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Top Ten Rush Defenses: Oakland Raiders v. Baltimore Ravens

The Steelers face-off against the very impressive New York Giants running game. Imagining sitting RB Brandon Jacobs given his efforts the past three weeks - 5 TDs and 272 yards - is tough to do, but he didn't receive more than 17 carries in any of those games. If the Steelers rush defense holds, don't be surprised to see a 15/40 game from Jacobs.

A bigger test will come for the Tampa Bay rush defense. It will get a 20+ carries dose of Marion Barber III as the Cowboys try to adapt to the weak-armed Brad Johnson at QB. While a 23/75 yard effort wouldn't surprise me given the Bucs ranking, I would not be surprised to see Barber go for 100+ yards as the Bucs defense has allowed 100+ rushing yards in five of its seven games. Having a 28- and 40-yard effort for the other two does wonders for averages in small samples.

It should go without saying that fantasy teams err on the side of sitting their RBs against the Baltimore Ravens. This week the Raiders will try to do what no team has done this year - rush for more than 76 yards as a team. I don't think any Raiders' RB will have a meaningful fantasy game. Rookie Darren McFadden aggravated his turf toe this week - not that it hasn't already hampered him. The Ravens' defense can more easily focus on Justin Fargas as a result.

The Ravens defense has been vulnerable to the pass in its past two games allowing 258 and 288 yards respectively. The question is whether QB JaMarcus Russell can take advantage of what Drew Brees and Chad Pennington saw.

Top Ten Rush Defenses:

Rank Team RYA Vs
1 Baltimore 64.7 OAK
2 Minnesota 69.3 BYE
3 Pittsburgh 75 NYG
4 Washington 78.7 @DET
5 NY Jets 79.3 KC
6 Arizona 82 @CAR
7 Tampa Bay 83 @DAL
8 Houston 84 CIN
9 NY Giants 84.3 @PIT
10 Tennessee 90 IND