Outside linebackers are trying to buck trends this year. After week three there are many you should go grab. Here we cover every position’s top waiver adds after week three.
Last week I had said to add two outside linebackers which are different from normal IDP thought. Those two were Whitney Mercilus and Shaquil Barrett. Mercilus produced once again with five tackles, two tackles for a loss, a sack, and a forced fumble. Barrett continued to be a pass-rushing maniac putting up six tackles, three tackles for a loss, four sacks and two forced fumbles.
All I can say is wow, that puts Barrett at the eight sack mark and Mercilus at the five sack mark. This week is more of the same with three more outside linebackers to add to your lineups. I think they are trying to make us eat our words by saying to avoid outside linebackers in standard leagues. Let’s see who the top IDP waiver adds are this week.
Adam Butler – New England Patriots
2019 Stats: Seven tackles (three solo), two tackles for a loss, 2.5 sacks and a pass defensed.
Adam Butler is the new next man up for the Patriots defense. No matter who is employed by the Patriots, they always seem to produce at least a serviceable level. Butler was an undrafted free agent signing out of Vanderbilt in 2017. He played in all 16 games starting six. Butler again played in all 16 games in 2018 though he did not start any. During his first two seasons, he accumulated five sacks and two tackles for a loss. Already in three games in 2019, he has 2.5 sacks and two tackles for a loss. He is only 0.5 sack away from a career-high.
During Butler’s lone start so far this season, in week two, he produced four tackles (three solo), two tackles for a loss, two sacks and a pass defensed. He has been on the field for about 50% of the Patriots defensive snaps. Butler is a nice surprise this season and can provide your fantasy team some DT depth.
Oshane Ximines – New York Giants
2019 Stats: 7 tackles (five solo), two tackles for a loss and 1.5 sacks.
Oshane Ximines is a raw but super athletic pass rusher drafted out of Old Dominion. He was drafted in the 3rd round and 95th overall in 2019. Steadily, each week he has made his presence felt more and more. In week one he played on 31% of the team’s snaps coming up with one solo tackle for a loss. Week two he upped his snap count to 34% tallying two assisted tackles and 0.5 sack. For week three, his snap total jumped up again to about 52% and this was his most effective week yet. He totaled four tackles, one for a loss and a sack.
Ximines still is mixing in with replacing Markus Golden and Lorenzo Carter when they come off the field. He was able to come up with 51 tackles for a loss and 32.5 sacks during his college career. If Ximines can stay on the field for over 50% of the Giants’ defensive snaps, he can have weekly production.
Robert Quinn – Dallas Cowboys
2019 Stats: Three tackles, one tackle for a loss and a sack.
Robert Quinn saw his first game action in week three and looked great. Early in his career, Robert Quinn was an elite defensive end. Between 2012-2014 Quinn produced 132 total tackles, 47 tackles for a loss, 40 sacks, nine passes defensed, 13 forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and a touchdown. Now he is only a fraction of his former self having had two injury-ending seasons since his Pro Bowl seasons, but that is still better than some defensive ends in the league.
Quinn now has the luxury of not being the team’s primary pass rusher. The Cowboys put out Demarcus Lawrence who is one of the elite defensive ends in the league. Lawrence soaks up most of the attention of the offensive line giving Quinn more one on one matchups. If Quinn can stay healthy, he could have quite a productive year.
Preston Smith – Green Bay Packers
2019 Stats: 13 tackles (eight solo), three tackles for a loss, 4.5 sacks, two passes defended, one interception and a forced fumble.
Last week I said two of the top three linebacker pickups were outside linebackers and both produced again. Here we go this week with some more outside linebackers. Preston Smith was signed by the Packers to replace Clay Matthews and boy has he. Preston Smith has out-produced the likes of Deion Jones, Leighton Vander Esch, Lavonte David and many more so far this season.
Smith’s previous career-high sack total is eight and he is on pace to smash that. Smith is averaging a little over four tackles per game but his high-end playmaking is what makes him so desirable. If he is on waivers, go grab him.
