• The IDP Guys’ NFL Week 6 Start/Sit List: IDP

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    Matchups, snap counts, form. It's all here in the IDPGuys' NFL Week 6 Start/Sit article.

    We're back once again with the NFL Week 6 Start/Sit article, but first, let's take a quick peek at what Week 5 had for us.

    It was another great week of American Football. Nine players had at least two sacks. 17 players recorded at least one forced fumble. 27 had at least an interception. 17 players had at least 10 total tackles.

    The international series returned to London for its 14th year. It looked like the London crowd would be subjected to yet another blowout, only for the Jets to rally in the second half. It was a great day out. My video skills don't do the day or the stadium justice, but you get the idea. We had fun.


    In the first few weeks of the season, I had a list of disclaimers here that explained how my advice is only a suggestion, how your team is your responsibility, and that I will get things wrong. It got too wordy, and I think most reasonable people understand all of this by now. I'm not going to include all that in my NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article.

    I'll just say this. If you're the sort of person who feels the need to complain when (not if) I get something wrong, and it costs you points, please read the disclaimers from those early weeks first. I encourage all feedback — even criticism when it's constructive — but not mindless rants. I do this for fun. It's a game. Let's keep it light.

    Article Key

    Tier One Starts

    Based on their opportunity, past production, talent level, and matchup, these players have the best outlook. They usually have a solid floor and an excellent ceiling. These guys should be the nearest to guaranteed production you can find.

    Tier Two Starts

    These players should earn a reasonable amount of points. Their opportunity, talent, or matchup is typically not on a par with a tier-one player. Tier two players are usually a good option in deep leagues that start multiple players at each position.

    Tier Three Starts

    These players are a bit of a gamble. You should probably only start them in larger leagues and those which start many players at each position. Tier three players can be serviceable as either bye week or injury replacements, but the chances of scoring well are slim. This tier is as close to "sit" as you can get while still retaining some value as a starter.


    As the name implies, sit these players. You should not start these players for any number of reasons. They aren't necessarily bad players. I just don't predict them to be scoring well this game week. In the case of rookies, for example, they may simply need time to earn more playing time and, therefore, our trust as fantasy starters.

    Any player not listed in any of these four categories should probably be considered a "sit." If they become IDP relevant on a week-to-week basis, they will likely end up in one of the categories above.

    No Cornerbacks?

    Johnny writes a separate article for CBs that drops on Fridays, so keep an eye out for that tomorrow!

    True Position Designations

    In some IDP leagues, certain positions are grouped in a suboptimal way, primarily because of outdated interpretations of what players at each position do. Many IDP leagues are turning towards True Position in an effort to address that problem.

    In true position scoring, outside linebackers and defensive ends (ends who predominantly line up outside of the tackle) are grouped together as 'Edge' (rushers). Defensive tackles and defensive ends who play on the interior are grouped together as IDL (interior defensive linemen). This leaves all remaining linebackers as off-ball linebackers (I've called them ILBs in this NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article to help with clarification).

    The result of these changes is that scoring is able to be more fairly distributed between groups of players who, in modern defenses, essentially perform near-identical roles.

    Players with EDGE designations in such leagues, and in this article, can vary in value from leagues that still use traditional DE and OLB positions. The same is true of IDL vs. DT designations and is complicated further by platforms that simply use DL positions to lump all defensive linemen together (the worst!). There is no easy way I can cater to all of these leagues here. Whatever I choose to do, someone would be missing out.

    While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to value translation between these different designations, I can at least offer to help adjust the IDP start/sit advice mentioned here for your league's scoring system. If you find yourself in need of help in that sense, or if you find all of this just too complicated, please send me a Twitter DM. I answer every message I receive.

    Let's get into the fun part of the NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article.

    Thursday Night Football

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    Bucs (4-1) at Eagles (2-3)


    Tier One

    Devin White, ILB; Shaq Barrett, EDGE.

    White played every down, had nine total tackles and two QB hurries. He has 37 tackles in five games. He has 12 total pressures but has yet to register a sack after recording nine sacks last season.

    The lack of sacks isn't for a lack of opportunities; White is second among all ILBs with pass-rush snaps with 48, second only to Demario Davis' 50.

    Barrett had an excellent game to continue his impressive start to the season. He played 43 snaps, led the Bucs with five total pressures, including two sacks. He added a forced fumble.

    The 2019 sack leader now has 22 pressures and four sacks through five games.

    The Eagles are preparing to be without Lane Johnson for an extended period of time due to a personal matter. "We're hopeful that Lane will be back this year," head coach Nick Sirianni said earlier this week.

    Andre Dillard has been standing in for Johnson admirably. There has been some talk that Dillard and Jordan Mailata may switch sides. Either way, Dillard and Mailata represent a challenging matchup for Barrett, Jason Pierre-Paul, and Joe Tryon-Shoyinka in Week 6.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    Jason Pierre-Paul, EDGE; Vita Vea, IDL; Mike Edwards, S.

    JPP returned from an injury last weekend. He failed to make much of a fantasy impact, recording three tackles, missing three more, adding two hurries, and a QB hit.

    The most notable point to take from JPP's fantasy performance was the fact he played 41 snaps to Tryon-Shoyinka's 17.

    JPP is questionable with a shoulder injury, otherwise, he might be a low-end tier two edge rusher. Monitor his status before starting him. If he can't play, Tryon-Shoyinka becomes a low-end tier two edge rusher in his place.

    See Barrett's notes for information on JPP's matchup in Week 6.

    Vea had his second consecutive game with zero tackles. I'm a fan of his in real life, but in fantasy terms, he has returned only marginal value this season.

    The sack he earned last week was deserved reward for any fantasy manager brave enough to stick with him, but you should be looking for better IDL production than Vea can offer.

    The interior of the Eagles offensive line has not been anything to write home about. In their defense, they have dealt with injuries.

    Edwards replaced Winfield last week and was second on the team with six total tackles. Winfield won't play on Thursday night; Edwards could be a decent option if you're short at the safety position.


    Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, EDGE; Ndamukong Suh, IDL; Antoine Winfield, S (injury); Lavonte David, ILB (injury).

    Tryon-Shoyinka has been reasonably disruptive when given the opportunity. Unfortunately for him, in the three games where JPP has been healthy, Tryon-Shoyinka has played only 21, 19, and more recently, 17 total snaps.

    Until he begins to earn more opportunities, Tryon-Shoyinka will remain a talented rookie that you shouldn't be starting in fantasy. 32-year-old JPP is in the final year of his contract, so there is some reason for optimism in dynasty formats.

    As I have said above, JPP is questionable with a shoulder injury. Monitor his status before starting him, or sitting Tryon-Shoyinka.

    Suh has generated just five total tackles and nine pressures in five games. He is well off the pace of his  43 total tackle, 62 pressure season in 2020.

    His 54.1 overall PFF grade is the worst of his career, down 20-30 points on the grades he earned during the 2012-2018 seasons. This is the 5th straight season his grade has been in decline. At 34, it's quite understandable.

    Winfield missed Week 5 with a concussion and is out for Week 6. I've listed Mike Edwards above as a starter with marginal value in Winfield's absence.

    David has been ruled out for Week 6 with an ankle injury. Kevin Minter is the player most likely to replace David, but I'm not confident in recommending Minter as a starter this week.


    Tier One

    Javon Hargrave, IDL.

    I was hesitant to place Hargrave in this tier until last week. The truth is he has been one of the most dominant IDLs of the 2021 season.

    He had two tackles, six pressures, including a sack, a hit, and four hurries against the Panthers last weekend. In total, he now has 21 total tackles, 18 total pressures, including five sacks. His PFF pass-rush grade trails only Maxx Crosby (min. 50 pass rush attempts).

