One of the biggest strategies in fantasy football is streaming defenses. Each week owners will look at matchups and make waiver wire acquisitions almost every week to find their starting defense. Here are fantasy football defenses to stream in week 12. (Note: All defense mentioned are owned in less than 50 percent of ESPN leagues)
1. Cleveland Browns
The Browns haven’t had a great year as a fantasy defense, but they did pick it up this past week. They scored 17 points against the Steelers on Thursday night. Their secondary is getting healthier, which should help, but they will be without Myles Garrett who is suspended indefinitely. They should be able to play decently without him.
This week, the Browns play the Miami Dolphins who are the worst against opposing defenses this season. With the way Cleveland is playing and their matchup, they are worth picking up and playing this week. They are owned in under 30 percent of ESPN leagues.
2. Oakland Raiders
Oakland hasn’t had a great fantasy defense either, but are playing lights out right now. They have scored 14 points and 17 points respectively over the last two weeks. One matchup was against the Chargers and the other was against the Bengals. With some young players stepping up for them, the Raiders defense could improve down the stretch.
After getting a favorable matchup against Cincinnati last week, the Raiders are getting another one this week. They play the Jets who rank 31st against opposing defenses this season. The Raiders defense is owned in just over 30 percent of ESPN leagues.
3. Detroit Lions
The Lions rank 29th as a fantasy defense and have been up and down all season long. In their last matchup against the Cowboys, they scored -6 points. They do have double-digit performances though against the Eagles and the Giants. This is one of the weeks they could score double-digit points.
Detroit is playing Washington this week, which presents them with a good matchup. Dwayne Haskins is still struggling, even if he is improving. The Lions should be able to stack the box and win the game. Detroit’s defense is owned in 7.6 percent of ESPN leagues.
4. Washington Redskins
Washington has the 27th ranked fantasy defense this season. They had a terrible start to the season, then picked things up, but now it is settling down again for them. The defense had good performances against Miami and San Francisco this year, but only scored two points against the Jets last week.
In week 12, the Redskins play the Detroit Lions. When healthy, the Lions have a solid offense, but they could be without Matthew Stafford for another week with a back injury. Without him, they’ll have to change the gameplan, which should make things easier for the Redskins. They are owned in fewer than 40 percent of ESPN leagues.
5. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons are another team with a bad defense on this list. They rank 28th as a fantasy defense and are coming off back to back good performances. Atlanta scored nine points at New Orleans and 23 points at Carolina. If they can keep their hot streak alive, they are certainly worth playing.
This week, the Falcons play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs rank 27th against opposing defenses this season. Atlanta will be looking to force turnovers, which should be easy considering Jameis Winston has thrown 18 interceptions this season. They are owned in two percent of ESPN leagues.