I feel the Minnesota Vikings got a steal in the fourth-round of this year’s draft with Oregon linebacker Troy Dye. Let’s take a look at why he’s a great rookie stash for your IDP dynasty leagues!
With rookie drafts well underway, and others yet to come, there’s plenty of buzz going around about this rookie IDP class. The top tier prospects get most of the attention, but there are plenty of later-round prospects that deserve to be talked about as well. Filling your taxi squad with these late round upside players can pay big dividends down the road if you’re patient.
While the draft capital may be low, sometimes all these guys need is an opportunity to showcase what they bring to the table. Let’s take a look at a day-three linebacker who makes for a great stash for dynasty owners.
Troy Dye Career Stats at Oregon:
48 games, 391 tackles, 41.5 tackles for loss, 13 sacks, 5 interceptions, 14 passes defensed
To say Troy Dye had a productive career during his time at Oregon would be a drastic understatement. His production was consistent and impressive as his numbers above show. Another impressive fact to consider is that Dye’s been the leading tackler for the Ducks every year for the last four years, from his Freshman to Senior seasons. Talk about leaving your mark on a program!
The Minnesota Vikings drafted Dye in the fourth round (132nd overall) in this year’s draft. I thought that was a fantastic value as I had a day two grade on him. What may have caused him to slip a little in the draft was the fact injuries kept him from participating in the NFL Combine as well as Oregon’s pro day. He did however put together his own pro day to show teams he was healthy and ready to go.
Teams are going to fall in love with Oregon's Troy Dye at the @seniorbowl.
All of the things I've heard about his character are incredible, and he's one of few off-ball linebackers in this class that can make splash plays/hold their own in coverage. pic.twitter.com/GgTM7MsQkZ
— Austin Gayle (@PFF_AustinGayle) January 8, 2020
Troy Dye is an athletic linebacker that possesses the three down skill set that NFL teams look for. Dye excels playing in space and has excellent range for the position. He is also very good in coverage, showing comfort in both man and zone coverages. Dye’s first step quickness is evident when you watch him play as he gets down hill in a flash when attacking as a tackler or blitzer. Standing 6’3’’ and weighing 231 pounds, Dye has a long athletic frame. Dye’s athleticism and long arms provide a large tackle radius and the ability to make plays from sideline to sideline.
While he has a lengthy, athletic frame, Dye could serve to add some bulk to it. He struggles to get off blocks at times and will get overpowered when engaged by bigger offensive lineman. Although he could use some bulk, there’s no doubting his toughness. In 2019, Dye played the second part of the year with a broken thumb as well as a partially torn right meniscus in the final four games. These injuries may have led to Dye only having 85 tackles this season after going over the 100 tackle mark the previous two seasons.
Dye projects best as an option at weak side linebacker in Minnesota’s base formation. Recently, that spot has been manned by Ben Gedeon and Eric Wilson. Gedeon isn’t a flashy player at the position by any means and got injured late in the year in 2019. Eric Wilson filled in for Gedeon once he went down and played pretty well to finish the season. Wilson projects as the current starter right now.
I feel Dye is a better talent than both veterans Gedeon and Wilson, but he will likely start the season as a backup. While he may have to wait his turn, Dye’s coverage skills could be his way onto the field as a rookie. Should the Vikings decide to rush Anthony Barr more on passing downs, it could provide an opportunity for Dye to see the field to help in coverage. Dye has the athleticism and ability to run with tight ends and cover backs out of the backfield. Pairing him with veteran leader Eric Kendricks would give the Vikings an excellent duo in coverage on passing downs.
In most drafts, owners don’t have to look at drafting Dye until the final rounds or possibly picking him up off waivers after the draft concludes. While he may not make a big splash year one, Dye is a great developmental prospect for your taxi squad. Dye leaves college with tons of experience and a high football IQ that will aid his transition to the NFL. That being said, when he gets his chance he could seize the opportunity and not look back.
Thanks for taking the time to read my article, I hope you enjoyed and found it helpful. You can find my work here at idpguys.org and follow me on Twitter @KBellf54. I’m always available for any questions or feedback you may have and my DMs are always open.