    The interior players on the Bucs offensive line consist of left guard Ali Marpet, center Ryan Jensen, and right guard Alex Cappa. These three have surrendered 25 pressures and only two sacks through five games. Matchups come easier.

    Tier Two

    Alex Singleton, ILB.

    Regardless of what you think of his talent level, Singleton has produced like a tier-two ILB in fantasy. In Week 5, he led the Eagles with 13 total tackles, and he also added a QB hurry. He now has 53 tackles in five games.

    Singleton also paced all Eagles linebackers with 53 of a possible 71 snaps.

    Tier Three

    Fletcher Cox, IDL.

    Cox had his first fantasy-relevant game of the season last weekend. He recorded a tackle, six pressures, including a sack, a hit, and four hurries. Please keep this up, Cox. We desperately need performers on the IDL for our DT/DI required formats.

    See Hargrave's notes for information on Cox's Week 6 matchup.


    Eric Wilson, ILB; Davion Taylor, ILB; Josh Sweat, EDGE; Derek Barnett, EDGE; Anthony Harris, S.

    Wilson's snap count dropped in Week 5. He played 48, 48, and 49 snaps in Weeks 2-4 but played only 29 against the Panthers last weekend. He lost snaps to Davion Taylor.

    Taylor played a season-high 24 snaps. It was an encouraging sign for the youngster. He logged four tackles and a QB hurry. He may separate himself from Wilson and begin to earn the lion's share of snaps going forward, but until he does, I recommend you sit him.

    I was talking Sweat up all off-season, and we've seen little of his talent until last weekend. He had three total tackles, six pressures, including a sack, and five hurries. Sweat played a season-high 53 snaps. I'd love this to be the start of something.

    Sweat faces Tristan Wirfs and Donovan Smith. Wirfs and Smith have allowed just 17 pressures and one sack in total through five games. It is not a good matchup for Sweat.

    Last weekend was his best game as a pass-rusher; he managed five total pressures. Nine of his 13 total pressures have been earned in the last two games. Unfortunately, he is yet to register a sack this season.

    Harris has been inconsistent this season. He had two double-digit tackle games in Weeks 2 and 3 but had four or less in the other three games. Maddening. He did play every down and spent 30 of his 71 snaps in a box role.

    Sunday Early Afternoon Slate

    Dolphins (1-4) at Jaguars (0-5)

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    Tier One

    Tier Two

    Jerome Baker, ILB; Emmanuel Ogbah, EDGE.

    I moved back down to tier two for the first time last week, and he had arguably his most productive fantasy game. Go figure. Seven total tackles, a sack, and a QB hit.

    He played 66 of a possible 74 snaps, easily leading all Dolphins linebackers in that category.

    Ogbah has had a good start to the season in general, but he had his least productive game of the season as a pass-rusher against the Bucs. He played only 37 of a possible 74 snaps, generated zero pressures, and recorded only one tackle.

    The lack of pressure is forgivable; it happens to even the best of players. The lack of snaps is a concern and is something we should monitor closely.

    Ogbah faces Jawaan Taylor in Week 6. Taylor has allowed 11 pressures this season, only two in the last two games. Taylor has yet to give up a sack.

    Tier Three

    Christian Wilkins, IDL; Jaelen Phillips, EDGE.

    Wilkins led the Dolphins IDLs with 46 snaps. He managed just two tackles and a QB hit. He now has 20 tackles and a sack this season. Wilkins showed signs of life with four pressures in Week 4 but has just seven total pressures in 2021. Disappointing.

    The interior of the Jags line has improved in recent games. Wilkins doesn't face an easy matchup.

    Phillips played a season-high 57 snaps against the Bucs after playing just 29 in Week 4. He only generated one pressure but converted it into his second consecutive sack. He added four tackles.

    Phillips has value if he continues to play as many snaps as he did last weekend. He has 11 pressures on 121 pass-rush snaps.

    In Week 6, Phillips will face Cam Robinson more often than not. Robinson has surrendered 18 pressures but zero sacks so far.


    Jevon Holland, S; Raekwon Davis, IDL.

    Holland will be a popular waiver target this week. He's a high-profile rookie, he played a season-high 72 snaps, and he led Dolphins Safeties in that category for the first time. Holland converted those opportunities into eight total tackles against the Bucs.

    I'm throwing caution to the wind for now. Brandon Jones was the box safety on 30 of his 50 snaps, compared with Holland's 14 of 72. Opportunity is key, but we can't ignore the role they play, especially where safeties are concerned.

    It was good to see Davis back again. He played 39 snaps which trailed Wilkins and only just beat Adam Butler's 39. Davis has the potential to become a tier-three IDL if given the opportunity. I'll monitor snap counts carefully each week.


    Tier One


    Tier Two

    Josh Allen, EDGE; Rayshawn Jenkins, S

    Allen led Jaguars' edge rushers with 43 snaps. He recorded seven tackles and four total pressures, including a sack, a QB hit, and two hurries. He now has 13 pressures and three sacks this season.

    The Dolphins made some offensive line changes in Week 5. Liam Eichenberg moved to left tackle, Austin Jackson moved to guard. Head coach Brian Flores said he views these changes as "potentially long-term' before adding that it is something the Dolphins will "stay with for the foreseeable future."

    Eichenberg allowed three pressures and a sack at left tackle but was an improvement over Jackson. Jackson had allowed 24 pressures in four games. Allen still has the advantage in this matchup.

    Jenkins missed just one down but managed just four tackles. He is playing slightly less in the box than earlier in the season but still played 21 of his 63 snaps in a box role.

    Tier Three

    Damien Wilson, ILB.

    Earning playcalling duties is a vote of confidence in Wilson, even if he shares those responsibilities with Jenkins. Wilson had four solo tackles and now has 33 total tackles on the season.

    Wilson played 55 snaps which led all Jaguars linebackers but remember Jack left with an injury. With Jack out in Week 6, Wilson is somewhere between a tier two and three inside linebacker.


    Myles Jack, ILB (injury); K'Lavon Chaisson, EDGE; Dawuane Smoot, EDGE.

    Jack is struggling with a back injury and will not travel to London.

    Jack had six total tackles before suffering the back injury and being replaced. He lost the green dot to Damien Wilson and Rayshawn Jenkins. Urban Meyer said, "he (Jack) plays best when he doesn't have to make the call."

    Chaisson had four total tackles, a sack, and two hurries. He did this on 33 snaps and just nine pass-rush attempts.

    Smoot led the team with two sacks. He added a QB hit and two tackles. He played 41 snaps which is his highest of the season. It's worth keeping an eye on him going forward; he could become a tier-three starter with marginal value.

    Chiefs (2-3) at Washington (2-3)

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    Tier One


    Tier Two

    Tyrann Mathieu, S; Anthony Hitchens, ILB

    Mathieu played every down, and he had four solo tackles. He has 20 solo tackles and two interceptions in four games.

    Hitchens has been the lone constant amongst Chiefs linebackers in snap counts. He played 47 of a possible 57 snaps and recorded six total tackles.

    Tier Three

    Nick Bolton, ILB; Daniel Sorensen, S; Frank Clark, EDGE; Michael Danna, EDGE;

    Bolton was second among linebackers with 43 snaps but led the group and team with seven total tackles.

    It will be interesting to see how Willie Gay Jr.'s return affects snaps for all Chiefs linebackers. I'm continuing to recommend Bolton as a tier-three starter until we see or hear something that suggests we should do otherwise.

    Sorensen played every down and spent 27 of his 57 snaps in the box or on the defensive line. He had four total tackles and missed two more, bringing his missed tackle total to 12 this season. He leads the NFL in that category.

