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John "The Guru" Norton and Gary "The Godfather of IDP" Davenport are two of the most experienced and knowledgeable IDP analysts in the fantasy football industry. Every week during the 2022 season here at Footballguys, The Guru and the Godfather will come together to answer five of that week's most pressing questions.
As we hit Week 11 and the stretch run to the IDP playoffs begin, the Guru and the Godfather have come together again to discuss players who could be set to finish strong or falter when needed the most, as well as a look ahead to potential smash plays, disappointments, and sleepers for Week 11.
There is just one month left in the regular season in most IDP leagues. Which players could be set to find a new gear in the stretch run who could help propel fantasy managers into the playoffs?
Guru: Payton Turner was a first-round pick in 2021, but until recently, he had done nothing. The injury to Marcus Davenport opened the door, and Turner stepped through. Over the last three games, he is 9-3-2 with a snap share that is growing.
Denzel Perryman is still a little gimpy, so his status for this week remains in question. But he will inherit the lead linebacker spot on a defense that’s a shambles. Perryman put up excellent numbers even when the Raiders' defense was respectable last year. Once he returns to action, which could be this week, I expect him to be a top-five linebacker from that point through the end of the season.
Kenny Moore has put up decent numbers all season but not as strong as he did over the last two years. In recent weeks his role has gone back to what made him so successful, and his numbers are creeping up. With quality matchups against the Eagles, Steelers, Cowboys, and Vikings on the schedule, I like Moore’s chances of a resurgence.
Godfather: It's hardly a surprise that Aidan Hutchinson of the Lions has been a hit-or-miss IDP option this season—even the best rookie edge rushers take time to acclimate to the pros. Hutchinson showed with his eight solos and a sack against the Bears last week what he's capable of, and the second overall pick in 2022 has some nice matchups down the stretch—including this week in New York against the Giants.
I hope my esteemed colleague is right about Perryman—I traded Bobby Wagner for him and Frankie Luvu last week in a league where my linebacker depth was all but gone. I just wanted you to know that because I know how much you care about my fantasy teams. Perryman's new batterymate could be a stretch-run factor, too—Jayon Brown made the defensive play calls last week. He has at least some history of productivity, and the Raiders' schedule is all kinds of favorable for linebackers the rest of the way.
At defensive back, I'll go with Jordan Poyer of the Bills, if only because I just can't quit Poyer. It's been a rough contract year for the veteran safety, but he's practicing fully ahead of this week's relocated game against the Browns and has been too steady for too long for me to write him off in IDP leagues.
2. Conversely, are there some IDP starters who could be set to swoon at the worst possible time for fantasy managers?
Guru: Picking players that are going to flounder or fall off down the stretch is much more difficult. These things usually happen due to injury or their team being out of it and working younger guys into the lineup. Both of those situations are tough to project. We can look at matchups and maybe see some possible drop-off, but even the matchups are often a moving target at this point in the season.
Some guys I am concerned about down the stretch are Myles Hartsfield, Myles Jack, Kamren Curl, and Tremaine Edmunds. In Week 10, Hartsfield had his least productive game since taking over the starting job, but he still played almost every snap. With the impending return of Jeremy Chinn, Hartsfield could be riding the pine as soon as this week.
I am less concerned about Jack, but after he was an active bench warmer in Week 10, he makes the list. He was not completely healthy, or so the story goes, at least. If he was not healthy enough to play, why was he active? Something just doesn’t feel right about this.
My concern with Curl is more about how impressed I am with Darrick Forest. Curl is not losing snaps at this point, but the Commanders are using more three safety looks, and Forest is making a lot of plays.
My concern with Edmunds is all about the injury situation. He tried to play through a sore groin last week but was forced from the game early. These injuries can linger, are easily aggravated, and can take several weeks to recover from.
Godfather: Deatrich Wise of the Patriots was the No. 2 defensive lineman in fantasy points over the first six weeks of the season and still ranks inside the Top 15. But he has just half a sack since Week 6 and ranks outside the Top 100 defensive linemen over the last three weeks. Wise was fun while he lasted, but he's headed right back to Downtown Anonymity—Population: Him.
Like Wise, Mykal Walker of the Falcons started the season red-hot, And the third-year linebacker isn't going to vanish completely. But Walker has been out-produced by teammate Rashaan Evans in recent weeks, and he has topped five solos in a game just once since Week 5. Over that span, Walker hasn't cracked the top-50 fantasy linebackers, and there's little reason to think that trend will reverse over the next month.
A funny thing happened last week in Green Bay—for the second game in a row, Cowboys safety Jayron Kearse out-snapped teammate Donovan Wilson. Wilson has been a top-10 defensive back most of the season, and this isn't to say that the bottom will completely fall out. But it was Kearse who opened the year as the starting box safety in Dallas, and over that time frame, Kearse has ranked over 20 slots ahead of Wilson.
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