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IDP Start/Sit: Week 11
Jake Kohlhagen, lead IDP contributor for Reality Sports Online, shares his IDP starts and sits for Week 11.
This article is presented by our friends at Reality Sports Online.
Week 11? That just feels weird to say! We are a few short weeks away from most fantasy football playoffs, and hopefully, you are all either locked in for the playoffs or still alive in the hunt for it. Regardless, let’s try and get your IDP lineups set the best and maybe find some value for our rosters too! (As a friendly reminder, the rankings I show for each player are their ECR from Fantasy Pros for this week.)
Week 10 Recap
Start: Jeffery Simmons (3 solos, 1 assist, PD. Not bad for a non-sack game!) 👍
Start: Josh Paschal (injured during the game, got a zero, played 17 snaps)
Sit: Uchenna Nwosu (1 assist, this isn’t a sell for the ROS, just wasn’t a good matchup) 👍
Start: Blake Martinez/Luke Masterson (Masterson stats: 2 solos, 4 assists, TFL, 72% snaps, not a great week but could have some value as an LB3/4 moving forward) 👎
Start: Willie Gay Jr. (6 solos, 2 assists, sack, QB hit, PD) 👍
Sit: Bobby Okereke (6 solos, 3 assists, PD, Okereke got 100% snaps with Leonard not suiting up) 👎
Start: Duron Harmon (2 solos, 2 assists) 👎
Start: Jalen Ramsey (5 solos, assist) 👍
Sit: Justin Simmons (Was ruled out late in the week)
START: Alex Highsmith, Pittsburgh Steelers, DL33
Alex Highsmith has been more of a volume play this season. He’s delivered average numbers—68.8 PFF pass-rush grade on the season and a 7.5% pressure rate over his last 3 games—but continues to see a high snap volume, sitting at 87% of snaps for the year. Last week, Highsmith had a strong performance (2 sacks, 5 total tackles, 1 QB hit), but we’re not just chasing points here. Highsmith gets a favorable matchup with the Bengals who are allowing a 24% pressure rate and a 21% sack conversion rate.
These numbers are slightly inflated from Week 1 (7 sacks) and Week 2 (6 sacks), but the Bengals are still allowing 2.7 sacks per game since then. Along with Highsmith’s consistent effort and favorable matchup, TJ Watt should be fully up to speed, allowing Highsmith to operate with less attention and giving him a better chance to deliver another solid performance. Consider him a solid DL2 option this week.
START: Denico Autry, Tennessee Titans, DL34
Denico Autry has seen an increased role due to injuries to his teammates—and he’s taken advantage of it. He’s delivered a whopping 23 pressures over the last 3 games as his snap counts jumped in Week 9 (76 snaps) and Week 10 (52 snaps), his two highest totals of the year so far. But his success is not just recent; he has a 13.7% pressure rate on the year and a very good PFF pass-rush grade of 76.7.
This week he gets the Green Bay Packers, who are middle of the “pack” (dad joke achieved!) with their lower pressure rate at 22% but higher sack conversion rate at 18%. The Packers have begun to ramp up their passing attack the last few weeks, too, with Rodgers’ time to throw clocking it at its highest levels this season and his Average Depth of Target (ADOT) the highest it’s been all season by over a full yard. These longer throws and longer time-to-throw give Autry a better chance to get home for some big plays this week. Autry should be a strong DL2 play this week.
SIT: Khalil Mack, Los Angeles Chargers, DL20
Khalil Mack has struggled to make a consistent impact for the Chargers defense recently outside of his big strip of the ball from Drake London against the Falcons. Khalil has managed only 3 pressures over the past three weeks while maintaining a strong snap count. The IDP production in the run game that prime Mack would deliver just isn’t there anymore. He has only topped 3 combined tackles twice in his 9 full games this season. This week, Mack gets the Kansas City Chiefs, who have the lowest sack conversion rate in the NFL at 4%. This is due in large part to the play of Patrick Mahomes and his pocket presence and escapability, which limits Mack’s already low upside. Playing Mack feels like you are playing him based solely on past production. I wouldn’t consider him more than a low-end DL3 for this week.