    Clark stole snaps from Michael Danna. He led all of the Chiefs' edge rushers with 47 snaps, earned two tackles, and paced the team with five total pressures - all QB hurries. He did miss three tackle attempts.

    Washington's offensive tackles have played reasonably well in pass protection. Unfortunately, rookie right tackle Samuel Cosmi will miss the game with an ankle injury.

    Left tackle Charles Leno Jr. will play but had had his worst game of the season last weekend, allowing six pressures, including a sack. In the four games prior, Leno was very good, surrendering zero sacks and only four pressures in total.

    Danna conceded snaps to Clark last weekend, as mentioned above. He played just 31 snaps which are the fewest of the season for him. He may feel slightly aggrieved after earning nine pressures and three sacks in the previous two games.

    Danna is in line to play more snaps this weekend with Chris Jones out injured.


    Juan Thornhill, S; Derrick Nnadi, IDL; Willie Gay Jr., ILB; Chris Jones, EDGE (injury).

    Thornhill played 25 snaps and didn't record any fantasy-relevant statistics. Even so, it is difficult to imagine he could be less impactful - and miss as many tackles - as Daniel Sorensen.

    Four Chiefs IDLs played a minimum of 20 snaps. Nnadi led the group with 32, had five total tackles, a QB hurry, and a batted pass. Unfortunately, this defensive line rotation affects his ability to remain consistently productive.

    Gay Jr. returned to the action after missing time with a toe injury. He played 25 snaps, had two solo tackles, both of which were stops. He bravely spoke up about some off-field challenges he faces. I'm pulling for him in that sense.

    Jones is out with the same wrist injury that kept him out last weekend.


    Tier One

    Chase Young, EDGE; Montez Sweat, EDGE; Jonathan Allen, IDL.


    Those who read my previous articles know I'm not the I-told-you-so type, but I will make an exception this once. In Week 5, Young produced the second-best PFF grade of his young career. He had seven total pressures, including a sack, a hit, and five hurries. He also forced a fumble and added a tackle.

    Yes, he has played a hell of a lot. Yes, he has still been a disappointment, but you don't give up on a player of this caliber after four games. Young has 14 tackles and 18 pressures this season and will attempt to build on his performance in the Saints game.

    Young faces Chiefs right tackle Lucas Niang. Niang hasn't allowed a sack in four games, but he has allowed at least five pressures in three games this season, including eight last week against the Bills. Young has a good chance to reward his loyal fantasy managers in Week 6.

    Sweat had four total tackles and four QB hurries last weekend. He didn't manage to convert any of those pressures into a sack, but he does have three in five games this season.

    Sweat will face left tackle Orlando Brown more often than not. Brown, like Niang, hasn't surrendered a sack since Week 1. Brown has allowed 14 pressures this season, already half of the total he allowed in all of 2020, so Sweat fantasy managers have some reason for optimism.

    Allen had two total tackles and generated five total pressures. Unfortunately, he didn't convert any of those pressures into a sack as two were QB hits, and three were hurries. This season, Allen has 18 total tackles and 18 total pressures, including three sacks.

    The interior of Washington's offensive line has been stingy. Left guard Joe Thuney is at the top of his game. Center Creed Humphrey has only allowed two pressures all season. Trey Smith was poor against the Chargers but has otherwise been impressive for a rookie. Payne has faced easier matchups.

    Tier Two

    Daron Payne, IDL; Landon Collins, S; Cole Holcomb, ILB.

    Payne played 49 of a possible 56 snaps, recorded three total tackles, three total pressures, including a sack, and two QB hurries. The former Crimson Tide star now has 18 total pressures this season.

    See Allen's notes above for details on Payne's Week 6 matchup.

    Collins played every down and had six total tackles. 37 of his 56 snaps were spent in a box role or on the defensive line.

    Holcomb played every down. He had seven total tackles, a QB hurry, and an interception. In fantasy terms, he has been playing like a low-end tier-one linebacker. No other Washington linebacker played more than 13 snaps.

    Tier Three

    Kamren Curl, S.

    Curl played 50 snaps, 22 of which were spent in the box or on the defensive line. Curl managed three tackles and a pass breakup.


    Jamin Davis, ILB.

    There was some hope Davis could fill the gap left by the injury to Jon Bostic. Unfortunately for his fantasy managers, Davis played just 13 snaps.

    Rams (4-1) at Giants (1-4)

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    Tier One

    Aaron Donald, IDL.

    Donald had six tackles, seven pressures, including a sack, two hits, and four hurries. He added a batted pass for good measure. Donald now has 28 pressures, including three sacks this season.

    The interior of the Giants offensive line is not particularly strong in pass protection. Wil Hernandez has improved in each of the last three games, but Donald is a mismatch for almost every team he faces.

    Tier Two

    Leonard Floyd, EDGE;  Sebastian Joseph-Day, IDL.

    Floyd led all Rams edge rushers with 63 snaps in Week 5. He recorded four total tackles and had four QB hurries. He missed three tackle attempts.

    The Giants Nate Solder moved to left tackle to replace the injured Andrew Thomas in Week 5. Matt Peart replaced Solder at right tackle. If Thomas is back, Floyd will face Solder. If not, he may face Peart. Neither player represents a difficult matchup for Floyd.

    Joseph-Day justified being placed in tier two last week. He played 50 of a possible 65 snaps and led the Rams with eight total tackles. He also added three QB hurries. Like Donald, he faces the interior of a Giants offensive line that can be taken advantage of.

    Tier Three

    Terrell Lewis, EDGE; Jordan Fuller, S. Taylor Rapp, S;

    Lewis has stepped up in the absence of Justin Hollins. He had 56% of the available defensive snaps in Week 4 and earned three pressures and a sack. He then had 64% of snaps in Week 5 and earned five pressures and a sack.

    If Andrew Thomas returns from injury, Lewis will face a difficult matchup. If Thomas doesn't return, Nate Solder will present a good matchup.

    Fuller played every down and had five total tackles. Only six of his 65 snaps were spent in a box role.

    Rapp played every down too. He had just one tackle. 17 of his snaps were spent in the box or on the defensive line.


    Kenny Young, ILB; Troy Reeder, ILB.

    Young played only 42 of a possible 65 snaps. Reeder played 51. This was quite a shift considering Young played 77 to Reeders 27 in Week 5.

    Against the Seahawks in Week 5, Young produced four tackles and a QB hurry. Reeder had the same but also registered an interception. I would not be in any great hurry to start either player until it becomes clear who is favored, but the momentum is certainly with Reeder at this point.


    Tier One

    Leonard Williams, IDL.

    Williams had four total tackles and a sack against the Cowboys last weekend. He played 56 of a possible 78 snaps. He now has 23 total tackles, 13 pressures, including two sacks this season.

    Rams left guard David Edwards, center Brian Allen, and right guard Austin Corbett have allowed an average of five pressures per game. Williams has the advantage here.

    Tier Two

    Dexter Lawrence, IDL.

    Lawrence played 45 snaps, had three solo tackles, and a QB hurry. Hardly earth-shattering numbers, but it happens at this position.

    The Giants IDL Austin Johnson snap numbers have increased in each of the last four games. He played 45 snaps this week, equalling Lawrence's total. And Johnson earned a sack, too.

    See Williams' notes for information on Lawrence's matchup in Week 6.

    Tier Three

    Azeez Ojulari, EDGE; Logan Ryan, S; Tae Crowder, ILB. Reggie Ragland, ILB.

    Ojulari had four tackles but generated no pressures for the first time this season. I did warn that he had a difficult matchup against the Cowboys' offensive tackles last week.

    Rams offensive tackles Andrew Whitworth and Rob Havenstein will also be a difficult matchup for Ojulari in Week 6.

