With Tryston on vacation, I get the keys to the IDP Free Agent Report for week 10. Hop in and let’s take a ride and see what we can drum up off the waiver wire.
After having six teams on a bye in each of the last two weeks, this week only four teams are on a bye. That means you’ll be left looking for replacements for Derrick Johnson (Chiefs), Chandler Jones (Patriots), D’Qwell Jackson (Browns), TJ Ward (Browns), Muhammad Wilkerson (Jets) and Demarrio Davis (Jets). Replacing studs like Johnson and Jones is never an easy thing to do, but read on and I’ll do my best to help you find replacements to ease the pain. As for a player like Davis, considering how poor he’s played over the past two weeks, having him on a bye can be a blessing in disguise. Either way, read on.
Last week, on the offensive side of the ball, there were surely people that due to the bye week, lucked into having to play Nick Foles, Jerricho Cotchery, Riley Cooper and Dwayne Harris, and on the IDP side, Paul Worrilow, Cameron Wake, Brent Grimes, and Jurrell Casey. Wake is a stud that got hurt and hasn’t produced well of late, so about the only way he was in someone’s starting lineup was most likely if they had no other option due to bye week issues...nothing wrong with a little Luck.
Recapping last week, Tryston’s LB recommendations were worth the price of admission alone. Paul Worrilow (28 points), Bobby Wagner (21.5 points) and David Hawthorne (16 points) put forth big games. Daryl Sharpton came up a bit small, scoring 9 points while playing in all 62 of the Texans defensive snaps. Joe Mays’ 10 points doesn’t look like he did that much better than Sharpton, but he did that while playing in just 30 defensive snaps.
Andrew Gachkar SDC LB – ILB 3-4
Gachkar’s value will be completely reliant on if Donald Butler (groin) plays or not this week. Butler was inactive against Washington in week 9, and that’s after having the bye in week 8 to get healthy. Not only was Butler inactive last week, but he didn’t practice at all. There’s a chance he could play this week, but odds are long that happens. Still, make sure you monitor the injury report and inactive list before blindly going with Gachkar. Matchup wise, Gachkar faces a Broncos team that is giving up 61 tackle opportunities (rushing attempts + pass completions + sacks allowed) – the most in the NFL – and that ranks 6th in average points allowed per game to opposing LBs. When you look at Gachkar’s metrics – .245 PPS and .127 TF – and the percent of snaps that he’s played (73%) in the Chargers last two games you’ll see why I like him as a bye week filler this week. Playing in 73% of the snaps should equate to Gachkar seeing field for around 53 defensive snaps and that should equate to around 45 tackle opportunities. Based on his metrics we’re looking at about 12-15 points on 6-8 total tackles (5-6 solos, 2-3 assists).
Roster Recommendation: LB2
Spencer Paysinger NYG LB – WLB 4-3
Paysinger had an ankle injury that kept him from playing in any of the Giants defensive snaps against Philadelphia in week 8. However, he did play in 17 special team’s snaps that week. With a bye week under his belt he should be ready to get back to his WLB position. You’ll need to monitor the injury report to make sure he has progressed well enough to play on defense, but my bet is that he has. The Giants week 10 opponent – the Raiders – will be flying east looking to rebound after being beaten thoroughly at home by the Eagles last week. The Raiders rank 7th in average points allowed to LBs this year, and are also a top 12 matchup in tackle opportunities allowed, ranking 11th (tie) with 53/game given up. Paysinger’s PPS is .160 and has a TF of .075. Beason will be the LB that has the biggest game among the Giants LBs this week, but Paysinger should see the field for at least 43 tackle opportunities, which equates to him scoring in the 8-12 point range. Upside wise were looking at 8 total tackles (7 solo), but more than likely a line of 5-1-0 is what he’ll log.
Roster Recommendation: LB3
Sneaky Linebacker Play
Paul Worrilow ATL LB – Tryston hit a homerun with Worrilow last week, and this week I’m going back to the well. He probably is still available in a good many of leagues, and he has another very nice matchup this week. He faces a Seattle team that ranks 10th in average points allowed to LBs this year. Over the Falcons last two games Worrilow has played in 96% of their defensive snaps, and fantasy wise he’s put up 12 and 28 points in those two games. With a .288 PPS average over the past two weeks, I’m looking for a 15-20 point week.
