How far we have fallen in just eight short weeks.
This article series will be set up exactly the same as last year’s was. For the Thursday night games, I will be tweeting the start or sit on Twitter (@Orangeman3142). This article will publish weekly on Saturday morning and will cover all of the Sunday games and the Monday night game as well.
Last year I was writing four thousand word articles describing the thought process behind all these “decisions” (start or sit and what tier of expected production). In an effort to cover every IDP relevant player and every matchup and team I’ve cut that part of this process out, for the record though I use past production, playing time, expected game flow and trends of the offense each IDP player is going up against as well as gut instinct and projections from places such as MFL, Yahoo, ESPN and Sleeper to inform these decisions.
If you’re looking for an explanation for a particular player feel free to DM me on Twitter, @Orangeman3142.
This is year sixteen of IDP for me so I’m not just throwing darts here and the two articles and one podcast I do weekly take more than enough time so this is what it’s going to be, if you’re looking for more detail for as to why certain players are starts or sits I’m sure there are articles out there that do that, it just won’t be this one. Also, I’m doing this for free and because I enjoy it so I’m going to have fun with it if you can’t handle jokes I would abort mission now, no harm no foul.
These start or sit decisions are only suggestions and in the end, the responsibility for your lineup is ultimately yours and yours alone. I’ll do my best to be as accurate as possible each week. These decisions I’m recommending are the same ones I’m making in my own lineups so we sink or swim together if you do decide to take any of this advice. Good luck in your matchups this week. Let’s get that hardware.
Every single game, team and IDP relevant player will be covered in this article series all year from start to finish. The production will be divided into categories like last year, this is how it looks:
Tier 1 Production: These players have the best matchups based on their playing time, past production, talent level, and opportunity. They have the most solid floor and a terrific ceiling. If you need guaranteed production these players are the best bet to get that for you. These will likely be obvious most of the time.
Tier 2 Production: These players will get you some points but are missing something that makes them your best choice. This could be a lack of playing time, talent or some other factor that hurts their chances at an outstanding performance. These players are usually a good option in deeper leagues with large rosters or all IDP leagues.
Tier 3 Production: These players are a shot in the dark. These are starts you will likely only make in larger leagues with huge rosters or during bye weeks or for short term injury replacements. There’s a chance it could work out but not a great one due to any number of factors including lack of playing time, talent or ideal matchup. This tier is as close to “sit” as you can get while still having some value. These players are mostly used in larger leagues with huge rosters and in all IDP leagues.
Sit: Pretty easy, sit em. For any number of reasons from a nagging injury to lack of playing time, talent or ideal matchup these players should NOT be started this week. I will be wrong on these occasionally throughout the season but at the time of publishing the players in this category are far more likely to bust and get you nothing rather than have a good or great week.
***Player situations change due to injury and other factors, this article was written days before Sunday so please pay attention and adjust your lineup accordingly ***
***If I don’t mention a player they are a sit or just not on my radar yet which likely means they should be a sit. If a player is inactive or injured after this article is published please use common sense and sit them. Check the inactive list at 11:40 AM eastern time and 3:40 PM eastern time on ESPN and NFL websites to check for surprise inactives each Sunday***
Last week I made approximately 260 “decisions” (start or sit) and got 190 of them correct or in the ballpark and 70 incorrect or not even close for a 74% correct rate. My average for all of last season was 74% correct overall and through this week we are holding at 74% correct for this season. Let’s dive into this week’s games.
***For any “EDGE” players listed the rule of thumb is to drop them a level in expected production from where they are listed if you start them as a regular linebacker instead of in a specific “Edge” or “OLB” slot in your league. This is due to the inconsistent nature of production for these players being sack dependent for the majority of their points. If your league has an “Edge” or “OLB” slot to plug them in to then everyone takes the same risk putting those players in that slot each week, however if you choose to use these players in a regular linebacker slot there’s a good chance they don’t get a sack and you end up with little to no points from them.
They are a boom or bust option when used in a regular linebacker slot. Keep that in mind as you play Shaq Barrett or Whitney Mercilus, there will be weeks where they don’t have any sacks and it won’t be pretty if you started them in a regular linebacker slot and your opponent started a guy like KJ Wright in that same slot when KJ gets his usual 4-8 tackles and you’re down that many fantasy points in just that one player to player matchup. We’ve already seen a multiple week stretch where both Mercilus and Barrett did nothing at all and if you played them in a regular linebacker slot it might have cost you a win. Buyer beware.***
Josh Allen has been just as good as Baby Bosa this season.
