Start 'Em & Sit 'Em is the ultimate weekly look at the NFL matchups and how they'll affect your fantasy football team. Fantasy superstars such as Patrick Mahomes and Alvin Kamara will not be featured in this column. All player matchups are based on a PPR scoring system.
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Week 7 Start ‘Em: Defenses
Byes: Colts, Dolphins, Ravens, Vikings
Start of the Week
Bills D/ST vs. Jets
This should be called the “which defense plays the Jets” section of the column. This week, it’s the Bills who get the pleasure of putting a beating on the hapless and hopeless Men in Green. Defenses have recorded a league-high 11.2 fantasy points per game against New York, who has put up a league-low 12.5 points per game. The Jets are also third to last among offenses in time of possession in 2020.
Chiefs D/ST at Broncos
Kansas City’s defense has been up and down this season, but I’m projecting an “up” week against the Broncos. Defenses have averaged the third-most fantasy points against them, including the Patriots, who scored 14 points a week ago. Denver is tied for fourth in giveaways, tied for ninth in sacks allowed, and ranks fourth from the bottom in points scored per game. Go get the K.C. defense.
Chargers D/ST vs. Jaguars
The Chargers are back after a bye week, so they'll be ready to roll against Gardner Minshew and the Jaguars. Traveling across the country to play a football game can be a disadvantage, and Minshew can, at times, be prone to turnovers. The Jags are eighth in giveaways and rank fifth in sacks allowed. So while the Bolts D/ST hasn’t done much, this is a pretty good spot for them to smash.
- Football Team vs. Cowboys
- Patriots D/ST vs. 49ers
- Browns D/ST at Bengals (DraftKings: $3,000)
- Football Team vs. Cowboys (DraftKings: $2,500)
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Week 7 Sit ‘Em: Defenses
Sit of the Week
Broncos D/ST vs. Chiefs
Denver’s defense put up a surprisingly solid performance in New England a week ago, scoring 14 fantasy points. I wouldn’t chase those points, though, as the Broncos had scored a combined 15 points in their previous five games. This unit also has a brutal matchup against Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs, who have averaged nearly 30 points and are also tied for the fourth-fewest giveaways.
Saints D/ST vs. Panthers
The Saints opened the regular season with a massive, 15-point explosion against the Buccaneers. Since then, this unit has scored eight fantasy points in total. Not good. I'd continue to fade them this week, as the Panthers have not been a favorable opponent for defenses. D/STs have averaged fewer than five fantasy points per game against Teddy Bridgewater and his offense in 2020.
Seahawks D/ST at Cardinals (SNF)
The Seahawks defense hasn’t been very productive from a fantasy perspective, putting up fewer than seven points in three of its first five games. That trend is likely to continue against the Cardinals, who have allowed just nine sacks of the elusive Kyler Murray. The Cardinals also have just seven giveaways, and defenses have averaged a mere 2.8 fantasy points against them this season.
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- Texans D/ST vs. Packers
- Titans D/ST vs. Steelers
- Steelers D/ST at Titans (DraftKings: $3,500)
- 49ers D/ST at Patriots (DraftKings: $3,300)
Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. You can follow Michael on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram for the latest news and analysis!
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