    Ryan played every down and had eight total tackles and a QB hurry. He now has 40 tackles this season, two pass breakups, and a sack. 26 of his 78 snaps were spent in the box or on the defensive line.

    Tae Crowder also played every down. He had six total tackles. Crowder and Ragland are in the same tier, but I prefer Crowder of the two.

    Ragland had 60 snaps, six total tackles, a batted pass, and two QB hurries. I'm not a fan of Ragland as a player, but as always, fantasy production is all that matters in this context. Ragland has had 15 tackles since he began starting for the Giants two weeks ago.


    Lorenzo Carter, EDGE; Jabrill Peppers, S (injury); Xavier McKinney, S.

    Carter had three total tackles, a batted pass, and an interception. He did nothing as a pass rusher and has only seven pressures, including zero sacks, on 111 pass-rush snaps.

    Peppers missed the Cowboys game with a hamstring injury. Even when healthy, he is a risky start.

    McKinney played every down and had a season-high seven total tackles. Only 11 of his 78 snaps were spent in the box or on the defensive line. He may find it difficult to reproduce tackle numbers like these on a consistent basis.

    Texans (1-4) at Colts (1-4)

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    Tier One


    Tier Two

    Christian Kirksey, ILB.

    Kirksey becomes the Texans linebacker to own, given the situation with Zach Cunningham. Kirksey played every down, recorded a season-high nine total tackles, and had a pass breakup.

    Tier Three

    Kamu Grugier-Hill, ILB.

    Grugier-Hill filled in for Cunningham in Q1 of Week 2 and again in Week 4. Grugier-Hill immediately leapfrogs him into tier three after playing ahead of him in Week 5.

    He had four total tackles, three of which were stops.


    Zach Cunningham, ILB. Charles Omenihu, EDGE; Maliek Collins, IDL; Whitney Mercilus, EDGE; Jonathan Greenard, EDGE; Jordan Jenkins, EDGE.

    It's rare for a tier-one fantasy producer to drop all the way to the sit column in the space of just one week, but what else are we to do with a player who barely plays half of the available snaps? Cunningham managed just 33 of a possible 64 snaps against the Patriots.

    Cunningham managed just two tackles when he was on the field and missed three more tackle opportunities. Unless he wins his job back, I can't recommend him as even a tier-three starter. Things move fast in this game!

    Omenihu was a healthy scratch after earning a team-high four pressures in Week 4. "We felt some other guys needed a chance," David Culley explained.

    Collins had three total tackles in Week 5. He led all of the Texans' IDLs with 37 of a possible 64 snaps. He is a recommended sit, even at a shallow position, because four other Texans' IDLs had at least 23 snaps. This sort of heavy rotation isn't rare at this position, but it harms fantasy value.

    Greenard had a sack, but it was his only pressure of the game. He barely played half the available defensive snaps.

    David Culley specifically mentioned Jordan Jenkins deserved more chances as part of that earlier quote. Jenkins did play a season-high 30 snaps, but that was still only good enough to rank joint-3rd among Texans edge rushers.

    Jenkins did make good use of those 30 snaps. He had six total tackles, a QB hit, and a hurry. He had the best PFF grade of any Texans defender, and by some margin. Maybe he earns himself more opportunities going forward?


    Tier One

    DeForest Buckner, IDL; Darius Leonard, ILB.

    Buckner tied for a team-high four total pressures against the Ravens. Unfortunately, he didn't convert any of them into a sack. He did add four total tackles.

    The interior of the Ravens' offensive line has been inconsistent. Each of the three players is seemingly taking it in turns to have poor games. Buckner is a premier IDL, so fire him up as a tier-one IDL in Week 6.

    Leonard led the Colts in Week 5 with 14 total tackles. He added a QB hit and, remarkably, his third fumble recovery in three consecutive games. I am concerned about his ongoing ankle pain, but he played every down yet again.

    Tier Two

    Bobby Okereke, ILB; Khari Willis, S.

    I've moved Okereke up a tier. He may not be grading well as an NFL player, but he is delivering for fantasy managers. He had 11 total tackles last weekend, increasing his total to 37 in five games.

    Like Leonard, Okereke played every down. No other Colts linebacker is getting close to Leonard or Okereke in snaps.

    Willis played only 19 snaps in Week 5. He was dealing with ankle and groin injuries, and I'm assuming he was limited. If he is healthy this week, start him as a low-end tier two safety. He has 21 tackles, an interception, and a sack in three healthy games this season. Just make sure you monitor his status.

    Tier Three



    Tyquan Lewis, EDGE; Al-Quadin Muhammad, EDGE.

    Lewis tied for the team lead with four total pressures, and he led the team with two sacks. He played 59 of a possible 73 snaps. He also added three tackles.

    It could be the start of something for Lewis, but it would be a surprise to me.

    Muhammad had six total tackles, three total pressures, including a sack. It was his third sack of the season.

    However, those three sacks have been earned on only nine pressures. He has had 122 pass-rush opportunities.

    Bengals (3-2) at Lions (0-5)

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    Tier One

    Vonn Bell, S.

    Bell played every down and was second on the team with nine total tackles against the Packers. He also added a QB hurry.

    35 of his 64 snaps were spent in the box or on the defensive line. His tackle numbers should give him a nice fantasy floor while this remains the case.

    Tier Two

    Logan Wilson, ILB; Trey Hendrickson, EDGE; Sam Hubbard, EDGE; Jessie Bates III, S.

    Wilson had a quiet game by his 2021 standards but still managed seven total tackles. He played 55 of a possible 64 snaps. Continue starting him. No other Bengals linebacker is threatening his snap share.

    Hendrickson tied for the team lead with four total pressures. He also converted two of those pressures into sacks. The former Saints edge rusher now has 24 pressures and five sacks in his first five games as a Bengal.

    He will be a boom or bust player, given his low tackle numbers. He has only four tackles this season.

    Hendrickson will face Penei Sewell this weekend. Sewell didn't allow a sack in his first three games but has given up four sacks in his last two. This is a case of an in-form edge rusher meeting an offensive tackle who is struggling. Advantage Hendrickson.

    Hubbard had two tackles, and three QB hurries in Week 5. He has a safer fantasy floor than Hendrickson but a lower ceiling. Hubbard has two sacks and 23 total tackles this season.

    Hubbard faces left tackle Matt Nelson in Week 6. Nelson has struggled, allowing 22 total pressures in five games. Hubbard could have a good week.

    Bates returned from injury to play every defensive snap. He led the team with 10 total tackles. He is one of very few safeties who line up deep and yet record good tackle numbers.

    Bates has 31 tackles in just four games.

    Tier Three

    DJ Reader, IDL; Germaine Pratt, ILB.

    Reader paced all Bengals IDLs with 49 snaps. He had five total tackles and a QB hit.

    Lions center Frank Ragnow is the only player on the interior of the Lions offensive line who has acquitted himself well this season, and Ragnow is out for the season with a toe injury.

    I don't believe in Pratt as an NFL player, but he had five solo tackles in the Packers game, bringing his total to 29 this season.


    Larry Ogunjobi, IDL; Akeem Davis-Gaither, ILB.

    Ogunjobi has not been productive for the Bengals. He had zero tackles, and three QB hurries in Week 5. Those three hurries doubled his pressure totals for the season.

    ADG doesn't play enough. He had just 21 total snaps last weekend.


    Tier One


    Tier Two

    Trey Flowers, EDGE; Charles Harris, EDGE.

    It was nice to see Flowers playing again and back amongst the sacks too. He had four total tackles, a sack, and a hurry against the Vikings.

    Flowers faces Jonah Williams and Riley Reiff in Week 6. Neither offensive tackle has allowed many pressures this season, but they have each allowed two sacks. Even so, Flowers will have easier matchups than this.

