Previous post:

Next post:

Best Games by Fantasy Defenses

by Chase Stuart on December 11, 2012

in Defense, Fantasy

Richard Sherman exhibits the proper form for 'You Mad Bro?' in sign language.

Bill Barnwell wrote yesterday about the dominant fantasy performance by the Seahawks defense against Arizona on Sunday. The Seahawks scored two touchdowns, forced 8 turnovers, recorded three sacks, and pitched a shutout. That made me wonder: which defense produced the best fantasy in NFL history?

I used Footballguys.com’s scoring system in the Footballguys Players Championship to calculate every performance by a fantasy D/ST since 1940. Here it is:

    Team Defense/Special Teams

  • 1 point – Every sack
  • 2 points – Every team takeaway (interception or fumble recovery)
  • 6 points – Every TD (via interception return, fumble return, punt or kickoff return, blocked FG return, missed FG return, blocked punt return)
  • 5 points – Every safety
  • 12 points – Every shutout
  • 8 points – Allowing between 1- 6 points
  • 5 points – Allowing between 7 – 10 points

Because I decided to use the official scoring designation for every play and chose not to rewatch every game in NFL history, there is one error that will come up in every few hundred games. Occasionally, an offense will score a touchdown on its own fumble recovery and that goes down in the gamebooks as a fumble recovery just like a defensive touchdown. So, be warned, these are unofficial fantasy scores.

As it turns out, Seattle’s game against Arizona comes in tied for 10th place. Incredibly, the best performance by a fantasy defense — a whopping 52 points — came in a Steelers-Browns game but wasn’t delivered by Pittsburgh. The came in the 1989 season opener, and after losing 41-10 the following week, Pittsburgh rebounded to finish 9-7 and make the playoffs. In 1950, the New York Giants also scored 52 fantasy points against the Steelers. New York scored 18 points in that game — 2 safeties, two fumble return touchdowns — and forced 9 turnovers and 7 sacks. The table below lists the best performances by a fantasy defense:

Tm
Yr
Opp
Gm
Boxscore
FR
INT
SK
TDs
Safety
PA
FP
CLE1989PIT1Boxscore53630052
NYG1950PIT1Boxscore63722752
SEA1984KAN10Boxscore06240050
GNB1978SDG4Boxscore65820350
CLE1960CHI11Boxscore17430050
CHI1940WAS12Boxscore18030048
PHI1965PIT13Boxscore395301347
SEA2005PHI12Boxscore24430046
WAS1973SDG1Boxscore34820046
SEA2012ARI13Boxscore44320043
DEN1984DET6Boxscore37620743
NYG1963WAS13Boxscore375301443
HOU2002PIT13Boxscore32630642
DEN1997CAR10Boxscore13430042
STL1966PHI4Boxscore059301042
GNB1966ATL7Boxscore04830342
RAM1952DTX7Boxscore26620642
SFO2009STL4Boxscore21530041
NWE2001CAR16Boxscore33330641
BOS1963HOU9Boxscore26520341
NYG1961WAS8Boxscore04512041
BOS1961SDG14Boxscore15520041
GNB1991TAM8Boxscore35610040
CHI1985DAL11Boxscore14620040
KAN1969HOU5Boxscore45410040
DET1962MIN13Boxscore552302340
NYJ1997TAM15Boxscore12330039
MIN1988DAL11Boxscore34611339
SEA1984CHI4Boxscore33430939
HOU1977CHI8Boxscore20621039
PHI1975WAS14Boxscore17320339
DET1968CHI2Boxscore28110039
KAN1968SDG13Boxscore07611339
SDG1961DEN8Boxscore34120039
DTX1960BOS13Boxscore14520039
DET1950GNB1Boxscore17030739
PHI1950CRD2Boxscore48410739
ATL2002CAR11Boxscore24810038
TEN2000DAL16Boxscore32420038
SFO1994ATL7Boxscore24620338
BUF1988GNB9Boxscore31620038
SEA1981CLE16Boxscore736202138
STL1977NYG7Boxscore13620038
BAL1971BUF4Boxscore24901038
BOS1963HOU13Boxscore339212838
PIT1952NYG10Boxscore27320738

Or, if you prefer to limit this to games since 1990:

