2015 IDP Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 16

Hello and welcome back to the IDPGuru.com's most popular in-season article, IDP Waiver Wire Pickups, which will be releasing every Tuesday of the regular season.

OK. Let's start things off by going through some IDP news, notes, and commentary from Week 15 of the NFL season.

Injuries
Patriots inside linebacker Dont'a Hightower left last Sunday's game after he appeared to re-injure his knee. With the Patriots in good standing for the playoffs, I would imagine they will play it conservative here and rest Hightower for Week 16.

David Harris
left Saturday's game against the Cowboys with an injury and did not return. Erin Henderson and Demario Davis were the two every down inside linebackers in his absence.

Jelani Jenkins missed last week with an ankle injury. This forced Kelvin Sheppard into a larger role and a monster game (11-1, PD). Continue to ride Sheppard for as long as Jenkins is out.
Reports indicate that OLB Pernell McPhee could have arthroscopic surgery on his left knee after the season is over. His recovery time is something to consider moving into 2016.

Paul Worrilow didn't practice last week and missed the Falcons' Week 15 game with an injured knee. Nathan Stupar replaced him in an every down capacity but was fairly average in the box scores with 5 solo tackles.

Jimmy Smith
suffered a thigh injury during the game on Sunday and did not return. We will get a better idea of his status later in the week.

Cardinals safety Rashad Johnson was inactive on Sunday night as he continues to work his way back from an ankle injury. Additionally, Arizona lost their star secondary player Tyrann Mathieu to a torn ACL in last week's game. He will miss the remainder of the season and try to be ready for the start of the 2016 regular season.

General Player Notes
Despite playing with a broken hand, Paul Posluszny exploded for 9 solo tackles, an assist, an interception, and a pass deflection. This is a prime example of not benching your studs during playoff weeks. Big players produce down the stretch (often times regardless of matchup or injury).

Vontaze Burfict
saw 80%+ of the snaps last week which was his highest percentage of the year. It may have been a result of game flow more than something permanent moving forward, but it's a good sign nonetheless. He's had a couple monster games in a row and remains a fantasy starter moving forward even with limited playing time.

The Raiders seem to be giving Ben Heeney a chance to prove himself at linebacker as he saw near every-down snaps last week. He's had two solid fantasy weeks in a row, so he's a worthwhile player to monitor in deeper leagues heading into 2016.

With Kwon Alexander suspended and Bruce Carter nursing an injury, Danny Lansanah found himself in an every down role and produced a respectable 8 total tackles against a very poor matchup in the St. Louis Rams. He makes for a decent, non-flashy LB4+/LB3- option moving forward.

Now onto The Guru's IDP waiver wire selections for Week 16!

(Please note that a majority of these pickups are long-term, rest of season pickups as opposed to matchup-type recommendations. As the season progresses and the waiver wire becomes more thin and matchup information becomes more reliable, the focus of this article will shift more towards recommendations based on weekly matchup.)

Defensive Linemen
(Previously recommended DLs: Henry Anderson, Allen Bailey, Mario Addison, Jacquies Smith, Jabaal Sheard, Sen'Derrick Marks, Jared Allen, Stephon Tuitt, Greg Hardy, Sheldon Richardson, Stephon Tuitt, Jarvis Jenkins, Kerry Wynn, Ryan Delaire, Jay Ratliff, Kony Ealy, Lawrence Guy, Cameron Wake, Adrian Clayborn, Sheldon Richardson, Jared Allen, William Hayes, DeMarcus Lawrence, Kawaan Short, Jason Pierre-Paul, Derrick Shelby, Mario Edwards, Frostee Rucker, Kony Ealy, Desmond Bryant, Linval Joseph, Mario Edwards, Derrick Shelby, Linval Joseph, Corey Liuget, Kony Ealy, Olivier Vernon, Derek Wolfe, Malcolm Brown, Derrick Shelby, Devin Taylor, Frank Clark, DeMarcus Lawrence, Jabaal Sheard, Desmond Bryant)

DE DeMarcus Lawrence (DAL) -
Lawrence has arguably been Dallas' best defensive player over the last several weeks. He's garnered 6 sacks in his last 6 games and has a tasty matchup this week against the Bills. I'd continue to start him with confidence. Strong DL2.

DE Robert Ayers (NYG) -
Ayers is still sparingly owned throughout IDP leagues despite the fact he's compiled 5.5 sacks over his last 5 games with fairly strong tackle numbers to boot. He has a top 5 matchup this week against the Vikings and is shaping up to be a viable DL3 candidate to end the year.

DE Danielle Hunter (MIN) -
With Everson Griffen struggling through an injury, the Vikings have had to rely more heavily on rookie Danielle Hunter who is quietly carving out a substantial role for himself for 2016. He's had a sack in back-to-back games (5 on the year). As a dynasty owner, he's a d-end I would be trying to get on my roster if he's not already.


