Duncan Smith (@duncafc) takes a look back at the week 6 action from a defensive point of view.
By Duncan Smith
Week 6 of the 2021 season saw Trevon Diggs tied for the most interceptions to start a season. The Ravens and Colts both effectively shut down their opponents, while the much-vaunted Washington defense again failed to stop anyone. Although they were playing Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs this week.
We break down all of the action below.
I hold my hands up, I was clearly a week too early in bad-mouthing Maxx Crosby and suggesting it was time for him to ride the pine. Luckily due to bye weeks and injury, I couldn’t follow my own advice and started him in week 6.
Despite playing his lowest snap total of the season (69%), he recorded 6 combined tackles (2 solo) a tackle for a loss, a pass defended, 5 total QB hits, and 3 sacks against Denver. These were his first sacks since Week 1 when he recorded 2 in total.
The streak continues, Trevon Diggs did it again. He got his seventh interception of the season. In six games! Oh, and it was his second pick-6! He is tied for touchdowns on the season with his brother, Bills wide receiver Stefon, with 2 apiece. A week 7 bye week means there shouldn’t be another Diggs INT to report in week 7 but in all honesty who knows what will happen.
23 players recorded a forced fumble this week. In total 123 players have recorded a forced fumble over the course of the first six weeks. At this point maybe even I have one, once the IPA’s get over a certain strength it gets hard to remember for sure.
In a torrid afternoon for Teddy Bridgewater, he not only got sacked 5 times, and threw 3 interceptions, but he also coughed up a fumble that was jumped on by Las Vegas linebacker Denzel Perryman. The former charger also recorded 11 combined tackles (6 solo) and looks well on his way to his best fantasy season in the seventh year of his career.
We should also mention Devin Bush recovering the fumble to set up a game-winning field goal for the Steelers after TJ Watts strip-sack of Geno Smith in overtime.
Ravens safety DeShon Elliott had his best game of the season so far against the Chargers. He managed a sack, 3 solo tackles, a tackle for a loss, 2 QB hits, an interception, and 2 passes defended.
When fit Elliott is a solid player over the last season or so, anyone struggling with a week 7 bye week hell situation may be able to get him from waivers as a plug and play option against the Bengals.
It’s not always easy to find videos of defensive plays, so here’s a tweet apparently showing Elliott wearing purple Van’s cleats.
Indianapolis linebacker Bobby Okereke had a strong showing with 14 of the Colts league-high 80 tackles. This was one behind Phillidelphia LB Alex Singleton, who had 15 total targets. Although Okereke did have 9 solo tackles to Singleton’s 8.
Elsewhere the Raiders had a strong showing as Cory Littleton, Denzel Perryman, and Nate Hobbs all finished in tenth spot this week with 11 tackles each.
Cleveland Brown’s star defensive lineman Myles Garrett has been playing through multiple injuries for several weeks now, and it may be beginning to take its toll. Against Arizona, he managed a season-low snap percentage of 71%, logging only 1 sack, 3 combined tackles (2 solo) and only 1 QB hit. While he still produced fantasy worthy numbers it is important to monitor his situation in case the Browns decide to shut him down for a week or so, their bye doesn’t come until week 13.
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah had been having a nice season up until week 6. While not explosive in terms of fantasy points, he had a nice floor and appeared to be building a solid base to go on and become a great fantasy asset in the future.
I realize I’ve made it sound like he’s dead. He’s not, he’s just on IR with an ankle injury, so he’s out for at least three weeks. With the mounting injury problems most fantasy managers are facing, coupled with bye week hell hopefully you can hold onto this promising young defender as he battles back to fitness.
The Rams were able to exploit a banged-up Giants offense in week 6 to finish as the highest-scoring D/ST. 2 forced fumbles, 3 interceptions, 4 sacks, a fumble recovery, 7 QB hits, and 64 tackles saw them finish 1 or 2 points ahead of Indianapolis (depending on scoring format). For the Colts part, holding Houston to the lowest points allowed of the week helped them to a strong showing.
Welcome to week 7, or bye week hell as it is otherwise known. The Bills, Cowboys, Jaguars, Chargers, Vikings, and Steelers are all resting this week.
Luckily on the defensive side of the ball, there are still some juicy matchups to get some streamers or a fill-in D/ST from. The Panthers, Patriots, and Cardinals all have favorable matchups against the Giants, Jets, and Texans respectively.
The Saints play the Seahawks on Monday night and could be a sneaky hail mary throw at D/ST going up against Geno Smith.
Titans safety Kevin Byard has 3 interceptions on the year and gets to face off against Patrick Mahomes this week. Mahomes has already thrown 8 interceptions this year. If the Chiefs D are unable to stop Derrick Henry and let’s face it why would you expect them to, then Mahomes could once again be forced into less than ideal throwing situations as Kansas City looks to stop their season from completely falling off the rails.