Tm
Yr
Opp
Gm
Boxscore
FR
INT
SK
TDs
Safety
PA
FP
SEA2005PHI12Boxscore24430046
SEA2012ARI13Boxscore44320043
HOU2002PIT13Boxscore32630642
DEN1997CAR10Boxscore13430042
SFO2009STL4Boxscore21530041
NWE2001CAR16Boxscore33330641
GNB1991TAM8Boxscore35610040
NYJ1997TAM15Boxscore12330039
ATL2002CAR11Boxscore24810038
TEN2000DAL16Boxscore32420038
SFO1994ATL7Boxscore24620338
KAN2011OAK6Boxscore06120037
NYJ2001MIA10Boxscore23320037
SFO1996STL2Boxscore31702037
PHI2009CAR1Boxscore255201036
KAN2002STL13Boxscore127301036
STL2001GNB17Boxscore262301736
BAL2000NYJ16Boxscore331312036
NYG1996DET8Boxscore15221736
SEA1993CLE10Boxscore52311536
WAS1993ATL14Boxscore247211736
NWE1996SDG13Boxscore24620735
MIN1993DET12Boxscore05710035
BUF1992IND3Boxscore03520035
PHI2008DAL16Boxscore41420634
GNB2005NOR5Boxscore23420334
STL2003ATL5Boxscore22311034
NWE2003MIA13Boxscore12511034
TAM2002BAL2Boxscore01321034
CHI2001DET15Boxscore23610034
JAX1999SFO1Boxscore23420334
MIA1998OAK13Boxscore168201734
GNB1993RAI15Boxscore22810034
PHI1992NYG11Boxscore228303434
DAL1992BUF19Boxscore544201734
BAL2006PIT11Boxscore12910033
CHI2005DET2Boxscore05320633
TAM2002OAK19Boxscore055302133
SEA1998PHI1Boxscore21910033
NOR1998STL10Boxscore12720333
STL1995CAR3Boxscore252201033
CHI2011DET9Boxscore242301332
CHI2006MIN12Boxscore145211332
SEA2003ARI2Boxscore24210032
PHI2002STL12Boxscore32810332
SEA1998SDG14Boxscore174201732
CHI1995TAM3Boxscore34410632
HOU1993KAN2Boxscore32410032
CLE1991IND13Boxscore22610032
ATL1990HOU1Boxscore422302732
KAN1990CLE4Boxscore21220032
PIT1990CLE15Boxscore81200032
SEA2007STL7Boxscore23710631
BAL2006OAK2Boxscore33601631
GNB2006CHI16Boxscore15220731
NWE2003PHI2Boxscore428101031
MIA2003JAX5Boxscore234201031
BAL2003CLE15Boxscore31510031
KAN2002ARI12Boxscore04510031
PHI2001DAL9Boxscore22320331
TAM2000CHI2Boxscore22510031
BAL2000NYG20Boxscore14420731
KAN1999SDG7Boxscore22510031
PHI1999STL16Boxscore345203131
DAL1992SEA5Boxscore21710031
PHI1991DAL3Boxscore131100031
WAS1990PHO1Boxscore14310031
DET2011DEN8Boxscore217201030
CHI2008MIN7Boxscore142304130
MIN2007ATL1Boxscore02620330
BUF2007DAL5Boxscore150302530
DET2007DEN8Boxscore31520730
KAN2006SFO3Boxscore22410030
TEN2006JAX14Boxscore134301730
MIN2005NYG9Boxscore142302130
GNB2002BUF15Boxscore42600030
CHI2001ATL3Boxscore23610330
STL2001DET4Boxscore12610030
CAR2000STL13Boxscore34210330
DAL1999MIA11Boxscore05210030
JAX1999MIA17Boxscore52510730
KAN1998OAK1Boxscore501001830
CAR1996TAM13Boxscore22410030
PIT1994BUF10Boxscore127201030
MIN1993TAM5Boxscore14301030
CIN1992SEA1Boxscore20620330
KAN1992DEN16Boxscore126302030
WAS1991PHO3Boxscore13410030
DET1990NOR7Boxscore443101030

And, for good measure, let’s close with the top fantasy performances in playoff games. The final column indicates the round of the postseason.

