IDP Guys Season Three, The Return of the Cheek Splitter
Welcome back my fellow degenerates. Another year is upon us, another chance to defy the injury grim reaper and the fickle lady luck and claim our rightful spot as champion in our leagues of note. If you’re here it’s because you, much like me and the entire staff here at idpguys.org, are a true degenerate. You didn’t just stop at DS/T you went all the way and learned the entire other side of the ball, you are here because of IDP. Together we will make this journey once again and navigate the shenanigans of yet another NFL season, and together we will get that money and those trophies and maintain or achieve that all important diamond rating.
This is season number seventeen for me in regards to IDP fantasy football and it’s going to be a season we all won’t soon forget. Chaos is a ladder. Embrace the chaos. Little Finger and Anthony Lynn both said it best, and there’s no point beating around the bush. This season is going to be an absolute circus from start to finish. Between a pandemic, the meltdown of Western civilization, no preseason, half hearted training camps with little to no actual football being played and the billion other crazy things happening right now this one is going to be pure chaos from start to finish. Week one will likely set a record for most penalties ever recorded in an NFL week of games and I wouldn’t be surprised if it also set the record for most injuries in an NFL week as well.
The injury grim reaper will be out there snatching ACL’s, hamstrings and whatever else he can get his hands on and the play on the field will be sloppy at best. But we will get through it and we will have a season. All last year I was preaching about paying attention, setting alarms for inactives, making sure you followed a routine with waivers and setting lineups and sticking to it religiously. All of that pays off now. This is the ultimate “pay attention” season. The normies and office warriors will not stand a chance this year. Between the injuries that were already at historic rates last year and will be just as bad and likely worse with no pre season this year and the expected toll from the coronavirus this season will be anything but normal. If you forget to check inactives or submit your waivers even once this season it might be enough to doom your team(s). Pay attention and stay on target and we’ll be successful this season just like we are every season.
Qualifications: Why should we listen to this crazy person with the weird captions and rambling shenanigans? I’ve played fantasy football for 18 years, IDP fantasy football for 17 of those. I have 22 titles, 56 trophies and a diamond rating in Yahoo redraft and have also won multiple titles and/or contests in dynasty, best ball, salary cap and DFS. I make good money every season off cash leagues, best ball and DFS. I’ve written over 135 articles for idpguys.org and have been doing the idpguys podcast since its inception over three years ago. I also do a DFS podcast with @Adamidp on the Big 3 network. I’m plugged in. I pay attention. I’ve got the pulse of IDP Twitter and have been doing this for so long that I see the outside variables that affect IDP production as well as the obvious ones (playing time, role, etc). If you decide to trust me with these recommendations I promise you that I’ll do my best to make sure these decisions pan out for you and help you win your league.
These decisions are based on many factors. They include playing time, role, defensive time of possession on average (if you spend more time on the field you have more chances to make plays and score IDP points), likely game script (offensive shootouts that will likely feature a lot of throwing are better for corners and less ideal for linebackers, etc), effects from injuries (if someone like Bobby Wagner gets injured that means less competition for tackles for guys like KJ Wright and Jamal Adams). All of those factors along with information and stats from places like nflgsis.com, PFF and other trusted sources plus my gut feeling on these players will be incorporated into these start or sit decisions.
Disclaimers: Please read because I will cut and paste these in response to any tweets trying to blame me for stuff that’s out of my control. And I’ll probably rip you on the podcast also, so keep that in mind. It’s your team, not mine, you submit the lineup. Take some ownership.
These are only suggestions, your team and lineup are your responsibility and yours alone. I made an average of 225 start or sit “decisions” each week last season and got 74% of them correct over the course of the season. I track how many I get right and wrong every week and publish those stats in the following weeks article to maintain accountability and transparency. I will be doing the same thing this season, the total number of “decisions” (start or sit) will be all of these “decisions” below plus all the “decisions” from my streaming corners article.
I do not work for the NFL. I do not sit in on defensive team meetings for all 32 teams. I do not have inside information. I am just a dude who has been doing this for nearly two decades and has been pretty successful at it. These suggestions I am making are the same exact “start or sit” decisions I am making personally in my forty plus fantasy leagues (dynasty and redraft) I’m in this season.
