And so it begins, our first wave of bye weeks. On top of the myriad of injuries to navigate, we also have four teams on an upcoming bye (Tennesee, Detroit, Houston, and Las Vegas). I did my best to navigate through the snaps and stats to find some potential waiver wire options for your IDP leagues. Please keep in mind there are many fun ways to play this IDP game we love, and if you ever have any league-specific questions feel free to reach out. Alright, let’s get to it.
Isaiah Simmons, Arizona Cardinals
Week 5 Stats: 13 tackles (8 solos)
Isaiah Simmons's role has been quite the rollercoaster to the start of the season. Simmons started significantly involved with an 87% snap share in Week 1 (61 snaps), but then things took a turn. Simmons' involvement drastically declined in Week 2 (15 snaps/22%), and the trend continued into Week 3 (16 snaps/33%). It was a disappointing turn of events for the former first-round pick as he entered the dreaded droppable zone for fantasy purposes.
However, in Week 4, Simmons saw a promising increase in playing time as he logged 43 defensive snaps (83%). This trend carried over into Week 5, as Simmons played a season-high 67 defensive snaps (92%) and produced a team-high 13 tackles (8 solos).
With Nick Vigil (hamstring) on IR, it was Ben Nieman who saw extra box work as he played a season-high 45 defensive snaps (62%). On the other hand, Simmons is spending time in the box but is being utilized a considerable amount in the slot. Over his last two games, Simmons has logged 60 of his 110 defensive snaps in the slot area, per Pro Football Focus. Nevertheless, Simmons is seeing his snap volume increase and is back on the IDP radar. If Simmons was dropped during his role reduction, he's worth a waiver add, given his positive trajectory over the past two weeks.
Tyrel Dodson, Buffalo Bills
Week 5 Stats: 11 tackles (7 solos), 1 tackle for loss, 1 sack, 1 QB hit
The Bills were without Tremaine Edmunds (hamstring) this week, and Tyrel Dodson stepped up in his place. Dodson got the starting nod next to Matt Milano and played 63 defensive snaps (84%). Dodson didn't disappoint in his first significant game action of 2022. His 11 tackles (7 solos) led the team, and he also added a splash play getting home for a sack.
This is purely speculation, but there is a fair chance Edmunds sits again this week with Buffalo having a Week 7 bye. Hamstrings can linger and extra rest is always a good thing if the team feels they can afford it. If you're an Edmunds manager or looking for a bye-week filler, Dodson is worth a pickup off the wire. Just make sure you monitor Edmunds' status throughout the week.
Alex Singleton, Denver Broncos
Week 5 Stats: 9 tackles (5 solos), 2 tackles for loss
In unfortunate news, Josey Jewell suffered a knee injury on Thursday night and is considered week-to-week. Alex Singleton was thrust back into action after Jewell's early exit. Singleton hadn't logged a defensive snap since Week 2, before playing 43 snaps (54%) in Week 5. Jonas Griffith continues to have a part-time role as he saw just 29 defensive snaps (37%).
If Jewell is deemed unable to go, Singleton would be the Bronco linebacker to target. Singleton makes for a solid bye-week fill-in while he's usable. Just make sure you monitor Jewell's participation throughout the week. However, if Jewell can go, Singleton should go away from your lineup.
Germaine Pratt, Cincinatti Bengals
Week 5 Stats: 8 tackles (2 solos), 1 tackle for loss, 1 sack, 1 QB hit, 2 passes defended
Germaine Pratt is a linebacker who doesn't carry a full-time workload but does see the field enough to give us some production. Pratt has a 72% snap share on the season and played a season-high 52 defensive snaps (80%) in Week 5. Pratt has a solid matchup against New Orleans this week and is worth a look if you need an injury or bye-week filler.
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