April 24, 2024

Week 1 Observations: IDP Edition

8 min read

Week 1 Observations: IDP Edition


Week 1 is officially over. And, just like most fantasy football creators, I have observations of what I saw. We witnessed teams with Super Bowl aspirations lose in week one (Chiefs, Bills, Bengals), and other teams come away with surprising victories (Rams, Jets, Lions).
After digesting all of week one’s results, let’s analyze the IDP developments and their impacts on our fantasy football rosters.

Players that Impressed

Bobby Wagner, LB, Seattle

A player with 19 tackles would be first on the list. What is even more impressive is that Wagner is 33 years old! The next oldest player inside the Top 12 is 28 years old. It is obvious that Bobby Wagner still has a lot of treads left on his tires, and he is a must-start in fantasy. Wagner was my preseason pick for Defensive Player of the Year, and he has not disappointed after one week of play.

Kader Kohou, DeShon Elliot and Jevon Holland, DB, Miami

I was confident that the Dolphin’s defense would have one superlative IDP player from their defensive backfield; I thought his name was Jalen Ramsey. Instead, the Miami defensive backfield has three! Led by Kader Kohou, DeShon Elliot, and Jevon Holland, the Miami defense was patrolled by playmakers all over the field. The game was a shootout and provided plenty of opportunities for the DBs to shine. With 36 total tackles, one sack, and two tackles for loss, these three DBs were almost impossible to stop from making plays. With all three, targeting just one in IDP may be challenging, but Holland and Kohou offer the most in IDP.

Josh Allen, LB, Jacksonville

Entering the season, Josh Allen was a trendy “sleeper” pick. Allen always had a nice blend of tackles and sacks. However, as tackles went up, sacks went down. In week one against the Colts, Allen notched ten tackles and three sacks-a massive game-changer for the Jaguars. If Josh Allen can maintain some semblance of this level of play, he will be mentioned in the same breath as TJ Watt and Micah Parsons. This could be the season Allen puts it all together.

Jessie Bates, DB, Atlanta

Jessie Bates was one of the leaders of the defense in Cincinnati. Moving to Atlanta, that role needed to be clarified. However, after week one, Jessie Bates has declared himself the defensive spark plug. With ten total tackles and two interceptions, Bates was the clear leader on a defense that desperately needed production. Last year, Bates set a career-high with four interceptions and one forced fumble. If Bates can maintain some level of contribution in multiple areas as he did in week one, Bates may be looking at an All-Pro level season.

Players that surprised

Brandon Stephens, CB, Baltimore

The Ravens’ defense has plenty of players that can shine in IDP formats. However, Brandon Stephens was a pleasant surprise for fantasy managers. A 3rd round pick in 2021, Stephens had a solid rookie season and notched 78 total tackles and four passes defended. In 2022, he took a step back and recorded 37 total tackles. It appears Stephens may be back to his rookie form. I do not expect him to record this many tackles every week, but it is conceivable that he could break the 90-tackle mark this season with some contributions in tackles for loss and passes defended.

Germaine Pratt, LB, Cincinnati

Germaine Pratt has been a solid, dependable linebacker in the NFL. However, in IDP circles, he has been mediocre. A linebacker who only contributes in one statistical category does not make a significant mark as an IDP player. In week one, Pratt recorded 11 tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble. Pratt needs to be rostered in your league, so act fast! I am predicting a breakout season for Pratt in 2023.

Players I “felt” could Break Out and Did!

Jermaine Johnson, DE, New York Jets

I was as big of a Jermaine Johnson truther as there can be entering the season. In his 49% snap share, Johnson recorded five total tackles and one sack. If his snap share rises to 60% to 65%, he can put up huge numbers for fantasy purposes. For now, let’s bask in the glow that Johnson started week one with a strong game and hope his Jets defense can continue to provide him with opportunities to shine.

Reed Blankenship, S, Philadelphia

After a small sample size last year, Reed Blankenship earned the starting spot after CJ Gardner Johnson departed for the Lions. Blankenship is an undrafted free agent in his second year with the Eagles. In 2022, Blankenship recorded 34 total tackles with one interception. With the starting job his to lose heading into the 2023 season, Blankenship rewarded fantasy managers that invested early with 12 total tackles and two passes defended. Blankenship is well on his way to an outstanding IDP season. Blankenship has found himself with a rib injury and has been ruled out of this Thursday night’s match up against the Vikings.

Terrel Bernard, LB, Buffalo

After Tremaine Edmunds departed for Chicago, Bernard was the savvy IDP manager’s pick to inherit the volume vacated by the departed Edmunds. However, some thought rookie Dorian Williams might also pop. After week one, Terrel Bernard and Matt Milano look to be the tandem policing the middle for the Bills. Bernard tallied ten total tackles against the Jets. To elevate to the upper tier of IDP linebackers, Bernard must also contribute in other areas. If Bernard is available in your league, run, don’t walk, to grab him.

