Week 8 could be a big week for fantasy defenses.

The world-beating New England Patriots obviously are at the top of the mountain, but there are more than a few matchups that could yield significant point totals this weekend.

Obviously, identifying which units will excel Sunday is no easy task. Thankfully, you’ve got us to give you advice that surely won’t go south.

Let’s look at the five defenses you should start in Week 8:

New England Patriots (vs. Cleveland Browns)
The Patriots have one of the best defenses in NFL history. Baker Mayfield leads the league with 11 interceptions. There’s a chance the Browns hang some points in Foxboro, but New England’s defense will do enough crazy stuff to post another elite fantasy outing.

Minnesota Vikings (vs. Washington Redskins)
Washington’s offense is a complete disaster, and Minnesota’s defense is one of the league’s best. What do you think is going to happen on a Thursday night in Minneapolis?

Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. Miami Dolphins)
You should start any defense that faces the Dolphins, and this week it’s the Steelers. That said, Ryan Fitzpatrick and the Fins did post a respectable 21 points against a good Buffalo Bills defense last weekend, so don’t be surprised if the Steelers only have a good, but not great, fantasy day.

San Francisco 49ers (vs. Carolina Panthers)
This is more about the 49ers than it is the Panthers, who, with Kyle Allen at quarterback, have been perfectly serviceable on offense. But the fact is San Francisco’s defense simply is too dominant — 11 sacks, six takeaways and just 10 points allowed over its last three games — to consider benching.

Los Angeles Rams (vs. Cincinnati Bengals, in United Kingdom)
Is a trip to London and a matchup with Jalen Ramsey and the Rams just what Andy Dalton and the Bengals need to turn a corner? Absolutely not. Start the Rams and expect great production.

Click for our Week 8 waiver wire pickups at each position >>

Thumbnail photo via Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports Images