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Fantasy Football - Defense Rankings

2008 Fantasy Football Rankings
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  1. Chicago Bears
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 2.
    How well do you think the Bears' defense will do this year?
    Projected Ranking: Top 4 Defense

  2. Baltimore Ravens
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 1.
    Sixty sacks and 28 picks? How is that humanly possible? With Adalius Thomas gone, Baltimore won't be able to match those numbers, but they may come close.
    Projected Ranking: Top 4 Defense

  3. New England Patriots
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 3.
    The Patriots accumulated 44 sacks and 22 interceptions in 2006. Both figures will rise with Adalius Thomas on board.
    Projected Ranking: Top 4 Defense

  4. San Diego Chargers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 4.
    Sixty-one sacks! 'Nuff said.
    Projected Ranking: Top 4 Defense.

  5. Atlanta Falcons
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 18.
    One of the top defenses in the league, but could become tired if they're on the field the entire game.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  6. Carolina Panthers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 10.
    You're guaranteed a bunch of sacks if you take Carolina's defense. They'll also give you a shutout or two. Keep in mind, however, that they play Seattle and Dallas weeks 15 and 16.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  7. Dallas Cowboys
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 12.
    With Greg Ellis healthy and Anthony Spencer joining the linebacking corps, expect many more sacks and turnovers from Dallas' defense.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  8. Philadelphia Eagles
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 9.
    If Jevon Kearse stays healthy, the Eagles will collect a large number of sacks and interceptions, and limit most foes to 17 points or less. That's a huge "if", however.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense


  9. Seattle Seahawks
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 13.
    Lots of sacks should create tons of interceptions - as long as the secondary's healthy.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  10. Cincinnati Bengals Bengals
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 16.
    Pay attention to the Odell Thurman situation. If he comes back, the Bengals could have a top-10 fantasy defense because they tend to force a lot of interceptions and other turnovers. Thurman will certainly help matters.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  11. Denver Broncos
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 6.
    The Broncos don't get many sacks, but if you take them, you'll get plenty of interceptions and a few single-digit efforts. The unit held five teams to less than 10 points in 2007.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  12. Oakland Raiders
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 17.
    The Raiders get a lot of interceptions and their sack total should be up, so they're worth taking as a starting unit in a 12-team league. Imagine how much more effective they'll be if the offense steps it up a bit.
    Projected Ranking: Top 12 Defense

  13. Green Bay Packers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 28.
    Not a bad defense to have in a big league. The Packers recorded 46 sacks and 23 interceptions last year. They also held three teams to less than 10 points.
    Projected Ranking: Top 16 Defense

  14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 14.
    If Simeon Rice really has lost it, and you take Tampa Bay's defense, you could be in trouble. The unit is definitely worth starting against Detroit, Washington, Houston and Atlanta (if Joey Harrington is under center).
    Projected Ranking: Top 16 Defense

  15. Jacksonville Jaguars
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 5.
    I'd love to have this defense on my fantasy team if at least nine of the starters stay healthy. That hasn't happened in a while, however. Proceed with caution if you draft it.
    Projected Ranking: Top 16 Defense (injury risk).

  16. Pittsburgh Steelers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 11.
    Will the Steelers be able to put their usual pressure on opposing quarterbacks? That remains to be seen and is dependant on how well Lawrence Timmons and LaMarr Woodley play. I don't know about you, but I don't want to count on a pair of rookies.
    Projected Ranking: Top 16 Defense

  17. Arizona Cardinals
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 21.
    Arizona doesn't get the sacks to be considered a top-notch fantasy defense. You can probably spot start them against Washington (Week 7), Tampa Bay (Week 9), Cleveland (Week 13) and Atlanta if Joey Harrington's the starter (Week 16).
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  18. San Francisco 49ers
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 19.
    The secondary certainly is better, but I'm not confident in the 49ers' ability to generate a consistent pass rush. The unit is definitely worth starting against Minnesota (Week 14) and Cleveland (Week 17).
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  19. St. Louis Rams
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 25.
    You'll get Leonard Little's sacks and Tye Hill's interceptions, but that's about it. Worth starting Week 8 against Cleveland if you want to do defense by committee.
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  20. Buffalo Bills
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 20.
    Like the Jets, Buffalo has a solid defense but just doesn't put up the numbers you want in fantasy football. Worth starting against Miami (Weeks 10 and 14), Washington (Week 13) and Cleveland (Week 15).
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense


  21. Cleveland Browns
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 27.
    No sacks. No shutouts. No glory. Worth starting against Oakland, Miami and Houston, perhaps.
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  22. Indianapolis Colts
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 26.
    The only time I would start the Colts is against a team that has a horrible offense and defense, like Houston or Kansas City. If Indianapolis establishes a large lead, you'll be collecting sacks, interceptions and fumbles left and right.
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  23. Kansas City Chiefs
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 22.
    The Chiefs drafted two defensive tackles to improve their pass rush, but we have no idea how well they'll play at the next level. I see no reason to take Kansas City's defense unless you want two stop units on your fantasy team for some odd reason.
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Starting Defense

  24. Miami Dolphins
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 7.
    Miami's defense did well last year, but for reasons I mentioned above, I think it'll struggle in 2007. Still worth starting against Washington (Week 1), Oakland (Week 4), Houston (Week 5) and Cleveland (Week 6).
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  25. New York Jets
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 24.
    I wouldn't start or draft them because they don't produce the stats you need to win in fantasy football. However, if you're planning on doing defense by committee, you can play the Jets against Miami (Weeks 3 and 13), Washington (Week 9), Cleveland (Week 14) and Kansas City (Week 17), if Brodie Croyle's starting.
    Projected Ranking: Spot-Start Defense

  26. Minnesota Vikings
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 8.
    The Vikings don't get sacks or shutouts. No point in drafting their defense.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 7 Defense

  27. New Orleans Saints
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 23.
    Not too many sacks or interceptions. Look elsewhere.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 7 Defense

  28. New York Giants
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 15.
    Not much to like here; Michael Strahan's getting old, the secondary's a mess, and the sack and interception totals are not fantasy-worthy.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 7 Defense

  29. Tennessee Titans
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 32.
    You're getting a defense with no sacks and no Pacman interceptions. Pass.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 7 Defense

  30. Detroit Lions
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 29.
    Start Detroit's defense if you're trying to score the least amount of points in the history of fantasy football.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 3 Defense

  31. Washington Redskins
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 30.
    No sacks, no picks, no glory. Don't bother.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 3 Defense

  32. Houston Texans
    ESPN Positional Ranking: 31.
    Nothing to like here.
    Projected Ranking: Bottom 3 Defense



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