    Harris has 14 pressures in his last four games and has a sack in four consecutive games. He won't help his fantasy floor with many tackles - he has just only nine in four games - but I can't overlook his production as a pass rusher any longer.

    Like Flowers, Harris faces a challenging matchup in Week 6. Harris will go up against left tackle Jonah Williams who has allowed only one pressure in his last three games, albeit a sack.

    Tier Three

    Alex Anzalone, ILB.

    Anzalone played every snap against the Vikings and only earned four total tackles. He could have had more, but he missed three tackle attempts.

    He did save the day for fantasy managers with an interception.


    Tracy Walker, S; Derrick Barnes, ILB; Jalen Reeves-Maybin, ILB.

    Walker had his best game of the season. He played 56 of 67 snaps, recorded nine solo tackles, seven of which were stops. He also added a pass breakup.

    I'm not confident Walker can come close to repeating this kind of performance each week. Not because he lacks talent, rather because 47 of his 56 snaps were spent lined up as either free safety or in the slot.

    I hoped the departure of Jamie Collins would open the door for Barnes to step into a more prominent role. It is Reeves-Maybin who has benefitted the most in terms of increased opportunities.

    Reeves-Maybin had 41 snaps last weekend. He had five total tackles and forced a fumble. He could become a starter with marginal value if he keeps this up.

    Barnes, meanwhile, played a season-high 31 snaps and earned six total tackles. I'm keeping my eye on the linebacker situation behind Anzalone.

    Packers (4-1) at Bears (3-2)

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    Tier One

    Kenny Clark, IDL.

    Clark had 54 of a possible 67 snaps against the Bengals in Week 5. He had five total tackles and a QB hurry. He is yet to register his first sack of the season but is doing everything but. Clark has 20 tackles and 16 pressures in five games.

    The interior of the Bears offensive line consists of left guard Cody Whitehair, center Sam Mustipher, and right guard James Daniels. After a shaky start to the season, these three players have been playing as well as any three interior offensive linemen in football. They have surrendered zero pressures in the last three games.

    Tier Two

    Adrian Amos, S; Rashan Gary, EDGE; De'Vondre Campbell, ILB.

    Amos played every down, had nine total tackles, and recorded an interception last weekend. He now has 36 tackles this season.

    Gary had four solo tackles and only one pressure. It was his first game without at least three pressures this season. I pointed out that facing Riley Reiff and Jonah Williams would be difficult.

    Gary will face left tackle Jason Peters and Elijah Wilkinson who will probably replace Germain Ifedi who has been placed on IR. Peters has allowed three sacks in five games. Gary will be hoping he can add to those numbers and has a reasonable chance to do so.

    Campbell was a popular discussion point last week after the Jaylon Smith signing. Campbell set out to prove this is his role to lose. He played 59 of 67 snaps, recorded nine total tackles, and had an interception.

    Tier Three

    Preston Smith, EDGE.

    Smith led all edge rushers - even Gary - with 49 snaps. However, Smith's 25 pass-rush snaps did trail Gary's 30. Smith converted his opportunities into three total tackles, a sack, and a hurry.

    See Gary's notes for information about Smith's matchup in Week 6.


    Darnell Savage, S; Jaylon Smith, ILB.

    Savage played every down once again. He had five solo tackles to increase his total to 14 this season. It isn't enough to be fantasy-relevant each week. He continues to line up so deep it is difficult to be as involved as fantasy managers would like him to be.

    Smith's role remains to be seen. I'll obviously be watching this situation closely. Campbell has played well enough to continue in his current role, but we'll have to wait and see.


    Tier One

    Khalil Mack, EDGE; Roquan Smith, ILB

    Mack had a nice game against the Raiders. He had seven solo tackles, six of which were stops. He added five total pressures, including a sack and four hurries. Mack now has five sacks in his last four games.

    The Packers may have Elgton Jenkins back for Week 6. Jenkins practiced in a limited fashion last week. Unless Jenkins is fully healthy, and even if he is, it's difficult to imagine an in-form Mack not being able to take advantage of this matchup. Yosh Nijman and Billy Turner are not on the same level.

    There are rumors Jenkins will return to guard, leaving Nijman at left tackle.

    Smith had 13 tackles and a pass breakup last weekend. He now has 49 tackles, two sacks, a pass breakup, and an interception in five games. Start him with confidence.

    Tier Two

    Robert Quinn, EDGE.

    Quinn registered 11 pressures in Weeks 3 and 4. He had recorded four sacks in his last three games ahead of the Raiders game. Kolton Miller was always going to be a difficult matchup, but Quinn managed zero pressures.

    See Mack's notes for matchup information for Quinn. Quinn will either face whoever lines up at left tackle for the Packers in Week 6.

    Tier Three

    Akiem Hicks, IDL.

    Hicks missed the Raiders game with a groin injury. Monitor his status ahead of the game. He hasn't quite been the impact player we're used to seeing this season, but he has only played three full games.


    Eddie Jackson, S; Alec Ogletree, ILB; Danny Trevathan, ILB.

    Jackson has done very little this season. He played 32 of his 67 snaps in the box or on the defensive line but still only managed three total tackles. He is averaging less than four tackles per game this season.

    Ogletree isn't a good player, but he has produced in fantasy terms in the last few weeks. 17 tackles and a pass breakup over that span. He remains a sit recommendation in this NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article because he played only 35 of a possible 57 snaps.

    Trevathan returned from IR last week and only played 10 snaps. I wouldn't be surprised to see him reclaim the role from Ogletree, but I'm happy to wait a week to know for sure before starting him.

    Chargers (4-1) at Ravens (4-1)

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    Tier One

    Joey Bosa, EDGE; Derwin James, S.

    Bosa played 64 of a possible 72 snaps and had his quietest game as a pass rusher this season. He had just three total tackles and one QB hurry.

    Alejandro Villanueva and Patrick Mekari shouldn't represent a difficult matchup for Bosa. If Stanley returns, it could be a slightly different story.

    James was everywhere in Week 5. He had 14 total tackles, a forced fumble, and a sack. He now has 38 tackles, a sack, a forced fumble, and an interception this season. 34 of his 72 snaps were in the box or on the defensive line.

    Tier Two

    Kyzir White, ILB.

    Kenneth Murray is on IR, and Drue Tranquill is out with a chest injury, so White gets bumped into tier two for this game.

    White played 53 snaps and had five solo tackles last weekend, one less than Tranquill.

    Tier Three

    Jerry Tillery, IDL; Linval Joseph, IDL; Nasir Adderley, S.

    Tillery had six total tackles and a QB hurry in Week 5. He is more likely to drop to the sit tier than he is to rise to tier two.

    Joseph has 22 total tackles this season which is reasonably good for an IDL. He only has eight total pressures and zero sacks, but his 2021 PFF pass grade is the best of his career. Admittedly it is a small sample size.

    I've resisted recommending Adderley as a starter, even at tier three-level, but he has earned at least eight tackles in three of his five games this season.


    Drue Tranquill, ILB (injury).

    Tranquill is out with a chest injury.


    Tier One


    Tier Two

    Patrick Queen, ILB; Chuck Clark, S; Calais Campbell, IDL; Odafe Oweh, EDGE.

    Queen had five tackles and a QB hit against the Colts. He played 50 of a possible 69 snaps. He is not playing particularly well but remains a tier two linebacker.

    Clark played every down and earned four solo tackles. 26 of his 69 snaps were spent in a box role or on the defensive line.

    Campbell led all Ravens IDLs in snaps by some margin, with 52. He had four total tackles, a QB hit, and a hurry.

