Week 11 Defensive Line Starts, Sits, Sleepers and Matchups

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There are 6 teams on a bye this week. Here we list a couple Defensive Lineman who you should employ in your lineups
Week 11.


Defensive End Starts

Jason Pierre-Paul– Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Season Statistics- 27 Tackles (23 solo), 9 tackles for a loss, 8 sacks, 1 forced fumble

Matchup: New York Giants (Give up the 7th most points to DE’s)

  • Ranked 32nd in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 24.5%
  • Ranked 26th in Pass Protection giving up 32 sacks at a rate of 8.7%

This is the best case scenario matchup for Jason Pierre-Paul. Not only is the Giants Offensive Line horrible but JPP was traded from the Giants to the Bucs before this season. I would say that this is a bit of a revenge game. The Giants have given up 32 sacks this season which is tied for 3rd worst in the NFL. Jason Pierre-Paul should have no problem getting behind the line. He can say hello to his old pal Eli Manning face to face.

The past two games have been lackluster for JPP. He has only been able to come up with 2 assisted tackles. Prior to those two games he was on fire though. Going up against his old teammates should refuel him to get back to form.

Prediction: 4 Tackles, 2 tackles for a loss 1.5 sacks

Cameron Jordan– New Orleans Saints

Season Statistics- 25 Tackles (19 solo), 9 tackles for a loss, 6 sacks, 3 pass deflections

Matchup: Philadelphia Eagles (Give up the 10th most points to DE’s)

  • Ranked 18th in run Blocking witha stuff rate of 19.6%
  • Ranked 26th in Pass Protection giving up 28 sacks at a rate of 8.3%

Cameron Jordan is quietly having another solid season for the Saints. The Eagles’ Offensive Line have given up the 10th most sacks this season. The Saints Defense has also been slowly getting better each game in comparison to the star of the season. The addition of Eli Apple to the the secondary has been tremendous for them. Coverage between Apple and Marshon Lattimore has been excellent allowing more time for the pass rush to arrive with force.

Prediction: 3 Tackles, 1 for a loss, 1 sack, 1 pass deflection

Defensive End Sits

Derek Wolfe– Denver Broncos

Season Statistics- 27 Tackles (21 solo), 2 tackles for a loss, 1.5 sacks, 5 pass deflections, 1 interception.

Matchup: Los Angeles Chargers (Give up the 30th most points to DE’s)

  • Ranked 7th in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 21.1%
  • Ranked 8th in Pass Protection giving up 13 sacks at a rate of 5.3%

The Chargers have the 7th ranked overall Offensive Line. Philip Rivers is the king of screen passes while being pressured. With Melvin Gordon rolling out and quick hits to Keenan Allen, Rivers avoids pressure. They have given up the 4th least amount of sacks in the NFL with 8. Rivers has been more more than once in a game only 3 times this year. Don’t expect Wolfe to get there.

Prediction: 2 Tackles (1 solo) and 1 pass deflection

Michael Bennett– Philadelphia Eagles

Season Statistics- 18 Tackles (12 solo), 7 tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks, 1 pass deflection, 1 forced fumble

Matchup: New Orleans Saints (Give up the Least points to DE’s)

  • Ranked 2nd in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 13.2%
  • Ranked 2nd in Pass Protection giving up 9 sacks at a rate of 4.3%

News flash, do not start any interior lineman against the Saints. The Saints have the best Offensive Line in football and it shows. They give up the least amount of points to opposing DE’s. Michael Bennett has filled in nicely as a full time starter since Derek Barnett went on IR Week 8. He does have the unfortunate task of getting to Drew Brees which has been next to impossible. Brees has been sacked once in his past 5 games….good luck.

Prediction: 1 Solo tackle

Defensive End Sleeper

Randy Gregory– Dallas Cowboys

Season Statistics- 11 Tackles(8 solo), 3 tackles for a loss, 2 sacks

Matchup: Atlanta Falcons (Give up the 9th most points to DE’s)

  • Ranked 22nd in Run Blocking with a  stuff rate of 25.4%
  • Ranked 18th in Pass Protection giving up 24 sacks at a rate of 7.3%

Randy Gregory was at one point a first round draft prospect. After a failed drug test at the draft combine he slipped to the second round to the Cowboys. Since his NFL career took off he has been suspended multiple timed for the NFL’s substance abuse policy. Gregory finally seems to have his shit together and at the right time.

Week 9 Gregory did not play a snap. Week 10 the Cowboys had a few injuries and Gregory saw 65% of defensive snaps. This week Taco Charlton is out, Antwaun Woods is doubtful, and Maliek Collins is questionable. This could leave Gregory as almost an every down player against a team who has given up he 9th most points to DE’s. Plus Gregory had a sack last week, with more playing time who knows. Watch the nice inside move Gregory makes to come up with the sack:

Prediction: 3 Tackles, 2 tackles for a loss, 1 sack

Defensive Tackle Starts

Akiem Hicks– Chicago Bears

Season Statistics- 29 Tackles (19 solo), 4 tackles for a loss, 3 sacks, 3 forced fumbles

Matchup: Minnesota Vikings (Give up the most points to DT’s)

  • Ranked 29th in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 21.1%
  • Ranked 9th in Pass Protection giving up 24 sacks at a rate of 5.7%

Hicks has cooled down a bit after a red hot start to the season. He still has the best matchup for DT’s this week so it warrants a start with his talent. Dalvn Cook is a full go for the Vikings meaning that they should be more balanced on offense. While cook was out the Vikings were more of a pass heavy team.

