Unless most of the teams in your league carry a backup defense, more than half of the league should be available to you every week. Perhaps instead of playing one above average defense every week, regardless of matchup, we should instead target the widely available waiver wire defenses with the best matchups in any particular week? You can always make exceptions if your rent-a-defense gets hot - heck, you might find a team worth starting all year by accident. Even if you don't, good matchups will continue to get greater in number as more QBs get injured or yanked as the season goes on. You can steal some points from bad weather come December. Each week I'll list the startable fantasy defenses on most waiver wires and rank them.
**Buffalo, Pittsburgh, and Baltimore have great matchups but assumed to be rostered**
One note - this year could be even more challenging for rent-a-defense than typical years because of the lack of a home field advantage - at least for the time being. Taking (what we believe will be) an elite defense like Pittsburgh or San Francisco and just playing them every week may end up being more viable than in years past because of the lack of a home field crowd to fuel a defense’s energy level and create confusion with noise… we’ll see.
Indianapolis (at Jacksonville)
This is by far the easiest choice this week. They should have been drafted in every league, but just in case they weren’t, the Jaguars are up first. The Colts added DeForest Buckner via trade and have youth and quality at every level of the defense. They are also the best candidate to become a set it and forget defense in the vein of Pittsburgh and New England last year.
A Look Ahead: MIN NYJ @CHI - This looks like good eatin’. Unless they fail miserably Week 1, we’re riding the Colts