Tm
Yr
Opp
Gm
Boxscore
FR
INT
SK
TDs
Safety
PA
FP
Rd
CHI1940WAS12Boxscore18030048C
STL2001GNB17Boxscore262301736D
CHI1985NWE19Boxscore427111035S
DAL1978RAM18Boxscore25310035C
DAL1992BUF19Boxscore544201734S
TAM2002OAK19Boxscore055302133S
CLE1948BUF15Boxscore35020733C
MIA1982NYJ12Boxscore05410032C
BAL2000NYG20Boxscore14420731S
JAX1999MIA17Boxscore52510730D
PIT1978HOU18Boxscore45400530C
RAM1975STL15Boxscore232302330D
NYG2000PHI17Boxscore216201029D
BUF1990RAI18Boxscore16110329C
RAM1985DAL17Boxscore33500029D
RAI1983WAS19Boxscore12620929S
OAK2000MIA17Boxscore13210028D
PHI1995DET17Boxscore162203728W
HOU2011CIN17Boxscore034201027W
CHI1985RAM18Boxscore21310027C
MIA1971BAL16Boxscore03310027C
OAK1969HOU17Boxscore23610727D
BUF1965SDG15Boxscore02510027C
CAR2005NYG17Boxscore23400026W
NYG2000MIN18Boxscore23400026C
TEN1999JAX19Boxscore423111426C
CHI1985NYG17Boxscore10610026D
MIN1973DAL16Boxscore243101026C
DAL1970DET15Boxscore21301026D
HOU1961SDG15Boxscore24600326C
NYG1958CLE13Boxscore13600026D
SDG1992KAN17Boxscore12700025W
DET1991DAL17Boxscore22310625D
MIN1987NOR16Boxscore242101025W
WAS1982DET10Boxscore32410725W
DAL1977DEN17Boxscore444001025S
BAL2008MIA17Boxscore14310924W
NWE2005JAX17Boxscore11610324W
NWE1997MIA17Boxscore12410324W
DAL1981TAM17Boxscore04400024D
OAK1980HOU17Boxscore12710724W
RAM1974WAS15Boxscore331101024D
GNB1961NYG15Boxscore14200024C
CLE1954DET13Boxscore361001024C
GNB1939NYG12Boxscore06000024C
ATL2002GNB17Boxscore32210723W
NWE2001PIT18Boxscore133201723C
GNB1996SFO17Boxscore231201423D
NWE1996JAX18Boxscore22110623C
MIA1992SDG17Boxscore14100023D
NYG1986SFO17Boxscore13110323D
SFO1984CHI18Boxscore01900023C
PIT1974MIN17Boxscore23001623S
BAL1971CLE15Boxscore23500323D
TAM2002SFO17Boxscore23400622D
BAL2000OAK19Boxscore14400322C
STL1999TAM18Boxscore02501622C
KAN1991RAI17Boxscore24200622W
WAS1991DET18Boxscore125101022C
WAS1983RAM17Boxscore13310722D
BAL1977OAK15Boxscore222203722D
DAL1977CHI15Boxscore34300722D
PIT1975BAL15Boxscore125101022D
BAL1968CLE18Boxscore12400022C
CLE1964BAL15Boxscore22200022C
CLE1955RAM13Boxscore072101422C
PHI1947PIT13Boxscore20010022D
CHI1946NYG12Boxscore260101422C
CAR2003PHI19Boxscore04500321C
PHI2002ATL17Boxscore02310621D
TEN1999BUF17Boxscore206111621W
DEN1998MIA17Boxscore12110321D
SFO1996PHI17Boxscore03300021W
BUF1992PIT18Boxscore12700321D
WAS1991ATL17Boxscore24400721D
BUF1981NYJ17Boxscore145102721W
SFO1972DAL15Boxscore325103021D
NYG1956CHI13Boxscore12410721C
CLE1950NYG13Boxscore02401321D
PHI1949RAM13Boxscore01110021C
CHI1941NYG13Boxscore23010921C
MIN2009DAL17Boxscore21600320D
ARI2008ATL17Boxscore123112420W
JAX2007PIT17Boxscore136102920W
WAS2005TAM17Boxscore123101020W
PHI2001TAM17Boxscore04110920W
BAL2000TEN18Boxscore011201020D
DAL1996MIN17Boxscore422101520W
SFO1994DAL18Boxscore234102820C
PHI1992NOR17Boxscore131112020W
SFO1989MIN17Boxscore144101320D
NYG1986WAS18Boxscore11400020C
NWE1985RAI18Boxscore332102020D
RAI1983PIT17Boxscore115101020D
DAL1982GNB11Boxscore234102620D
DET1957CLE14Boxscore242101420C

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Shattenjager December 11, 2012 at 12:15 am

I’m wondering if I should feel proud or embarrassed that I knew Seattle’s game against the Eagles in ’05 was going to be at least near the top.

Reply

Richie December 11, 2012 at 1:45 pm

I never understood the appeal of using team defense in fantasy football.

Reply

BlueTalon December 12, 2012 at 12:58 am

What? Seattle pounded the snot out of the Carolina Panthers in the NFCCG following the 2005 season. That didn’t make the playoff list?

Reply

Runscape Gold Generator February 1, 2014 at 2:56 pm

Thanks designed for sharing such a good opinion, post is nice, thats why i have read it entirely

my blog post :: Runscape Gold Generator

Reply

www.magicyellow.com/ June 6, 2014 at 11:58 am

Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your article seem to be
running off the screen in Firefox. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue
or something to do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post
to let you know. The layout look great though!

Hope you get the problem resolved soon. Kudos

Reply

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <strong> <em> <pre> <code> <a href="" title="">

{ 1 trackback }