Linebackers

(Previously recommended LBs: Thomas Davis, Vincent Rey, Brian Cushing, Koa Misi, Uani Unga, Dont'a Hightower, DeMeco Ryans, Jordan Hicks, Justin Durant, Hau'oli Kikaha, Jordan Hicks, Malcolm Smith, A.J. Klein, Christian Kirksey, Anthony Hitchens, Manti Te'o, Thurston Armbrister, Christian Kirksey, Eric Kendricks, Rolando McClain, Avery Williamson, Michael Wilhoite, Dannell Ellerbe, Eric Kendricks, Michael Wilhoite, Denzel Perryman, Justin Durant, Jon Beason, Kevin Minter, Manti Te'o, Vontaze Burfict, Wesley Woodyard, O'Brien Schofield, Jake Ryan, Chad Greenway, Phillip Wheeler, Jonathan Anderson, Tahir Whitehead, Kelvin Sheppard, Shea McClellin, Jasper Brinkley, Justin Durant, Kelvin Sheppard, Brian Orakpo, Will Compton, Philip Wheeler, Jonathan Freeny, Kelvin Sheppard, Denzel Perryman, Jake Ryan, Gerald Hodges, Danny Lansanah, James Anderson, Chad Greenway, Danny Lansanah, Jelani Jenkins, Elvis Dumervil)

MLB Anthony Hitchens (DAL) -
Hitchens has produced well when given an every down role. He got another chance to play in that capacity last week as Rolando McClain was inactive due to a concussion. He outpaced Sean Lee with 10 total tackles (5 solos) and should serve as a solid LB3- pickup for Championship week if owners are scrounging for a linebacker on the waiver wire.

SLB Justin Durant (ATL) - If Paul Worrilow is out again, Durant should have no problem producing at a LB3 level against a run-heavy Panthers team. He carries some injury risk, but outside of that, he's a fairly safe bet for 6-9 total tackles. Let's keep an eye on Worrilow's playing status for Week 16.

ILB John Timu (CHI) - The Bears are out of the playoffs and taking the opportunity to evaluate some of their young, unproven talent. That said, John Timu got the start at ILB next to Shea McClellin and ripped off 9 tackles to lead the team in that category. He only played 61% of the snaps so he remains a risky play moving forward. However, he could see a bump in playing time in Week 16 after his strong performance last week. He's a high variance LB4+ at this point and an underdog team could find him valuable in deep IDP leagues.

OLB Jadaveon Clowney (HOU) - For those in big play leagues, I like Clowney this week against a Titans team that has given up a whopping 49 sacks on the year and will have their backup QB under center. Although he's been a bit inconsistent, Clowney has shown flashes of multi-sack potential and could be in line for a huge game to round out the season. Great upside play for those willing to take a risk.


Defensive Backs
(Previously recommended DBs: Calvin Pryor, Trenton Robinson, Josh Norman, Adam Jones, Will Allen, Eric Berry, Adam Jones, Tony Jefferson, Corey Graham, Brandon Meriweather, T.J. Ward, Ronald Darby, Chris Conte, Jonathan Cyprien, David Amerson, Jonathan Joseph, Brandon Browner, Mark Barron, Jason McCourty, Antwon Blake, Jason McCourty, Devin McCourty, Mark Barron, Jaquiski Tartt, Kemal Ishmael, Jacquiski Tartt, Ibraheim Campbell, Logan Ryan, Prince Amukamara, Kurt Coleman, Leodis McKelvin, Will Allen, Isa Abdul-Quddus, Marcus Peters, Logan Ryan, Will Allen, Clayton Geathers, Robert Blanton, DeShawn Shead, Jude Adjei-Barimah, Isa Abdul-Quddus, Robert Blanton, Patrick Robinson, Jaquiski Tartt, Michael Griffin, Anthony Harris)

CB David Amerson (OAK)
- Amerson has found a new home in Oakland after being released from by Washington earlier in the year. He's had above average production in a good majority of his games since Week 4 and has a great matchup on the books this week against a pass-heavy Chargers team. I'm expecting 5-6 solos, a couple pass deflections, and a 25% chance of a big play.

S DeAngelo Hall (WAS) - For a player that has been a IDP fantasy mainstay over the last several seasons, Hall has had a very quiet year (mainly due to injury). The team has now moved him to safety and he's put up 14 solo tackles there over his last two games. He has a great matchup with the Eagles next week. Sneaky DB3-DB3+ option.

SS Maurice Alexander (STL) - Alexander has assumed the every down, strong safety role after T.J. McDonald went on IR. He's posted 5-0 and 6-1 1 PD stat lines in those two weeks he has started. He's a fairly high floor/low ceiling play, but if you are just looking for 5-6 solos out of your safety, Alexander makes for a good selection.


If you have any questions, feel free to email me at theidpguru@idpguru.com or follow me on Twitter. Also, feel free to post any questions or comments for me in the comments section of this post.

Last Updated: December 22, 2015
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