    The Chargers lost their best guard, Oday Aboushi, to injury. Former Panther, Michael Schofield, is most likely to replace him this week. Center Corey Linsley has found form after a rocky start; left guard Matt Feiler had a good game after some decidedly poor games earlier in the season.

    If Campbell can be isolated on either guard, he will face a good matchup here.

    Oweh gets bumped into tier two this week. He has moved around and can take advantage of right tackle Storm Norton, who has been poor.

    Oweh led the Ravens' edge rushers in snaps and total pressures in Week 5. His five pressures brought his season total to 18, and his sack increased his season tally to three. Much has been asked of the rookie, but he has delivered in impression fashion so far.

    Tier Three

    DeShon Elliott, S; Tyus Bowser, ILB/EDGE.

    Elliott was inactive for Monday night football against the Colts. It was the second game he has missed with a quad injury. If he returns this week, I would recommend starting him as a tier-three safety.

    Bowser had 44 snaps and six total tackles on Monday night. After a six-pressure, two-sack performance last week, he earned zero pressures against the Colts.



    Vikings (2-3) at Panthers (3-2)

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    Tier One

    Danielle Hunter, EDGE; Eric Kendricks, ILB; Harrison Smith, S.

    Hunter played 61 of 68 snaps, recorded three total tackles, a sack, and three hurries against Detroit.

    In Week 5, the Panthers Taylor Moton moved from his normal right tackle position to the left tackle spot, filling in for the injured Cam Erving. Brady Christensen occupied the right tackle spot. Hunter will face Christensen more often than not if Erving doesn't make it back. It's a very good matchup for Hunter.

    Kendricks played every down, recorded seven total tackles, and logged an interception. He remains a fantasy stud at ILB.

    Smith led the Vikings with 10 total tackles. He also added a pass breakup. He is off to a good start in justifying the big, new contract.

    Tier Two

    Everson Griffen, EDGE.

    I must admit I didn't expect Griffen to be more than a tier-three level starter again in his career, but here we are. The veteran edge rusher is thriving opposite Hunter.

    In Week 5, Griffen played 49 of a possible 68 snaps, he led the team with six total pressures, two of which were sacks, and he forced a fumble. Griffen also added two tackle assists.

    Griffen now has 16 total pressures and four sacks in four games. If Cam Erving returns from injury to man the left tackle spot, Griffen could continue this run of form. If Moton continues at left tackle in place of Erving, Griffen may find things a little more difficult.

    Tier Three

    Anthony Barr, ILB; Xavier Woods, S.

    Barr didn't look too impressive in his first game back from injury. He played all 68 snaps and earned just three total tackles. Maybe he's a little rusty? Nick Vigil, Barr's injury replacement earlier in the season, earned five total tackles on just 25 snaps.

    Woods played every down and recorded eight total tackles against the Lions. It was his third game of the season with six or more total tackles.


    Nick Vigil, ILB; D.J. Wonnum, EDGE.

    Vigil played 25 snaps, as I mentioned above. That isn't enough in fantasy terms.

    Wonnum recorded his first sack of the season in Week 5. Don't get too carried away just yet; it took 141 pass-rush snaps for this to happen.


    Tier One

    Brian Burns, EDGE; Haason Reddick, EDGE; Jeremy Chinn, S.

    Burns played 51 of a possible 67 snaps, registered two total tackles and three QB hurries. He has 17 total pressures, including three tackles this season.

    The Vikings replaced left tackle Rashod Hill with rookie Christian Darrisaw in the 2nd quarter of the Eagles game. Hill had surrendered his third sack in three games and was not playing well.

    Burns and Reddick should be able to take advantage of Darrisaw. Brian O'Neill will be a difficult challenge.

    Reddick recorded two sacks against the Eagles. It is the fourth time this season he has had a multi-sack game. He also added five solo tackles.

    Chinn played 47 of his 67 snaps in either a box role or on the defensive line. He recorded three tackles, missed two more tackle attempts, and added a QB hurry. If his usage in this game is any indication of how he will be used going forward, it bodes well for Chinn. He needs some big games.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    Derrick Brown, IDL; Jermaine Carter, ILB.

    Brown has been a disappointment so far this season. I thought he had a chance to be a tier two IDL for much of the season, but instead, I have to justify ranking him as an IDL with even marginal value.

    He did show signs of improvement against the Eagles. Three total tackles and three QB hurries.

    The interior of the Vikings offensive line has been poor. Uli Udoh, Garrett Bradbury, and Ezra Cleveland have allowed a total of 33 pressures in five games. Brown has a decent matchup.

    Carter played every snap in the absence of Shaq Thompson but failed to capitalize. He had three solo tackles and a pass breakup.



    Sunday Mid-Afternoon Games

    Cardinals (5-0) at Browns (3-2)

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    Tier One

    Budda Baker, S

    Baker led the team with seven total tackles. He also added an interception and a QB hurry.

    Tier Two

    Isaiah Simmons, ILB; J.J.Watt, EDGE.

    Simmons managed only three tackles and a QB hurry against the 49ers. He still played 62 of a possible 65 snaps but continues to play double-digit snaps in the slot each week. If this remains the case, the production we saw in the first two weeks of the season may be the exception rather than the rule.

    Watt had five pressures for the third consecutive game. Sadly for his fantasy managers, he failed once again to convert any of these pressures into a sack. He now has 23 pressures this season and zero sacks. The sacks will come if he can continue playing like this.

    The Browns offensive tackle Jedrick Wills missed the game last week. He had been struggling with an ankle injury suffered in Week 1. Monitor his status this week.

    Jack Conklin has been playing well at right tackle for the Browns. He allowed two sacks in the first two games but has since allowed zero sacks and only three pressures.

    Watt also sees time inside in certain packages. The interior of the Browns line is solid.

    Tier Three

    Markus Golden, EDGE; Jordan Hicks, ILB; Jalen Thompson, S.

    Golden played only 33 snaps of a possible 65 in Week 5. He generated zero pressures. He remains in tier three as he could be relied upon in the absence of Chandler Jones.

    Hicks played every down and had six total tackles. He belongs in the upper end of tier three while he is playing this much.

    Thompson had six total tackles and a pass breakup last weekend. He now has 33 tackles in five games.


    Chandler Jones, EDGE (injury); Zaven Collins, ILB

    On Wednesday, Jones was added to the reserve/COVID-19 list and is not expected to play against the Browns.

    Collins had a season-high 34 snaps and earned five total tackles. It was an encouraging development, but he needs to play more than this to become fantasy-relevant each week.


    Tier One

    Myles Garrett, EDGE; Jadeveon Clowney, EDGE.

    Garrett had five pressures, including a sack and four hurries against the Chargers. He added a tackle and a batted pass.

    He will face D.J. Humphries more often than not this weekend. Humphries has played pretty well this season. He allowed two sacks against the Vikings in Week 2 but has allowed zero sacks in any other games.

    Clowney missed Week 5 with an elbow injury. He didn't practice on Weds, so monitor his status closely ahead of starting him this weekend.

    Clowney has 21 pressures and three sacks in four games this season. If healthy, he is a low-end tier-one edge rusher for fantasy purposes.

    Tier Two

    Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, ILB; Malik Jackson, IDL;

    In last week's article, I mentioned JOK's snap share was increasing with every game. Even so, I didn't expect his snaps to jump from 35 in Week 5 to 68 in Week 6. He led all Browns linebackers in snaps, even overtaking Anthony Walker.

    JOK managed five total tackles and a forced fumble.

    Jackson led all Browns IDLs with 54 snaps but failed to produce in fantasy terms. He had just one tackle, one QB hit, and one hurry.

