Much like Week 10, Week 11 features some highly intriguing matchups between many of fantasy football’s top defenses. Among the top 10 highest-scoring DSTs this season, Philadelphia visits Green Bay, Miami hosts Buffalo and Detroit hits the road against Arizona. Not to mention Houston traveling to Cleveland, and Kansas City squaring off against last season’s top DST in Seattle.
Let’s dive into some of the matchups and try to make the start or sit choices for fantasy owners much easier.
Eagles at Packers
Philly’s far and away the highest scoring DST this season, and is coming off a phenomenal showing against Carolina, highlighted by 9.0 sacks, three picks, two fumble recoveries and one touchdown. It was an incredible performance, but don't expect anything close to it against the Packers steamroller offense. For one they won’t get to Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers like they did Cam Newton. The Pack’s let up 21 sacks all year. Second, Green Bay’s committed only eight turnovers all season, three of which were picks by Rodgers.
On the flip side, the Packers face Philly backup Mark Sanchez. He was impressive against Carolina but Green Bay owns the No. 9-ranked pass defense that’s picked 12 passes this year.
Buffalo at Miami
This game is clearly huge for both sides. Both suffered difficult losses last week, and a wild card spot and outside shot for the AFC East could be on the line. Both also committed some fourth quarter blunders that resulted in the loss. Last week we gave the edge to K.C. over Buffalo because the former has more playmakers, and it’s the same this week.
The Bills have Sammy Watkins, but after him no one has really stepped up over the last few weeks. Miami has receivers Mike Wallace and Jarvis Landry, and running back Lamar Miller, with QB Ryan Tannehill orchestrating everything. Buffalo’s fumble woes are worrisome as well, with three last week upping their total to eight on the season.
Detroit at Arizona
This could be the marquee matchup of the week. On paper Detroit has the edge, with the No. 2 pass and No. 3 rush defenses in the league, and can test the Cardinals No. 30 pass defense with the return of receiver Calvin Johnson. But those numbers are little deceiving with the Cards first in the NFL with 14 interceptions. Detroit QB Matthew Stafford has also tossed four of his eight interceptions in the last three games.
Some may point to Detroit’s 3-1 road record, but they’ve beaten some bottom dwellers in the Jets, Vikings and Falcons. Those aren’t quality wins that make the Lions a threat on the road.
Houston at Cleveland
Cleveland’s allowed 13.4 points per game over the last five weeks, a stellar number for fantasy owners, and won four times. However, only one victory came against a high-scoring team, Week 6’s victory versus Pittsburgh. The only loss? That nasty 24-6 letdown at Jacksonville. The other wins came against Oakland, Tampa Bay, and a weakened Cincinnati squad last week.
Still the Browns secondary is a serious threat to almost any QB, totaling 10 interceptions in the last five games. That’s a huge advantage against Houston’s Ryan Mallett, who will make the first start of his career Sunday.
Week 11’s Start/Sit
Sit: Minnesota, New England, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Buffalo, Carolina, Atlanta, Cincinnati, St. Louis, N.Y. Giants, Detroit, Houston
Start: Chicago, Seattle, Green Bay, Arizona, Miami, Cleveland, Washington, Denver, San Francisco, San Diego
Byes: Dallas, N.Y. Jets, Jacksonville, Baltimore