Jon Somerset (@Orangeman3142) goes through his updates to the IDP Guys rankings, and takes note of where the changes were made.
As we close in on the start of the regular season and more people start up their fantasy leagues and get drafts going, we’ve had a lot of questions about the IDP rankings. In an effort to respond to those questions and lay out the state of things at this moment, I updated the rankings today (8/4/18). I wrote this article to explain some of the changes and when to expect more information and final rankings prior to the season starting. With the start of training camps things are happening: guys are tearing ACLs, getting suspended, winning or losing starting jobs and changing positions. Let’s get into it.
Linebackers:[table id=2 /]
There weren’t a ton of changes here but some guys moved up or down and I expanded the total list to 40 guys. Deion Jones moved to overall #1 with Wagner at #2, CJ Mosley moving to #3 overall. This is simply because both Jones and Wagner are middle linebackers in a 4-3 while Mosley is an inside linebacker in a 3-4, traditionally more points are scored by the MLB in a 4-3 than an ILB in a 3-4. Christian Kirksey and Myles Jack moved up the list (got a better ranking) due to the news coming out of Browns camp that Mychal Kendricks has been floating around all three linebacker positions but will most likely be used as a pass rusher (that hurts SLB Collins the most) and may take some MLB and SLB snaps also. Kirksey, who played every defensive snap for the Browns last season, is staying at WLB and shouldn’t be impacted by Kendricks usage as much. Myles Jack has been getting snaps at middle linebacker in Jags camp and it appears likely he could move to MLB this season, if this is the case his value skyrockets as will his production.
Instead of Antonio Morrison and Anthony Walker I simply have those spots listed as “Winner of Colts MLB slot” or “Winner of Colts WLB slot”. It really is up in the air as to what their defense will look like starter-wise with the linebackers. Keep an eye on those battles, both the MLB and WLB from that team will most likely clear 100 combined tackles this season. Preston Brown was one of the 10 extra guys that were added to the list, despite not being in a great situation like he was last year on the Bills he should still be a top 40 linebacker especially with Burficts four game suspension to start the year. Raekwon McMillan was also added into the rankings I forgot about him the first go-around. Being the middle linebacker in a 4-3 on a Dolphins team that should have a terrible offense puts him in great position for this year production-wise.
*The Colts released their first unofficial depth chart so Anthony Walker and Darius Leonard were added to the MLB and WLB slots for the rankings. Also rankings were expanded to 45 total linebackers to add in Deone Buchanon and Josh Bynes and a couple others.
Safeties:[table id=3 /]
Landon Collins and Keanu Neal are now the overall #1 and #2 safeties with Reshad Jones now in 3rd place. The addition of McMillan along with the return of Alonso plus the drafting of Mincah Fitzpatrick all add mouths to feed on the Dolphins and Jones should drop some production due to it. It won’t be a lot but should be enough to drop below Collins and Neal. Harrison Smith dropped beneath Byard and Poyer, while Smith is consistent and had a great 2017 Byard and Poyer are in better situations going into this season. Jonathan Cyprien is done for the season and there’s a chance Byard plays more strong safety and has more tackles because of it, while Poyer should see even more defensive snaps then last season with the Bills offense looking horrific and the possibility of suspension for McCoy. Matthias Farley has been replaced with “Winner of Colts SS Job” because that’s up in the air as well, keep an eye on that situation as well because last year that slot produced 95 combined tackles in 15 games (Farley). Tyran Matthieu cracked the top 15, he’s looking to be more of a tackler for the Texans as their strong safety.
*As of 8-7-18 the Colts are listing Clayton Geathers as the starting strong safety.
John Johnson also cracked the top 15, despite some of the IDP “experts” fading him for this season I’ll trust my gut and the opinion of Gary (@HBogart27) that he will take advantage of a largely unskilled and young linebacker corps and clean up a lot of missed tackles improving on his impressive 2017 rookie campaign. Justin Simmons sneaks into the top 20 as an under the radar candidate to break out this season on the Denver Broncos. And last but not least both Jabril Peppers and George Iloka look to take advantage of new defensive schemes to get more involved in their teams defense and increase their tackle numbers, thereby landing both of them in the top 25.
Defensive Ends:[table id=4 /]
Not much changed in the top 10 I just fixed a mistake where I had mixed up the two outstanding defensive ends from the Vikings, Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter, they are now in correct order. Exekiel Ansah fell a few spots due to his lingering injury concerns. I expanded the total number of defensive ends to 25 and that’s about it for changes. Anything past the first 10 or 12 guys is really a crap shoot with this position, it all comes down to sack numbers and there’s no good way of predicting that ahead of time. The best you can do is just get solid guys at your DE or DL slots and either play the matchups against bad offensive lines or just start them and pray for sacks.
Defensive Tackles:[table id=5 /]
The only big change here besides expanding the total number of listed players to 20 is that DeForest Buckner has overtaken Damon Harrison for overall #1 defensive tackle. Despite me not actually seeing Harrison line up as a nose tackle (I physically went to Giants training camp) there is still a strong possibility he will have to do so at least some of the time due to the nature of the 3-4 defense the Giants switched to in the offseason. In this case the nose tackle is more of a space eater than a tackle maker and should negatively impact Harrisons numbers. He played nose tackle in a 3-4 for the jets and average about 10-20 less combined tackles a year in that position. This knowledge combined with projections and other rankings I’ve seen that are really high on Buckner caused me to switch them, Harrison is still the #2 overall DT and should still get a ton of IDP points this year but Buckner seems to be the guy to own this year.
Just a heads up I’ll be updating the rankings again before the season starts. Literally as soon as the real depth charts come out I’m all over it. Until then a lot of these positions that are in question leave us with guesses instead of facts. And probably we won’t have all the answers until a few weeks into the season anyways so I would recommend that if any of these questions give you pause just draft someone else and let another guy take the risk. Sure whoever wins MLB for the Colts is going to have a great season but there are plenty of fish in the sea. Even better save your last couple picks in your drafts to go after some of the guys we think will win these jobs, roll the dice a little and maybe come up with a flier or two that works out. Until then if you have any specific questions about anything don’t hesitate to reach out to any of us on the IDP Guys staff and we’ll get you the best answer we can possibly find. We’re all in this IDP boat together after all.