Texans @ Jaguars
Tier one starts: Whitney Mercilus (EDGE)
Tier two starts: Justin Reid (S) Jahleel Addae (S) Bernardrick McKinney (LB) Zach Cunningham (LB) Texans Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Texans corners, preferably Roby if he’s healthy, then Conley then Johnson*
Tier three starts: Brennan Scarlett (LB) DJ Reader (DT)
Sits: JJ Watt (DE) *Out for season, his replacement is still unclear and likely will be light years away from his production and consistency*
Sits: Quincy Williams (LB) *Got benched for Goode*
All hail our new waiver wire darling Matt Ioannidis!
Redskins @ Bills
Sits: Shaun Dion Hamilton (LB) *Playing time*
Tier three starts: Bills Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Bills corners, preferably White & Wallace* Trent Murphy (DE) Jerry Hughes (DE) Ed Oliver (DT) Jordan Phillips (DT) Shaq Lawson (DE) Lorenzo Alexander (LB)
Sits: Star Lotuleilei (DT) *Lack of production*
Aww shit looks who’s back this week. Cousins about to get his cheeks clapped.
Vikings @ Chiefs
Tier three starts: Anthony Harris (S)
Sits: Jayron Kearse (S) *Playing time*
Kansas City Chiefs
Tier one starts: Chris Jones (DT) *If healthy* Frank Clark (DE) *If healthy* Tyrann Mathieu (S) Anthony Hitchens (LB) Damien Wilson (LB) *Both LB’s could be closer to tier two but I really like their matchup against the run crazy Vikings*
Tier two starts: Chiefs Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Chiefs corners, preferably Fuller if healthy, then Ward and Breeland*
Sits: Ben Niemann (LB) *Playing time* Daniel Sorenson (S) *Playing time*
I think I would rather keister a traffic cone wide end first than start any Jets linebackers this week.
Jets @ Dolphins
New York Jets
Tier one starts: Jamal Adams (S)
Tier one starts: Jerome Baker (LB)
Tier three starts: Vince Biegel (LB) Sam Eguavoen (LB) Bobby McCain (S) Christian Wilkins (DE) Dolphins Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Dolphins corners, preferably Rowe then Lewis*
This mans prodigious talent is being wasted on a team with a vomit worthy offense.
Bears @ Eagles
Tier two starts: Bears Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Bears corners, preferably Fuller then Amukamara* Leonard Floyd (EDGE)
Sits: NA, all others
Tier three starts: Rodney McLeod (S) Kamu Gruger Hill (LB)
Sits: Genard Avery (LB) *Likely no or not a very significant role yet* All others, Curry, Sendejo & Sweat (Playing time)
For my money this guy has been the best value at defensive tackle this season by a mile.
Colts @ Steelers
Tier three starts: Colts Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Colts corners, preferably Ya-Sin and Moore* Bobby Okereke (LB)
Sits: Khari Willis (S) *Huge drop in playing time with Geathers & Hooker back healthy*
Sits: NA, all others
As consistent as diarrhea after Chipotle.
Titans @ Panthers
Tier three starts: Titans Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Titans corners, preferably Ryan then Butler* Cameron Wake (DE) Da’Quan Jones (DT)
Sits: Kamalei Correa (LB) *Playing time*
Tier one starts: Luke Kuechly (LB)
Tier three starts: Panthers Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Panthers corners, preferably Bradberry then Jackson or Cockrell if Jackson is inactive* Tre Boston (S) Bruce Irvin (EDGE) Mario Addison (EDGE) Dontari Poe (DT) Gerald McCoy (DT)
Sits: Brian Burns (DE) *Playing time been decreased significantly recently*
Damon Harrison squats and takes a shit on the field in front of thousands of shocked and horrified fans, Detroit USA Circa 2019
Lions @ Raiders
Tier one starts: Jarrad Davis (LB)
Sits: Tracy Walker (S)
Tier one starts: Tahir Whitehead (LB) Raiders Cornerbacks *This is an ideal matchup to start or stream Raiders corners, preferably Worley then Mullen*
Sits: Benson Mayowa (DE) *Playing time*
JPP looks to have another explosive game this week.
