Fantasy Football: Streaming Defense Guide Week 1

Put up a defense in fantasy football and stick with it for a whole season? What year is it? 2007? Because fantasy defenses are a high variance offering, the best method is to stream your defenses, go week-by-week, and work the waiver wire on a matchup basis, rather than going to a “big” defense in the 11th Names” round of your design. Sure, you won’t be able to win the Cowboys or 49ers using this method, but this allows savvy fantasy managers to gain an extra edge while also maximizing players’ position in their rosters.

Here are the best streaming defense options for Week 1 of the 2023 NFL season…

1. Washington Commanders: vs. Cardinals

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 13

Do you know who the Cardinals’ starting quarterback is this week? Neither does head coach Jonathan Gannon. The options are either recently acquired journeyman backup Joshua Dobbs and round five rookie Clayton Tune. Arizona’s qualifying group is tenuous to say the least. With Washington’s strong defensive line, they might as well rack up a few sacks while the Cardinals appear to be in full tank mode.

2. New Orleans Saints: vs. Titans

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 11

A duel with Ryan Tannehill and an explosive Tennessee offense is a nice Week 1 break for the Saints defense.

3. Minnesota Vikings: vs. Buccaneers

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 27

Long gone are the days of defenses led by Mike Zimmer, but going home to Baker Mayfield and a Buccaneers team that could be on the fast track to a top-10 pick is a conservative bet.

4. Green Bay Packers: at Bears

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 16

Chicago averaged fewer than 20 points per game in 2022 (23rd in points standings). Justin Fields can develop as a pro passer, but there won’t be a quick lead to stardom in Week 1. It’s a worthwhile move to shoot into Green Bay’s defense on the Bears offense, which is in turmoil.

t-5. Carolina Panthers: at Falcons

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 22

t-5. Atlanta Falcons: vs. Panthers

FantasyPro’s D/ST ranking: 28

This game will be an absolute slop fest. It has tremendous Big 10 West energy. If you are Really stuck in one deep Liga, you could do worse than either of these defenses.

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