Week 8 Fantasy Defense Rankings: Sleepers, busts, waiver-wire D/ST streamers to target

The middle weeks of the season are often when it gets most difficult to find a worthwhile fantasy defense. Between byes and injuries to key defensive players, some of the top D/STs are either idle or perform worse than expected. Tough matchups against good offenses are always a problem, too (this week especially). Nonetheless, our Week 8 fantasy defense rankings will try to identify some of the better waiver wire streamers as we continue to target mistake-prone quarterbacks and poor offensive lines.

Unfortunately, two of the easier units to exploit, Washington and Jacksonville, are on bye this week. Usually, the opponents of those two teams either enter the streamer category or upgrade an already strong defense to a top-five play. Instead, fantasy owners will have to navigate this week without that luxury. The good news is no every-week D/STs are off this week, as Arizona and Houston join Washington and Jacksonville on bye.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end |  Kicker

Fortunately, two top-10 defenses are returning to action after their byes. The Ravens (vs. Steelers) and Colts (@ Lions) have both been fantastic this year, but both have tough matchups this week. However, it’s worth noting that the Ravens traded for star pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue, previously of the Vikings, while the Colts should be getting stud linebacker Darius Leonard (groin) back after he missed a couple of weeks. Neither are optimal plays this week, but given the lack of depth at the position, you can take a chance with either.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end  | Kicker

Atop this week’s rankings are the Bucs and Chiefs, who are facing the Giants and Jets, respectively. Get used to seeing the opponents of the two New York teams in the top five. The Rams (@ Dolphins) also crack the top three this week, as they are taking on Tua Tagovailoa in his first start and should be able to pressure him with Aaron Donald.

In terms of streamers, the cupboard is pretty bare. The Cowboys (@ Eagles) could be a nice play if they can take advantage of the Eagles’ banged-up offensive line, but they didn’t do much against Washington this past week (two sacks, no takeaways, 23 offensive points allowed), so they’re a huge boom-or-bust risk. Green Bay (vs. Vikings) and Tennessee (vs. Bengals) represent higher-floor options who also have fairly high ceilings. 

NOTE: Check back for updates throughout the week. 

Week 8 Fantasy Defense Rankings

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