Team Defense Tiers

A look at team defense rankings using tiers

While the position isn't as looked down up as kicker, there are lots of leagues that have removed the team defense position. The reasons vary, but it's certainly fading a bit in popularity. If your league, however, still uses defenses, you must strive to not mess it up.

Let's make it easier to not mess it up.

To get us going, we'll look at three sources:

  • FFPC Best-Ball ADP - In best-ball leagues, all 32 defenses are drafted. FFPC participants are among the most-thorough preparers in this hobby, and all of the data is taken from paid leagues.
  • Footballguys ADP - A compilation of several different sources; this is generally smooth data.
  • David Dodds' Projections - Dodds spends 100s of hours a year doing projections. The numbers are solid and fit in with the historical parameters of the NFL.

And we'll also look at the following stats from 2018:

  • Fantasy Points Scored (using the following scoring system):
    • 1 point for a sack
    • 2 points for a forced turnover
    • 6 points for a scored touchdown
  • Points Allowed
  • Yards Allowed

While team defense scoring can vary wildly from league to league, almost every scoring system awards points for sacks, turnovers, and touchdowns. Some also factor in points allowed and yards allowed, so it's wise to consider those stats as well.

The It's Lonely Up Here at the Top Tier

Rank
Defense
FFPC BBs
FBG ADP
David Dodds
2018 Stats
FanPts
Sacks
TOs
TDs
Pts/Gm
Yds/Gm
1
Chicago Bears
1
1
1
158
50
36
6
17.7
299.7

This season, the Bears defense is far and away the most coveted fantasy unit. Not even close.

The Here Is Almost Everyone's Next 4 Tier

Rank
Defense
FFPC BBs
FBG ADP
David Dodds
2018 Stats
FanPts
Sacks
TOs
TDs
Pts/Gm
Yds/Gm
2
Los Angeles Rams
2
2
2
125
41
30
4
24.0
358.6
3
Jacksonville Jaguars
3
3
3
83
37
17
2
19.8
311.4
4
Minnesota Vikings
5
4
5
108
50
20
3
21.3
309.7
5
Los Angeles Chargers
4
5
6
90
38
20
2
20.6
333.7

If you don't want to spend a decent pick on the Bears, taking one of these defenses will be a great option. Maybe wait for one of them to be picked and then take yours with your next pick.

The This Defense Might Be Awesome Tier

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