Fantasy Football

2018 Fantasy Football Week 5 Defense Stream-O-Matic


What’s up, studio gangstas?

I am PRESSED for time this week on the writing for this article. I’m heading to Atlanta to watch my Braves compete in the postseason for the first time in several years. Forgive me if I’m frank, but it’s quality of life over quality of article!

Anywho, we’ve got lots of business to attend to here. The Bears are on a bye week and many streaming decisions need to be made. Despite my day job and extracurricular activities, I’m here to help along with my trusted sidekick: the Stream-O-Matic chart!

Speaking of the Bears, if you can keep their defense around through their bye week, you won’t be sorry. I typically don’t suggest rostering two defenses, so this is new to me. It feels icky, quite honestly. However, check out that beautiful schedule starting in Week 6: Dolphins, Patriots, Jets, and Bills. Three of those AFC East foes are rather tasty matchups. The Bears are too good of a defense to drop. If you have to, maybe wait until Sunday so that you can reclaim them after Week 5.

Let’s charge into Week 5, shall we?

2018 Fantasy Football Week 5 Defense Stream-O-Matic


I use a traditional rotisserie scoring style commonly used in fantasy baseball season-long leagues to give point totals to each team.


The categories for the chart are listed below along with links to websites that I use to find this data.

  • Own%: Ownership percentages based on ESPN leagues gives us an idea of who is available. This doesn’t factor into the standings.
  • Location: Generally speaking, defenses play better at home than on the road. Thus, a five-point advantage is given to all home teams.
  • Wind: The only weather element that has shown a direct correlation with point totals is winds in excess of 15 MPH. Another five-point bonus is awarded to teams playing in such windy conditions.
  • Vegas: Using Vegas odds, the spread and over/under generates a projected game score that the bettors go against. This game score portrays what the game flow could look like and, therefore, which fantasy football defenses are in a good position to succeed.
  • oSAC%: To gauge how good (or bad) an opposing offensive line might be, look at the sack percentage for that team’s offense. Not only are some offensive lines bad, but some quarterbacks don’t show the ability to avoid the sack.
  • oINT%: The opponent’s interception percentage obviously helps in streaming a defense. Turnover percentage is not used here because fumbles can be a little fluky and turnover percentage uses both fumbles and interceptions.
  • FPPG: I use ESPN defensive scoring rankings to determine a ranking of the fantasy football defenses.
  • DVOA: Probably the most popular tool for evaluating defenses, the DVOA efficiency ratings are utilized to give a strong baseline to the rankings.

Stream-O-Matic Chart


Defenses on Bye Week: Bears, Buccaneers

Snooze-a-palooza of the Week

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I hate to pick on the Cardinals, but this matchup with the 49ers is just bound to be a stinker. These are two of the worst offenses in the league, especially Arizona as the last place team in yards and points per game. The 49ers aren’t far behind with the switch to CJ Beathard. Woof.

The chart loves both of these defenses this week. It’s an easy decision to start the Cardinals for me, as they are an above average defense by DVOA standards. However, I never enjoy streaming bad defenses and the 49ers are barking up that tree. I don’t believe this will happen, but I would not be surprised if this was the coming out party for Josh Rosen. Outside of DeForest Buckner, there aren’t many bright spots for this San Francisco defense.

If you are in a 14-teamer where you are struggling to find a good streaming option, I am okay with it. Otherwise, let’s find you a better option here using the chart and some superlatives to our advantage.

Barn-Lighting Scoreboard-Burner

I feel like I’ve been recycling the same four teams in this barn-burner section, but you shouldn’t fix what ain’t broke. That’s what my crazy uncle from Arkansas used to say, anyway.

We head to the Steel City where the Falcons visit the Steelers. These are both top ten offenses by points and yards per game. They are both below average defenses according to DVOA. The over/under is 57 for goodness sake! The points will be a-flowing and the fantasy glory will be similar to the RamsVikings game from last week.

Okay, not that crazy, but you get the picture!


New York Jets, DST1 (27.2%)

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Coming in hot with that No. 1 ranking!

The Jets are in a good spot this week. The Broncos are traveling across two time zones and coming off a bone-crushing loss to the Chiefs on Monday night. It could easily be a slow start for them in this game and the favored Jets should take advantage.

Additionally, it’s not like you’re running the risk on a bad defense – the Jets are very solid on the defensive front! According to Pro Football Focus, the average player on the Jets’ starting lineup defensively is around 64, which is above average on their rating scale. DVOA is a believer as well, ranking them 5th in the league in overall defense through the season’s first four weeks.

I’m all aboard the Jet Airliner, making Steve Miller very proud.

Buffalo Bills, DST10 (1.7%)

I will give the Bills credit – they do have a decent defense going. However, the game flow does not favor them against a Titans team coming off a huge win against Philly. That’s going to cap their fantasy scoring upside here in Week 5.

Similarly to the 49ers mentioned before, if you are struggling to find a streaming option in your deeper league, then go for it! Otherwise, let’s take a look at a couple of defenses that I believe are underrated by the ol’ Stream-O-Matic this week.

Carolina Panthers, DST13 (49.1%)

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Okay, the Stream-O-Matic can’t make assumptions. When it sees that the Giants are among the league-leaders in interception percentage, it has to take it literally. However, we all know that erratic Eli lurks in that backfield. If that oINT% was even average, we’re looking at a top-five ranking for the Panthers DST for Week 5.

All of the factors are coming together for Carolina. They are coming off a bye week on their home turf. Meanwhile, the Giants keep suffering injuries (mainly, Evan Engram) and losses. I’m expecting a Panthers win here and they’ll force the Giants to air it out in the second half. More passes, more picks, more fantasy points for the Panthers defense. Common sense. Come on, Stream-O!

New England Patriots, DST16 (57.9%)

Whoa, now there is the ‘Patriot Way’ we all know and hate! Those who thought for a brief moment that the Dolphins could get a three-game lead on them were gravely mistaken. Sigh.

The Evil Empire is back and faces a Colts team traveling on a short week. As my colleague Kevin Huo pointed out, Andrew Luck is coming off a game where he had to throw 52 times and was beat up a little bit by the Texans front seven. You couldn’t fault the Colts for putting up a bad performance here, and that’s exactly what the Pats plan to do.

I would stream the Patriots ahead of both the 49ers and Bills. With a positive game flow and an opportunity to pick off a large number of passes from Luck, there should be an easy path to some fantasy scoring here!

Check out the rest of our 2018 Fantasy Football content from our outstanding team of writers.

About Tyler Thompson

Follow me on Twitter at @therealwody. For all the latest news and best advice out there, like us on Facebook, Google+ and Instagram.

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