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Each week of the NFL season has actionable information for fantasy managers. I'm here to share some of the most important trends that impact IDP player value.
MIN ED Marcus Davenport is back.
Davenport made his full debut for the Vikings in Week 4 and followed up his solid performance with another strong game in Week 5. This defensive line is desperate for anyone to rush the quarterback opposite Danielle Hunter, and Davenport is a clear upgrade over D.J. Wonnum. While his current pace is unsustainable, managers should believe in Davenport's ability to contribute at times going forward.
NE ED Anfernee Jennings led the team in snaps from the edge.
With Matthew Judon missing about two months with an injury, there was a massive vacated role on the Patriots' defensive line. I expected Josh Uche and Keion White to fill that role, but actually, Jennings gained the most value. He also leads the team in pass-rush win rate in True Pass Sets (via PFF). While he has accomplished this in a small sample of snaps, managers can be optimistic about his production potential for deep leagues.
Bills LB Matt Milano suffered a season-ending injury in Week 5.
Filling in for him was Tyrel Dodson - who played 62% of snaps - and Dorian Williams - who played 37%. The starting linebacker position in Buffalo is a valuable one for fantasy, and one of these two players should see an immediate boost to their production going forward. Dodson should be the priority add as he earned more snaps and played above Williams in the preseason, but there is also a small chance that neither player earns a full-time role and they rotate instead. That would not be ideal. Managers should hope for one of these backups to fill in as an every-down player.
DAL LB Leighton Vander Esch may miss time with a neck injury.
Teammate Damone Clark is second on the team in snaps at the linebacker position. If LVE misses any games, Clark should see an increase in snap share as his replacement. He has a 16% tackle efficiency so far this season and could be a solid starting option in moderately deep leagues for as long as Vander Esch is out. Also, keep an eye on Micah Parsons playing more snaps at off-ball linebacker, as mentioned by Cowboys DC Dan Quinn.
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