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IDP Strong/Weak Plays

This will be a weekly feature for IDP owners out there who are having some troubles deciding who to start on Sundays. I'm going to analyze the statistics in a few different ways to find favorable matchups and unfavorable matchups and then point out some players who are most likely to be affected by those matchups. I'll provide the reasoning behind these selections so you can think about it and decide for yourselves. I will also review my picks from the week before so you can see how accurate the picks have been. As most people know, predicting performance on a game by game basis can be difficult for offensive players, but that difficulty is often exaggerated with IDPs. Matchups are important, but there are so many other variables that come into play that sometimes you have to just stick with your best players and hope they come through with just one or two big plays. Good luck.

Review of Last Week's Selections

STRONG STARTS

  • DL Carolina Panthers (@ Arizona Cardinals): DE Julius Peppers (3 solos, 1 PD = 4 pts), DE Mike Rucker (2 solos, 1 asst = 2.5 pts)
  • DL Miami Dolphins (@ Buffalo Bills): DE Jason Taylor - 6 solos, 2 sacks, 1 FF, 1 PD = 15 pts
  • DL Green Bay Packers (vs New Orleans Saints): DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila - 1 FR = 2 pts
  • DL New York Jets (vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers): DE Shaun Ellis - 2 solos, 1 asst, .5 sacks = 4 pts
  • LB Detroit Lions (vs Baltimore Ravens): MLB Earl Holmes (4 solos, 4 asst, 1 FF = 8 pts), OLB Boss Bailey (4 solos, 1 asst = 4.5 pts)
  • LB Atlanta Falcons (vs New England Patriots): OLB Demorrio Williams (2 solos, 3 asst, 1 INT, 1 PD = 8.5 pts), OLB Keith Brooking (9 solos, 1 asst = 9.5 pts)
  • LB Tennessee Titans (@ Houston Texans): MLB Brad Kassell - 6 solos, 1 FF = 8 pts
  • LB Denver Broncos (vs Washington Redskins): MLB Al Wilson - 3 solos, 2 asst, 1 FR, 2 PD = 8 pts
  • DB Carolina Panthers (@ Arizona Cardinals): CB Ken Lucas - 5 solos, 1 FR, 4 PD = 10 pts
  • DB New Orleans Saints (@ Green Bay Packers): SS Dwight Smith (6 solos, 1 asst = 6.5 pts), CB Mike McKenzie (2 solos, 1 asst, 1 PD = 3.5 pts)
  • DB Cincinnati Bengals (@ Jacksonville Jaguars): CB Deltha O'Neal - 2 solos, 1 PD = 3 pts
  • DB New York Jets (vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers): SS Kerry Rhodes (2 solos, 1 asst = 2.5 pts), CB David Barrett (3 solos, 2 PD = 5 pts)

Hit Rate for Week 5: 8/17 (47%)
Year to date: 34/64 (53%)

WEAK STARTS

  • DL Atlanta Falcons (vs New England Patriots): DE Patrick Kerney - 1 solo, 1 asst = 1.5 pts
  • DL Buffalo Bills (vs Miami Dolphins): DE Aaron Schobel - 2 solos, 1 asst = 2.5 pts
  • DL Pittsburgh Steelers (@ San Diego Chargers): DE Aaron Smith - 1 solo = 1 pt
  • DL San Francisco 49ers (vs Indianapolis Colts): DE Bryant Young - 0 tackles = 0 pts
  • LB Miami Dolphins (@ Buffalo Bills): OLB Junior Seau - 3 solos, 3 asst = 4.5 pts
  • LB Indianapolis Colts (@ San Francisco 49ers): WLB Cato June - 4 solos, 2 INT, 1 TD = 18 pts
  • LB Cincinnati Bengals (@ Jacksonville Jaguars): WLB Brian Simmons - 2 solos, 1 asst = 2. 5 pts
  • LB Chicago Bears (@ Cleveland Browns): WLB Lance Briggs - 6 solos, 3 asst, 1 sack, 1 PD = 11.5 pts
  • DB San Diego Chargers (vs Pittsburgh Steelers): FS Bhawoh Jue - 3 solos = 3 pts
  • DB Indianapolis Colts (@ San Francisco 49ers): SS Mike Doss - 4 solos, 3 asst, 1 INT, 2 PD = 11.5 pts
  • DB Miami Dolphins (@ Buffalo Bills): FS Tebucky Jones - 5 solos, 4 asst = 7 pts
  • DB San Francisco 49ers (vs Indianapolis Colts): SS Tony Parrish - 3 solos = 3 pts

