Week 13 DST & K Rankings
Week 13 DST Sleepers
Week 13 Start N' Sit
Week 13 Waiver Wire Tips

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Colts DST
By Greg Buchphoto of journalist Greg Buch
Greg develops and updates FFSwami's website. He's played in various fantasy football leagues the last 15 years and is a life-long Cincinnati Bengals fan.
This is how we rank the top defenses in action this weekend. Our rankings are based on a standard league where fumble recoveries and interceptions count for 2 points each and sacks count for 1 point with a typical sliding scale for points and yardage allowed, while the K rankings are based on field goals counting for 3 points (with 5 points awarded for 50+ yard FGs) and extra points counting for 1 point.

  1. Indianapolis Colts
  2. Cincinnati Bengals
  3. Philadelphia Eagles
  4. St. Louis Rams
  5. Minnesota Vikings
  6. Houston Texans
  7. Baltimore Ravens
  8. Miami Dolphins
  9. Cleveland Browns
  10. Detroit Lions
  11. Dallas Cowboys
  12. Seattle Seahawks
  13. New York Giants
  14. Oakland Raiders
  15. Atlanta Falcons
  16. Arizona Cardinals
  1. Adam Vinatieri
  2. Dan Bailey
  3. Mason Crosby
  4. Cody Parkey
  5. Justin Tucker
  6. Stephen Gostkowski
  7. Caleb Sturgis
  8. Phil Dawson
  9. Stephen Hauschka
  10. Randy Bullock
  11. Blair Walsh
  12. Mike Nugent
  13. Greg Zeuerlein
  14. Cairo Santos
  15. Shaun Suisham
  16. Matt Bryant
Vikings DST
By Greg Buchphoto of journalist Greg Buch
Greg develops and updates FFSwami's website. He's played in various fantasy football leagues the last 15 years and is a life-long Cincinnati Bengals fan.

Minnesota Vikings
Vikings DST
Last year's bottom feeder among fantasy defenses, the Vikings have made great strides under new HC Mike Zimmer. This despite losing A.P. for the year and getting some very uneven quarterback play from rookie Teddy Bridgewater. I really like them this week in a home match-up against a Carolina Panther offense that's giving up the 6th-most fantasy points to opposing defenses. Cam Newton's been struggling lately, making a lot of poor decisions, and this game's being played outdoors in sub-20 degree temperatures at University of Minnesota stadium. I really don't expect the Panthers to show up for this one, so look for Minny's defense to put some points on the board.

Indianapolis Colts
Colts DST
The Colts are in the middle of the pack among fantasy defenses but are on a stretch where they have some very nice match-ups. If you followed my advice last week and streamed them against a hapless Jaguars offense, you were rewarded with 15 fantasy points. I'm pounding the table again this week on them as they're facing a rudderless Redskins offense that's allowing opposing defenses to score an average of 10.4 fantasy points a game. RGIII has really been struggling, so I like this match-up even more if the 'Skins decide to forego a quarterback change and stick with him but would still not hesitate to start them against an inexperienced Colt McCoy. The career back-up is vertically challenged so, if he starts, look for plenty of batted passes that may turn into INTs.

Arizona Cardinals
Arizona Cardinals defense
Photo of Arizona Cardinals defense © Greg Buch
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The Cardinals defense managed to sack Russell Wilson 7 times and post a respectable stat line despite getting blown out of the water last week. This week they may not be as fortunate against a Falcons offense that put 26 points on the board against a tough Cleveland defense. This one doesn't look that bad on paper as the Falcons are allowing 7 points a game to opposing defenses but I think sooner or later ineffective quarterback play is going to take its toll on the Cardinals DST and I never like counting on a team making a cross-country road trip. As good as this unit may be, if the offense isn't moving the ball, they're bound to give up some yardage and points. I'd be cautious about starting them until I see some evidence that Drew Stanton's not a huge downgrade in talent from Carson Palmer.

New England Patriots
New England Patriots DST
The Patriots have been a pleasant surprise this year, scoring the 6th-most points among fantasy defenses. However, they've lost their top sack specialist to an injured hip and this week they hit the road to take on a high-powered Packers offense. Green Bay has been firing on all cylinders since getting Eddie Lacy back on track and opposing defenses are scoring a paltry 3.6 points a game on them. Don't try and buck the odds by starting this defense this week.

St. Louis Rams
St. Louis Rams DST
This defense, which a lot of owners abandoned earlier in the season, has been playing much better lately. They limited a high-flying Broncos offense to just 7 points in Week 11 and followed it up this week with 3 turnovers and a Janoris Jenkins pick-six that was a thing of beauty. This week they host an inept Raiders' offense that's yielded 8 points a game to opposing defenses. Look for the Rams to dominate this game at home and create a few turnovers. They make a solid start if your top defense faces a difficult match-up.

Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore Ravens DST
This one looks ugly on paper as the Chargers are allowing just 5.9 fantasy points a game to defenses. However, there are several things to like about this match-up. Philip Rivers has been struggling lately, averaging barely over 200 yards with just 2 TDs to his name against 4 picks over the last 3 games and the Chargers will be travelling about 3,000 miles to play this game. The weather shouldn't be a factor as it's expected to be around 55 degrees when the teams play but I wouldn't be surprised to see the visiting Chargers lay an egg in this game. Look for the Ravens to pick off Rivers a few times and dominate this contest.

Cincinnati Bengals defense
By Greg Buchphoto of journalist Greg Buch
Greg develops and updates FFSwami's website. He's played in various fantasy football leagues the last 15 years and is a life-long Cincinnati Bengals fan.
As the fantasy season draws to a close, your waiver wire strategy depends on where your team is in the standings. If you've already clinched, you should be making moves with the post-season in mind and not worrying about regular season match-ups. However, if a spot in the playoffs isn't guaranteed, then looking at next week's match-ups is unavoidable. We've got a few hot tips that should help your chances of making the post-season:

Defenses to Add

Cincinnati Bengals
The Bengals defense has looked much better in recent weeks, even if it hasn't really translated into fantasy points. The front four, especially Carlos Dunlap and Wallace Gilberry, were able to apply pressure to Drew Brees and Ryan Mallett, and their secondary has looked very solid. This week they take on a Bucs offense with a penchant for turning the ball over. Tampa Bay has been allowing opposing defenses to score 10.6 fantasy points a game, which is third-highest in the league. Last week the Bears sacked Josh McCown 5 times and created 4 turnovers en route to the highest point total by any defense. The Bengals have typically done very well against NFC teams so look for them to have similar success this week. Thanks to their mid-season swoon, they're available in 69% of ESPN leagues.

Indianapolis Colts
The Colts own the 10th-highest scoring fantasy defense and have a favorable match-up on tap against a Redskins offense that's struggled this year. RGIII has been ineffective all season so there may be a change at quarterback in Washington this week. Unless the prospect of facing Colt McCoy scares you, I wouldn't hesitate to pick this defense up and start them in this match-up. The 'Skins have allowed 10.4 fantasy points a game to opposing defenses, 4th-highest in the league.

Defenses to Drop

Buffalo Bills
The Bills defense ranks 7th in fantasy scoring this year. However, they failed to take advantage of a very good match-up against the Jets last week, scoring 0 fantasy points, and their upcoming schedule does not look good. They play the Browns, Broncos, and Packers over the next 3 weeks, which means they'll be sitting on your bench until a Week 16 match-up against the lowly Raiders (if you're even alive at that point). Don't be afraid to drop them now if a defense with better match-ups is available in your league.

Arizona Cardinals
If your team's fighting for their playoff lives, you may want to drop this defense. The Cardinals have difficult match-ups over the next two weeks. They play on the road in Atlanta this Sunday, then host a stingy Chiefs offense in Week 14. They do however have a favorable match-up in St. Louis in Week 15, so if your spot in the playoffs is already assured, they're worth rostering for that match-up. Keep your expectations in check, however, as if their offense keeps on performing like it did this past Sunday in Seattle, their defense will be on the field a lot, which isn't usually a good recipe for fantasy success.

Kickers to Add

Connor Barth
Barth was just signed today by the Denver Broncos. If you're in need of an upgrade at kicker, he's worth a gamble. In four seasons with Tampa Bay, he converted over 84% of his field goal attempts and should get plenty of opportunities to put up points with Peyton Manning running the offense.

Shaun Suisham/ Graham Gano
If you're badly in need of a kicker, check your waiver wire to see if an owner dropped either one of these kickers, who were on bye in Week 12.

Kickers to Drop

Chandler Catanzaro
After an impressive start to the year, Catanzaro's hit the "rookie wall", missing 2 of his last 4 field goal attempts. With Carson Palmer out for the year, the scoring opportunities may not be as plentiful for the Cardinals kicker, so there are probably better options available on your waiver wire.

Brandon McManus
The Broncos decided they couldn't afford to wait for McManus to break out of his slump and cut him today. The rookie was just 5-of-9, including a 33-yard miss that almost cost Denver the game last week, after making a few chip shots to start the season. If you were one of the few owners who picked him up, figuring any kicker for a high-scoring offense like the Broncos was a safe bet to put up some points, it's safe to say that experiment didn't work out so well for you.