IDP Start/Sit: Week 14
Jake Kohlhagen, lead IDP contributor for Reality Sports Online, shares his IDP starts and sits for Week 14.
This article is presented by our friends at Reality Sports Online.
Here we are. Week 14. The final week of the fantasy regular season (in most leagues). Hopefully, I’ve helped you on your journey up to this point, but we are not done yet. Let’s get these teams into the playoffs and bring home some of those sweet, sweet IDP fantasy football league championships! (Reminder: rankings are ECR from Fantasy Pros.)
Week 13 Recap
Start: Uchenna Nwosu (2 sacks, 4 solos, TFL, 3 QB hits, 1 FF, what a performance!) 👍
Start: Leonard Floyd (1 assist, 1 QB hit, what a whiff, he played 94% of snaps, the process felt good, just didn’t come show in the stat sheet for IDP) 👎
Sit: Matthew Judon (2 solos, 1 assist, 1 QB hit, 1 FR, the fumble recovery essentially saved his week and those are very fluky stats to count on) 👍
Start: Chad Muma (1.5 sacks, 7 solos, 4 assists, 2 TFLs, 2 QB hits, an amazing week for the rookie, but he did depart with an ankle injury, so pay attention to that moving forward) 👍
Start: Christian Harris (2 solos, 4 assists, 1 PD, played 100% of snaps coming back from his injury, good for the long-term, not great this week though) 👎
Sit: Lavonte David (1 sack, 10 solos, 2 assists, 2 TFLs, 1 QB hit, this is apparently what happens when you suggest sitting an IDP legend) 👎
Start: Rodney McLeod (5 solos, 1 assist, 1 TFL, 1 PD, very consistent production from McLeod, just like we thought) 👍
Start: DeAndre Houston-Carson (3 solos, 2 assists, 1 TFL, not terrible, but would have liked to see a little bit more to call this a “win” this week) 👎
Sit: John Johnson III (1 assist, INT, 1 PD, his week was saved by the interception, which was a wonky one if you watch the replay, but he made it nonetheless) 👎
Week 14 Starts & Sits
START: Haason Reddick, Philadelphia Eagles, DL30
In his first year with Philadelphia, Haason Reddick faced questions about whether he was purely a volume play or if he could produce numbers with other talented DL around him. Well, consider those questions answered. Reddick has played 70% of the total snaps so far this season which gives him the foundation for production. He has also delivered a strong 13.5% pass-rush pressure rate for the year. Now he has a great matchup this week against the New York Giants. They have allowed a 26% pressure rate on the season (7th worst this season), and an 18% sack conversion rate (4th worst this season). Reddick should be a high-end DL2 this week.
START: Josh Allen, Jacksonville Jaguars, DL36
Josh Allen is a big-name edge rusher who hasn’t quite filled up the stat sheet the way we hoped he would, with only 3 sacks. But he has been delivering some foundational things we like to see. He is seeing 77% of the snaps for his defense, which is a strong number for an edge rusher. He has 44 pressures total on the season for a respectable 12.8% pass-rush pressure rate. Next up for Allen is the Titans and their offensive line. They have allowed a 30% pressure rate on the season (worst in the league) and a 16% sack conversion rate (8th worst in the league). This should help Allen find a way back into strong IDP production. I see Allen as a good DL2 this week.
SIT: Jerry Hughes, Houston Texans, DL23
With 8 sacks at age 34, Jerry Hughes has been one of the great stories for IDP—and the NFL—this season. With only 16 tackles, though, Hughes is more boom/bust than some might realize. He’s delivered on that upside quite a bit, just not as much in the last 3 weeks. Playing just 61% of snaps limits his upside, and this week, Hughes has a less-than-ideal matchup against the Cowboys, who are allowing an average pressure rate of 25% (tied for 12 best in the league) but are only allowing a 6% sack conversion rate (best in the league). Hughes is a DL4 this week.
