Here’s the thing: We shouldn’t worry about preseason fantasy football ratings for defense as much as we do. It’s 2018, and we’ve all been doing this long enough to know that once the season starts, week-long streamers and sleepers by the schedule rule the day. your cheat sheet and projections no longer matter. oh did you catch one of the top ranked fantasy d/sts in the middle rounds of your draft? cold. they will play the patriots in week 1. now what are you going to do? please proceed to the waiver cable for pick up. sweet draft strategy, bro.
but that won’t stop us from trying to get the best d/st we can on draft day. Heading into this season, there’s no shortage of solid units you’re comfortable with starting each week (“could” is the operative word). Of course, we know that due to the fortuitous nature of defensive throws and touchdowns, some teams will disappoint (looking at you, Minnesota and Denver) and others will surprise (Detroit, New Orleans). And as much as we want to project pro/no matchups in the summer, things can change quickly once a rookie stud like deshaun watson or a surprising veteran like case keenum starts playing like russell wilson or draw brees in week 4.
Reading: Best fantasy football defense 2018
Of the many variables that must be considered with d/sts, the most important is changes in personnel. Whether it’s a new defensive coordinator, an offseason acquisition, an offseason loss, or a player returning from injury, it’s important to be aware of the key differences from last season. stat-wise, sacks tend to be at least somewhat repeatable, and both total defense and scoring can give an idea of how “good” a defense is, even if that doesn’t always translate to fantasy success. kick-offs, particularly fumbles, have a way of fluctuating wildly, and defensive/return scores aren’t something to count on at all. It’s fair to assume that a proven defense full of playmakers will score at least a couple of touchdowns, but the difference between three TDs and seven TDs (24 fantasy points) is the difference of five to 10 places in the final standings.
2018 standings: quarterback | running backwards | wide receiver | tight end | top 200 | ppr
and that’s why we normally recommend waiting in drafts until one of the last three rounds to take a defense. most will fret and draft a d/st before then, which is fine, but remember you’ll need to drop your draft defense or carry two d/sts on your roster at some point in the season. There’s no need to over-invest in this position, even if a lot of the teams below seem like high-potential units that can’t be missed.
These rankings will be updated throughout the preseason, so check back for more analysis.
Master Your Draft: 2018 Ultimate Fantasy Football Cheat Sheet
fantasy football 2018: defense ranking
rankings based on standard scoring leagues
Week 1 Rankings: Quarterback | running backwards | wide receiver | tight end | d/st | kicker
ppr ranking: broker | wide receiver | tight end | Top 200
Strategy draft and ranking levels:QB | running backwards | wide receiver | tight end | d/st