Buccaneers @ Seahawks
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tier one starts: Lavonte David (LB) Shaq Barrett (EDGE)
Tier two starts: Andrew Adams (S) Jordan Whitehead (S) Buccaneers Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Bucs corners, preferably Hargreaves and Davis* Devin White (LB) Carl Nassib (DE) Jason Pierre Paul (DE) N’Damakong Suh (DT)
Sits: NA, all others
Tier one starts: Bobby Wagner (LB) Seahawks Cornerbacks *This is an ideal matchup to start or stream Seahawks corners, preferably Griffin and Flowers, King if Flowers is inactive*
Sits: Ezekiel Ansah (DE) LJ Collier (DE) *Playing time & production, or lack of, for both*
Congratulations to Brandon Allen on the start this week, your prize is getting your asshole blown inside out by Myles Garrett. Welcome to the NFL.
Browns @ Broncos
Tier one starts: Joe Schobert (LB) Myles Garrett (DE)
Tier three starts: Sheldon Richardson (DT)
Sits: Eric Murray (S) *Injured and out* Browns Cornerbacks *This is not an ideal matchup to start or stream Browns corners, but if you were to it should be Ward and Williams*
Tier two starts: Broncos Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Broncos corners, preferably either Harris or Jackson* Von Miller (EDGE) AJ Johnson (LB)
Tier three starts: Maliek Reed (EDGE) Derek Wolfe (DE)
Sits: Demarcus Walker (DE) *Playing time, he doesn’t get enough of it to remain consistent*
Joey Bosa has been on fire, will it continue this week against Rodgers?
Packers @ Chargers
Green Bay Packers
Tier three starts: Kyler Fackrell (LB)
Sits: BJ Goodson (LB) and Oren Burks (LB) *Playing time for both*
Los Angeles Chargers
Tier one starts: Joey Bosa (DE)
Which version of Jamie Collins will we get this week? Boom or bust? Feast or famine? Poop or puke?
Patriots @ Ravens
New England Patriots
Tier one starts: Jamie Collins (LB) *If you’re feeling luck, he, much like every Patriots IDP, is massively inconsistent*
Tier three starts: Patriots Cornerbacks *This is just an OK matchup to start or stream Pats corners, preferably Gilmore then Jones and McCourty* Donta Hightower (LB) Patriots Pass Rushers
Sits: If it were my team? I would sit them all. I don’t use Patriots IDP. Pick a player that’s been on the Patriots for a few seasons and look at his past game box scores going back a season or two and you’ll see why. Consistency is nonexistent on this defense.
Tier three starts: LJ Fort (LB) Josh Bynes (LB) *Sit if Onwuasor is playing, one of these two won’t play if that’s the case but I don’t know which*
Sits: NA, all others
Will DLaw and the Hotboyz clap some cheeks this week?! I sure hope so!
Cowboys @ Giants
Sits: NA, all others
New York Giants
Tier two starts: Giants Cornerbacks *This is a good matchup to start or stream Cowboys corners, preferably Jenkins and Baker* Markus Golden (DE)
Sits: NA, all others
***Please make sure to check the inactives that come out each Sunday before the games start to make sure your players aren’t a surprise inactive due to a surprise injury. Obviously, if I have any of these guys listed as a start of any kind and they are inactive DO NOT START THEM. This article is written usually days before the games and surprise injuries can and will happen, make sure you stay up to date to avoid getting a surprise zero in your lineup***
***These are only suggestions ultimately it’s your decision who you start or sit. If a player gets hurt or has a bad game it happens it’s part of the game and not the result of me using a voodoo doll with your fantasy team’s name on it. I wish you all nothing but the best and hope you win all your matchups this and every week. Take home that hardware.***
Keep an eye out for my instant reaction and defensive waivers article dropping during the week next week, likely Thursday morning. I’ll be covering all the production and playing time from every single IDP relevant player and giving you options for defensive waivers. We’ll go over the week’s results and make sure you are ahead of the curve for getting any of those surprise studs AKA Darius Leonard last year. The next week’s start or sit will drop next Saturday morning and the Thursday night games start or sit will be in Tweet form (@Orangeman3142). Also, make sure and catch our weekly podcast on all your podcatching sites dropping Tuesday night or Wednesday morning all season long. Idpguys.org will continue to be your one-stop-shop for all things IDP.
Thank you for reading and good luck in this week’s matchups. Make sure you’re following @IDP_Dude and @JoeythetoothIDP to make sure you’re covered from all angles in regards to waivers, starts and sits and general IDP information, the three of us handle the Lions share of the IDP writing here at the site.
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