Fantasy Defense Rankings Week 15: D/ST must starts, sleepers, busts

It’s fantasy football semifinal week, and Pro Football Network continues the weekly Defense/Special Teams (D/ST) rankings for the 2020 season. We now look to fantasy defense rankings for Week 15. While singular offensive players dominate fantasy football, the other side of the ball sees players work together as a unit. These rankings can be especially useful if you are streaming your defense on a weekly basis.

*When ranking a fantasy defense and special teams, the general scoring includes points for fumbles, interceptions, sacks, safeties, and restricting offensive yards and points. Special teams’ scoring incorporates any kickoff or punt return touchdowns, blocked punts, and blocked field goal attempts.

Week 15 Fantasy D/ST Ranking Top 10

1) Los Angeles Rams

With double-digit points in each of their last three outings, the Rams, who face the New York Jets, are poised to be fantasy’s number one defense. At this point, Adam Gase is around to ensure the Jets’ draft position, and it shows.

2) Pittsburgh Steelers

A team that sorely needs a bounceback will get one against the team performing the worst in their division. The Bengals offense has had a turnover in all but two games this season, and since their bye in Week 10, they have given up multiple turnovers in each game. Fantasy players and Mike Tomlin will both be happy with this rebound.

3) Baltimore Ravens

Having Gardner Minshew under center cleaned up some of the issues of the Jaguars passing game. Still, the Ravens’ propensity to blitz results in big plays, and the talent on this defense is good at converting them often. 

4) Cleveland Browns

The Giants offense had a miserable showing against the Cardinals, and nobody may have been happier to see eight sacks than Myles Garrett. Daniel Jones is a game-time decision, and even if he plays, he is still dealing with a sprained ankle and a hamstring injury, which severely limited his mobility last week.

5) Miami Dolphins

While the day ended with nearly 400 yards allowed through the air, few teams can say they intercepted Patrick Mahomes three times. Their divisional matchup against an underwhelming Patriots squad could yield significant results as Brian Flores takes on his former boss. They are a team I have my eye on for the Week 15 defensive rankings — I love revenge scenarios for D/ST purposes.

6) Tennessee Titans

Matthew Stafford is as tough as a quarterback comes. But if his rib injury doesn’t stop him from playing this week, it could indeed lead to an early exit. The Titans pass rush was underwhelming even before Jadeveon Clowney went on IR. Still, losing Stafford tanks the Lions’ chances of mounting an offense.

7) Indianapolis Colts

The Colts defense notched yet another touchdown last week, and they have an appealing matchup in their division this week. The Texans can’t protect Deshaun Watson, which the Colts know all too well after getting to him five times in Week 13. Look for the Colts to put their foot on the gas on their way to improve their playoff standing.

8) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Julio Jones won’t suit up for the Atlanta Falcons, and while Calvin Ridley is no scrub, the Buccaneers’ outlook received a bump when his status was made official. The six sacks they had against the Vikings could very well be in play this week as this unit gets back on track.

9) San Francisco 49ers

Limiting Washington to 11 points last week was impressive, and it seems that while this defense isn’t the same one from a year ago, they can still feast on the right opportunity. Zeke’s inefficiency, along with the offensive line woes in Dallas, means San Francisco has a chance to keep the score low.

10) Seattle Seahawks

Against struggling competition, the Seahawks defense has been great for fantasy scoring double-digit points against Eagles, Giants, and Jets over the last three weeks. Jamal Adams continues to be their best pass rusher, and that pressure alone makes this unit a safe start.

Week 15 Defense and Special Teams Fantasy Rankings – Tier 2

11) Chicago Bears
12) Washington Football Team
13) Kansas City
14) New England Patriots
15) New York Giants
16) Minnesota Vikings
17) Dallas Cowboys
18) Arizona Cardinals

Week 15 Defense and Special Teams Fantasy Rankings – Tier 3

19) New Orleans Saints
20) Atlanta Falcons
21) Philadelphia Eagles
22) Houston Texans
23) Detroit Lions
24) New York Jets
25) Cincinnati Bengals
26) Jacksonville Jaguars

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Andrew Thomas Jordan is an editor and analyst for Pro Football Network covering fantasy football: dynasty, redraft, best ball, DFS, our 2020 D/ST rankings, and more. You can follow him @The_ATJ on Twitter and hear him weekly as host of The Fantasy Force Podcast.