It’s a big week for Jaguars defense fantasy owners, as Jacksonville finally returns from its Week 8 bye.
No, we can’t believe we just typed that sentence, either, but here we are: The Jags enter Week 9 as the most coveted defense in fantasy football (just ahead of the New Orleans Saints, of course).
The ferocious AFC South felines aren’t the only club that could wreak havoc defensively this weekend, though.
Here are our top five fantasy defense plays for Week 9.
Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. Cincinnati Bengals)
Believe it, folks: The Jaguars are the best (fantasy) defense in football. The top-scoring D/ST in fantasy this season is a must-start at home against a Bengals club that’s allowed seven sacks and committed four turnovers in its last two contests.
Philadelphia Eagles (vs. Denver Broncos)
If you think Brock Osweiler will magically solve Denver’s offensive woes, then Philly’s D is not for you. If you’re a sane, rational human being, then you’re absolutely starting the Eagles at home versus the Broncos, who helped defenses top 20 fantasy points in three consecutive weeks.
Houston Texans (vs. Indianapolis Colts)
The Texans’ pass rush took a serious hit with J.J. Watt and Whitney Mercilus out for the season. Fortunately, that shouldn’t matter against the Colts, who are averaging more than a turnover a game and have surrendered five defensive touchdowns in eight contests. There’s big-play potential for Houston in this home matchup.
Buffalo Bills (at New York Jets)
New York’s offense hasn’t been as bad as many expected, but it’s still turning the ball over a ton (14 turnovers through eight games, fifth-most in the NFL). The Bills, who lead the league with 17 takeaways, will be licking their chops ahead of a potentially sloppy “Thursday Night Football” showdown.
New Orleans Saints (vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
Welcome to the new normal. The Saints are an elite fantasy defense after allowing just three touchdowns while recording nine interceptions over their last five games. Next on the docket: An ailing Jameis Winston who has tossed three interceptions in a two-week span and could get pulled for pick machine Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Thumbnail photo via Thomas J. Russo/USA TODAY Sports Images