The Vikings are in the bottom 5 in Run Blocking. Now with Cook fully healthy they should look to get back to the run more. Enter Hicks who should be able to feast in the center of that line. Eddie Goldman should swallow up interior blockers paving the way for Hicks to get into the backfield. Hicks has also had his best pass rushing season to date as well per Pro Fotball Focus:

Prediction: 4 Tackles with 3 tackles for a loss

Sheldon Rankins– New Orleans Saints

Season Statistics- 23 Tackles (16 solo), 7 tackles for a loss, 5 sacks

Matchup: Philadelphia Eagles (Give up the 6th most points to DT’s)

  • Ranked 18th in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 19.6%
  • Ranked 24th is Pass Protection giving up 28 sacks at a rate of 8.3%

Rankins was part of my Sits list last week and he proved me wrong. The Eagles give up a lot of sacks and Rankins is tied for 5th among all DT’s in sacks with 5. With both Sheldon Rankins and Cameron Jordan on this list, you can see I think that D-Line is going to have a big week. Jordan should make a strong push on the outside along with Alex Anzalone. This will force Carson Wentz to step up in the pocket,  right into Rankins’ arms. Watch Rankins’ strength with the bull rush here:

Prediction: 4 Tackles, 1 tackle for a loss and 1 sack

Defensive Tackle Sits

Ndamukong Suh– Los Angeles Rams

Season Statistics- 33 tackles (20 solo), 3 tackles for a loss, 3.5 sacks, 2 pass deflections, 2 fumble recoveries

Matchup: Kansas City Chiefs (Give up the 26th most points to DT’s)

  • Ranked 19th in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 19.3%
  • Ranked 6th in Pass Protection giving up 17 sacks at a rate of 5%

Suh would probably be the best Defensive Tackle on almost any other team. Unfortunately his running mate is Aaron Donald. Although Suh is having another good year, it is not up to his normal lofty standards. His tackle numbers are still pretty high but his sacks are down. Going up against the Chiefs who rank 6th in pass protection, the only DT that will get to Patrick Mahomes will be Aaron Donald. This may also be a competitive game for the Chiefs so they will probably throw more. That leaves what Suh does best (stop the run) out of the equation. Suh is best suited for your bench this week.

Prediction: 1 Tackle for a loss

Linval Joseph– Minnesota Vikings

Season Statistics- 31 Tackles (20 solo), 4 tackles for a loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery, 1 Touchdown.

Matchup: Chicago Bears (Give up the 27th most points to DT’s)

  • Ranked 28th in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 21.1%
  • Ranked 10th in Pass Protection giving up 18 sacks at a rate of 6%

Joseph is coming off a bye and should be fresh. Unfortunately for him he has not produced since his Week 5 masacre of the Eagles. Since Week 5 he has 10 tackles (5 solo) and 2 tackles for a loss. There have been a couple plus matchups during those weeks as well, mainly the Jets. The Jets give up the 5th most points to DT’s and Joseph didi not record a single stat. The Bears give up the 27th most points to DT’s, Joseph should not start against them.

Prediction: 1 Solo tackle and 1 assisted tackle

Defensive Tackle Sleeper

Javon Hargrave– Pittsburgh Steelers

Season Statistics- 27 Tackles (19 solo), 3 tackles for a loss, 3 sacks

Matchup: Jacksonville Jaguars (Give up the 13th most points to DT’s)

  • Ranked 23rd in Run Blocking with a stuff rate of 18.4%
  • Ranked 13th in Pass Protection giving up 22 sacks at a rate of 6.7%

Hargrave has been able to put up solid numbers for the DT position even though he has had one of the toughest Fantasy schedules for DT’s. He plays the run very well as you can see by his 27 total tackles. Hargrave also came up with 6 tackles last week against the Panthers. Now Jacksonville got Leonard Fournette back last week and he finally finished the game. When Fournette is healthy the Jaguars run the ball…a lot. This could allow Hargrave to have another good Fantasy day.

Prediction: 4 Tackles and 2 tackles for a loss

There are my Week 11 starts, sits, sleepers and matchups. Hopefully these can help you with your IDP weeks and maybe fill some of your byes with a win. Tune in again Week 12 for my Defensive Line matchups.

Don’t forget to follow me on twitter @josephhaggan and @IDPGuys. Also listen to our podcast on a weekly basis, the info you get from us will definitely help your season.


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I have played IDP 6 YRS, fantasy for 10. Writing for the greater good of IDP, if it's not IDP it's not fantasy football.