I will get things wrong. I will get at least 25% of these wrong every week, all season. I know that because I’ve done this article for three seasons now and have tracked my accuracy each of those seasons and it hasn’t moved from around 75% that entire time. This isn’t an exact science, dumb luck plays a part in fantasy football. If JJ Watt blows out his ACL it’s not because I stuck pins in a voodoo doll with his likeness. I want you and your teams to succeed, I want my teams to succeed, I am making these exact same moves with my teams every week.
What I don’t want is morons in my mentions blaming me because the Jacksonville defensive staff decided at the last minute to pull Najee Goode out of their starting lineup and failed to mention it to anyone. It happens. Roll with the punches and keep it moving, in the end it’s just a game and this is supposed to be fun. I didn’t even want to write this article this season I was supposed to be doing a college fantasy waivers article but we all know how that went. Don’t kill the messenger, I’m just trying to help.
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.
Any player not listed in any of these categories should probably be considered a “sit”. Very likely they are not someone being rostered unless in the absolute deepest of deep dynasty leagues. If they show me something and become IDP relevant they’ll end up in one of the categories above, until then they’re probably a sit.
***Any EDGE/OLB player please keep in mind these guys are boom or bust and should not be counted on for any kind of consistency, if they are plugged into a linebacker slot there 100% will be weeks where they give you nothing. You need to know that before you pull the trigger on guys like this in a linebacker slot. If however the player in question has a defensive end designation I would feel much better about plugging them in because then your opponent is taking the same risk on their end. If you plug in Von Miller (EDGE) as a linebacker and he puts up only three combined tackles with no sacks or “splash plays” and your opponent played KJ Wright (LB), a consistent tackle floor linebacker, in that same linebacker slot he’s far more likely to put up well over three combined tackles a game every game all season. By losing that dice roll in just that one matchup you’re already down points against your opponent. The reverse is true as well, Von Miller (EDGE) could have put up three sacks and a forced fumble and you would have destroyed your opponent in that individual matchup where he played KJ Wright (LB) in the same slot, however sacks, forced fumbles, interceptions and other “splash plays” are erratic, unreliable, inconsistent and not predictable with any degree of certainty. To each their own but I’ll take consistency any day of the week***
All cornerbacks will be listed in an entirely different article, Johny The Greeks Cornerback Corner. Please read that article for my cornerback starts and sits.
Depth Chart information provided by ourlads.com, then I circled back through again when the “unofficial week one” team depth charts dropped.
Apologies for the longer than usual preamble, anyone who’s read my stuff before knows I always have to do this week one for the new readers, it will be business as usual next week. Also, this should go without saying but I’m going to say it anyways. Week one is going to be an absolute shit show. With no preseason we know less than usual going into this year and week one is usually a guessing game anyways, it’s just extra hard to predict player performances, roles and playing time this season due to the lack of information we usually have available. Even if we take it on the chin this week we’ll get things figured out and be back in the game going into week two. Let’s get into it.
* Means that I’m not 100% positive on this guy, not enough information to determine if they’re in the correct tier or not. This week is a pure guess based on ourlads.com and “unofficial depth charts”. Will know more week two.
The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.
This man is as consistent and reliable as bubble guts the morning after Taco Bell.
New York Jets @ Buffalo
Tier one producers: NA
Sits: Everyone else. The Jets LB situation is a mess, week one will be painful but will provide clarity and likely some great producers at a reduced price.
Sits: Quinton Jefferson (DT)* AJ Epenesa (DE)* Both could be IDP relevant right out the gate but that’s not what ourlads.com thinks and I’d like to see a week of snap counts, production and actual roles for everyone before going out on any limbs with either of these guys.
Power only resides where men believe it resides.
Green Bay @ Minnesota
The measure of a man is what he does with power.