    Cards center Rodney Hudson hasn't allowed a single pressure all season but is out for this game with a rib injury. Left guard Justin Pugh has allowed only 5, none of which have been sacks. Right guard Josh Jones hasn't been nearly as good.

    Tier Three

    Anthony Walker, ILB; Malik McDowell, IDL.

    Walker was second in snaps among Browns linebackers but still played 55 of a possible 75. He managed four total tackles.

    McDowell had only one pressure in this game but registered a sack. He has 10 pressures this season.


    John Johnson, S; Takk McKinley, EDGE; Grant Delpit, S.

    Johnson played every down but has yet to have a fantasy-relevant game. 66 of his 75 snaps were spent lined up as a free safety.

    McKinley could have capitalized in Clowney's absence but only managed one tackle and three pressures.

    Delpit only played 23 snaps after playing every down in Week 4.

    Raiders (3-2) at Broncos (3-2)

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    Tier One

    Maxx Crosby, EDGE. Denzel Perryman, ILB;

    Crosby finished with one assisted tackle and one hurry against the Bears. He now has four consecutive games without a sack. I encourage fantasy managers to stick with him. He leads the NFL with 31 pressures and is playing very well despite the lack of sacks in recent weeks.

    Crosby faces Broncos right tackle Bobby Massie in Week 6. Massie has been sub-par, allowing 17 total pressures and two sacks in five games. Crosby could easily record his first sack since Week 1.

    Perryman has been a tackling machine this season. He added 15 more total tackles against the Bears, increasing his season total to 63. He now leads the NFL in tackles. I never imagined he would ascend to the tier one linebackers in this NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article, but I can't deny him any longer. Kudos, Denzel.

    Tier Two

    Yannick Ngakoue, EDGE; Cory Littleton, ILB; Jonathan Abram, S.

    Ngakoue paced the Raiders with four pressures and two sacks in Week 5. He also added a tackle.

    He faces left tackle Garrett Bolles this weekend. Bolles hasn't played quite as well as he did in 2020, but he had a good game against the Steelers, allowing zero pressures and recording his highest PFF pass-blocking grade of the season.

    Littleton led the Raiders in linebacker snaps with 56 to Perryman's 52. Littleton had seven total tackles and now has 43 this season.

    Abram played every down, had five total tackles and three QB hits. 45 of his 64 snaps were in the box or on the defensive line.

    Tier Three





    Tier One

    Von Miller, EDGE.

    Week 5 was Miller's first game of the 2021 season without a sack. He played 58 of 65 snaps and recorded two tackles and two QB hurries.

    Miller faces right tackle Brandon Parker in Week 6. Parker replaced rookie Alex Leatherwood who has been moved to guard. Parker was poor, surrendering three pressures, but he was an upgrade on Leatherwood. Miller still has one of the best matchups of the week.

    Tier Two

    Justin Simmons, S; Alexander Johnson, ILB.

    Unfortunately for his fantasy managers, Simmons' increase in box snaps in Week 4 did not carry over to Week 5. He played in the box on just nine of his 65 snaps.

    Simmons managed six total tackles and a QB hurry against the Steelers.

    Johnson played every down, had seven total tackles, a pass breakup, and a QB hurry. He has PFFs second-highest grade among off-ball linebackers this season (min. 50 snaps).

    Tier Three

    Malik Reed, EDGE; Kareem Jackson, S; Justin Strnad, ILB; Shelby Harris, IDL.

    Reed recorded the Broncos' only sack last weekend. He added a QB hurry, six total tackles, and a forced fumble. He played 61 of a possible 65 snaps, which led all Broncos edge rushers.

    Reed has a difficult matchup in Raiders left tackle, Kolton Miller. Miller is a good left tackle and has yet to surrender a sack this season.

    Jackson played 55 snaps and had seven total tackles. He has 29 total tackles this season.

    Strnad had a better game in his third start. He played 51 snaps, recorded six total tackles, and a QB hurry.

    Harris led Broncos IDL players with 42 snaps. He had five total tackles but didn't generate any pressures for the first time this season.


    Dre'Mont Jones, IDL.

    Jones has been a bit disappointing this season. He had three total tackles, and a QB hit last week. Harris has only played marginally better. Both need to up their game a little to help fantasy managers.

    Cowboys (4-1) at Patriots (2-3)

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    Tier One

    Micah Parsons, ILB/EDGE

    Parsons played 63 of a possible 68 snaps against the Giants. He spent 58 of those in the box and just three on the defensive line. He rushed the passer just 13 times.

    Parsons recorded eight total tackles, five of which were stops. He added two QB hits and two hurries.

    Tier Two

    Osa Odighizuwa, IDL; Randy Gregory, EDGE; Jayron Kearse, S.

    Odighizuwa had a tackle, and four total pressures, including two hits and two hurries. He is now third in the NFL in total pressures among all IDL with 19, three of which he has converted into sacks. It's a really impressive start to the season for the rookie.

    Gregory didn't record a sack but had a productive game as a pass rusher. He generated nine total pressures, including three hits and six hurries. He now has 19 pressures and two sacks in four games.

    The Patriots were missing four of their five starting offensive linemen in Week 5. When they are all available, the interior of the line is very good. Keep an eye on who is available closer to the weekend if you're looking to start Odighizuwa or Gregory.

    Kearse played every down, earned six total tackles, two QB hurries. 39 of his 68 snaps were spent in the box or on the defensive line. He now has 30 tackles in five games, only four of which were starts.

    Tier Three

    Leighton Vander Esch, ILB; Keanu Neal, ILB.

    LVE played only 31 snaps, and Neal played 34. LVE had five total tackles, and Neal had four.

    While neither of them is playing even half the defensive snaps, they have marginal starter value.


    Jabril Cox, ILB.

    People seem excited about Cox. It would be nice to see him become a factor in IDP, but he played just four snaps last week and has a depth chart to climb, even after the departure of Jaylon Smith.


    Tier One

    Matt Judon, EDGE.

    Judon continued his fine start to the season against the Texans with two more sacks. He now has 22 pressures and seven sacks in 5 games.

    Judon will face both left tackle Tyron Smith, and right tackle Terence Steele. Smith is as good as they come and will be difficult to beat. Steele, despite playing the best game of his young career last week, would not be a match for Judon.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    Kyle Dugger, S; Adrian Phillips, S.

    Dugger played 45 of a possible 63 snaps. He spent 30 of those snaps in the box or on the defensive line.

    Dugger led the Patriots with nine total tackles and now has 31 total tackles this season. He's in the upper end of tier-three safeties.

    Phillips played 53 snaps and spent 32 of those in the box or on the defensive line. Phillips was second on the Pats with seven total tackles.


    Ja'Whaun Bentley, ILB; Dont'a Hightower, ILB; Josh Uche, EDGE.

    Bentley was fourth among Pats linebackers with 37 snaps.

    Hightower had six total tackles but only played 38 snaps.

    Uche played just 14 snaps. I won't mention him again until things improve in that sense.

    Sunday Night Football

    Seahawks (2-3) at Steelers (2-3)

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    Tier One

    Bobby Wagner, ILB; Jamal Adams, S.

    Wagner played every down, and he had five total tackles and a QB hurry. It was a quiet game by his standards, but he will bounce back.

    Adams played every down and had five total tackles. He isn't playing anywhere near the level he is capable. His tackle total is still decent, but he lacks any splash plays to boost his fantasy value. He's simply playing quite poorly at the moment. He's on shaky ground.

    Tier Two

    Jordyn Brooks, ILB.

    Brooks led the Seahawks with 12 total tackles, the most he has ever had in a single game. He now has 43 tackles in five games.

    He played 61 of a possible 67 snaps and rushed the passer eight times.

    Tier Three

    Quandre Diggs, S. Darrell Taylor, EDGE.

