Fantasy Football Player Analysis: Defensive team

by Cory J. Bonini on August 2, 2012 @ 17:41:34 PDT

 

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KFFL's player analysis will be updated and expanded on regularly through the offseason. Be sure to sound off in the comments section below!

1) Philadelphia Eagles | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
0052211410271036

Fantasy analysis: Philly tied the Minnesota Vikings for the most sacks (50) in the league last year. Their front line is as deep as they come and has the talent to rival anyone in the NFL. DeMeco Ryans was added to shore up the linebacking corps, while the loss of Asante Samuel is addition by subtraction in the secondary. Rookie defensive tackle Fletcher Cox is a versatile beast and figures to start Week 1. Getting after the quarterback will help this unit produce more turnovers. Consider them around the 14th round in standard leagues.

2) San Francisco 49ers | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
005113181220642

Patrick Willis, ILB, San Francisco 49ers

Fantasy analysis: Jim Harbaugh's group showed a marked turnaround in 2011 and ranked in the top five of fantasy point-earners at the position. San Fran created 38 takeaways and reached the quarterback 41 times on the year. Ted Ginn Jr. gives this team a boost as a return man, if your league scores special teams points. Playing six games against the NFC West is a defensive coordinator's dream, and all 11 defensive starters from a year ago return. Fantasy owners should consider the 49ers as early as the 14th round in typical virtual setups.

3) Green Bay Packers | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
003102187241147

Fantasy analysis: Green Bay's defense scored the most fantasy points in 2011, and that happened with only 29 recorded sacks on the year. They have improved their pass rush, on paper, with the first-round pick of Nick Perry at outside linebacker. This unit produced five defensive touchdowns, plus two special teams scores, last year. Dom Capers' aggressive philosophy is ideal for fantasy success. Some shuffling in the secondary is worth keeping an eye on in preseason play, and this group isn't as good for leagues that deduct for yards or points allowed. Select them as a top-five unit in 2012 drafts.

4) New England Patriots | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
005122201625940

Fantasy analysis: A strong fantasy D from 2011 (ranked seventh) appears to be even stronger with the draft additions of defensive end Chandler Jones and linebacker Dont'a Hightower. Steve Gregory comes over from San Diego to play free safety, and strong safety Patrick Chung is healthy. New England has a deep front seven and almost as much in reserve in the secondary. Look for improvement from their 40-sack, 34-takeaway, four-touchdown 2011 season. This group is very undervalued as the 11th defense chosen, on average.

5) San Diego Chargers | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
0041121510251136

Fantasy analysis: We're really high on San Diego turning around their defense this year. A new coordinator in John Pagano should do wonders for this talented group. The Bolts spent several key picks on improving this side of the ball and brought in a key free agent in linebacker Jarret Johnson. A better pass rush, led by Shaun Phillips and first-round pick Melvin Ingram, should help bolster their paltry 21 takeaways from a season ago. San Diego is a risky sleeper defense that you can land late in your draft after the sexy picks come off the board.

6) New York Giants | Defense/special teams

2012 Projected NFL/Fantasy Football Statistics

Score Allwd Off Pts Allwd Tot Def TD Tot Spec Tm TD Fum TD Int TD Int Fum Rec Pass TD Allwd Rush TD Allwd Def Scks
0020111913251437

Fantasy analysis: New York's front four is arguably the most dangerous in the league, led by third-year stud Jason Pierre-Paul. His 16.5 sacks led the 2011 Giants and helped them to 48 QB takedowns on the year. This defense created 31 turnovers and finished eighth in fantasy points scored. Terrell Thomas (knee) tore his ACL again, and Aaron Ross left in free agency. Rookie Jayron Hosley enters the fray, while last year's first-round cornerback selection Prince Amukamara is healthy. This defense's success is predicated on their pass rush. Draft them as a midrange DT1.

Six more defensive teams are a click away.

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About Cory J. Bonini

Cory is KFFL's General Manager. In late 2002, he joined the KFFL staff as a research analyst and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1996. A member of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, as well as Fantasy Sports Writers Association, Bonini has been featured in print, on radio and on scores of websites. Bonini co-hosted Big Lead Sports on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio from 2011 to 2012.

Bonini was recognized with the 2010 Best Article in Print Award from the FSWA and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. In '11, he finished first overall in the FSWA NFL experts challenge that featured 60 of the industry's best competitors.

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