Fantasy Football IDP Start/Sit Advice: Week 3
So we now have two weeks of NFL action under our belts. Yes. The IDP landscape becomes a bit easier to navigate with each passing week as we get a bit more information. That being said. It is still way too early to draw definitive conclusions. It’s also too early to give up on players. Let’s give it one more week before reaching for the panic button.
Let’s take a look at some Week 3 IDP Start/Sit options.
Jerry Hughes (DL – BUF)
This is the first back to back start suggestion of the season. The veteran Hughes, playing in his tenth season, remains the top edge rush threat for the Bills. He is off to a decent start with five total tackles, 1.5 sacks and two passes defended. The entire Buffalo defensive line, playing in their first home game, should feast on a banged-up Cincinnati offensive line. The Bengals have allowed eight sacks and a forced fumble to defensive linemen in the first two weeks.
Justin Houston (DL – IND)
The move from Kansas City to Indianapolis for Houston led to a position designation change. After years of being classified as a LB, he would now carry a DL designation. Through the first two games, things are working out well. He has posted eight total tackles and a sack while playing over 75% of the defensive snaps. The Falcons gave up three sacks to the defensive line position in Week 1 against Minnesota. Look for Houston to put up at least one sack this week.
Grady Jarrett (DL – ATL)
Let’s take a look at one of the most dominant interior defensive players in the league, shall we? The Falcons defense is being led by Jarrett, fresh off signing a big contract extension, who has been unstoppable. Through the first two games, he has 10 total tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble. Those numbers have him ranked among the top-10 DL in fantasy. The Colts have given up 20 solo tackles as well as three sacks to defensive linemen this season.
Nigel Bradham (LB – PHI)
This a recommendation based purely on the matchup. The Lions offense is among the most generous when handing out fantasy production to LBs. They are allowing an average of 30 total tackles to the position through the first two weeks. There are also big-play opportunities as Detroit has allowed six in two games. Bradham has played 100% of the defensive snaps in the first two games and has 11 total tackles. Every down players are an asset in IDP football, LBs in a plus matchup even more so.
Jerome Baker (LB – MIA)
In his second season, Baker has secured an every-down role for Miami. Three down LBs, especially ones on teams with weak offenses, can be game-changers in IDP. The Dolphins defense has been on the field for an average of 70 snaps per game. Over the first two weeks, entrenched as the starting WLB, Baker is averaging just over 10 total tackles per game and played 100% of the snaps. He’ll be busy again this week in Dallas as there will be a steady dose of Ezekiel Elliott to deal with.
Alec Ogletree (LB – NYG)
A calf strain suffered in the first preseason game kept the veteran Ogletree out for the preseason. This could be one explanation for his slow start in the first two games. He has put up just 11 total tackles, two passes defended and zero big plays. That could all change this week in a positive matchup. Only the aforementioned Detroit Lions have allowed more total tackles to LBs than the Buccaneers. The stars are aligned, or at least appear to be, for a bounce-back game from Ogletree.
Shawn Williams (DB – CIN)
There is something to be said, regarding starting players at the S position, that line up behind a weak set of LBs. That is the case with Williams, as well as teammate Jessie Bates for that matter, in the Bengals secondary. The Bengals are razor-thin at LB, which boosts the value of Williams and teammate Jessie Bates. Last week against San Francisco the duo combined for 19 total tackles. This week Williams, my preference of the two, faces a Bills offense that allows an average of 31 tackles per game to DBs.
James Bradberry (DB – CAR)
The Cardinals offense, under new head coach Kliff Kingsbury, has been a positive matchup up for opposing CBs. Rookie Kyler Murray has thrown 94 passes in the first two weeks. That is a lot of opportunities for DBs to rack up tackle totals and big plays. Bradberry had a big Week 1 for Carolina big play wise with a sack and interception. Having played 100% of the defensive snaps, along with fellow CB Donte Jackson, he could add to those big-play totals in Week 3.
Trey Flowers (DL – DET)
There is clearly something going on with Flowers in Detroit. Perhaps the shoulder issue, that kept him out of the entire preseason, is the reason. Whatever it is, he has put up just three total tackles in the first two games. His snap count has been decent as he’s played 60% and 50% respectively in the first two weeks. Regardless of the matchup, IDP owners can sit Flowers until he has that breakout game. There are better options out there.
Frank Clark (DL – KC)
Much was expected from Clark after he came over from Seattle. Through the first two games, little has been delivered. He has put up just four total tackles along with an interception, which is a rarity for a DL, but has zero quarterback hits. The Chiefs brought him on board to boost the pass rush and that is not happening. Things aren’t likely to change this week, the Saints are solid in pass protection, so Clark can take a seat.
Vontaze Burfict (LB – OAK)
It appears that the years of abuse that Burfict has put his body through are catching up with him. He is only 28 years old, which is hard to believe but has clearly slowed considerably on the field. Through the first two weeks, he has 10 total tackles and is already dealing with multiple injury issues. He was limited in practice this week with shoulder and knee issues. It’s time for IDP owners to finally say goodbye to Burfict, at least as a start option.
Jamie Collins (LB – NE)
Don’t be fooled by the fact that Collins is a top-5 fantasy LB through two weeks. That ranking is due mainly to the two interceptions and defensive touchdown he had last week. He has posted just 11 total tackles in the first two games. The Patriots use a heavy rotation at linebacker, four have seen 60% or more snaps, making Collins a very risky option to rely on. Against a struggling Jets offense, the Patriots defense will not be on the field much.
Karl Joseph (DB – OAK)
This is the from the ‘penthouse to the outhouse’ selection of the week. After Johnathan Abram was placed on IR Joseph seemed poised to break out. Nope. Not only did he post a paltry three total tackles last week, he also saw a decrease in snaps. After playing 84% in Week 1 he played just 65% last week. It’s time to give up the notion that Joseph is ever going to be fantasy relevant in Oakland.