Here are some of the more noticeable trends I've observed so far this season:
— Philadelphia, Buffalo, Carolina, and Pittsburgh have all failed to protect the passer and figure to be great plays for opposing fantasy defensive linemen.
— Miami, Minnesota, Cinncinati, and Tennessee have been some of the more run-heavy teams and have really given up the fantasy points to opposing linebackers.
— The cornerback that goes up against Roddy White is in for a solid tackle day.
— This may be the year to ignore typical IDP rational and pick up a SLB. Sam linebackers Daryl Smith, James Anderson, and Sean Weatherspoon have all put up top 15 linebacker numbers so far this season.
Obviously, these observations are not hard and fast rules, but they are important to keep in mind when you are trying to scour the barrel for that golden nugget IDP waiver wire move.
Before we get to my recommendations for this week, I would also like to point out that three top 25 linebackers are possibily returning this week: DeAndry Levy, Stewart Bradley, and D'Qwell Jackson. If you have a bench, it would be a smart idea to grab these guys off the wire and stash them. They're gonna be good.
Now let's take a look at the waiver wire suggestions for this week:
|1. RDE Antwan Odom (CIN) @ CAR - I had Odom pegged as a bust heading into the season. As a generality, I still stand by that prediction as I believe that he was significantly overhyped after a hot start to last season. However, he faces the Carolina Panthers this week who have given up the 2nd most sacks so far this season with eight and who are starting a rookie quarterback in Jimmy Clausen. Odom will get off the sack schneid this week and could be in line for a multiple sack game.|
2. NT Sione Pouha (NYJ) @ MIA - "Poo ha" has replaced the injured Kris Jenkins as the starting nose tackle for the Jets. He's had 13 tackles and 2 fumble recoveries in his first two games and goes up against the run-heavy Dolphins. I like this matchup A LOT in DT-required leagues. ***DT-REQUIRED SPECIAL***
3. RDE Stylez G. White (TB) vs. PIT - I'm going to live and die by Stylez this year. He came through for me last week with a sack and he has another good matchup against the Charlie Batch-led Steelers. I'm sticking to my preseason prediction of double digit sacks for the man they call "Stylez."
***THE GURU'S LOCK OF THE WEEK***
LDE Derrick Harvey (JAX) vs. PHI - Harvey hasn't done jack so far this season which is extremely disappointing to me since he has the potential to put up top 20 fantasy numbers in his position. With a recently-concussed Kevin Kolb and an Eagles team that has given up a league-leading 12 SACKS coming to town, I'll take my chances on starting Harvey in the hopes he can get in on some the sack action. Obviously, if Kampman is available, start him over Harvey.
|1. WLB Michael Boley (NYG) vs. TEN - I will tell you up front this is a risky move. The Giants have been quite experimental with their use of linebackers. In their first game against the run-heavy Panthers, defensive coordinator Perry Fewell decided to use their "Big Base" defense a majority of the game which calls for Mathias Kiwanuka at SLB, Jonathan Goff at MLB, and Keith Bulluck at WLB (and Boley on the bench). Last week against the pass-heavy Colts, it was a completely different story. Fewell went with 6 DBs and 1 linebacker for a large portion of the game. That one linebacker in the game was Michael Boley who ended up with 16 total tackles. Boley has a great matchup this week against Chris Johnson and the Titans who are currently giving up the most fantasy points to opposing linebackers. My only concern is that the Giants will go back to that "Big Base" defense leaving Boley on the bench.|
|2. WILB Paris Lenon (ARI) vs. OAK - This is not a glamorous move by any means. However, sometimes it's the conservative moves that win you your weeks. Lenon has had solid fantasy performances in back-to-back weeks and has 19 total tackles thus far this season. He's a three-down WILB linebacker on a defense that is on the field for an above-average amount of snaps. As Daryl Washington starts to see an increased role, Lenon's value will gradually dissipate. However, that shouldn't start happening for a few weeks.|