    Diggs played every down and played almost every snap in a deep alignment. He managed five tackles, and he recorded an interception, his second in consecutive games.

    Taylor is a difficult one. He has earned 12 pressures this season, converted four of those into sacks, but has done so on only 79 pass-rush snaps.

    I'm not arguing he doesn't deserve to play more snaps, the rookie has impressed, but he's still third in snaps among edge rushers on his own team. Start him if you must, but I'm pessimistic that this level of production is sustainable.

    He does have a decent matchup against the Steelers this week. Chukwuma Okorafor isn't bad, he's played well in his last two games, but Dan Moore is bad, despite playing well against the Broncos last week.


    Poona Ford, IDL.

    It wouldn't take much for Ford to sneak into tier three, there is a dearth of productivity at the IDL spot, but he falls just short this week.


    Tier One

    Cam Heyward, IDL. T.J. Watt, EDGE.

    Heyward played 45 of a possible 60 snaps against Denver. He had three tackles, all three of which were stops. He added two hurries and two batted passes.

    Heyward hasn't had a sack in four consecutive games, but he has 19 pressures, 26 total tackles, five batted passes and a forced fumble. He remains a dominant IDL.

    He has a nice matchup in Kyle Fuller and Damien Lewis in this Seahawks game.

    Watt didn't record a sack, but he had PFF's highest overall defensive grade. He had three total tackles, one QB hit, and four hurries. He has 15 pressures and four sacks in four games this season.

    Watt will face right tackle Brandon Shell in Week 6. Shell can be half-decent in pass protection at times but is no match for Watt.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    Melvin Ingram, EDGE; Devin Bush, ILB; Joe Schobert, ILB; Terrell Edmunds, S; Minkah Fitzpatrick, S.

    Ingram played slightly more than he did last week, but he still only managed 36 of a possible 60 snaps. He had one assisted tackle and one QB hurry.

    He has 16 pressures this season which is a good number, but 11 of those came in the first two weeks when he was playing more than 50 snaps a game. It is difficult to continue being as productive when playing as little as he is now.

    The bad news is that Bush left the Broncos game with a leg injury. The good news is that he practiced in full on Wednesday.

    Before Bush left the game, he had 25 snaps, earning a sack and a QB hit. He only has 15 total tackles this season, but he has only played three and a bit games.

    Schobert played 49 of 60 snaps. He had five tackles and a pass breakup. He has 32 total tackles this season.

    Edmunds played every down and had six total tackles. He played 32 of his 60 snaps in the box or on the defensive line.

    Minkah paced all Steelers defenders with 10 total tackles. 11 of his 60 snaps were spent in a box role. He has 36 total tackles this season and has generally begun to play a little better the last two weeks.


    Alex Highsmith, EDGE.

    Highsmith showed a lot of promise coming into the season but has failed to deliver so far. He has only four total pressures in four games. He may still come good.

    Monday Night Football

    Bills (4-1) at Titans (3-2)

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    Tier One

    Jordan Poyer, S; Matt Milano, ILB.

    Poyer played all 86 defensive snaps on his return from injury. He had seven total tackles and two pass breakups. It hasn't been the fastest start of the season for Poyer in tackles, but he has helped fantasy managers with a couple of big plays.

    Poyer only had three snaps in the box, which is concerning.

    Milano missed Week 5 with a hamstring injury. McDermott has suggested Milano could be back this week. If Milano plays, he's a low-end tier-one linebacker. The Bills could do with his presence against Derrick Henry. Monitor Milano's status.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    Tremaine Edmunds, ILB; Jerry Hughes, EDGE.

    Edmunds is somewhere between tier two and three as a fantasy starter. He played every down last weekend and had eight total tackles. This increased his season total to 26 in five games.

    Hughes had easily his most productive game as a pass rusher this season. The veteran had eight total pressures, including a sack and seven hurries.

    It was a slight departure from the norm for the Bills to give one pass rusher much more snaps than the rest, but that is what they did vs. the Chiefs. Hughes had 54 snaps, while four other Bills edge rushers had between 28 and 36 snaps.

    Titans' right tackle David Quessenberry started the season well, allowing just two pressures in three games. He has since allowed 15 pressures and two sacks in his last two games. Left tackle Taylor Lewan has done the opposite. He started poorly but has improved since and had his best game last week.


    Gregory Rousseau, EDGE; All Bills edge rushers not named Jerry Hughes; Micah Hyde, S;

    Rousseau had a sack against the Chiefs. It was his only pressure of the game. If you lack edge rusher options, play Rousseau above the rest, but you're gambling each week on Rousseau being as efficient as he has been so far this season.

    Hyde is a good player; he just isn't racking up the tackles. He has just three in the last two games and hasn't had more than six in a game this season.


    Tier One

    Jeffery Simmons, IDL; Harold Landry, EDGE.

    Simmons had three total tackles and seven total pressures, including two hits and five hurries against the Jags last weekend. He now has 17 pressures and two sacks this season. It's a good start for Simmons.

    The Bills Mitch Morse is a good center. But none of the Bills guards are particularly special. Simmons has a reasonable matchup.

    Landry has started the season even hotter. He added five total pressures, including two sacks last week. He now has 30 pressures this season, joint second with Myles Garrett among all NFL edge rushers. Landry also has five sacks in five games.

    Landry will play against both left tackle Dion Dawkins and right tackle Daryl Williams. Neither has what it takes to contain Landry if he continues playing as well as he has this season.

    Tier Two


    Tier Three

    David Long, ILB; Denico Autry, EDGE; Kevin Byard, S.

    Long would be in tier two if he stopped missing tackles. He played every down last week and led the team with 13 total tackles. Unfortunately, he missed four tackles, which makes it seven missed tackles in the last two weeks.

    I think Long can correct that issue. I'll feel comfortable recommending him as a tier two starting linebacker if he does.

    Autry recorded 16 total pressures in Weeks 2-4 but had just one in Week 5. He was a clear second on the team among edge rushers with 48 snaps.

    Byard played every down, and 19 of his 71 snaps were spent in a box role. He had a season-high 10 total tackles and now has 27 through five games.


    Rashaan Evans, ILB; Jayon Brown, ILB (injury); Avery Williamson, ILB.

    Evans played only 33 of a possible 71 snaps. He can't become a consistent fantasy option when playing so little. He is also questionable with a quad injury.

    Brown is on IR with a knee injury.

    Williamson has been signed back to the Titans. He may become a starter with marginal value given the injuries to Brown and Evans, but I'd rather be a week late than take a gamble on starting him prematurely.

    Final Reminder

    Please remember to check inactive players before submitting your final lineups on Thursdays, Sundays, and Mondays. Players can and will suddenly become inactive at the last moment.

    This NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article was published days before kick-off. I will try to keep it updated with injury news if it affects start/sit recommendations. I will update it at least three times, once before the Thursday night game, once before the early games on Sunday, and again before the mid-afternoon games.

    Please check the IDPGuys IDP Injury Report article from @FF_Skinnychef for the latest injury news.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my NFL Week 6 Start/Sit IDP article! I hope you find it useful. You can find more of my work here at IDPguys.org, and you can follow me on Twitter @FFIDP_Jase. I will do my best to be available for questions or feedback. My DMs are always open.

    For start/sit advice for players on offense, please check out the article here from the IDPGuys @FantasyLadder.

    Jase Abbey

    I'm an IDP-obsessive and have been playing fantasy football for 20 years. I write the weekly IDP start/sit for IDP Guys in-season, redraft IDP content during the offseason, and appear on the odd podcast from time to time. I am a big, big believer in data-driven and evidence-based content. I'm UK-based, love most sports, and study sports journalism at university. My favorite two things in life are family and sarcasm.
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