The attack is occurring just outside the penalty area. There is an attacker in the offside position inside the penalty area. One of his teammates attempts to pass the ball to another attacker outside the penalty area. The ball is not played in the direction of the offsides attacker. Both of the players outside the penalty are onsides. The defender steps in to intersept the pass and is able to play the ball away from the attacker. In doing so, the ball is played towards his own goal, to the attacking player in an offside position. It was not a deflection, the defender played the ball. Offside?

USSF answer (March 18, 2008):
If the player in the offside position — there is no such thing as an “offsides attacker” as described in the question — clearly demonstrated that he was not involved in play, then there is no offside. If there was no involvement through interfering with an opponent, interfering with play, or gaining an advantage from that offside position, there the player is not offside. Once the defender gains possession and plays the ball, as you suggest he has done, then the ball is fair game.

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