|3. ROLB Tully Banta-Cain (NE) vs. BUF - TBC is one of the more underrated pass-rushing linebackers in the league. He had 9.5 sacks last season and already has 1.5 this season. He plays the pathetic Bills who will be starting an equally pathetic quarterback in Ryan Fitzpatrick. Tully should be harassing Fitz all day long and is a great option in big-play leagues. ***BIG-PLAY SPECIAL***|
|4. WILB Roger "Rocky" McIntosh (WASH) @ STL - If you haven't jumped on the Roger McIntosh bandwagon yet, it's time to start. The switch to a 3-4 defense has definitely improved his fantasy value. He's a good fit for the scheme and LFB has seemed to have lost a half-step. Also, the Washington scorekeeper has been more than generous this season when handing out tackles. The Redskins had a whopping 45 assists last week in their home game against the Texans. On the same note, the Rams scorekeeper is notoriously stingy with tackles, so don't expect a ton of assists out of McIntosh this week.|
|5. SLB Sean Weatherspoon (ATL) @ NO - Weatherspoon has had a larger role in the defense than most expected this early in the season. Interestingly enough, Weatherspoon, not veteran Mike Peterson, has been playing in nickel packages and is the Falcons leading tackler ahead of fantasy stud Curtis Lofton. "Spoon" is only going to get better as the season progresses and may eventually move over to the more fantasy productive weak side of the playing field. He draws a good matchup this week against the ball-controlling Saints. Get him on your rosters, especially in dynasty leagues.
***THE GURU'S LOCK OF THE WEEK***
SLB James Anderson (CAR) vs. CIN - I was a doubter of James Anderson's hot start in Week 1. However, another solid performance in Week 2 has changed my mind a bit. Even though he plays on the strong side and has stiff competition for tackles amongst his linebacker peers, he is still a three-down linebacker who plays for a below-average team who's defense is on the field quite a bit. More importantly, I like the matchup against the Bengals this week. Expect a heavy dose of Cedric Benson and plenty of tackle opportunities to go around.
|1. SS Steven Gregory (SD) @ SEA - If your looking for some consistency at the defensive back position, Gregory looks to be a nice choice. He is currently outperforming Eric Weddle and is the Chargers leading tackler so far this season. The SS position in San Diego can be a very productive one, so I don't consider Gregory's production to be a fluke. The matchup isn't superb this week, but I see this more as a long-term pickup.|
|2. SS Sean Considine (JAX) vs. PHI - Along the same lines as Gregory, Considine has been solid in his first two games of the season. The Jaguars defense figures to be on the field a lot this year and Considine could wind up having a sound season.|
|3. LCB Jabari Greer (NO) vs. ATL - Playing off of the trend of the first two weeks, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that one of the Saints CBs is going to have a nice tackle day against Roddy White and the Falcons. Matt Ryan has targeted White a ridiculous 35 times already this season. Greer is the best tackling cornerback in Atlanta and should put 7+ solo tackles in this contest.|
|4. SS Lawyer Milloy (SEA) vs. SD - This is for all you owners in extremely deep leagues. Milloy rebounded last week with 8 tackles after a week with only 3 tackles and seemed to regain control over the starting SS job in Seattle. Even though he's old as dirt and won't provide big plays, he's valuable in Pete Carroll's system and can be had in virtually every league. ***DEEP-LEAGUE SPECIAL***|
***THE GURU'S LOCK OF THE WEEK***
SS James Butler (STL) vs. WAS - I liked Butler quite a bit heading into the preseason. He plays on a defense with an atrocious front seven who is on the field perhaps more than any other defense. Unfortunately, injuries have left Butler on the bench and allowed his replacement, Craig Dahl, to put up some nice tackle numbers. Well, with Dahl out with a concussion, it's Butler's turn to rack up some tackles against the Redskins this week.
Thanks a bunch for reading and feel free to ask me any specific questions. I want to help you dominate your fantasy leagues! Until next time, this is The IDP Guru signing off.
Last Updated: September 21, 2010