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What to do with Bengals, Browns team defenses in Week 2 fantasy football

Can the Cincinnati or the Cleveland defense provide value plays for fantasy owners in Week 2?

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew is sacked by Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins during the first half at Paul Brown Stadium David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

The Battle of Ohio is going down on Thursday night and each of these teams are looking for their first win of the season. The Browns were outright embarrassed by the Baltimore Ravens in Week 1 as they suffered a brutal 38-6 loss. The Bengals had a painful Week 1 as well, as they lost a close game with the Chargers that ended with a tragic missed FG that would have tied the game up as time was about to expire. Each of these teams looks to bounce back in Week 2. Will either of their defenses be worth a start on your fantasy team? We break down the fantasy implications below.

Fantasy Football Analysis: Bengals D/ST, Browns D/ST

The Browns gave up 38 points while allowing 377 total offensive yards in Week 1. While that sounds terrible, that statistic should have an asterisk next to it, as they faced what is arguably the most potent offense in the NFL. The Browns were also without starting cornerback Greedy Williams, starting linebacker Mack Wilson, and nickel cornerback Kevin Johnson.

Unfortunately, the injury woes continue to plague the Browns, as the three aforementioned players were unable to practice Monday or Tuesday. Linebacker Jacob Phillips was also unable to practice this week, while defensive end Olivier Vernon logged limited practices Monday and Tuesday with an abdominal injury. Joe Burrow and the Bengals are not an offense that can match the caliber of the Baltimore Ravens, however they did show promise in Week 1. Given the poor Week 1 performance and the injury troubles the Browns continue to deal with, there is likely a better defense out there.

The Bengals only gave up 16 points in Week 1, however they weren’t facing a particularly strong offense as they met with the Chargers in Tyrod Taylor’s first start with the team. While the Chargers didn’t score many points, the Bengals did concede 362 total offensive yards to their opponents. The Bengals look like they may be without defensive tackles Geno Atkins and Mike Daniels, as neither has been able to practice this week. They may also be without safety Shawn Williams who also sat out of practice Monday and Tuesday. The Browns’ offense may have been unimpressive in Week 1, but they have many weapons and can pose a threat if they get in a groove. In all likelihood, the Bengals will not be your best option for D/ST in Week 2.

Start/Sit Recommendation

Sit the Browns D/ST.

Sit the Bengals D/ST.