By Duncan Smith

Welcome back everyone, for our weekly dive into all things IDP. As usual, we’ll look at every team in the league, yes even the Jets, and try to filter out a shiny nugget of useful information from each roster for your fantasy consideration.

You know what, we have a lot to get through, so no more preamble. Let’s get to our snap decisions.

ARIZONA CARDINALS

Safety – Budda Baker’s season keeps improving, during Monday’s blow out win over Dallas he recorded 1 interception, 1 sack, 1 pass defended, 1 forced fumble, and 7 solo tackles.

He may get the opportunity to get at the quarterback again in week 7, as opponents Seattle has allowed Russell Wilson to be sacked 15 times in 5 games.

ATLANTA FALCONS

LB – Foyesade Oluokon had another good week against Minnesota. He recorded his first career interception, hauling in one of Kirk Cousins 3 turnovers for 14 yards, to go with a pass defended, and 6 combined tackles, including 1 for a loss. This was his first week with a 100% snap count and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue going forward.

BALTIMORE RAVENS – Bye Week 7

DT – The Ravens have 13 sacks over the last 2 weeks after dropping Carson Wentz 6 times on Sunday. Last week veteran star Calais Campbell was unable to get one of the 7 sacks but more than made up for it this week recording 3 sacks, 5 combined tackles ( 4 solo, 4 for a loss), and hit Wentz 4 times. He also played a defensive line high 71% of snaps. The 34-year-old gets a week off to recuperate before a tough match with Pittsburgh.

BUFFALO BILLS

Safety – Jordan Poyer continues to put up solid IDP numbers, even if the Bills haven’t looked the same team over their last two outings as they did in their first four. Poyer has 3 double-figure scoring games so far, including this week where he got 10 combined tackles, including 9 solo and 1 for a loss. Next up is a trip to East Rutherford to face the woeful Jets. There’s nothing to make you think he won’t continue that form this week.

CAROLINA PANTHERS

Safety – Of the Carolina rookies we mentioned last week free safety Jeremy Chinn is the only one you can currently start with any confidence. He finished the week with an interception and 5 combined tackles. His snap count dropped slightly from 98% to 95% but he has established himself as the starter in his role. I would like to see his tackle numbers increase before calling him an every-week play but he’s not far from it. Next, he gets New Orleans and Drew Brees, who has already thrown 3 interceptions this year compared to 4 total in 2019.

CINCINNATI BENGALS

Safety – The Jessie Bates breakout is here. He leads the team in solo tackles (27) and passes defended (8). He added to his stats week 6 with 5 solo tackles, a pass defended, and an interception. Week 7 brings Cleveland to Cincinnati. The Browns gave up 10 combined tackles to Bates and an interception to William Jackson in week 2. Keep Bates in your lineup, don’t worry about Jackson.

CHICAGO BEARS

LB – Roquan Smith logged another 12 combined tackles, 7 solo, on his way to a solid outing against the Panthers. He leads the team with 52 combined tackles in 6 games. He’s already over halfway to breaking his 100 tackle line last year, and if he keeps playing well could easily break his rookie total of 121 tackles. He’s not had an interception yet this season but with 7 career picks it’s definitely within his wheelhouse.

CLEVELAND BROWNS

Edge – Aaron Donald is currently taking all of the plaudits for a monster season so far. However, Myles Garrett is keeping pace with him and arguably has been better so far. Garrett has 19 tackles, 7 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and 2 fumble recoveries. He has a nice schedule for the rest of the season, starting with Cincinnati this week and ending with NYG and NYJ in weeks 15 and 16. If I’m the guy with Aaron Donald, I would seriously consider trying to swap him for Garrett, who at 24 is 5 years younger than the Rams star.

DALLAS COWBOYS

I spent a long time looking at Dallas, hoping to find someone other than Jaylon Smith to talk about but there isn’t anyone. The wheels are falling off the Cowboys season and now the players are starting to complain to the press. Once that happens things are unlikely to improve quickly. 

Jaylon is scoring consistently enough though, with double-digit tackles in 4 out of 6 games. You can find better elsewhere for the other players.

DENVER BRONCOS 

LB – Malik Reed continues to impress in Jeremiah Attaochu’s absence. He recorded 2 sacks of Cam Newton and 5 combined tackles this week on a 86% snap share. 

With Attaochu likely to sit out week 7, Reed has a chance to impress again if he can get to Patrick Mahomes when Kansas City roll into town.

