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Worst D/ST schedules, defenses to fade in the fantasy football playoffs

With the fantasy football playoffs here, we look at the strength of schedules that you want to avoid for D/ST when setting your lineup.

Chris Herndon #89 of the Minnesota Vikings is tackled with the ball in the second quarter of the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at U.S. Bank Stadium on December 9, 2021 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

After a long season of brainstorming and setting your best lineups on a weekly basis, the fantasy football playoffs are finally here. For those sweating out which defenses and special teams to start on your road to a league title, we have a few that should not be on your radar.

Fantasy football playoffs: Worst D/ST schedules

Pittsburgh Steelers (TEN, KC, CLE)

The Steelers defense has been easy to exploit throughout the 2021-22 campaign. Despite two out of their next three matchups being played in the roaring cauldron of Heinz Field, the Steelers have not shown enough firepower to be fantasy relevant. They’ve allowed 35 or more points to their opponents in three out of their last four contests.

Cincinnati Bengals (DEN, BAL, KC)

While Week 15 is probably a workable matchup for the Bengals defense, the Broncos have been running the football exceptionally well this season. Spearheaded by a tandem of Melvin Gordon III and Javonte Williams, Denver has averaged 169 yards on the ground the last two games. Week 16 will likely wind up becoming another AFC North shootout against the Ravens, and then a head-to-head affair with the Chiefs in Week 17.. Well, just look at what they’ve been capable of in their last six games.

Carolina Panthers (BUF, TB, NO)

The Panthers have secured only one victory this year against an opponent with a record over .500. After catapulting to a 3-0 record at the beginning of the season, it’s evident that Injuries have been, by far, the biggest detriment to this team. With one of the toughest remaining schedules, the Panthers defense is not worth a risk in the fantasy postseason.