Hit Rate for Week 5: 8/12 (67%)
Year to date: 36/61 (59%)

A brief note about the hit rates: To provide an objective standard to evaluate these selections, 5 fantasy points will be used as the cutoff for DL and 6 fantasy points will be used as the cutoff for LB and DBs. Thus, when a player is listed as a strong start, that means I think he has a good chance to top 5 or 6 points based on his matchup, and when I say a player is a weak start, that means I think he has a good chance to put up fewer than 5 or 6 points. I'll continue to evaluate my success throughout the season to try and provide you with the information you need to make your starting decisions.

Best of luck with your starting lineup decisions this week. Feel free to e-mail me at rudnicki@footballguys.com with any feedback or suggestions regarding this article.

STRONG STARTS

  • DL Chicago Bears (vs Minnesota): DE Adewale Ogunleye
    The Vikings come into this game ranked #2 on the season in fantasy points allowed to opposing DL. Daunte Culpepper has been playing hurt and was sacked 16 times in his past two games, so the Bears should be able to get pressure on him. Ogunleye is their best pass rusher, and is expected to be ready to play this week after missing last week's game with an ankle injury. He's put up good numbers in the two games he's played this year (7 solos, 2 asst, 2 sacks, 2 PD, 1 FF), and should have a big edge over RT Mike Rosenthal. DE Alex Brown put up 7 solo tackles against the Bengals in week 3, but didn't do much in the other 3 games and has yet to record his first sack this year. He's a risky play going against LT Bryant McKinnie. DT Tommie Harris is probably the only other player worth considering, but given the Vikings ineffective run game, and his 5 solo tackles through 4 games, it's probably a safe bet to leave him on your bench this week.
  • DL Atlanta Falcons (@ New Orleans): DE Patrick Kerney, DT Rod Coleman
    The Saints rank #5 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DL, and #4 over their last 3 games, with most of the points coming from the Packers blowout on Sunday. Without Deuce McAllister around to keep the defense honest, the Falcons should be able to get consistent pressure on Aaron Brooks. DT Rod Coleman had a disappointing game against the Patriots on Sunday, but that was a brutal matchup as no team gives up fewer points to DL this year than New England. He still ranks #11 in fantasy points/game among all DL and should be able to rebound against the Saints. DE Patrick Kerney has had 3 quality starts out of 5 games played, but both bad games came against very tough matchups. He has 2.5 sacks on the season and should be able to add to that total this week. The other Falcons DL have minimal fantasy value and aren't worth playing this week.
  • DL NY Jets (@ Buffalo): DE Shaun Ellis
    Buffalo ranks #6 on the year in fantasy points allowed to opposing DL, but #1 over their past 3 games. The pass protection has broken down repeatedly, and it doesn't seem to matter much whether Losman or Holcomb is under center, although Holcomb provides a less mobile target for defenders. The Bills also rely heavily on their running game, which creates plenty of tackle opportunities for defenders. Jets DE John Abraham has to be considered a must-start player against almost any matchup, so I didn't even bother listing him as a strong start this week. Despite cooling off the past 2 weeks, he still ranks #10 in fantasy points/game and should have a great game against the Bills this week. DE Shaun Ellis has been a slight disappointment so far this year (13 solos, 3 asst, 1.5 sacks, 1 FF) but should be able to get back on track this week. DT Dewayne Robertson is a nice sleeper play this week after his big 2-sack game against the Bucs last week, although he hasn't been very consistent in the past.
  • DL Seattle Seahawks (vs Houston): DE Bryce Fisher, DT Rocky Bernard
    Houston ranks #9 in fantasy points allowed to DL on the year, and #9 over their past 3 games. David Carr has been sacked a league-leading 27 times, despite only having playing 4 games. Surprisingly, DE Bryce Fisher and DT Rocky Bernard lead the Seahawks in sacks this year while Grant Wistrom has none. Fisher has been a quality start in 3 of 5 games so far, and should be a solid start against this matchup (both Titans DEs reached double digit fantasy points against the Texans on Sunday). Rocky Bernard is a sleeper pick, but he's been remarkable consistent with 4 quality starts so far this year. His tackle numbers haven't been great, but he's collected a sack in 3 different games. Many IDP owners had high expectations for Wistrom coming into the year, but he has probably been one of the biggest disappointments so far. This could be the week for him to turn things around, but based on his numbers of the past few weeks he has to be considered a risky play.
