NFL Week 13 Defense/Special Teams Fantasy Football Rankings

Josh SatlerAnalyst INovember 25, 2008

Must Start:

1. Tennessee Titans vs. Detroit Lions. The Titans' perfect season came to a screeching halt last Sunday as they were embarrassed 34-13 to the NY Jets. This week, on National TV, they'll look for some payback.

With only WR Calvin Johnson to contend with, look for the Titans to constantly pressure Culpepper and make his life miserable on Thursday. We see multiple sacks, a few turnovers and a potential pick six coming from Tennessee. Top fantasy play.

2. Miami Dolphins vs. St. Louis Rams. The Rams have set the bar quite low on offense this year. They've managed just 35 total points in their past four games, and many of those have come when the game was out of reach.

The Fins showed they weren't an elite defense when they allowed 48 to the Pats last week, but this is the Rams, and they have the ability to make any defense look like the '86 Bears. Look for a strong performance out of Miami and a few sacks and turnovers.

3. Baltimore Ravens vs. Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens defense absolutely destroyed the McNabb/Kolb-led Eagles last Sunday and returned a pick to the house. This week, they get the 1-9-1 Bengals and look to keep pace with the 8-3 Steelers. Look for a stout effort by Ray Lewis and Co. and a few turnovers and sacks are definitely in order.

4. Dallas Cowboys vs. Seattle Seahawks. It remains to be seen whether the reigning NFC West Champions have mailed in the season after moving to 2-9 after last Sunday's loss to Washington.

Regardless, the Cowboys defense is playing much better since Phillips assumed the play calling responsibilities and with the offense beginning to find its rhythm, it's helping out the other side of the ball. Look for Ware to get to Hasselbeck on more than one occasion and for the Cowboys to be a strong fantasy start.



1. New York Jets vs. Denver Broncos. The Jets are on a roll and now playing for a No. 2 seed in the conference. It's amazing to think how far this team has come since early on in the season.

For Denver, they're an enigma as they refuse to take command of the AFC West. Without any threat in the running department, Cutler is being forced to do too much through the air and opposing defenses are taking advantage of this. Look for the Jets to capitalize on a few mistakes and play well this Sunday.

2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New Orleans Saints. The Saints are coming off a 51-point effort against the Packers on Monday Night. So how can Tampa be a sleeper? Because New Orleans is quite average on the road against quality defenses and that's what they'll be facing when they get to Tampa.

Look for Tampa's strong secondary to take advantage of a few Drew Brees' mistakes and possibly return one for six.


Others with Favorable Match-ups:

1. New York Giants vs. Washington Redskins. The Skins offense hasn't been as effective of late and rumors are spreading that perhaps the league has caught up with Zorn's play calling. The Giants know that with a strong performance this week, they'll take one step closer to the top seed in the NFC so look for Tuck and Co. to get after Campbell and force Washington into mistakes.

2. Buffalo Bills vs. San Francisco 49ers. The Niners aren't an offensive juggernaut in their own park and now they make the dreaded cross country trip to Orchard Park to play in the early game. Look for Buffalo to focus on stopping Gore and then go after Hill, forcing the QB into a few sacks and turnovers.

3. Indianapolis Colts vs. Cleveland Browns. The Browns as an organization is in shambles right now, and its offense is completely out of sync. With the expected lead that Indy should have heading into the third quarter, we like Freeney and Co. to make Quinn's life miserable once again and force a few picks and turnovers.