Welcome to the second installment of The Huddle’s IDP Hot and Not. Check us out every other week, where we’ll give you a flavor of what IDPs are hot and look to continue their streaks and which ones are not that you might consider benching in coming weeks or dropping altogether.
DeMeco Ryans (HOU) – Ryans is living up to his #1 LB billing on The Huddle’s preseason rankings. 23 fantasy points opening weekend and 26 this past weekend. It’s not a stretch to imagine he would have topped 20 points Week 2 against the Ravens had Hurricane Ike not disturbed the Houston area. Figure Ryans will be extra-busy come this Sunday in trying to track down the dual RB threat of the Jaguars.
Freddie Keiaho (IND) – It was – in many opinions – that it was only a matter of time that Keiaho became the best Colt LB to own. Gary Brackett is still a solid fantasy LB, but Keiaho’s play thus far in 2008 has vaulted him closer to the fantasy elite. He’s hovering just under 20 fantasy points per game and with that kind of consistency, is a must-start in all leagues. You’ll obviously have to keep him on your bench this week, with the Colts on bye, but get him back in your lineup the following weeks, as the Colts will come out hitting hard against two lesser foes in the Texans and Ravens.
Nate Webster and D.J. Williams (DEN) – Real odd how both Webster and Williams started the season off hot (18 and 14 points, respectively, in Week 1) and then cooled off (6 and 9 points Week 2) and then went buck-wild in Week 3. Webster tallied 29 fantasy points and Williams had a whopping 30. Don’t expect those kinds of numbers each week, but both LBs are looking real solid and should be started (Webster as a solid #3 or decent #2; Williams as a solid #2).
Derrick Johnson (KCC) – Johnson had a decent Week 2 (15 fantasy points) but has stunk in Weeks 1 and 3. He was set to yet again be a decent #2 or #3 LB, but has stats worthy of your bench thus far. He may rebound against the Broncos this week, in which case he’ll be safe to start once again.
Justin Smith (DE – SFO) – I can’t truly toot my own horn too much, because I never had anything “in print” stating that Smith could have a nice season for the Niners. But many pundits argued (and rightfully so) that Smith’s move to the Niners 3-4 defense would make his value decrease. Well Smith is now the #3 DL (behind only Justin Tuck and James Hall) and the Niners have him all over the field. Looks like Smith is truly outplaying his rank, especially based on the scheme he’s in.
Fred Robbins (DT – NYG) – What is it with DTs this season? Typically, they’re the lowest scoring IDP, by far. This season, we have Robbins, James Hall, Chris Hovan, Tank Tyler and Shaun Rogers all in the top 10. Robbins put another 2-sack game together on Sunday. You have a bye week to contend with this week, but feel free to grab him for the next few weeks (Browns and Niners on the upcoming schedule)
Ray Edwards (DE – MIN) – With Jared Allen on the other end, it was thought that Edwards would have the “Tamba Hali” effect and put up solid numbers. No such luck. Edwards has a miserable 16 fantasy points thus far and has a couple of tougher matchups upcoming before a cherry one in Week 6. If someone ditches Edwards in the next two weeks, he might be a bounce-back candidate for that game (playing the Lions does wonders).
Charles Tillman(CB – CHI) – Tillman is currently leading all IDPs in fantasy scoring (and is #15 overall per SOFA scoring). He’s got absolutely fantastic matchups upcoming, so feel free to stick him in your lineup no matter your league size, scoring system or number of IDP starters.
Rodney Harrison (S – NEP) – With the Patriot offense struggling without Tom Brady, the defense becomes that much more important. Harrison is the leader of the Patriot secondary and definitely their best IDP fantasy play. As long as he can remain healthy, he’ll continue to be an outstanding start. He’s obviously riding your pine this week, as they’re on bye, but he’ll be a great start once again in two weeks.
Kevin Kaesviharn (S – NOS) – Perhaps “hot” is not the right word to describe Kaesviharn, but he merits mentioning because of his consistency. 6 solos and one assist in each of the first three games for the Saints’ D. As long as Kaesviharn is the starter (in lieu of the injured Roman Harper), he’s a solid start.
Reggie Nelson (S – JAX) – As good as the Jag D is, they really don’t offer you many IDP options. Nelson is a tremendous talent, but hasn’t put big fantasy numbers up thus far in 2008. Add to it that he’ll be nursing a bruised knee for the next couple weeks.
Scoring system used for this report – solo tackle (2), assisted tackle (1), sack (3), forced or recovered fumble (3), interception (3) and pass defensed (1)