LB Ben Heeney, Oakland Raiders

For my next “Player Profile” I am going to give away one of my future monsters of IDP. I suppose in some circles he could be called a “sleeper.” So, for all my friends and colleagues who read this and know me personally, this is a nice juicy bone for all you wanna be IDP league gurus!

Mark my words. Ben Heeney will be a beast in the IDP world for years to come. I have him on all my Myfantasyleague.com teams and I even made a trade to get him in my home league in which I put Martavis Bryant (post suspension) in the deal to secure Mr. Heeney. If you were an owner who had Chris Borland, like me, and have seen him fill up the IDP stat sheet for a handful of games and then… the floor dropped out like a John Di Bari (@dibari22) Vegas magic trick and POOF he was retired.
Heeney is going into his second season with the Raiders as the “green dot” helmet signal caller of the new revamped Black Hole defense. Although Heeney was the back up for Curtis Lofton last year he played very well. In fact, Defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. loves Heeney and Heeney says the love is mutual: “I feel like everybody on the defensive staff is a former player, so just being able to get their knowledge from a player’s standpoint and a coach’s standpoint has definitely helped me out a lot.”–Ben Heeney
Roots…
Mr. Heeney led his high school team to three state titles while he was at Hutchinson High School in Hutchinson, Kansas. Additionally, Heeney is a fine athlete, running for over 2,000 yards his senior year as a running back and also compiling 143 tackles and 4 interceptions as a hulking safety.
Jayhawk Life
The fact that a kid stays for most or all of their four years in college is a huge accomplishment in my eyes. (Playing sports or not) It’s one of the first things I look for with the players coming in the NFL draft. Playing 3 to 4 years in the same system and excelling in it shows commitment and discipline towards a vision. For example; running back David Johnson of the Arizona Cardinals is an offensive example of staying in school and having success (thus far) in the NFL. Heeney played all four years at Kansas:
2011 – 12 gp – 8 tackles2012 – 12 gp – 112 tackles – 1 sack2013 – 10 gp – 88 tackles – 2 sacks – 3 ints.2014 – 12 gp – 127 tackles – 1.5 sacks – 1 int. (led team in tackles)
Welcome to the Black Hole
Mr. Heeney was drafted by the Oakland Raiders with the 140th pick in the 2015 NFL draft. He blew up the Combine at the linebacker position with and outstanding and somewhat unexpected, 4.59 in the 40-yard dash. (This was 5th best at the linebacker position) His 3 cone drill was the best at the 2015 NFL Combine for linebackers, with a 6.68 time.
Note: The 3 cone drill shows athleticism and quickness in changing direction, which Heeney uses on every play.
Other notable Combine results: 19 bench press reps at 225 lbs., 33.5 vertical jump and 120.0 in broad jump.
Thumbs Up
In 2014 his tackles for a loss resume’ was impressive. He possesses a grinders mentality by not waiting for a play to come to him. His motor is constantly going which puts him around the ball on almost every play he is in. This in turn will put in him in a 3 down role with the Raiders this year. Also, he is like me… a film junkie that is constantly looking for a detail or observation that can give him the leg up.
Thumbs Down
Lacks ideal size and occasionally does not disengage quickly enough from blockers. Coming in to the pros his coverage in the pass game was lacking, but I think he has improved on that since being with Ken Norton Jr. and the Raiders coaching staff. The biggest knock I keep hearing on this young man was that he was the leader in missed tackles in college football in his senior season. This is not as bad as you would think. To me this shows hardnosed enthusiasm and excitement. I’d rather have a missed tackle with effort then someone “half-assing” on the play and giving up if the play is out of range.
Overall IDP Outlook
If this kid can keep cleaning up his pass coverage skills and learn how to convert his excitement into more production, LOOK OUT! With the help of a solid pass rush and former super bowl MVP and IDP new comer beast Malcom Smith next to him, I think Heeney will have 90-100 tackles this year and with Khali Mack in QB’s faces I can see a couple of interceptions and maybe a pick six this year. Start him with confidence in IDP leagues as a LB3/4.
If you have any Dynasty/Fantasy Football/IDP/Devy questions or you just want to get updated on my next article, rankings or even to just chat you can follow me on Twitter @FatAdamSchefter. Thank you all for reading and Good Luck!
 

jmaynard

Lead IDP Writer, Live/Film Scout, Interviewer. Ranker. Best Prediction % for IDP in season weekly starts 2016. Born & raised in Beautiful Cleveland. Browns, OSU & Tampa Bay Bucs fan! Successful 26 year F.F. vet. I have an Amazing wife of 3 years. Middle linebacker mind but I played defensive tackle when I was young. Bad car wreck took me out, now I concentrate on scouting & writing. Constantly looking for that next amazing player. My passion is true 4 Football & Music. ((Small School Player Supporter.)) ~FSWA Member.~ Follow me on Twitter: @FatAdamSchefter I beyond appreciate your support!

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