Ernest Jones, LB, Los Angeles Rams

When the Rams allowed Bobby Wagner to walk, many wondered what the Rams were thinking. Wagner was the key to the defense and would be missed greatly by a defense missing playmakers. Jones tallied eight tackles against the Seahawks in week one, with three tackles for a loss. In 2022, Jones tallied 114 tackles. On most teams, a player notching those tackle numbers is usually a focal point of the defense. However, Jones played alongside the future Hall of Famer Bobby Wagner for the last two years. Now, it is Jones’ turn to lead the Rams’ defense. For IDP, Jones will need to contribute in more areas other than tackles to be a genuinely elite IDP linebacker.
For now, grab him in all formats.

Jordan Whitehead, DB, New York Jets

Jordan Whitehead was one of Josh Allen’s favorite targets on Monday night, connecting on three passes. That previous sentence would be all right, except that Whitehead played for the opposing team. In addition to the three interceptions, Whitehead also notched two tackles. Teams may quickly learn that if you try to avoid Sauce Gardner, other players on the Jets defense can also make plays. I anticipate those types of interception numbers only a few times a season, but it shows Whitehead can read the quarterback and make plays.

Players that did not break out (yet?)

Devin Lloyd, LB, Jacksonville

I was a big fan of Devin Lloyd’s heading into this season. And I am not entirely abandoning him as a player I invested in on my Dynasty rosters. However, week one was a disappointment. Lloyd totaled three tackles and one fumble recovered. Those stats were not horrible, but coming from a linebacker, we need more from a player with a 72% snap share. Lloyd is a hold in Redraft formats, but if a similar performance like that occurs next week, Lloyd will be a release candidate.

Malcolm Rodriguez, LB, Detroit

Malcolm Rodriguez, the breakout star of last season’s Hard Knocks, saw his field time diminish in week one to just a 14% snap share. In that time, he only made one tackle. The Lions will use a three-safety look, as Alex Anzalone is the only linebacker locked into a steady snap share. Barring any injuries, Rodriguez is no longer worth rostering.


Players that disappointed

Micah Parsons, LB/DE, Dallas

This post is about something other than whether you should trade or drop him. That would be a ridiculous response after one week. However, we were hoping for more than three total tackles and a sack for a player who was the first defensive player taken in many IDP drafts. He is a great player and should rebound, but let’s hope he reads this and it motivates him to better things.

Myles Garrett, DE, Cleveland

For the same reasons I listed Micah Parsons, I listed Myles Garrett. For a Top 3 DE in most formats, three total tackles and one sack were underwhelming for Garrett.

Nick Bosa, DE, San Francisco

A pattern with these top-tier defensive lineman is that their success revolves around their ability to cause havoc in the backfield. With only two tackles against Pittsburgh, better days are ahead for Bosa. Let’s hope we don’t see offenses chipping on Bosa to the point where he may not warrant the high draft capital most managers invested.

Kyle Hamilton, S, Baltimore

Besides notching three total tackles, Hamilton did not add any countable stats for IDP managers, as he was on the field for 76% of the defensive snaps. I expect a bounce back from Hamilton against the Bengals (hey, the Browns looked good against them), but monitor his output closely. At 6’4″ and 220 pounds, Hamilton is a prototype for modern-day safeties who can also move into the box and add support. Hamilton is capable of contributing in many ways as an IDP star.

Haason Reddick, DE, Philadelphia

Haason Reddick terrorized quarterbacks last year as he recorded 16 sacks in 2022. And although he can certainly return to that form again in 2023, his first game was not the start to make that goal a reality. Reddick tallied only one tackle against the Patriots. I expected better for a DE on the field for 58% of the snaps. Similarly to Parsons, Garrett, and Bosa, I expect a bounce back; I hope it comes sooner rather than later.

Injured Players to monitor

Jalen Pitre, S, Houston

Early in the game against the Ravens, Jalen Pitre took a blow to the chest and left the game due to bruised lungs. Pitre recorded two total tackles before exiting the game. Many IDP managers have high hopes for Pitre this season; let’s hope he can recover quickly and return to the field.

Nakobe Dean, LB, Philadelphia

While on the field, Nakobe Dean provided plenty of reasons for IDP managers to be excited about this season. In his 49% snap share, Dean made seven total tackles. However, Dean left the game in a walking boot and was placed on the IR. It will be four more weeks before we can see this promising linebacker on the field again.

Quay Walker, LB, Green Bay

One of the most impactful players to hit the injury report, Quay Walker, sustained a concussion in the Packers’ week one game against Chicago. On a 49% snap share, Walker had four total tackles, an interception, and a touchdown. IDP managers had a lot of high hopes if they punted linebackers and drafted Walker as their LB1. Let’s hope he returns to the field soon…

Copyright © All rights reserved. | Newsphere by AF themes.