START: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Cleveland Browns, LB31
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah has taken the clear lead in the Cleveland Browns LB room with snap percentages of 80%, 95%, 96%, and 78%. Last week’s dip might seem a little concerning, but with Sione Takitaki out for the season, JOK is winning this war of attrition right now. He has seen his average solo tackles jump up from 4 to 5 over this stretch and he’s up 0.5 assisted tackles per game as well. He’s also racked up 3 TFLs, 1 QB hit, 3 PDs, and 1 FF in that span. JOK is taking advantage of his opportunity and delivering for IDP. Between the snaps, the play-making (that we were all hoping for from him this year), and a matchup against Cincinnati—whose offense has been humming over the last 5 games—JOK feels like a strong LB2.
START: Jaylon Smith, New York Giants, LB58
Jaylon Smith has gone from a high-end round 2 pick for the Cowboys, to a big 2nd contract, to cut, to a 2nd chance with the New York Giants. He has made the most out of it this year, taking clear control of the LB room and delivering a nice floor for IDP in the last few weeks. He has played 71% of the snaps for the defense in his 9 games with the Giants and has seen great usage in his last three: 74%, 91%, and 87%. He is averaging just under 7 tackles per game over his last three as well. With Dallas as the matchup this week, Smith should see strong usage in defense of the Cowboys’ run game and their 68 plays per game over the last 3 weeks (7th highest in the league over that stretch). Smith has strong upside as a low-end LB3 this week.
SIT (INJURY): David Long Jr., Tennessee Titans, LB19
David Long Jr. was a consistent target for me this year, so sitting him feels counterintuitive. However, this is specifically related to the hamstring injury he just suffered. Soft tissue injuries can linger, and as such, the Titans could be very slow in bringing him back in hopes of making sure he is available for the NFL playoffs. Long was already a DNP (did not participate) for Wednesday’s practice, which is a big negative for him suiting up this week. If you are in a tight spot, Dylan Cole looks like the next man up behind him as he took 77% of the snaps once Long went out. You should be planning for life without Long this week and possibly next week too.
START: Rayshawn Jenkins, Jacksonville Jaguars, DB33
Rayshawn Jenkins has been a model of consistency this season for IDP. Since Week 3, he has never been under the 5 tackle mark, has produced 9 passes defended (a more indicative stat than INTs), and has even added 2 FFs in the last 3 weeks. Looking just at his consistent numbers without any major statistical marker jumping off the screen, he would feel in the right spot as a DB3 this week. But his usage in heavy run-game script against Detroit (39 box snaps!) makes me believe he will be there a bunch this week against the Derrick Henry-led Titans. You should consider Jenkins more of a low-end DB2 this week as he is in a situation to rack up a nice tackle floor.
START: Sauce Gardner, New York Jets, DB37
Sauce Gardner has made a splash in his rookie season, planting himself firmly in the discussion for top CBs in the NFL. This week, I think he will be producing for IDP purposes as well, as he gets the Buffalo Bills and presumably Stefon Diggs. And we need to look no further than last week to see how the Bills are not afraid to attack a team’s top corner. Jonathan Jones had 11 targets that led to 9 receptions against him, but also 6 solos and 2 assists. For Sauce, this should mean he has a strong floor based on tackle opportunities if he gets targeted with big-play upside for PDs and/or an INT. Sauce has also only missed 4 tackles all season (7.3%), so you can count on the opportunities he does get. Gardner is a high-end DB3 with strong DB2 upside!
SIT (FADE): Talanoa Hufanga, San Francisco 49ers, DB12
Talanoa Hufanga has been a great story this year as he burst onto the scene with some big tackles, big plays, and big hair! (How can you not love this guy’s lettuce?!?) So how can we “sit” this guy, you ask? If you feel you can’t bench him, perhaps the best we can do is lower expectations. Hufanga has seen his box/DL snap alignment trend downward as he’s played more in the FS role. The 49ers don’t have a strong need for him up when Warner and Greenlaw are healthy and productive. Queue Tom Brady and the Buccaneers this week. Mr. Brady loves to utilize the quick passing game more than anybody in the league, with one of the fastest times-to-throw (2nd lowest with at least 100 attempts, 2.29) and throwing more pass attempts within 9 yards of the line of scrimmage (252) than any other QB. This feels like a game for Greenlaw and Warner to deliver while Hufanga will become more big-play dependent. I would consider Hufanga a low-end DB2 this week and plan your roster accordingly.
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