Welcome fellow IDP fantasy owners, to volume 4 of my newest weekly article. For those of you just reading this for the first time, each week I am going to recap on the top performances of a handful of IDP rookies. Not only will we look at how they did the past week, but also what it means going forward and most importantly the impact in the fantasy world. Hope this will help your fantasy rosters. So let’s jump right into this week write up.
LB, Darius Leonard, Indianapolis Colts
There’s not much more I can say that I haven’t already said for Leonard. He put together another great game this past week versus the Houston Texans, with thirteen tackles and a sack. At this point, the DROY award is his to lose. Through the first four games of the season, he has totaled a whopping 53 tackles, 38 solos, and four sacks. He is red hot and showing no signs of slowing down. It’s highly unlikely you can find him on waivers, with all the attention he has gotten, but if you can, grab him fast. The most likely way to acquire him is by trade and he won’t be cheap. Most owners will want a 1st round pick for him and I would be willing to give that for him right now. The longer he continues to play this well, the higher his asking price will be.
S, Derwin James, Los Angeles Chargers
If there is one player who can challenge Darius Leonard for DROY honors, its James. He has been nothing short of amazing so far and has been everything the Chargers expected and more. Through the first four games, he has 27 tackles, with 21 of them being solos, to go along with three sacks, one interception and six pass break ups. He’s had a sack in three of the four games and in the one he didn’t, he grabbed an interception. He’s a big playmaker and a game changer. As I mentioned for Leonard, you can only get him by trade now and earlier this week I offered up a 2nd round pick next year for him and was turned down. His owners value him highly so be prepared to pony up in any potential trade offers.
S, Minkah Fitzpatrick, Miami Dolphins
With veteran safety Reshad Jones missing the last two games, it has given us a good look at what Minkah can do and player he can be. In these two games, he has recorded a combined twenty tackles, with an interception and two pass break ups. I was one that had him graded higher than most and he looks to be transitioning into pro game very well. He may lose some play opportunities when Jones returns, but this is a valuable experience and I see him continuing with this success. Check your waivers now and see if he’s available, as this may be one of your last chances to get him cheap.
DT, Maurice Hurst, Oakland Raiders
We all know how hard it is to find productive defensive tackles in fantasy. Their success isn’t always shown in the stat box, but that’s what we as fantasy owners look at. I had Hurst graded as the top defensive tackle in this past draft and it looks like the Raiders got steal with him. On the season he has nine total tackles, but more importantly, he has two sacks. That’s huge for an interior d-lineman. He’s one of the few that can provide a reliable pass rush from the interior. If you play in position specific leagues, then definitely go see if Hurst is available and pick him up.
LB, Harold Landry, Tennessee Titans
I have to admit that I may have been wrong on my assessment of Landry. He has been an extremely active pass rusher for the Titans and at a position in which they can use his youth. He missed the first game of the season with an injury, which is one of my concerns with him. In the next two games, he would only record two tackles, but had a number of pressures and near misses, which shows what the Titans saw in him. Finally this past week versus the defending Super Bowl Champion Eagles, his hard work would bear fruit. He would tally four tackles, with a sack, a forced fumble and a number of near misses. As he becomes more polished, he could be a dangerous pass rusher. He’s worth a look in leagues that score sacks heavily.
S, Jessie Bates, Cincinnati Bengals
Bates has been one of the bigger surprises in the IDP world so far. Not as hyped, as stars like James and Fitzpatrick mentioned above, but has been a reliable play nonetheless. He has recorded an outstanding eight tackles in three of the four games so far, with a total of twenty-seven on the season. He can be grabbed up off waivers in a lot of leagues and should be owned in all leagues. His stock is rising quickly so get him while you can.