Fantasy Football IDP Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 5
The first quarter of the IDP fantasy football season is in the books. As usual, the injuries are beginning to mount and there are suspensions to deal with as well. Raise your hand if you thought Vontaze Burfict would make it through the season without getting suspended or injured. The man can’t get out of his own way.
Some significant injuries that hit IDP teams hard were defensive end Melvin Ingram leaving Week 4 with a hamstring issue that looks like it will sideline him for multiple weeks. We also lost linebackers Bradley Chubb and Ryan Connelly for the season with ACL injuries. When it comes to injuries in the IDP realm, it’s a war of attrition. Working the waiver wire in a wise manner is critical.
There is also the issue of covering for bye weeks as well. Once again, we’ve done the heavy lifting for IDP owners. Here are some potential Week 5 waiver wire options. Keep in mind that Detroit and Miami are on their bye weeks.
Taco Charlton (DL – MIA) – 3% FAAB
When working the IDP waiver wire, it’s advisable to stay ahead of the curve. Go ahead and pick up Charlton now even though the Dolphins are on a bye this week. His price will likely be low as owners look for immediate Week 5 help, allowing him to be had at a great value.
It didn’t take him long to get going in Miami after Dallas let him go prior to Week 3. Carlton has a sack in back-to-back games, his first two in Miami, and already leads the team in sacks with two. He will have plenty of playing time on a defense that will be on the field a lot.
Olivier Vernon (DL – CLE) – 4% FAAB
It took longer than expected, but Vernon finally notched his first sack as a member of the Browns’ defense. In Week 3, he finished with two solo tackles (one for a loss), a sack, and two quarterback hits. The faith I had in him heading into the 2019 season has been restored. He has a solid track record as an edge rusher, having put up 22 sacks over the past three seasons. With opposing offenses having to account for Myles Garrett, look for more production since he will face very few double teams.
Nick Williams (DL – CHI) – 5% FAAB
With Akiem Hicks dealing with a knee issue that held him out of Week 4, the Bears’ defense may have found his replacement. In the Week 4 win over Minnesota, Williams continued his early-season hot streak. He put up seven total tackles, two tackles for a loss, two sacks, and recovered a fumble.
He has at least one sack in each of the past three games. On the season, he has 12 total tackles, four sacks, and a fumble recovery. He is currently putting up top-10 defensive lineman numbers and should be rostered in all IDP scoring formats.
Nick Kwiatkoski (LB – CHI) – 4% FAAB
There is something going on with Roquan Smith. He was a healthy scratch an hour before Week 4 kickoff due to “personal reasons.” There were no further details offered as to what those reasons are. As of Monday morning, it’s unclear if Smith will travel with the team for their Week 5 game against Oakland in London.
Last week, Kwiatkoski drew the start and had a huge outing. He finished with 10 total tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble. When called on, he has always proven to be a more than capable fantasy contributor. With Smith’s availability in question, it’s advisable once again to get ahead of the curve and roster Kwiatkowski.
Clay Matthews (LB – LAR) – 2% FAAB
In the first four weeks, it appears that the 33-year-old Matthews has regained his edge-rushing mojo. In his first season in Los Angeles, he has at least one sack in each of the first four games and has already surpassed the 3.5 sacks he put up in 2018. On the season, he has 14 total tackles and five sacks.
The extra attention that Aaron Donald draws from opposing offensive lines has opened up things for Matthews. He is currently putting up top-10 linebacker numbers for fantasy purposes. He does bring more value in big-play scoring formats but is worth a roster spot in standard-scoring leagues.
David Mayo (LB – NYG) – 4% FAAB
The Giants’ defense is running out of linebackers. Alec Ogletree missed Week 4 with a hamstring issue and is not a lock to return for Week 5. Rookie Ryan Connelly, who was playing admirably in place of Ogletree, suffered a torn ACL last week.
That leaves Mayo as basically the last man standing since Tae Davis is dealing with a concussion. Due to all the injuries, he played a season-high 36 snaps last week. He finished with eight total tackles and should continue to see plenty of playing time with the depleted state of the Giants’ linebacking corps.
Xavier Woods (DB – DAL) – 5% FAAB
It was originally believed that the hamstring injury he suffered in Week 2 would sideline him for four-to-six weeks. He was more than likely dropped in most IDP leagues after that initial report. Surprisingly, he missed just a single game and was back on the field last week.
Let’s keep in mind that he put up 11 total tackles along with a forced fumble in Week 1. When healthy, Woods is the man in the secondary IDP owners covet on the Cowboys’ defense. The matchup this week is a sweet one. In Week 4, Philadelphia safeties accounted for 21 total tackles against the Packers’ offense.
Erik Harris (DB – OAK) – 3% FAAB
The Raiders’ linebacking corps has been, to say the least, underwhelming. The latest news is that Vontaze Burfict, who was vastly underperforming this season, has been suspended for the remainder of the 2019 season. While Tahir Whitehead is basically the last linebacker standing in Oakland, it does appear Nicholas Morrow will be the next man up, so feel free to put in a low bid on him as well (2% – FAAB).
With that being said, it’s time to stock up on Raiders’ safeties for IDP purposes. Harris played 100% of the defensive snaps, alongside Karl Joseph, for the first time last week. He responded with seven total tackles (he had 13 in the last two games) and an interception that he returned for a score.
Montae Nicholson (DB – WAS) – 2% FAAB
This is the follow-the-matchup, plug-and-play waiver wire option for Week 5. Averaging 70 snaps per game, Nicholson checks all the boxes for a player in line for a big game. While teammate Landon Collins garners the publicity, Nicholson is quietly having a nice season.
He is an IDP owner’s dream — a good player on a bad team. Through the first four weeks, he has put up 24 total tackles, an interception, and a forced fumble. This week he faces a Patriots offense that is allowing an average of 30 total tackles per game to opposing defensive backs.
Jonathan Cyprien (DB – ATL) – 1% FAAB
This is the short-and-sweet special of the week. This week, Atlanta traded for Cyprien, who had played just 15 snaps for Philadelphia this year, and he could be the eventual replacement for the injured Keanu Neal. It appears that they may not want to continue to roll out Kemal Ishmael, who did have nine tackles in Week 4 as the starting SS. Grab him on the cheap and take a wait-and-see approach as to how the situation plays out.