Taking a look at the NFL week 5 from a IDP perspective; notes on what our writer @Orangeman3142 saw this weekend.
This is a continuation of my weekly article series that breaks down what we saw this week in IDP fantasy football. What happened and why, what we got right and what we got wrong and more importantly how to move forward and get better this week. We look at possible waivers and trends, snap counts and issues that effect production for your IDP team. I covered the first twelve games of week five in part one, two and three of this article series, let’s keep going.
LA Rams @ Seattle Seahawks
Rams: The Rams linebackers corps got a huge boost this week with the return of Mark Barron (LB) the well known IDP producer. He played 80% of snaps this week and recorded 9 combined tackles and 0.5 TFL in his first game this season after being injured in the first four weeks.
His snap count will be sure to increase and this kind of production on his limited snaps this week gives you an idea of what he’s going to be capable of. Ramik Wilson (LB) was filling in for him and had great production in the first four weeks, I would expect those kind of numbers out of Barron plus much more. Grab him if you can!
N’Damakong Suh (DT) was the next on the box score with a huge game. He put up 7 combined tackles, 1 sack and 1 TFL on 90% of snaps played this week. He’s a top ten defensive tackle and you play him weekly just for games like this.
Cory Littleton (LB) had the next best day with 7 combined tackles and 2 PD on 100% of snaps played. There was some concern that Barron’s return would stifle some of Littletons production but this doesn’t seem to be the case. That may change though against teams that can’t muster as much offense as the Seahawks did this week so beware of that factor.
John Johnson (S) had a serviceable day with 5 combined tackles and 0.5 TFL playing 100% of snaps. He’s been a bit up and down this year but hasn’t had any real dud games and should be played as a safety two in IDP lineups with a ton of upside.
Marcus Peters (CB) continues to be startable despite his “shutdown” corner reputation putting up 5 combined tackles and 1 PD on 100% of snaps played this week. He remains a matchup dependent corner who is skilled and knowledgeable enough to be in the right place at the right time to make plays despite opposing quarterbacks doing their best to avoid him.
Aaron Donald (DE) seems to be back in the groove with his second nice week in a row after a slow start. He recorded 2 combined tackles, 1 sack and 1 TFL on 97% of snaps played. He can be a monster so despite the down weeks to start the year you pretty much have to play him every week in case he goes nuts like he did in the Minnesota game.
Michael Brockers (DE) had a serviceable game this week with 4 combined tackles on 83% of snaps played and is a decent bye week or short term injury replacement option.
Seahawks: When we learned earlier this week that Bradley McDougald (S) would be staying at strong safety many in the IDP community breathed a sigh of relief. He has been incredibly productive at that position all season and had another monster game this week. He put up 10 combined tackles and 0.5 TFL on 100% of snaps played this week and remains a tier one safety and a weekly automatic start for me.
Bobby Wagner (LB) was right behind him with 8 combined tackles on 100% of snaps played and is a weekly auto start as well. You all know who Wagner is I don’t need to get into it lol.
New free safety Tedric Thompson (S) and strongside linebacker Barkevious Mingo (LB) were next on the box score this week. Thompson recorded 7 combined tackles, 1 INT and 1 PD on 98% of snaps played in relief of the injured Earl Thomas while Mingo put up 7 combined tackles playing 97% of snaps.
Thompson will be someone I’ll keep an eye on, if he can come even close to replicating Thomas’s production from earlier this year he’ll be worth a waiver wire grab but Mingo plays an IDP irrelevant position and this production was just a flash in the pan.
Frank Clark (DE) had a huge week with 2 combined tackles, 1 TFL, 1 PD and 1 INT with 26 turnover yards while playing 82% of snaps this week. He’s been pretty reliable this year and I’ve been playing him in deeper leagues weekly, in a shallow league he’s a terrific bye week or short term injury fill in guy.
Tre Flowers (CB) had another nice week as well with 6 combined tackles and 1 PD on 100% of snaps played and has been a reliable IDP corner option this year.
Jarran Reed (DT) had his second solid week in a row with 6 combined tackles playing 91% of snaps this week. He’s been trending up lately and may not be a bad option if you need a defensive tackle for a week or two, I’ll keep an eye on him and we’ll see where this goes.
Dallas Cowboys @ Houston Texans
Cowboys: With stud IDP linebacker Sean Lee (LB) out for another few weeks Leighton Vander Esch (LB) (Mein Shizor, okey dokey, Cartmans mom is in a shizor video!) and Jaylon Smith (LB) have taken full advantage of the situation and both put in monster days this week. Vander recorded 14 combined tackles while playing 100% of snaps and is a terrific short term linebacker piece for IDP if you need it.
Just remember that when Lee comes back his snap count will plummet and his production will be sure to follow. Jaylon Smith had a great day as well with 12 combined tackles, 1 sack, 3 TFL and 1 PD playing 99% of snaps. Even with Lee back in the lineup Smith has made the jump to top tier IDP linebacker and should be a weekly start at this point.
Byron Jones (CB, S) has dual designation in Yahoo which makes him valuable to start with, when you factor in his reliability and solid weekly production he’s a great piece to any IDP squad. He recorded 10 combined tackles and 2 PD on 100% of snaps played this week.
Chidobe Awuzie (CB) had a down week with only 3 solo tackles while playing 45% of snaps so that’s concerning, his snap count hasn’t been that low all season so it may be a decent idea to sit him for a streamer with a solid matchup next week. I just checked his situation and it looks like an injury may have killed his playing time this week but you should monitor the situation before playing him next week.
