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Week 1 of the 2012 NFL season is in the books, and while some defensive stars such as San Francisco 49ers inside linebacker Navorro Bowman performed as advertised others such as defensive end Mario Williams of the Buffalo Bills pulled a disappearing act.
That means it’s time to start looking ahead to Week 2 with another edition of IDP Studs and Duds, where we’ll look at some Individual Defensive Players who could be set to exceed expectations this week (Studs) and some that for whatever reason are riskier plays than usual (Duds).
That isn’t necessarily to say that every “Stud” is a must-start (it depends on your other options) or that every “Dud” should be glued to your bench (just that the odds of a letdown week are greater than usual), but forewarned is forearmed and all that happy nonsense.
Finally, before we get on with the show, if you have a specific IDP Start/Sit question you’d like my take on you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or post the question in the “Kilroyz Krystal Ball” thread in the Fantasy Sharks IDP Forum. I can’t promise I’ll get to every question, but I’ll do the best I can.
Jared Allen – DE, Minnesota Vikings (at IND): It goes without saying that Allen’s a stud, but I’m using him as the poster child for the star defensive linemen who were disappointments last week. It’s a long season folks, and bad weeks happen, so it’s important sometimes to just take a deep breath and stay the course.
Chandler Jones – DE, New England Patriots (vs. AZ): The rookie from Syracuse had an excellent NFL debut last week with five tackles and a sack against the Tennessee Titans, and Jones is a top 10 IDP option at his position this week in a very favorable matchup with the Kevin Kolb-led Cardinals.
Justin Tuck – DE, New York Giants (vs. TB): The eighth-year veteran has never been shy about speaking his mind, and after calling out his teammates after the loss to Dallas I think that Tuck and the New York defensive front are set to bounce back in a big way this week against the Buccaneers.
Stephen Nicholas – OLB, Atlanta Falcons (vs. DEN): Nicholas paced the Falcons with 12 total tackles and an interception in the win over Kansas City, and while it isn’t reasonable to expect that sort of production on a weekly basis the sixth-year pro has a favorable fantasy matchup against the Broncos in Week 2.
Paul Posluszny – MLB, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. HOU): It was a relative quiet Week 1 for Posluszny with seven total tackles against the Vikings, but you know that the Texans will be banging away all day on the ground, which should mean ample tackle opportunities for the 27-year-old.
DeMeco Ryans – MLB, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. BAL): After reports surfaced that Ryans would be pulled in the nickel many fantasy owners likely reserved him, but the seventh-year veteran was on the field for 60 of 62 defensive snaps and faces a Baltimore Ravens team Sunday that was a top five fantasy matchup for opposing linebackers in 2011.
William Gay – CB, Arizona Cardinals (at NE): Fantasy owners looking for a one-week matchup play at the cornerback position should look no farther than William Gay, who racked up seven tackles with a forced fumble last week and will all but certainly be targeted a ton Sunday.
Charles Godfrey – SS, Carolina Panthers (vs. NO): It should come as a surprise to absolutely no one that the New Orleans Saints are a tasty IDP matchup for defensive backs, and Godfrey and the back end of the Carolina defense should be plenty busy against Drew Brees and company this week.
Lardarius Webb – CB, Baltimore Ravens (at PHI): The 26-year-old got off to a solid start to the 2012 season with seven tackles in the blowout win over the Cincinnati Bengals, and Webb should keep his momentum going against an Eagles team this week that allowed the fifth-most fantasy points per game to opposing defensive backs in 2011.
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