DETROIT LIONS 

LB – Against Jacksonville on Sunday the Lions finally got their run defense going, holding the Jags to 44 total yards on the ground. Veteran LB Jamie Collins continues to see his snap percentage increase, 92% this week, and since a disappointing week 1 he has been putting up some solid numbers. At 30 he doesn’t have much dynasty longevity but he’s a nice bye-week option with the potential to help you the rest of this season.

GREEN BAY PACKERS 

DT – Kenny Clark returned to action in the Packers blowout loss to Tampa Bay. He recorded 4 combined tackles on 63% of the snaps. In DT required leagues I would get him back in my lineup with Houston up next. 

The Texans have allowed DeShaun Watson to be sacked 19 times already this season and there’s no reason to think Clark can’t add to that while recording his first sack of 2020.

HOUSTON TEXANS

LB – Tyrell Adams played well with the start again this week, with a sack, 2 passes defended, and 8 combined tackles. In his two starts since Benardrick McKinney was placed on IR, he has recorded a sack, 2 passes defended, a fumble recovery, and 20 combined tackles. I’m still not convinced about his long term value and would be wary of starting him this week against a Green Bay outfit looking to make amends for their schooling by Tom Brady.

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – Bye week 7

LB – The Colts have an exciting young linebacker group in big off-season acquisition Darius Leonard, Anthony Walker, and sophomore Bobby Okereke. With Leonard being absent over the last two weeks, Walker and Okereke have both played 100% of snaps and combined for 31 tackles, 2 picks, and 5 passes defended.

Leonard will likely be back after the Colts week 7 bye and will probably take work from at least one of his teammates. Based on pre-injury snap percentages, it will be Walker but I would still like any of the three on my roster.

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

LB – Myles Jack looked on course for a career season after an excellent opening four games. However, an ankle injury has curtailed that slightly, forcing him to miss week 5 and leave the field early in week 6. With the Jags on a bye in week 8, it may be week 9 before we see him back on the field. Newly signed Kamalei Correa should be the beneficiary in terms of snaps but is unlikely to translate that into meaningful IDP production.

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

LB –  Anthony Hitchens currently leads the team with 43 combined tackles, 23 solo, and has managed at least 5 tackles every week. This gives him a solid floor in leagues that reward tackling, but he’s never been prolific in getting to the quarterback, and his only career interception came as a rookie in 2014, which severely lowers his ceiling.

LAS VEGAS RAIDERS 

Edge – In the three games before the Raiders bye Maxx Crosby racked up 4 sacks while seeing his snap count reach a season-high of 92% in week 5. He needs to start recording more tackles if he is going to beat his rookie season tally of 46 tackles, 10 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles.

If he can take a step up over the remainder of his second season he could quickly become a dependable weekly start in almost all formats.

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 

Edge – Melvin Ingram is eligible to return from IR this week. Keep an eye on his progress as well as Joey Bosa’s as the week progresses. If they are good to go this weekend both have a great match against Jacksonville, who have allowed opposing defenses to sack Gardner Minshew 17 times already in 2020. 

Bosa and Ingram are one of the most fearsome pass rush duo’s in the league and should be started everywhere when healthy.

LOS ANGELES RAMS

LB – Micah Kiser was questionable going into week 6 but was able to suit up and recorded 13 combined tackles while wiping out any value Troy Reeder had after his good showing in week 5. 

Kiser’s game is all about tackling, he’s never recorded a sack or interception. He needs matchups with the opportunity to bring the ball carrier down to rack up points. Week 8 against Chicago might not be the plus match you expect as the Bears are currently 5th in pass attempts and only 24th in rushing attempts. However,  look for Aaron Donald to get back in amongst the sacks.

MIAMI DOLPHINS – Bye week 7

DE – Emmanuel Ogbah has got himself on a nice run going into the Dolphins bye week. He has 5 sacks so far this year including 4 over the last 3 weeks. He’s averaging around 77% of snaps over 6 weeks, so hasn’t reached his ceiling if he can continue with his current form.

MINNESOTA VIKINGS – Bye week 7

CB – With Mike Hughes going down again in week 6 after reaggravating a neck injury, rookie cornerbacks Cameron Dantzler and Jeff Gladney are both getting plenty of playing time and opportunity to nail down those starting roles. Dantzler had 11 combined tackles and Gladney 9 as the Falcons blew the doors off of Minnesota. 

They get a week to rest now before taking on Green Bay in week 8. I doubt Aaron Rodgers will have any problems with throwing in either of their directions giving them both upside on volume alone.