  • LB Cleveland Browns (@ Baltimore): ILB Ben Taylor
    The Ravens rank #1 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs this year, and #4 over their past 3 games. The Lions were the only team with linebackers that didn't put up huge numbers against the Ravens this year. ILB Andra Davis is the #7 ranked linebacker in fantasy points/game this year, so he should be started regardless of matchup. The other ILB Ben Taylor, however, has outperformed him in each of the Browns past two games and looks like a great play again this week. The Ravens will continue to rely heavily on the running of Jamal Lewis and Chester Taylor, so both ILBs should put up good tackle numbers this week. OLB Chaun Thompson is considered by some to be the most talented player in the Browns LB corps and he has been a quality start in 2 of 4 games thus far, so he should be a pretty solid start this week as well. OLB Kenard Lang is a converted DE, who has yet to record a sack and only topped 2 solo tackles once, so it's probably a good idea to leave him on your bench.
  • LB Seattle Seahawks (vs Houston): MLB Lofa Tatupu
    The Texans enter this game ranked #3 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs this year and over their past 3 games. The change of offensive coordinators during the bye week didn't appear to have an impact as Titans LBs Keith Bulluck and Brad Kassell combined for 18 solos and 3 assists last week. MLB Lofa Tatupu has emerged as an early favorite for defensive rookie of the year with his back to back 9 solo tackle performances, but he's also shown big play potential with 2 sacks and an INT on the year. He is on fire right now and looks like a great start this week. Tatupu's rise in production has coincided with a decline in the production of SLB Jamie Sharper, who has failed to reach 6 fantasy points in consecutive weeks and looks like a risky play this week. WLB D.D. Lewis could be a sleeper this week as he has reached 5.5 fantasy points or more in 3 of 5 games. He's a guy that has flown under the radar of most fantasy owners and may even be available on the waiver wire in some leagues. Don't look for big numbers from him but he could be a decent fill-in if your team has been weakened by injuries or byes.
  • LB Denver Broncos (vs New England): MLB Al Wilson, WLB Ian Gold
    While the Patriots rank dead last in fantasy points allowed to DL, they rank #4 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs on the year and #1 over their past 3 games. The Patriots do a great job of sustaining long drives, which gives opposing linebackers plenty of tackle opportunities each and every week. The Broncos have one of the best LB groups in the league, so they should be able to take full advantage of this favorable matchup. Al Wilson is one of the league's better MLBs and he currently ranks #21 among linebackers in fantasy points/game. WLB Ian Gold is one of the league's fastest LBs and he should bounce back from a disappointing game (1 solo, 3 asst) against the Redskins last week. Both Gold and Wilson see time in the team's nickel package, which makes them more productive and valuable than the SLB DJ Williams, who only has 10 solo tackles after 5 games.
  • LB Indianapolis Colts (vs St Louis): WLB Cato June
    For a team as pass-happy as the Rams tend to be, it is somewhat surprising to see them ranked as the #6 team in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs for the year and #5 over their past 3 games. The Rams will be without their head coach Mike Martz for the time being, and that could result in them relying more heavily on the running of Steven Jackson, which should be good news for the Colts linebackers. MLB Gary Brackett comes into the game ranked #6 among fantasy linebackers so he should definitely be in your starting lineup each week until he falls off. WLB Cato June is a little less obvious, but ranks #16 among fantasy linebackers thanks primarily to his huge game against the 49ers last week, in which he intercepted 2 passes and ran one back for a TD. SLB David Thornton has been a quality start in 3 of 5 games so far this year, and could also be a solid play this week.
