Here is a look at the top 20 IDP fantasy football linebackers from 2018 and IDP Dude’s prediction on who misses out during the 2019 season
2018 Top 20 Linebackers
- Darius Leonard, Indianapolis Colts
- Telvin Smith Sr., Jacksonville Jaguars
- Blake Martinez, Green Bay Packers
- Cory Littleton, Los Angeles Rams
- Leighton Vander Esch, Dallas Cowboys
- Bobby Wagner, Seattle Seahawks
- Luke Kuechly, Carolina Panthers
- Lavonte David, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Jaylon Smith, Dallas Cowboys
- Roquan Smith, Chicago Bears
- Mason Foster, Washington Redskins
- Avery Williamson, New York Jets
- Kiko Alonso, Miami Dolphins
- Tremaine Edmunds, Buffalo Bills
- Tahir Whitehead, Oakland Raiders
- Anthony Hitchens, Kansas City Chiefs
- Demario Davis, New Orleans Saints
- Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers
- Myles Jack, Jacksonville Jaguars
- Wesley Woodyard, Tennessee Titans
Now that we have our top 20 linebackers from 2018 let’s take a look at who I think misses the list in 2019.
Myles Jack, Jacksonville Jaguars
There was a lot of hype coming into the 2018 season when Jack was moved to the middle linebacker spot but his production was sporadic throughout the season. To be honest, he made the top 20 by way of staying healthy and playing all 16 games. On a fantasy points per game basis, he ranked 29th. He is entering the final year of his rookie contract, I have never been a big fan and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Jaguars decide to look elsewhere for a middle linebacker in 2020.
Add Myles Jack to the list of people who got the memo. pic.twitter.com/J1nimM5xrZ
— Big Cat Country (@BigCatCountry) December 30, 2018
Demario Davis, New Orleans Saints
After finishing as the second best LB in 2017 with the Jets, the IDP community knew he was not going to replicate his production in 2018 with the Saints. Like Myles Jack, Davis made the top 20 by staying healthy for all 16 games. On a fantasy points per game basis he ranked 27th, two spots ahead of Jack. That is not very encouraging. I expect Davis to be a serviceable LB next season but I don’t expect him to find his way back to the top 20 in 2019.
Anthony Hitchens, Kansas City Chiefs
Anthony Hitchens just ain't it. I thought he was an ascending player but every Chiefs game I've seen I haven't been impressed at all
— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) October 15, 2018
What a weird year for Hitchens. He looked terrible out there yet managed to rack up the tackles. He falls into the production by default category. The IDP Tipster has a great write-up about Hitchens’ inefficiencies that you can check out here.
Mason Foster, Washington Redskins
What a great and unexpected year of production out of Foster. Despite finishing as the 11th best LB this season, I have him falling outside the top 20 in 2019. The IDP Tipster has a great write-up about Foster and has him falling in the upper tier two range which puts him around the bubble at 20. You can read more about Foster in The IDP Tipster’s article here.
Tevin Coleman says hello Mason Foster. pic.twitter.com/fK0poVcqDj
— Levi Damien (@LeviDamien) November 4, 2018
Wesley Woodyard, Tennessee Titans
Putting Woodyard outside the top 20 was actually a little difficult for me. Unfortunately for Woodyard, he will have a trio of obstacles to fight through in 2019 – Age, Rashaan Evans, and Jayon Brown. Evans, the 22nd overall pick in the 2018 draft is not going to remain on the sidelines forever. The Titans invested heavily in this kid and I expect him to find his way on the field a lot more in 2019. Evans saw 52.7% of the snaps when active compared to Brown’s 81.4% and Woodyard’s 93.9%. Woodyard will be 33 before the beginning of the 2019 season and entering the final year of his contract. We should see the passing of the torch in 2019 if the Titans know what is best for them moving forward.
Rashaan Evans has been one of the top linebackers in the NFL over the final few weeks of the season. pic.twitter.com/bhsXbw0xro
— PFF (@PFF) December 30, 2018
Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @IDP_Dude. Listen to the guys talk about news, analysis, and strategy on the podcast. Follow the show on Twitter @IDPGuys and for even more in-depth analysis, check out The IDP Tipster.