Safeties Jeff Heath (S) and Xavier Woods (S) both had nice games this week as well. Heath recorded 10 combined tackles and 1 PD playing 100% of snaps while Woods had 5 combined tackles, 1 PD and 1 INT playing 99% of snaps this week. Both have been up and down this season and either lack the consistency I’m looking for in the world of IDP safeties.
DeMarcus Lawrence (DE) had a down week with 1 tackle assist on 76% of snaps played but had three sacks last week and has been a monster more often than not this season. Defensive end is spotty in general, no ones going to get you a sack every week unless we’re talking Micheal Strahan the year he set the sacks record, it just doesn’t work like that. Keep playing him there are better weeks ahead.
Texans: The two known IDP relevant linebackers on the Texans both had terrific games this week. Zach Cunningham (LB) and Bernardrick McKinney (LB) both put in work this week. Cunningham recorded 9 combined tackles on 100% of snaps played while McKinney put up 8 combined tackles, 0.5 sacks and 1.5 TFL playing 100% of snaps this week. Cunningham has been the more consistent and productive of the two but McKinney has been a nice linebacker three or four in much deeper leagues.
The Honey Badger Tyrann Mathieu (S) has been lighting it up in his new home this season and had another great week. He put up 8 combined tackles and 1 TFL playing 95% of snaps this week. He’s been a fringe safety one and a reliable safety two this season.
DJ Reader (DT) got back into the action this week with 4 combined tackles on 68% of snaps played, he’s been quiet since week one where he had a massive game and this weeks game was just barely serviceable so I’m continuing to steer clear.
JJ Watt (DE) and JaDaveon Clowney (DE) both had decent days and I find myself amazed every week JJ Watt plays without injuring something and going on IR. We have to ride this production while we can, god only knows how long it will last. Watt recorded 2 solo tackles, 1 sack and 1 TFL on 90% of snaps this week while Clowney put up 3 combined tackles, 0.5 sacks and 1.5 TFL playing 87% of snaps this week.
Both are weekly auto starts at defensive end but if you have Clowney in your league as a linebacker I’m staying far away from that nonsense. I’d rather start a guy who gets me like six or seven combined tackles and week and miss out on a monster game from Clowney every once in awhile than live with the weeks where he doesn’t record a sack and his output is terrible.
Washington Redskins @ New Orleans Saints
Redskins: It would seem that despite returning to the starting lineup Zach Brown (LB) is either still slightly injured or has lost a step since last year. His production just hasn’t been what it used to be. He played 88% of snaps this week and only put up 6 combined tackles, at this point I would keep him on your bench and see what happens if you have the room but if you have to move on I understand.
Personally I’m holding onto him where I can I think there’s a good chance he can return to form this season, he’s too talented not to. Mason Foster (LB) has been the producer for the Redskins linebackers corps while Brown has been not himself this season, he had another solid week with 10 combined tackles on 100% of snaps played this week. He seems to be the linebacker to play on this team so far.
DJ Swearinger (S) has been pretty decent this year and while he hasn’t had a monster game yet he’s had a solid floor with some decent upside. This week he put up 5 combined tackles on 100% of snaps. I’ve found more productive guys in my leagues but he’s not a bad option if you really need safety help.
Da’Ron Payne (DT) had his first nice game of the year with 4 combined tackles, 1 sack and 2 TFL on 77% of snaps played but is nothing more than a dynasty piece for the future for me.
Ryan Kerrigan (LB, EDGE) had his first solid game of the year as well but has been straight taco bell diarrhea every other week this year and I don’t trust him at all, avoid.
Saints: New Orleans spent most of this game on offense so their IDP production wasn’t incredible this week but there were some bright spots. Vonn Bell (S) led the production with 8 combined tackles, 1 TFL and 1 PD on 84% of snaps this week. He has been battling Kurt Coleman for sole possession of that safety spot all year and his less than ideal playing time has led to up and down production so I’m all set here.
Demario Davis (LB) came in next on the box score with 6 combined tackles playing 82% of snaps. This was a down week for him, he’s been productive all season and is tier two linebacker that you should feel pretty safe playing every week.
The Saints defensive line had a huge night terrorizing Alex Smith. Cameron Jordan (DE), Marcus Davenport (DE) and Sheldon Rankins (DT) all put in work. Davenport led the way with 3 combined tackles, 1 sack, 2 TFL and 1 PD playing 57% of snaps this week. He’s still just a future dynasty piece for me despite this weeks production, show me consistency then we’ll talk.
Jordan recorded 2 combined tackles, 1 sack and 2 TFL playing 82% of snaps and is a tier one defensive end and a weekly auto start. Rankins recovered from last weeks dud with 2 solo tackles, 1 sack and 1 TFL on 59% of snaps played. He’s been spotty this year but you could do worse for a one week injury fill in or bye week replacement in a much deeper league.
Marcus Williams (S) and Marshon Lattimore (CB) both had down games and both were sidelined with injury with the game well in hand so weren’t needed out there. They’ll both be fine against any team that actually competes with the Saints unlike the Redskins that got their doors blown off in this one.
Make sure you catch part one, two and three of this article and keep an eye out for my start or sit article dropping Saturday. My bad habit of going too far into detail means this article is in multiple parts instead of one novel. If you have any questions or need some advice feel free to hit me up on Twitter (@OrangeMan3142) or use the “Contact Us” box on our website (idpguys.org) to reach us.