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Fantasy Rankings for Rookie IDP
Darin Tietgen
Updated: May 18, 2009
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Defensive Linemen
Rnk Player Team Analysis
1 Aaron Maybin BUF In a great situation with limited competition.  Trumps Jackson/Orakpo due to their "hybrid" tags.
2 Brian Orakpo WAS No more Jason Taylor.  This pass-rushing monster will surprise you with his coverage skills.
3 Tyson Jackson KCC The scheme may hinder his production short-term, but the guy is a beast and will put up numbers.
4 Everette Brown  CAR Could see some situational snaps early on and could start opposite Peppers mid-season.
5 Michael Johnson CIN Johnson could see serious playing time in leiu of injury-prone starters.  Pass-rusher extraordinaire.
6 Robert Ayers DEN Looks like he's a starter, but could be listed as LB, which could limit relative fantasy value.
7 Connor Barwin HOU Could jump up a spot or two in these rankings if he ends up starting opposite Super Mario.
8 Evander Hood PIT Looks like he's going to begin the season as the starter on a unit without an impact defensive end.  
9 B.J. Raji (DT) GBP Raji will likely start at NT for the Pack and make an immediate impact plugging up the middle.
10 Lawrence Sidbury ATL Will battle for situational snaps and could contend for the starting spot if Jamaal Anderson flops.
11 Jarron Gilbert CHI If he ends up lining up at DT more often, your projections might be lowered.
12 Paul Kruger BAL May be listed as LB, which would drop his value significantly.  A solid sleeper if if listed as DE.
13 Peria Jerry (DT) ATL Penciled in as a starter on a pretty talented line as a one-gap filler.  Could turn up a few sacks, too.
14 Sen'Derrick Marks (DT) TEN Could be the replacement to Albert Haynesworth; perhaps not immediately, but sometime soon.
15 Kyle Moore TBB Was mostly a situational guy in college and will likely assume the same role for the Bucs.
Linebackers
Rnk Player Team Analysis
1 Aaron Curry SEA The most talented defender in this draft.  Just pray he lines up as the WLB.  
2 James Laurinaitis STL Looks like he'll start in the middle and could put up huge numbers.  
3 Rey Maualuga CIN Could easily occupy one of the first two spots in these rankings with a starting gig for the Bengals.
4 Brian Cushing HOU Looks like he's the starting SLB for the Texans.  This spot net surprisingly solid stats last season.
5 Clay Matthews GBP Could prosper on the outside in the new Packers 3-4 alignment if given spot duty initially.
6 Deandre Levy DET What a great spot for Levy to fall into; could challenge for the starting MLB spot for the Lions.
7 Gerald McRath TEN Big time sleeper will battle for the starting gig as the Titans MLB.
8 Scott McKillop SFO Will challenge for time in the middle alongside Patrick Willis.  Has to beat out a couple old fogies.
9 Clint Sintim NYG Great athlete finds himself fighting for time amongst a host of pretty solid LBs.  
10 Jason Phillips BAL May battle Taveres Gooden for the incumbent MLB spot for the Ravens.
11 Jason Williams DAL Joins a group of good young OLBs but could figure into the mix should any of them fail to impress.
12 Tyrone McKenzie NEP Could play yin to Jerod Mayo's yang in the middle of the Patriot line as the old LBs fade away.
13 Kaluka Maiava CIN Joins a deep linebacking unit for the Browns, but could emerge as a decent dynasty sleeper.
14 Larry English SDC Merriman lite could start opposite - or replace - Merriman at some point.
15 Jasper Brinkley MIN Will have to fight some good young LBs for playing time, but could figure in eventually.
16 Spencer Adkins ATL Finds himself on a pretty deep linebacking corps for the Falcons, but could develop.
Defensive Backs
Rnk Player Team Analysis
1 Louis Delmas DET The best rookie safety jumps in with both feet as a starter for the Lions.  Plenty of chances.
2 William Moore ATL Looks like he has a great chance at the SS spot.  Instant fantasy production.
3 Patrick Chung NEP Will excel alongside Brandon Meriweather for years to come.  May not start from day one, though.
4 Malcolm Jenkins (CB) NOS Yet another big-time ex-Buckeye CB.  Would be better in a Cover-2 but should still produce here.
5 Michael Mitchell OAK A reach for the Raiders becomes a big-time IDP sleeper; should contend for starting SS spot.
6 Rashad Johnson ARI Won't be beating out Antrel Rolle anytime soon, but he's a huge talent that'll figure in the nickel.
7 Vontae Davis (CB) MIA Could easily be the #2 CB for the Dolphins.  Will opposing QBs test the rookie?  You bet.  
8 Chip Vaughn NOS Will make an immediate impact for the Saints defense.  Can play either safety spot.
9 Sherrod Martin CAR Better off as a FS than CB, fantasy-wise.  Flexible athlete that will see situational snaps.
10 Michael Hamlin DAL The elder Hamlin could give way to the new "Hammer".
11 Alphonso Smith (CB) DEN Could play opposite Champ Bailey, and we all know what that means in terms of fantasy potential.
12 D.J. Moore (CB) CHI Joins a very deep corps of defensive backs for the Bears, but could emerge in a couple years.
13 Sean Smith (CB) MIA Will fight fellow rook Vontae Davis for playing time.  Good luck, Sean.
14 Nic Harris BUF Worth a shot if he's designated as a DB rather than LB.
15 Ryan Mouton (CB) TEN Will see situational snaps to start off, but could be the #2 guy in a couple years.
16 Donald Washington (CB) KCC Absolutely buried on a super deep and young DB set, but could emerge as a nickel back soon.

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