The Jacksonville Jaguars were No. 1 in fantasy scoring among D/STs last season
The Jacksonville Jaguars are in position to start the 2018 season where they finished it when it comes to fantasy defense/special teams (D/ST) rankings -- first. As part of the Jaguars' impressive turnaround in 2017, the defense ranked in second in the NFL in points allowed per game, sacks and takeaways while also contributing seven touchdowns.
The outlook for 2018 is just as promising, as Jacksonville returns every starter on that side of the ball except for linebacker Paul Posluszny (retired), and has added to its depth through free agency and the draft. The Jags will likely be the first D/ST off of the board in fantasy drafts this year.
If not the Jaguars, then perhaps it could be either of Los Angeles' two teams. The Rams, who already feature NFL Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald, added to their star power on defense with the acquisitions of cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib as well as defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. The Chargers meanwhile used four of their seven draft picks to bolster their depth on a unit that already boasts one of the best defensive lines in the league.
Rounding out the top five in the D/ST rankings are Minnesota, the team that finished No. 1 in the league in both total and scoring defense last year, and Philadelphia, the defending Super Bowl champions. So as impressive as Jacksonville was last year, it's pretty clear the Jaguars aren't the only D/ST worth drafting this season. The question is when should you take your D/ST or how long you should you wait come draft day?
2018 Defense/Special Teams Rankings
|2||Los Angeles Rams||12|
|3||Los Angeles Chargers||8|
|8||New Orleans Saints||6|
|12||New England Patriots||11|
|17||Kansas City Chiefs||12|
|20||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||5|
|23||New York Giants||9|
|25||Green Bay Packers||7|
|28||San Francisco 49ers||11|
|30||New York Jets||11|
And don’t forget to pick up your copy of Athlon Sports’ 2018 Fantasy Football magazine, available for purchase online and at newsstands everywhere.