Defensive Linemen Plays
In week 8 Robert Quinn put on a clinic, and in week 9 it was Cameron Wake who showed just how good a DE he is. He’s been hampered by injury but now appears to be good to go.
The DL position is one that has high weekly variance and that makes projecting them difficult. Last week’s group didn’t have any big performances but Art Jones (6 points) and Lamarr Houston (6 points) put up solid performances. Cory Redding scored 5 points, which at the end of the day wasn’t bad at all, but Hunter’s 2 points were disappointing.
Justin Tuck NYG DE – DE 4-3
Tuck hasn’t scored in double digits since doing so in week 2, which is why you probably can pluck him off your waiver wire. This week he faces an Oakland team that ranks 8th in average points allowed to DEs. What you are looking at with Tuck is a player that should safely score in the 6 point range, but also has the upside to get you 12+ points on a given week. With the game being in New York, I think he’s worth a roll of the dice.
Roster Recommendation: Low-end DL2
Brian Robison MIN – DE 4-3
Robison doesn’t get much love in the fantasy community, and that’s because he doesn’t possess much upside. For the most part he’s a ho-hum DL2 that won’t hurt you too often. This week he has a strong matchup against a Washington team that ranks 10th in average points allowed to DEs. The game is in Minnesota, and over his career, 20 of 30 career fantasy sacks (sacks from week 1-16) have come at home. You’ll be looking at a 6 point floor and 12+ point upside .
Roster Recommendation: DL2 with Low-DL1 upside.
Cliff Avril SEA DE 4-3
Avril is stuck in a rotation on a strong Seattle DL, and that rotation is what limits his fantasy upside. He has 4.5 sacks while playing just over 50% of the Seahawks defensive snaps. Avril isn’t a player that is going to pad his stats with many tackles as it is, but this year he only has 7 solos and 4 of those were awarded on his sacks. What you are looking for from Avril is for him to get a couple of solos, notch a sack and cause a fumble in the process. Against a Falcons team that ranks 7th in average points allowed to DEs this year he’ll have the opportunity to hit double digits for the first time in 2013.
Roster Recommendation: High variance DL1 upside play.
Defensive Back Plays
After frustrating IDP owners for much of 2013 – be it due to injury or inconsistent play – LaRon Landry (17 points), Mark Barron (26 points) and Eric Weddle (24 points) all had big fantasy games in week 9.
Last week Xavier Rhodes (12 points) was a solid recommendation but Jairus Byrd (7 points), Josh Robinson (7 points) and Tashaun Gipson (1 point) all underperformed. Gipson’s performance was one that no one saw coming.
Rashad Johnson ARI S – 3-4 FS
Since losing the tip of one of his fingers earlier in the season, Johnson has scored in double digits in two of his last three games. Against a Texans team that ranks 2nd in tackle opportunities allowed with 57 he’ll have plenty of chances to put up double digits in three consecutive games. Based on his IDP metrics we’re looking at 10-12 fantasy points.
Roster Recommendation: DB3
M.D. Jennings GBP S – 3-4 SS
The Packers safety position – both FS and SS – haven’t been very productive fantasy wise this year. Morgan Burnett didn’t return to the field this year until week 5 and from week’s 5-8 only has two double digit performances (11 & 13 points), which isn’t exactly what fantasy owners were expecting. While Burnett was out, Jennings scored 8, 13 and 19 fantasy points, but since Burnett returned to the field he hasn’t topped 7 fantasy points. That makes Jennings a bit risky this week, but against an Eagles team that ranks 1st in average points allowed to safeties this year he’s worth the risk. Metric’s lead me to believe he’ll score between 10-12 points.
Roster Recommendation: DB3
George Iloka CIN S – 4-3 SS
Illoka was a sleeper of mine this past summer, but unfortunately, he never really woke up. Season to date he’s scored in double digits just four times. However, if there’s a silver lining, it’s that three have come in the past four weeks. The Ravens are giving up 52 tackle opportunities/game and rank 3rd in points allowed to safeties this year. Iloka is playing in over 98% of the Bengals defensive snaps so it’s good knowing he’ll be on the field. With a .113 PPS we’re looking at 10 points. As a floor I see 8 points, but ceiling wise 14-15 points isn’t out of the question.
Roster Recommendation: DB3 with DB2 upside.