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IDP Sleepers Report - Week 7
Darin Tietgen
October 17, 2007

OK so you should be used to the wild games.  This week, though, we learned that the best team in the NFL could be from New England and that the NFC may be outclassed (again).  We have more bye weeks this week, so scour that waiver wire.  Hopefully some of the below choices will help you win.  And as always, if you want to recommend a sleeper or simply discuss IDP sleepers, feel free to email me at huddledarin@yahoo.com

LINEBACKERS

Pisa Tinoisamoa (STL):  The Rams are really struggling and will continue to struggle.  Their D will be on the field a bunch and Will Witherspoon has been only average.  “Tino” had another nice game on Sunday and could repeat that effort against the Seahawks come this week.

Ben Leber (MIN):  Yes, Leber plays the SAM LB spot, the least desirable fantasy LB, but you can’t ignore his recent play:  8 solos in Week 3, and a very solid game last week (3 solos, an INT, sack and pass defensed).  This week, he’ll be stuffing the Cowboy run game and shadowing TE Jason Witten.

Tully Banta-Cain (SF):  The Niner defense should again be on the field come this week and Banta-Cain could be busy stopping the Giant run game and TE Jeremy Shockey.

Other to Consider:  Danny Clark (HOU)

Last Week’s Recommendation that should be added:  Matt Wilhelm (after this week’s bye, perhaps)

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

Gaines Adams (DE – TB): Well-regarded as one of the best defensive rookies in this past draft, Adams is starting to heat up a bit.  A tough task awaits this week, against the rested Lions, but Adams and company should be able to get to QB Jon Kitna as he hangs in the pocket.

Philip Daniels (DE – WAS):  Daniels has been a regular here on the IDP Sleeper list for a couple years now, and has usually performed well when recommended.  This week he’s a no-brainer, as the Skins face the Cards who’ll be led by QB Tim Rattay.  Expect Daniels’ first solo sack come Sunday.

Hollis Thomas (DT – NO):  Thomas has posted two double digit games in a row and could make it three as the Saints face the ridiculously terrible Falcons this week.

Other to Consider:  Jared Devries  (DE – DET) and Haloti Ngata (DT – BAL)

Last Week’s Recommendations that should be added:  None

DEFENSIVE BACKS

Dwight Smith (S – MIN):  Smith was another IDP Sleeper regular last year and posted solid results.  He has had 5 solos in each of his past two games, with some “other” stats sprinkled in.  Expect him to be busy against the ‘Boys.

Dawan Landry (S – BAL):  Could be a big game from the young Raven safety against the Bills.  Expect 4-6 solos and at least one pass defensed. 

Philip Buchanon (CB – TB):   Buchanon is by far the best CB free agent on my 16-team league’s waiver wire, and could be on yours too.  He’ll be very busy this week against the passing attack of the Lions.

Others to Consider:  Jim Leonhard (S – BUF) and Fakhir Brown  (CB – STL)

Last Week’s Recommendation that should be added:  Lawyer Milloy (S – ATL)

Track Record – Week 5

LINEBACKERS

Matt Wilhelm (SD):  3 solo tackles, 1 assisted tackle (7 fp).  The Raiders had nothing going on the ground and as such the linebackers really weren’t making tackles – or didn’t even need to make ‘em. 
Dhani Jones (CIN):  3 solo tackles, 1 forced fumble (8 fp).  As Jones gets adjusted to the Bengal defensive schemes, he could be a decent fill-in or 3rd LB in larger leagues. 
David Thornton (TEN):  4 solo tackles, 2 assisted tackles (10 fp).  Super-stud LB Keith Bulluck is having a quiet start to the season but Thornton has remained somewhat consistent in his tackling, and has even had two huge games.  He’s a decent third option in most leagues, and could really start putting up numbers as the season goes on.
Eric Barton (NYJ):  3 solo tackles, 2 assisted tackles (8 fp).  Not great numbers but not horrible ones either.  If your team was bitten by the bye week bug and you needed a fill-in, those 8 points were alright. 
David Harris (NYJ):  2 solo tackles, 1 pass defensed (5.5)  At least the rookie is keeping involved.  In redraft leagues, he’s waiver wire fodder, but in dynasty leagues, you really want this guy.

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

Kenechi Udeze (DE – MIN): 3 solo tackles (6 fp).  Really thought he would get to Bear QB Brian Griese this past week, but you’ll have to settle for the three solos, which isn’t terrible for a DE.  He’s talented, yes, but a bit too erratic to rely on week to week.
Robaire Smith (DE – CLE):  1 solo tackle (2 fp).  Yuck.  Really wanted Smith and the Brown D to run roughshod on the Fin offense, but no dice.  Smith may be an option in two weeks when the Browns take on the Rams.
Grady Jackson (DT – ATL):  3 solo tackles, 1 assisted tackle (7 fp).  Grady “Are You Going to Eat That?” Jackson was stuffing up the middle a few times for the Falcons, so if you need a DT, he could be a decent option down the road if you’re struggling to find a starter in leagues where you gotta throw a DT in your lineup. 
Anthony Weaver (DE – HOU):  2 solo tackles (4 fp).  The pickins were sure thin this week.  Weaver will have some value at some point as teams contend with super Mario Williams. 

DEFENSIVE BACKS

Deon Grant (S – SEA):  2 solo tackles (4 fp).  After posting big numbers for pretty much each week this season, Grant took a big step back with only two solos.  He’ll be a solid option against the floundering Rams in Week 7 though.
Tanard Jackson (S – TB):  4 solo tackles, 1 pass defensed (9.5 fp).  Oh that sneaky Jackson.  I go and point out that he has had double digits in each game this season and then he stops short a half point less this week.  Well, expect double digits – and then some – this week against the Lions.
Jacques Reeves (CB – DAL):   5 solo tackles (10 fp).  Oops, mislabeled him as a Bronco, but surely you knew this guy, the most picked-on CB in the league.  He is – at best – a third CB and he’s been thrust into the starting lineup.  With the rest of the Cowboy secondary making aggressive plays on the ball, it’s Reeves that may end up as the safety valve, making tackles.  He may not have many tackling opportunities in the next two weeks (vs. MIN, bye week) but some better matchups follow.
Lawyer Milloy (S – ATL):  11 solo tackles (22 fp).  Finally, a Yahtzee!  Milloy was busy tackling both Giant runners and catchers on Monday night.  The Falcon team – on both sides of the ball – is just so bad… Milloy should continue to have value.
Will Allen  (CB – MIA):  2 solo tackles, 1 assisted tackle (5 fp).  Figuring he and the rest of the Fin defense would be on the field a lot, one would think he’d get some tackling opportunities.  In leagues where you must start a CB, Allen will be a decent fill-in, as the Fin defense should see the field a bunch.

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