Sunday, October 7, 2012

AFC West 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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5. Oakland Raiders Defense:
1st Against the Pass [22.48 PPG]: The Raiders have not been able to stop the pass all season and are one of only two teams who haven't recorded an interception yet this season. This is what happens when you let your two best corners walk away. Play any and all QBs against this train-wreck of a defense (sorry Raiders fans).
6th Against the Run [24.55 PPG]: The Raiders have played against nothing better than decent-to-poor running backs, but they still rank 5th worst in the NFL. Play any starting running back you can against this team. Talent will probably trump offensive line play against this defense.
10th Against Receivers [24.15 PPG]: The Raiders fare better against opposing WRs, but they are still heavily scored on. The Raiders have not given up a large number of touchdowns to receivers, but it's still better than playing them against most other teams. Don't senselessly avoid this defense with any average or above average receivers.
5th Against Tight Ends [10.43 PPG]: The Raiders haven't given up many yards to TEs, but they've averaged one touchdown per game. Play any traditionally good TE against this defense.

20. Kansas City Chiefs Defense:
3rd Against the Pass [21.19 PPG]: This defense is 14th in yards but 31st in total points. This team is allowing an amazing 2.5 touchdowns per game despite allowing no 300 yard passing games. How amazing is that? All of this means that you should play quarterbacks against this team happily. The real test will be in week 6 when they play Josh Freeman. If they can't stop him, they can't stop anyone.
9th Against the Run [23.75 PPG]: This team is only allowing about 4.2 YPC, but they're also allowing about 5 receptions for 60 yards from opposing running backs each game. No matter what kind of running back you have going up against the Chiefs, you're going to want them to be in your starting lineup. This team simply can't stop them.
19th Against Receivers [20.10 PPG]: The Chiefs have actually been pretty efficient at stopping opposing wide receivers. Dwayne Bowe has been the leading receiver in yards each of the last three games. The Chiefs face opponents with very good receivers over the next two weeks, so I wouldn't be worried about starting Anquan Boldin, Torrey Smith, or Vincent Jackson against this defense.
10th Against Tight Ends [9.18 PPG]: This is a large number of TE points per game. Feel free to start TEs against this weak defense.

26. Denver Broncos Defense:
12th Against the Pass [17.14 PPG]: The Broncos have not had much success against the pass, but Peyton Manning has outpaced the opposing QB in every game this season. The Broncos don't seem to know what they want to do, with Schaub throwing for 4 touchdowns and Palmer throwing for none. It's very difficult to make an accurate prediction from this point forward, but you shouldn't avoid or seek this matchup right now. Lean towards facing the Broncos in most situations.
27th Against the Run [12.00 PPG]: The Broncos have been one of the best teams against the run, with opposing backs only averaging about 3.1 YPC so far this season. This is a team that has faced Arian Foster, Michael Turner, and Darren McFadden; if you can possibly avoid this matchup, do it.
13th Against Receivers [22.83 PPG]: The Broncos aren't especially good at defending against opposing receivers. It seems like they fare better when they are facing a team with a less defined receiving corps (they played better defensively against the Steelers and Raiders), so don't be afraid to bust out your studs on the Broncos. You just might want to avoid any weak players with weak quarterbacks.
6th Against Tight Ends [9.95 PPG]: Another team giving up big-ish points to tight ends. Feel free to utilize this matchup.


22. San Diego Chargers Defense:
18th Against the Pass [15.60 PPG]:The Chargers have played quite well against the mediocre quarterbacks they played, but they were completely dominated by the one top quarterback they faced (Matt Ryan). This is probably a solid assessment going forward. With them allowing less than two touchdowns per game and greater than one interception per game, you shouldn't be seeking a matchup with San Diego any more than you should be avoiding one. This team will make fantasy quarterbacks exactly what they are.
14th Against the Run [17.35 PPG]: This team has been weak against the run both on the ground (allowing over 4 YPC and 2 touchdowns) and through the air (32 receptions for 222 yards and 2 touchdowns). Any running back that can catch screens and run the ball should have a nice game against this team. The Chargers don't have a strong front-seven to stop the run and don't seem to have the discipline and agility to stop backs in the passing game.
22nd Against Receivers [19.28 PPG]: This team is playing extremely well against wide receivers. You don't want to start a bye-week player against the Chargers if you can help it. There are definitely other players who will have more success than any low-level receiver playing the Chargers. They are somewhat susceptible to strong WR1s, but not to a great extent.
17th Against Tight Ends [7.60 PPG]: Very middling number. Don't worry about it right now.

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