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 

CB – Well, Stephon Gilmore cleared Covid protocol and played 100% of snaps in Sunday’s loss to Denver, however that didn’t slow down versatile back Jonathan Jones any. He recorded a pick, 3 passes defended, and 4 combined tackles on 84% of snaps. His adaptability means he can pop up anywhere in the secondary and cause havoc for offenses.

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS 

3 out of the top 5 defensive performers for New Orleans are in their thirties, or old as we like to call them in sports. They are Demario Davis (31), Malcolm Jenkins (32), and Cameron Jordan (31). The other two are Marshon Lattimore (24) and Chauncey Gardner-Johnson (22). 

Lattimore is unlikely available but you might be able to get Ceedy Duce from free agency as an end of your bench prospect.

NEW YORK GIANTS

Safety – Logan Ryan managed a sack, a tackle for a loss, a pass defended, and 8 solo tackles against Washington. Keep him in your line ups week 7 against the Eagles. Carson Wentz has been sacked 25 times and thrown 9 interceptions already this season.

NEW YORK JETS

Safety – corner Brian Poole had the best stat line of the week but I want to talk about the Butt Interception. 8 years after the Butt Fumble, Marcus Maye picked off Ryan Fitzpatrick by trapping the ball against his ass before acrobatically securing it behind his back for the only Jets highlight of the day. 

PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

Edge – Brandon Graham led the team with 2 sacks and 6 combined tackles against the Ravens. This is his second 2 sack game of the season, while this week may be unexpected, his other 2 sack game against Cincinnati and Joe Burrow who has been sacked 24 times in 6 games. Week 7 brings the fifth most sacked quarterback Daniel Jones.

Graham doesn’t have a solid tackling floor and at 32 he’s not much of a dynasty asset but I like his chances of getting at least one more sack this weekend.

PITTSBURGH STEELERS

The Steelers are the top defense of 2020 in passing and rushing. They have only allowed 171/1095/9 through the air and a miserly 99/331/3 on the ground. Next up is Tennessee, the Titans have been relying on Derrick Henry and the run game to keep Ryan Tannehill out of trouble, so far averaging 157 yards per game, but Pittsburgh is giving up only 66 yards a game. If they can stop Henry then Tannehill could be forced to air it out against a secondary that already has 8 interceptions on the year.

What I’m saying is even if you had a disappointing week like me with Mike Hilton make sure you continue playing your Steelers if they’re playing.

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

LB -. With Kwon Alexander missing this game against the Rams with a confirmed high ankle sprain, it opened the door for  Dre Greenlaw to play 100% of snaps. He took the opportunity and recorded a team-high 8 tackles, all solo. With Alexander likely to miss at least another week if not more, Greenlaw is a nice fill in, with potential stand-alone value going forward. Up next he gets New England and their seeming inability to keep the defense out of their backfield.

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 

Safety – Seattle is coming off of their bye week to face Arizona in week 7. The Seahawks are expecting star safety Jamal Adams to return after missing weeks 4 and 5, although Pete Carroll was coy when asked about his return this week.

Those with Adams rostered should keep an eye on the injury report and be ready to roll him out in a plus matchup. Kyler Murray is currently 10th in passing attempts (205), 4th in interceptions (6), and the 19th most sacked (9) quarterback so far this season.

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

LB – I hope you stuck with Lavonte David and Devin White after their down week in week 5, as both of them bounced back in Tampa’s dismantling of Green Bay. David got himself 8 combined tackles and 1.5 sacks, while White claimed 10 combined tackles and 1 sack.

CB – Keep an eye on Carlton Davis as a boom or bust player, he has 3 interceptions on the year so far, from Teddy Bridgewater, Justin Herbert, and Nick Foles. He faces Daniel Jones, who has given up an interception a game so far, in week 8.

TENNESSEE TITANS 

DT – Jeffery Simmons led the team with 6 combined tackles, a sack, a tackle for a loss, and 2 hits on the QB against Houston. The second-year player has shown he is ready to take the next step over his last two games. Up next is Pittsburgh before he gets Cincinnati and a real chance to cause havoc in the opponent’s backfield.

WASHINGTON REDSKINS

A disappointing week for the WFT against a Giants offense ranked 30th in passing and rushing. As a collective, they only managed 1 interception and 1 sack on Daniel Jones and none of them came close to recording 10 tackles. There may be a chance for redemption next though as they have a divisional match-up against a faltering Dallas and Zeke Elliot, who seems to have forgotten how to hold things.

Duncan Smith – @duncanc
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