Clay Matthews – Los Angeles Rams
2019 Stats: Nine tackles (eight solo), four tackles for a loss, four sacks, one pass defensed and two forced fumbles.
Many people thought Clay Matthews’ career was over after leaving his long-time team the Green Bay Packers. On the contrary, Matthews looks a lot like his old self. He has been given a reduced role in Los Angeles but is still has been in on about 67% of the team’s defensive snaps. He is mostly a situational pass rusher but has even been used on run downs. With Matthews’ experience as inside and outside linebacker and the lack of depth at the position for the Rams, Matthews has been a solid play.
Markus Golden – New York Giants
2019 Stats: 12 tackles (six solo), two tackles for a loss and three sacks.
After a below-par week one, Markus Golden has really turned it up. He has played just over 80% of the team’s snaps and between the last two weeks, he has 11 total tackles, two for a loss and three sacks. The Giants’ pass rush seems to really be clicking right now and Golden is on the field the most of all of the pass rushers.
The Giants next face the Seahawks in week four. The Seahawks have a terrible offensive line and Daniel Jones may be able to move the offense enough for the Seahawks to continue to pass. Golden could have another productive day for the Giants for week four.
Kemal Ishmael – Atlanta Falcons
2019 Stats: Six tackles and one for a loss.
Kemal Ishmael has been thrust into a larger role for the Falcons. Keanu Neal owners are once again frustrated as it seems that he has torn his Achilles just one year after tearing his ACL. These owners should jump on the waiver wire and grab Ishmael to be the next man up in their lineups. He played on only 55% of the team’s snaps in week three after Neal went down and came up with six tackles and one for a loss.
Date back to Ishamel’s second year in the NFL. In 2014 he posted 96 total tackles, two for a loss, six passes defended, four interceptions, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, and a touchdown. That seems like a long time ago but any time Ishmael is forced to start, he provides ample fantasy numbers. The game plan for the Falcons should not change much with him in the starting lineup.
Mike Edwards – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2019 Stats: Nine tackles (six solo), one tackle for a loss and two passes defensed.
Rookie Mike Edwards has officially won one of the starting safety spots for the Buccaneers. After playing only 6% of the team’s snaps week one, he has averaged 94.5% of the snaps over the last two weeks. He is coming off of a week three where he seemed to pop up on every play. He totaled six tackles, one for a loss and a pass defensed.
Edwards is in a division that gives up large amounts of fantasy points to opposing safeties. Going into week three, the Falcons had given up the most points to opposing safeties, the Saints gave up the 4th most points, and the Panthers gave up the 8th most. Edwards’ schedule and time on the field alone should give him solid fantasy production. The fact he looked great last week is an added bonus.
Isaiah Oliver – Atlanta Falcons
2019 Stats: 13 tackles (10 solo) and four passes defensed.
Isaiah Oliver was a guy I thought would have a big second year in 2019 by claiming a starting corner job with the Falcons. Week one started off a bit to be desired but since he has put up great numbers. In his last two games, he has 12 total tackles and four passes defensed. The next two matchups for Oliver are not ideal with the Titans and the Texans, but after that, the road looks a little better.
Oliver plays across from Desmond Trufant which bodes well for his fantasy production. Oliver should be able to continue his production as teams avoid Trufant.
Kevin King – Green Bay Packers
2019 Stats: 15 tackles (11 solo), one for a loss, one sack, two passes defended and an interception.
Kevin King was drafted by the Packers in 2017 in hopes to strengthen their secondary but his career has been thrashed by injuries. He has returned to the starting lineup to start this season and has looked great in his return. In the first two weeks, he had a pass defensed in each game to add to a sack in week one and an interception week two. He did not have any in week three but produced nine total tackles.
King plays across from Jaire Alexander who seems to have claimed the name tag of a lockdown corner. King in his own right was supposed to have a role like that but injuries have not allowed him to. Now that he gets targeted a lot, he can showcase his ability and should continue to put up great numbers.
We continue this week by adding outside linebackers to our squads. It has been a strange season so far and I am not sure if it is due to schemes or just scenery change but outside linebackers are trying to take back roles in fantasy lineups. At DT we have an emerging youngster from the Patriots who is getting more opportunity. For DE’s we have Oshane Ximines, a rookie with an expanding role and Robert Quinn, a former stud enjoying the luxuries of playing number two. Kemal Ishmael should be inserted in lineups due to the loss of Keanu Neal and Mike Edwards has cemented himself as a near every-down safety. Isaiah Oliver is emerging as a solid option at the corner after a slow start and Kevin King is now playing how most thought he would.
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