Philadelphia @ Washington
Tier one producers: Fletcher Cox (DT)
Sits: NA (There are a ton of questions in regards to this teams linebackers and secondary, if you have the option I would avoid those units week 1 and circle back after there’s some clarity)
Sits: Reuben Foster (LB)* (Also there’s too many chefs in the kitchen as far as the defensive line goes, good lord are they going to hurt some quarterbacks this year. But yeah, we’ll have to see how this looks on paper going into week two. Jonathan Allen (DT) and Chase Young (DE) strike me as the locks for playing time with a whole lot of uncertainty besides that)
The rich get richer.
Cleveland @ Baltimore
Tier one producers: Myles Garrett (DE)
Tier three producers: Olivier Vernon (DE) BJ Goodson (LB)* Andrew Sendejo (S) Tae Davis (LB) or Jacob Phillips (LB) (I’ve seen both listed as starters on different depth charts, I would avoid both for now unless truly desperate)
Sits: NA (Browns linebackers and safety situation is a mess right now, avoid if possible)
Tier one producers: Calais Campbell (DE)
Much like digesting anything from Chipotle the price was too high for me to see many Leonard shares this season.
Indianapolis @ Jacksonville
Sits: Denico Autry (DT) (Buckner taking that role and playing time)
Tier two producers: Myles Jack (LB)
Sits: NA (There could be some production from the other part of the defensive line, Bryan, Smoot, Jones, etc. No idea yet though so those guys are a sit for me until I get a better look at that situation)
Spock Odell Beckham find in the Enterprise’s toilet? The Captain’s log.
Las Vegas @ Carolina
Tier two producers: Nick Kwiatkowski (LB) Jonathan Abram (S)
Sits: Jeff Heath (S)*
Tier one producers: Shaq Thompson (LB)
Sits: NA Jeremy Chinn (S) not listed as a starting safety, also he’s listed as a possible sub for ROLB. So in short, no freaking clue, circle back week two.
Will we see the old Khalil Mack this season? Why can’t DC perform to Marvels level? Does anyone really like The Last Jedi? These are the questions that keep me up at night.
Chicago @ Detroit
Tier one producers: Khalil Mack (EDGE/OLB) Roquan Smith (LB)
Sits: London LaCale (DT)* Deon Bush (S) Bush not listed as a starter.
Tier one producers: Tracy Walker (S)
Sits: NA (Lions linebacker situation also messy, I would avoid everyone except Collins until we get more clarity) Also Tracy Walker (S) could end up being a disaster if the reports are all true, I can’t imagine they would be that stupid but this is the Lions. I just want this in writing somewhere if the worst does happen so I can point to this. I’m sitting him week 1 in leagues where I can find other solid safety options. Update: Tracy Walker (S) is listed as a starting safety according to the Lions unofficial week one depth chart on their team website.
Like being in a toxic codependent relationship I keep coming back for more.
Seattle @ Atlanta
Tier one producers: Bobby Wagner (LB) Jamal Adams (S)
Tier two producers: Jarran Reed (DT) KJ Wright (LB)
Tier two producers: Foye Oluokon (LB)
Sits: Takk McKinley (DE) Allen Bailey (DE)
This matchup is so horrible for IDP that instead here’s a picture of the painting of cookie monster as a member of ISIS I ordered for my living room.
Miami @ New England
Tier one producers: NA
Sits: Realistically I’m starting zero Dolphins IDP in 40 plus leagues, maybe Shaq Lawson (DE) but that’s the only guy I feel remotely good about, a lot of moving parts here. If Jerome Baker (LB) has the same role and playing time as last season this is an ideal matchup for him. I would look elsewhere though and circle back week two. This is a giant mess, I’ve literally seen four different iterations of this depth chart this week.
Tier one producers: NA
Tier three producers: Kyle Dugger (S)
Sits: I always steer clear of any and all Patriots IDP, the two exceptions in the last decade have been Trey Flowers (DE) and Stephon Gilmore (CB). They are always inconsistent, unreliable and individual roles and playing time always vary immensely from game to game based on what they’re trying to accomplish against each opponent. Ask anyone who’s played IDP awhile what they think of Patriots IDP in general and you’ll hear this from anyone who knows what they’re doing.
Speak softly but carry a big stick.