  • DB Minnesota Vikings (@ Chicago): CB Antoine Winfield
    Somewhat surprisingly, the Bears offense ranks #2 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs this year and #2 over their past 3 games as well. The Bears have found themselves playing from behind pretty often, but apart from the 5-INT game against the Bengals, Orton has done a good job of protecting the ball. S Darren Sharper is probably the best starting option from the Vikings secondary, but he's missed the past 2 games with a knee injury and is listed as probable on the injury report so make sure he's playing before inserting him in your lineup. The other safety, Corey Chavous has seen his numbers actually decline with Sharper out of the lineup so it's hard to know what to expect from him, but he could put up good numbers this week. CB Antoine Winfield is perhaps the best pound for pound tackler in the NFL and his ability and willingness to support versus the run gives him a chance to produce even when he doesn't see many passes thrown his way. CB Fred Smoot is a solid in coverage and a good playmaker, but is not a physical player so he'll rarely get enough tackles to be a good fantasy option.
  • DB Cleveland Browns (@ Baltimore): CB Gary Baxter
    The Ravens only rank #16 on the year in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs and 12th over their past 3 games, but those numbers hide the fact that they've given up a ton of points over the past 2 weeks. Last week against the Lions, 3 different DBs finished with 6 or more fantasy points including 18.5 from Dre Bly who intercepted 2 passes, forced a fumble, and scored a TD. This will be the first chance for Gary Baxter to face his former team, and if he's matched up against Derrick Mason as expected, he should see plenty of action. Baxter is a very solid tackler who has been a quality start in all 3 games played this year, so he looks like a strong play this week. SS Chris Crocker is the #2 scorer among fantasy DBs this year so he's a must start regardless of matchup. FS Brian Russell has only been a quality start in 1 of 4 games played so far and is not a very good tackler, making him a risky play. CB Daylon McCutcheon is a solid sleeper choice this week as he's been surprisingly productive all year with 22 solo tackles, 2 INTs, and a FF.
  • DB Indianapolis Colts (vs St Louis): SS Mike Doss
    The Rams are always a great matchup for opposing DBs as the Rams rely heavily on the passing game and Bulger throws plenty of INTs. They rank #3 in fantasy points allowed to DBs this year and #5 over their past 3 games. After 5 games, Bob Sanders has had 3 good games and 2 bad ones. He had to leave the game last week with an arm injury and is listed as questionable this week. If he plays, he will almost certainly be a quality start against this matchup so keep an eye on his health status as the game approaches. Mike Doss has played in 4 games and has been a quality start in 2 of them, including a surprising 11.5 points against the 49ers last week. If the Rams rely more on Steven Jackson with their new coach, that should help Doss as well as he is a pretty solid run defender. The Colts CBs are hard to predict because they've been in and out of the lineup due to injuries. The most productive of the bunch have been Nick Harper and Marlin Jackson, but they had 1 assisted tackle combined in last week's game against San Francisco.
  • DB Kansas City Chiefs (vs Washington): SS Sammy Knight, FS Greg Wesley
    The Redskins are another surprisingly strong matchup for opposing DBs this year as you wouldn't think an offense with Mark Brunell and Clinton Portis would rely very heavily on their passing attack. But, the Redskins are making plays in the passing game and currently rank #4 on the year and #8 over their past 3 games in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs. Greg Wesley was ignored by a lot of fantasy owners this year as many expected him to struggle with the move to free safety, but he's been surprisingly productive with 26 solo tackles through 4 games. Sammy Knight was a big free agent signing for the Chiefs, and while he hasn't been as productive as Wesley so far, he's been solid with 5.5 points or more in 3 of the 4 games played. The Chiefs CBs have traditionally been good fantasy options, and Dexter McCleon and Patrick Surtain have put up a few good games between them, but they are risky plays whose value will rely heavily on their ability to get an INT.

