Sunday, October 7, 2012

AFC South Defensive Matchups

**NOTE: These are match-up ratings, not defensive ratings. A rating of 1st means that they are an amazing match-up while a rating of 32nd means they are the worst match-up. 

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2. Tennessee Titans Defense:
2nd Against the Pass [22.20 PPG]: The Titans have allowed the second most points to quarterbacks this season, despite playing a number of this season's most underachieving QBs. Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Matthew Stafford, and Matt Schaub have all come to town and beaten up on the lowly Titans. While I don't know about Christian Ponder's chances, it's hard to be against him with this defense.
5th Against the Run [24.58 PPG]: Again, this defense is terrible against the run, we know that. The Titan's haven't exactly gone up against the best running backs in the league with the exception of their game against Arian Foster. Given the division the Titans are in, their run defense ranking isn't likely to get much better. Anyone running against the Titans is a good play.
18th Against Receivers [20.38 PPG]: The Titans defense is markedly more effective against opposing wide receivers. The Titans have a slightly stronger group of corners, so even though they've given up plenty of receiving yards over the last 4 games, there have only been 3 touchdowns by receivers. If you are debating about whether or not to start a receiver against the Titans, consider it a tough matchup.
1st Against Tight Ends [20.03]: The Titans are every bit as bad against tight ends as they are good against receivers. They've allowed 7 touchdowns to tight ends, so you know where opposing offenses will go in the red zone. These defensive rankings are something like self fulfilling prophesies.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars Defense:
20th Against the Pass [15.55 PPG]: The Jaguars are probably good against the pass because their offense is like a limp noodle. Other teams simply aren't intimidated by the Jaguars offense, even though Blaine Gabbert is playing much more like an NFL quarterback. The Jaguars also have a good CB1 in Derek Cox. It definitely isn't because opposing teams aren't throwing the ball, though; they just aren't throwing it well.
3rd Against the Run [26.75 PPG]: Opposing teams are running an average of 30.5 times per game, but they're only getting about 4 yards per carry. If this offense could get ahead of teams they would be able to stop the run. Keep that in mind before the Jags play bad defenses...they just have to be really bad defenses.
20th Against Receivers [19.53 PPG]: The Jags are decent against WR1s, as long as they aren't of the elite variety (A.J. Green is that variety), but they can be hurt in unexpected ways. T.Y Hilton rocked this team, but he's the kind of guy you could never have bet on before that game. I wouldn't suggest playing borderline WRs against this team.
25th Against Tight Ends [5.98 PPG]: The tight ends are better than average against tight ends, but good tight ends could still gash them. Don't seek this defense out when choosing a TE.

15. Indianapolis Colts Defense:
19th Against the Pass [15.57 PPG]: This number is generically low because of the Bears, Vikings, and Jaguars. Those three teams have had pedestrian or worse passing attacks this season. You can tell this is the case by looking at the WR numbers. There's really nothing stopping a good passing attack from shredding this defense. Things will change if they stop the Packers this weekend.
8th Against the Run [24.00 PPG]: The Colts are the second team to have a terrible run defense with under 20 carries per game. This, again, is likely because of the weak opponents. Cedric Benson will show this weekend what a mediocre running game on a great offense can do to the Colts defense. I think he will have great success. They are allowing well over 4.5 YPC.
8th Against Receivers [26.30 PPG]: The Colts have been allowing big games to opposing receivers. The last second score by Cecil Shorts was a fluke, but even without those numbers the Colts are still bad. Any strong WRs should be played against this team, and if you don't know who to play, play the guy going up against the Colts.
31st Against Tight Ends [4.00 PPG]: They have been amazing against tight ends this year. Don't seek them out as an opponent.

32. Houston Texans Defense:
31st Against the Pass [9.86 PPG]: You don't really want to play any QB against the Texans. There are times when you don't have a choice, but this defense has excellent pass rushers and corners. Avoid them whenever you can.
21st Against the Run [14.00 PPG]: Nothing was more surprising than when Chris Johnson ran all over the Texans. 14 points per game is still extremely low, so don't play any RBs against this defense if you can avoid it. The defense is so good against the pass that very few offenses can afford to waste time by running the ball.
32nd Against Receivers [15.05 PPG]: Less that an average of 100 yards and 1 touchdown for all wide receivers per team per week. Only the very best should be played against this defense.
22nd Against Tight Ends [6.75 PPG]: This team is not the best against tight ends, but you'd be well served to avoid playing against them unless you absolutely must. In all; avoid the Texans.

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