Los Angeles Chargers @ Cincinnati
Tier one producers: Joey Bosa (DE)
Sits: Alohi Gilman (S)* Desmond King (CB) might play some safety, that’s a cheat code if he’s a corner in your league, that’s a move I’d definitely consider. However for week 1 I would wait and see, he’s not currently listed as a starting safety. Nasir Adderley (S) is listed as the other starting safety and Uchenna Nwosu (LB) is listed as a backup defensive end in the team websites depth chart, pure madness all over the place. Besides the obvious guys here I am staying the hell away from this LB and Safety corps.
Sits: Carl Lawson (DE)* He might have some value but I need to see snaps with everyone healthy first, he usually only produces when he gets an uptick for covering for an injured Dunlap etc.
I’m already having nightmares thinking of our beautiful prince Jimmy GQ running from this monster week 1. Jimmy will you marry me?
Arizona @ San Francisco
Sits: NA Campbell is listed over Simmons as a starting ILB with Hicks, just so you know and don’t think I’m a crazy person.
Sits: Fred Warner (LB) If he’s back from corona reserve in time start him in place of Greenlaw, no worries Kwon will shatter into a million pieces of glass by week 6 so hold on to those Greenlaw shares tight.
Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.
Tampa Bay @ New Orleans
Tier two producers: Ndamukong Suh (DT) Jason Pierre Paul (DE)
Sits: Mike Edwards (S) Winfield was listed as the other safety starter over Edwards in the teams unofficial depth chart.
Sits: Chauncey Gardner Johnson (S) I didn’t see anything other than spotty playing time and inconsistency last season, I’m still not sold.
People do not decide to become extraordinary. They decide to accomplish extraordinary things.
Dallas @ Los Angeles Rams
Sits: NA While the Rams LB corps does have a nice matchup against the man who needs to be fed we really have no idea what that unit will look like at the moment so tread lightly.
“I do love poop. I can’t help it. The heart wants what it wants. I enjoy being clever and pithy and political, but nothings going to get me like dumb stuff.” Minkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh USA 2019
Pittsburgh @ New York Giants
Tier three producers: Vince Williams (LB)
Sits: NA Keep in mind that playing Fitzpatrick is feast or famine, and it was mostly famine last year. Rich mans Eddie Jackson (S).
Sits: NA If Logan Ryan (CB) plays some safety and is listed as a corner in your league and you start him in a corner slot that’s a massive advantage, do that down the road if that’s the case. He is currently listed as a backup yet common sense dictates that he’ll likely score some IDP points this week. However I would sit him and see what things look like after we see snaps and roles etc. Better safe than sorry.
One part of the “Brown Note” in Tennessee
Tennessee @ Denver
Tier two producers: Jurrell Casey (DT) Von Miller (EDGE/OLB) *If healthy
Please remember to check inactives before submitting your final lineups Thursday night, Sunday at 11am Eastern and 330pm Eastern Time, prior to Sunday night football and Monday night. Players can and will suddenly become inactive after looking “good to go” all week (See “Robert Woods 2019″). That’s on you to keep an eye on. Also this article was published days before the season and I have zero intention of updating it a hundred times with injuries and inactives prior to kickoff. That stuff is on you, figure it out, or don’t, it’s not my lineup.
These are only suggestions, your lineup is ultimately your responsibility and yours alone. Good luck this week and all season, go get that hardware and cash.
Follow me on Twitter @Orangeman3142 and all our writers on our IDP team as well, @JoeyTheToothIDP, @seahawksdan8, @HollywoodTitan, @ZMagsIDP, @Lanny1925, @IDP_Dude, @KBellf54, @ONUtyjo and @ejh1528IDP for all your IDP needs. We will have IDP articles, matchup charts, waivers, sleepers and everything you could possibly need this season coming out daily all season long here at idpguys.org, we’re going to literally waterboard you with content. Check out my Johny The Greeks Cornerbacks Corner streaming corners article every Friday morning as well as the “Monster” (Ten thousand words on every single teams IDP production, waivers, snap counts and trends) out every Thursday morning all season long. We’ve got you covered from every angle.
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