Fantasy Football Player Analysis: Defensive team

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

 

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13) Baltimore Ravens | 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
016631111610171038

Fantasy analysis: Baltimore's defense is one of the most overrated groups in fantasy circles. The loss of Terrell Suggs (Achilles') is huge, and even if he makes it back this year, don't count on his explosive nature to return until 2013. Ed Reed and Ray Lewis are getting grey, while the pass-rushing replacements for Suggs are unproven. Aside from the 48 sacks recorded, which is a figure bound to regress, three fumble recovery returns for touchdowns powered this fantasy defense last year. You can't count on that happening again. This group recorded just 26 takeaways last year. Let someone else waste a high pick on them.

14) Dallas Cowboys | 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
024810011210261432

Von Miller, OLB, Denver Broncos

Fantasy analysis: A retooling of the secondary should make a considerable difference for the 'Boys. Last year, this group found the end zone only one time - including special teams play. Their 42 sacks hold up for a No. 1 fantasy DT, yet they logged only 25 takeaways. Rob Ryan gets a full offseason to turn this thing around in Big D. Fantasy owners can take a chance on them as a high-upside, low-cost flier.

15) Denver Broncos | 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
024852121411261046

Fantasy analysis: Elvis Dumervil and Von Miller lead the pass-rushing charge for this unit. Peyton Manning will even help the defense by keeping it off the field so much. The sack total (41) was there last year, although only 18 total takeaways marred their fantasy value. Tracy Porter and Mike X. Adams improve the secondary, but D.J. Williams will miss the first six games due to suspension. Denver is a No. 2 defense worth targeting.

16) Pittsburgh Steelers | 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
01791001129181137

Fantasy analysis: Think about this for one second: The fifth worst fantasy defense from last year is drafted No. 2 overall among its 2012 counterparts. That's called blind hype, people. Pittsburgh is a great real-life defense. This group has finished 25th or worse in fantasy scoring in two of the past three seasons. They are old and struggle to take away the football (15 turnovers in '11). Don't say you weren't warned!

17) Seattle Seahawks | 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
01605113251419745

Fantasy analysis: Seattle ranked ninth in points scored among fantasy defenses last year, but that largely came from four interceptions returned for touchdowns. That's tough to bank on happening again. This group has a chance to return to the top 10 if they can become more versatile on defense (22 INTs, only nine fumble recoveries). Rookie linebacker Bruce Irvin will be the key to reaching the quarterback more than their 33 takedowns from 2011. They are too risky to be a No. 1 fantasy defense, but it never hurts playing six games in the NFC West.

18) Kansas City Chiefs | 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
02224112169251144

Fantasy analysis: KC has the pieces in place to be a strong fantasy defense but needs more of a pass-rushing presence to make this happen. Their 29 sacks from a year ago tied for the third fewest in the league and contributed to just 26 takeaways. Arguably their best defensive player, safety Eric Berry, is working his way back from knee reconstruction. Temper your expectations for the first half of 2012 but keep them in mind for the second half.

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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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