WEAK STARTS

  • DL Denver Broncos (vs New England): DE Courtney Brown
    The Patriots are by far the worst matchup for opposing defensive linemen, ranking dead last in both YTD and last 3 game rankings, although their stats may be a little deflated because they have played several teams that use a 3-4 defensive front. While the Broncos defense has been playing very well this year, none of their defensive linemen have emerged as a consistent fantasy option. DE Courtney Brown has been the best of the bunch, but he only has 5 solo tackles, 1 sack, and 2 FRs on the year and ranks #106 in fantasy points/game among DL. This doesn't look like a good week for him to break out. The other DE, Trevor Pryce, has been playing great but it hasn't been reflected in his statistics thus far (8 solo tackles in 5 games). Other players like DE Ebenezer Ekuban and John Engelberger also see time as part of a DE rotation, which winds up hurting the value of all Broncos DEs. DTs Gerard Warren and Michael Myers are not worth starting any week, but especially not this week.
  • DL Oakland Raiders (vs San Diego): DE Derrick Burgess
    The Chargers rank #31 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DLs this year, and #28 over their past 3 games. Drew Brees and the offensive line have done a good job of avoiding sacks (only 7 allowed through 5 games), and Tomlinson is usually tackled by linebackers instead of linemen. DE Derrick Burgess has been up and down this year with 2 bad games and 2 good games, but his pass rush skills should be neutralized by the matchup. He generally gives way to Tommy Kelly in run situations, so it's possible Burgess could see less playing time than normal this week as the Raiders attempt to contain Tomlinson and the Chargers run game. The remaining Raiders DL aren't great fantasy options when they have a good matchup, so they probably shouldn't be considered at all this week.
  • DL Dallas Cowboys (vs NY Giants): DE Greg Ellis
    It's amazing how much impact a QB can have on sack totals. Ever since Eli Manning has taken over in New York, the Giants have become one of the toughest matchups for defensive linemen. The Giants enter this game ranked #30 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DL this year, and #31 over their past 3 games. DE Greg Ellis has struggled with the Cowboys transition to a 3-4 defense, and is becoming more of a pass rush specialist than an everydown player so his tackle numbers are down (7 solos, 3 assists). He does have at least half a sack in 4 of the 5 games so far, but only 2 QBs have been sacked fewer times than Eli Manning so far. DE Chris Canty was emerging as a force for the Cowboys earlier in the year, but he was kept scoreless against the Eagles on Sunday and isn't ready to become a fantasy starter just yet. DTs Jason Ferguson and La'Roi Glover have been splitting time and that has limited both of their fantasy value, so neither looks like a solid play this week.
  • DL St Louis Rams (@ Indianapolis): DE Leonard Little
    The Colts rank #28 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DL this year, and #30 over their past 3 games. Despite playing some teams with a solid pass rush, Peyton Manning has only been sacked once. DE Leonard Little is off to a great start with 4 sacks in his first 5 games, but he left last week's game with a lower back injury and is listed as probably on the injury report this week. He's expected to play, but a less than 100% Little may not be enough to get to Peyton, and his tackle numbers aren't consistent enough to rely on. There were some reports that DE Anthony Hargrove was in danger of losing his job after a slow start, but it looks like he's turned things around with 9 solos and a sack over the past 2 games. Don't expect that to continue with a matchup against LT Tarik Glenn and the Colts though. DTs Ryan Pickett and Jimmy Kennedy have had one or two good games between them this year, but aren't worth considering this week.
  • LB NY Jets (@ Buffalo): SLB Victor Hobson
    The Bills offense has struggled to sustain drives this year and rank #32 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs as a result. Zach Thomas still managed to have a good game against them last week, but he's been the top scoring fantasy linebacker this year by a large margin. Jets MLB Jonathan Vilma is ranked #3 on the year and should do fine despite the bad matchup as he'll be the man most responsible for containing his former Hurricane teammate Willis McGahee. WLB Eric Barton has missed the past two games with an ankle injury and is listed as questionable so that hurts his value as well as his replacement Mark Brown's. SLB Victor Hobson has taken Barton's place in the nickel defense the past two weeks and has put up 14 solo tackles and 9 assists, but look for him to cool off this week against the Bills.
  • LB Houston Texans (@ Seattle): ILB Kailee Wong, ILB Morlon Greenwood
    The Seahawks rank #27 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs this year, but are 31st over their past 3 games. Despite the injury to Darrell Jackson and strong performance of Shaun Alexander, LBs facing them simply haven't done very much. Both Texans ILBs came into the season with pretty high expectations given the previous success of Jamie Sharper and Jay Foreman in the same system. While they've both shown some flashes this year, neither has emerged as a guy you can start every week with confidence yet. Wong leads the team in tackles (21 solos, 12 assists), but he's only been a quality start in 2 of the 4 games played. Greenwood has fewer fantasy points but has been a quality start in 3 straight games. One or both could still manage to have good games, but it's hard to know which one and neither should blow up against this matchup. OLB Antwan Peek probably hasn't done enough this year to warrant a start, and the other OLB position has been even less productive.
