D has made big plays, and will look to get the Superdome crowd into the game Sunday against Buffalo.

2. Oakland Raiders D/ST

Oct 13, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Oakland Raiders defensive back Chimdi Chekwa (35) breaks up a pass intended for Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe (82) during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Raiders D has had put up double digit points in three of their last five games and have had a solid performance in every game except the game they faced Peyton’s aerial assault in Denver. This week they host the Steelers who have allowed the fifth most points to opposing defenses and have struggled offensively. They’re very widely available but are actually pretty solid defensively especially at home.

3. Philadelphia Eagles D/ST

The Eagles defense hasn’t been good this year, but they are in the best possible matchup as they take on Eli Manning and the Giants at home. New York has allowed 12 or more fantasy points in all but one of their games this year and consistently turns the ball over. The Eagles don’t get tons of pressure on the QB but they did force four turnovers in week 5 when these two teams met, so I think they’ll have another decent day Sunday.

4. Atlanta Falcons D/ST

Atlanta scored a TD and put up 11 against the Bucs last week and now head to Arizona to face the turnover machine that is Carson Palmer. They may not put up a huge number of points, but should at least get a few interceptions from Palmer for this week.

5. New York Jets D/ST

The Jets defense has been playing well the last few weeks but face a tough task as they take on the Bengals and Andy Dalton’s suddenly-clicking passing attack. The Jets are coming off their season-high 14 points against the Patriots, but they’re only an emergency option this week.

If you have any questions about who I’d start/sit for week 8, you can find me on twitter @ZT_Sports or drop the question in the comments at the bottom of the page. For information on other positions, starter rankings, waiver wire pickups, and plenty of fantasy football insight, check out our Fansided fantasy football page.


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Tags: Atlanta Falcons Fantasy Football Fantasy Football D/ST Fantasy Football Defense New Orleans Saints New York Jets NFL Week 8 Oakland Raiders Philadelphia Eagles