NFL

Patriots defense/special teams has outscored these fantasy football stars in 2019

Patriots defense/special teams has outscored these fantasy football stars in 2019

Defenses don't often win championships in fantasy football, but we might have to make an exception in the case of the 2019 New England Patriots.

The Patriots defense is off to one of the best starts in NFL history, and the unit will enter Week 7 leading the league in interceptions, takeaways, yards allowed per game and points allowed per game. In fact, New England's defense is the only one giving up fewer than 10 points per game. The Pats also have tallied the second-most sacks.

The Patriots gave another stellar performance in their Week 6 win over the New York Giants on Thursday night. The defending champs tallied a sack, three interceptions, a fumble recovery, a defensive touchdown (on the fumble recovery), a punt block and a special teams touchdown (on the punt block). 

New England's defense has been among the most consistent and highest scorers of all defense/special teams and players in fantasy football this season. The Patriots earned 28 points in ESPN standard scoring in Week 6, and that was the seventh-highest total of any player or defense/special teams entering "Monday Night Football".

Here's a list of fantasy stars the Patriots defense/special teams is outscoring based on average points in ESPN standard scoring:

Patriots, D/ST: 20.3 points/game
Tom Brady, QB, Patriots: 20
Carson Wentz, QB, Eagles: 19.4
Dalvin Cook, RB, Vikings: 18.9
Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Cowboys: 15.2
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers: 15.1
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, 49ers: 13.9
Alvin Kamara, RB, Saints: 12.9
Adam Thielen, WR, Vikings: 12.1
Julio Jones, WR, Falcons: 11.8
Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs, 9.3

The Patriots' schedule will get tougher pretty soon, but after what should be a tough five-game stretch from Week 9 through Week 14, their defense will finish with three favorable fantasy football matchups against the Cincinnati Bengals, Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins. New England forces turnovers, effectively rushes the quarterback and doesn't give up many points -- the essential ingredients for an excellent fantasy football defense/special teams.

NFL legend thinks this team will be Pats' toughest AFC challenger>>>

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Fantasy football Week 15 waiver wire: Can A.J. Brown deliver in playoffs?

Fantasy football Week 15 waiver wire: Can A.J. Brown deliver in playoffs?

You didn't come this far just to come this far.

Week 15 of the NFL season means it's the semifinal round of the fantasy football playoffs in most leagues.

If you're reading this, congrats on still being alive. But you're not interested in a runner-up trophy, and we're not interested in providing runner-up advice.

Below are the top players at each position who are widely available on fantasy football waiver wires and are worth adding for Week 15 as you seek fantasy glory.

QUARTERBACK

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans (owned in 48 percent of Yahoo! leagues): We'll continue to put Tannehill on this list until he's owned in more than half of leagues. The Titans gunslinger was the sixth-best quarterback in fantasy last week and faces a Houston Texans defense that just allowed 309 passing yards and three touchdowns to Drew Lock. He's your guy again this week.

Other quarterbacks to target: Ryan Fitzpatrick (MIA), Jacoby Brissett (IND), Kyle Allen (CAR)

RUNNING BACK

Adrian Peterson, Washington Redskins (40 percent owned): News that Derrius Guice has a sprained MCL means Peterson is the clear-cut workhorse on a team that loves to run the ball. The ageless veteran has touchdowns in back-to-back weeks and should see north of 20 touches against the Philadelphia Eagles, making him the safest waiver wire pickup among running backs.

Other running backs to target: DeAndre Washington (OAK), Patrick Laird (MIA), Boston Scott (PHI)

WIDE RECEIVER

A.J. Brown, Tennessee Titans (27 percent owned): The rookie wide receiver has become Tannehill's go-to deep threat, with 333 receiving yards over his last three games. Brown's low catch total makes him a bit of a boom-or-bust play, but it's the playoffs. Gotta take shots to make shots.

Other wide receivers to target: Zach Pascal (IND), Darius Slayton (NYG), Justin Watson (TB)

TIGHT END

David Njoku, Cleveland Browns (37 percent owned): Njoku caught just one pass for four yards in his first game since Week 2, but has a dream matchup against an Arizona Cardinals defense that's given up the most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season. He's a high-risk breakout candidate.

Other tight ends to target: Gerald Everett (LAR), Darren Fells (HOU)

DEFENSE

Kansas City Chiefs (32 percent owned): Is the Chiefs defense ... good? Kansas City has held each of its last opponents (including the New England Patriots) to 16 points or fewer. The Denver Broncos are riding high after upsetting the Texans, but we're sensing a turnover-filled letdown game in KC.

Other defenses to target: Oakland (vs. JAX), Seattle (at CAR)

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Fantasy football Week 14 waiver wire: Texans defense a great streamer for playoffs

Fantasy football Week 14 waiver wire: Texans defense a great streamer for playoffs

No more fun and games, folks. It's winning time.

The fantasy football playoffs start this week in many leagues, and with them come raised stakes and raised expectations.

The good news for fantasy owners with holes in their lineups is that there are several quality players available in more than 50 percent of leagues who could be plugged in as legitimate starters for Week 14.

Let's get right into it with our top fantasy football waiver wire adds at each position for Week 14.

QUARTERBACK

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans (owned in 39 percent of Yahoo! leagues): That Tannehill is available in over 60 percent of leagues is a testament to the depth of this position. The veteran QB has accounted for multiple touchdowns in six consecutive weeks and faces a reeling Oakland Raiders defense that's allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. Tannehill is the top streaming option this week.

Other quarterbacks to target: Ryan Fitzpatrick (MIA), Jacoby Brissett (IND), Daniel Jones (NYG)

RUNNING BACK

Benny Snell, Pittsburgh Steelers (20 percent owned): Snell established himself as Pittsburgh's lead back over Jaylen Samuels last Sunday, logging 16 carries to Samuels' seven and scoring his first career touchdown. If James Conner can't go this weekend -- he's played just once in the last five weeks -- Snell is a solid RB2 against a porous Arizona Cardinals defense.

Other running backs to target: Raheem Mostert (SF), Alexander Mattison (MIN), Darwin Thompson (KC)

WIDE RECEIVER

Russell Gage, Atlanta Falcons (11 percent owned): Gage benefited from Julio Jones' absence in Week 13 to the tune of five catches for 52 yards and a TD. But he still led Atlanta with eight catches in Week 12 with Jones on the field. Even if Jones returns in Week 14, he might be on a pitch count, opening the door for Gage to contribute for a third straight week. 

Other wide receivers to target: Anthony Miller (CHI), John Ross III (CIN), Zach Pascal (IND)

TIGHT END

Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins (33 percent owned): The Dolphins' offense has suddenly come alive, and Gesicki is benefiting: He's scored TDs in back-to-back weeks and been targeted 14 times by Ryan Fitzpatrick in that span. The New York Jets are stingy against tight ends (fifth-fewest fantasy points allowed), but Gesicki is your best waiver wire bet this week.

Other tight ends to target: Gerald Everett (LAR), Darren Fells (HOU)

DEFENSE

Houston Texans (27 percent owned): Yeah, Drew Lock won his NFL debut Sunday. But the Denver Broncos are much worse on the road (1-5) than at home (3-3), and the Texans are coming off an inspiring defensive effort against the New England Patriots. Expect another strong effort out of Houston in Week 14.

Other defenses to target: Jacksonville (vs. LAC), Green Bay (vs. WAS)

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