  • LB Carolina Panthers (@ Detroit): WLB Will Witherspoon
    Detroit ranks #25 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs this year, and #22 over their past 3 games. That may not seem very high, but the only linebacker group which has done much against them is the Bears in week 2 during a blowout loss. Strong linebacker groups from Tampa and Baltimore have done very little against this Lions offense in the past 2 weeks, although all 4 MLBs (Nick Barnett, Brian Urlacher, Shelton Quarles, Ray Lewis) they've faced have finished with 6 or more solo tackles. The trends suggest that MLB Dan Morgan should be fine this week, but WLB Will Witherspoon could be in trouble. Witherspoon missed a game against Miami in week 3, and hasn't been very productive in the 2 games he's played since. SLB Brandon Short hasn't been a quality start yet this year and this probably won't do much this week either.
  • LB Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs Miami): WLB Derrick Brooks
    The Dolphins enter this game ranked #28 in fantasy points allowed to opposing LBs for the year, and #30 over their past 3 games. In the past 2 games, MLBs Dan Morgan and London Fletcher have had solid games against this unit while WLBs Will Witherspoon and Angelo Crowell have done little. Tampa's best IDP performer this year has been MLB Shelton Quarles, who ranks #10 among fantasy LBs, and he should be fine this week as he tries to slow down the running of Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams. The matchup doesn't look very favorable for WLB Derrick Brooks, however, who is off to a bad start this year and only has 17 solo tackles in 5 games played. The Bucs haven't gotten much production out of Ryan Nece at the SLB spot, and neither have fantasy owners.
  • DB New England Patriots (@ Denver): SS Guss Scott
    Despite having Jake Plummer (20 INTs in 2004) and downfield threats in Rod Smith and Ashley Lelie, the Broncos only rank #31 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs this year and dead last over their past 3 games. SS Guss Scott has taken over for the injured Rodney Harrison and is a solid player, but he's nowhere near as good as Harrison was up near the line of scrimmage and just 5 solo tackles in each of the past 2 games. Don't expect Harrison-type numbers from him going forward. Meanwhile, the remaining Patriots DBs all seem pretty risky. FS Eugene Wilson hasn't been a quality start since the season opener, and all the CBs combined only have 1 quality start among them (Asante Samuel vs Atlanta).
  • DB Jacksonville Jaguars (@ Pittsburgh): SS Deke Cooper
    Predictably, the Steelers offense ranks #32 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs this year, and #31 over their past 3 games. They rely on a power running game and only throw downfield occasionally to keep defenses honest, so the DBs don't get much work. SS Deke Cooper has taken over for the injured Donovin Darius, but he's nowhere near as strong against the run and only managed 2 tackles against the Bengals last week. FS Deon Grant has been a quality start in 2 of 5 games played, but free safeties haven't done very well against this Steelers offense. The Jaguars CBs Rashean Mathis (19 solos) and Kenny Wright (22 solos) have been pretty productive this year, but this looks like a tough matchup for them. The safer play of the 2 would likely be Mathis, assuming he gets matched up against Hines Ward.
  • DB New Orleans Saints (vs Atlanta): SS Dwight Smith
    It should also come as little surprise to see the Falcons ranked as a bad matchup for DBs as they lead the league in rushing and rarely throw the ball. Atlanta ranks #24 on the year in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs, and #30 over their past 3 games. Dwight Smith leads the Saints in tackles and finished with a solid 6 solos during last week's blowout loss to the Packers, so he may be able to overcome the bad matchup, especially if the Falcons get out to an early lead and wind up trying to run out the clock in the second half. FS Josh Bullocks is a rookie who was recently inserted into the starting lineup, but he hasn't shown enough yet to warrant starting consideration. CBs Mike McKenzie and Jason Craft have had their moments, but a matchup against the Falcons is usually even worse for CBs than it is for the safeties.
  • DB Detroit Lions (vs Carolina): SS Terence Holt
    The Panthers rank #28 in fantasy points allowed to opposing DBs and #29 over their past 3 games. Although Steve Smith is the leading scorer among fantasy WRs, the Panthers don't really have much else in their passing game so they rely heavily on the running of Stephen Davis and DeShaun Foster. SS Kenoy Kennedy got off to a slow start, but has lived up to expectations with 13 solo tackles the past 2 weeks. If he's used often as the 8th man in the box to slow down the running game, he may get enough tackle opportunities to survive the tough matchup. Last week against this Panthers defense, stud SS Adrian Wilson only managed 5 solo tackles and FS Robert Griffith only finished with 1, which suggests FS Terrence Holt may not see much action. Holt has been a solid fantasy option so far this year, but he seems like a risky play this week. Dre Bly is coming off a huge game against the Ravens last week, and he may do alright if he's matched up against Steve Smith as expected.

FBG standard scoring system for IDPs

  • Solo tackle = 1 pt
  • Assist = 0.5 pt
  • Sack = 3 pts
  • INT = 4 pts
  • Pass Defensed = 1 pt
  • Forced Fumble = 2 pts
  • Fumble Recovery = 2 pts
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