START: Frankie Luvu, Carolina Panthers, LB27
Luvu got back to IDP prominence last week with a big game. The big takeaway, though? He’s back to a 100% snap share alongside Shaq Thompson. This 2-LB look is what we want, but we’ll see if it remains the case for the rest of the season. This week, Luvu gets the Ravens and this is a plus matchup for him. The Ravens run the most plays per game in the NFL at 69.7 and the teams that have found success at slowing down the Ravens’ offense have been pressuring/blitzing. Luvu has seen consistent pass-rush snaps and has been successful with a 70.3 PFF pass-rush grade. I anticipate this is how the Panthers will try to slow him down and Luvu will be a part of this.
My biggest concern is Luvu does have 16 missed tackles on the season, and getting after Lamar Jackson—who is one of the most elusive runners in the NFL—might lead to some missed tackles. But I would fire up Luvu as a high-end LB2 this week.
START: Jamin Davis, Washington Commanders, LB32
Picking Jamin Davis feels like the least “sexy” start I’ve ever recommended. Davis was a first-round talent that hasn’t quite delivered or been able to climb past Cole Holcomb on the Commanders’ depth chart. With Holcomb out, however, Davis finds himself with a 100% snap share and another opportunity this weekend, as Holcomb looks unlikely to play (he was a DNP on Wednesday).
His matchup against Houston this week offers a run-heavy situation where Dameon Pierce has been seeing plenty of work. He’s had 15+ rushes the last 5 weeks, with 3 of those at 20+ rushers… even though 4 of those were losses and negative game scripts. Davis isn’t a strong play rest of the season, but for this week, he is a solid LB2.
SIT: Zaven Collins, Arizona Cardinals, LB21
I’m a huge Zaven Collins fan, but this week, I’m struggling to see him as an LB2 even with a 100% snap share. Collins is starting to get a small dose of the “Micah Parsons experience” and see more snaps from the DL position. Last week, he saw 36% of his snaps at DL. In Week 8, it was 31%. During those weeks, he saw his lowest tackle production both weeks with 4 combined tackles in each of them.
If he’s lining up at DL and taking pass-rush snaps, doesn’t he have more big play upside? Typically yes, but the matchup this week against San Francisco is less than ideal. They have the lowest pressure rate in the NFL and 7th best sack conversion rate allowed. I would steer away from Collins unless you really need him in an LB3/4 spot due to his volume. If you can afford to bench him for a week, I’d do it.
START: Dane Belton, New York Giants, DB77
Dane Belton came into his rookie season with some real promise but then broke his collarbone. Meanwhile, Julian Love and Xavier McKinney ran with the starting safety jobs. In a strange turn of events, Xavier McKinney broke his hand and ended up on IR, giving Belton his chance. The real surprise was Belton taking over the bulk of the “sweet spot” snaps (box, DL, or slot). He had 67% of them last week, which led to 4 combined tackles. However, with snap alignments like this, he could be a late-season steal off your waiver wire. This may only be until McKinney is back, but during that time, Belton should be a high-end DB3, maybe even a low-end DB2.
START: Tyrann Mathieu, New Orleans Saints, DB26
Tyrann Mathieu has been one of the few IDPs to play every snap so far this season, which is impressive given his age. In Week 10, we saw a heavy shift in Mathieu’s usage. With Pete Werner out, Mathieu saw 76% of his snaps in the sweet spot, which is a high amount for any safety. As such, with Werner likely out again this week, we need to fire up Mathieu against the Rams. This usage led to his highest tackle output of the season and playing the Rams will lend to some strong opportunities for big-play upside as well. Tyrann is looking like a DB1 this week and a smash start!
SIT: Kyle Dugger, New England Patriots, DB27
In terms of IDP production, Kyle Dugger was amazing in 2021. However, that production came due to strong efficiency on a lower snap volume than the DBs who produced similar numbers as him. One of those metrics was his tackle efficiency of 11.9%, but this year, he’s seen a dip of over 2 points down to 9.3%. The biggest concern, though, is his limited snap count and the fact he’s battled injuries all year. With a heavy rotation at the safety spot for the Patriots between Dugger, Adrian Phillips, Jabrill Peppers, and Devin McCourty, plus Dugger’s return from an ankle injury, I’d park him on your bench until he gives you a reason to start him.
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