Top 12 Fantasy Football Defense Rankings for Week 3

Jason Schandl
Top fantasy football defense rankings for Week 3 of the 2020 NFL season.
Top fantasy football defense rankings for Week 3 of the 2020 NFL season. / Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Defenses are sometimes left as an afterthought in fantasy football, but Week 2's action has highlighted how important a defense can be. Anyone who scored big by starting the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday can attest to that.

With that in mind, here are our fantasy football defense rankings for Week 3.

12. New York Giants (vs San Francisco 49ers)

The New York Giants' defense turned in a surprisingly solid fantasy performance in Week 2, scoring 9 points thanks to 4 sacks and 2 interceptions against the Chicago Bears. This week's matchup against the San Francisco 49ers would usually be a tough one, but the Niners will be led by Nick Mullens thanks to Jimmy Garoppolo's injury. Mullens has attempted 285 passes through three NFL season, being picked off 11 times. For some context, that 3.9 percent interception rate would have been the second worst for any qualifying QB in 2019.

11. Buffalo Bills (vs Los Angles Rams)

10. Tennessee Titans (at Minnesota Vikings)

9. Pittsburgh Steelers (vs Houston Texans)

The Houston Texans are a tough matchup for an opposing defense, but the Pittsburgh Steelers' incredible pass rush gives them huge upside on a weekly basis. No team recorded a pressure (sack, knockdown or hurry) on a higher percentage of opposing dropbacks than the Steelers' 30.5 percent in 2019 (second-best was 28.7 percent). True to form, they rank No. 2 in the NFL with a 28.0 percent pressure rate through two games in 2020, while their 27 QB hits are 8 more than any other team. Deshaun Watson has been sacked 4 times in each game to start the season, and Pittsburgh's pass rush could be in for a big day.

8. Arizona Cardinals (vs Detroit Lions)

7. Cleveland Browns (vs Washington Football Team)

6. Philadelphia Eagles (vs Cincinnati Bengals)

5. Los Angeles Chargers (vs Carolina Panthers)

4. San Francisco 49ers (at New York Giants)

3. New England Patriots (vs Las Vegas Raiders)

2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at Denver Broncos)

1. Indianapolis Colts (vs New York Jets)

The Indianapolis Colts are huge 10.5-point favorites over the New York Jets this week, making them Week 3's biggest favorite on FanDuel Sportsbook. Factoring in the game's 43.5-point over/under, the Jets have a paltry 16.5-point implied total. Likely to be playing with a big lead for most of the game, the Colts should be able to take full advantage of their dreamy matchup against Sam Darnold and his 5.21 adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A; No. 27 among qualifying passers).

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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.