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2017 IDP PLAYOFF RANKINGS: Divisional Round

For both NFL fans and fantasy enthusiasts participating in playoff leagues, there’s good news and bad news where last week’s Wild Card Round is concerned.

The good news, at least for fans of the favorites, is that chalk ruled the day. All four higher-seeded teams won their respective matchups – in rather convincing fashion. If your fantasy playoff league only allows each player to be used a finite number of times, the lack of upsets (in theory) should have made it easier to burn through options that are no longer active at this point.

Of course, this news comes as little solace to fans of the underdog. It’s also of little consolation to IDP owners, because it means elite fantasy options like Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack, Miami Dolphins inside linebacker Kiko Alonso and New York Giants safety Landon Collins are done for the season, thinning the pool of defensive talent available.

If you made an ignorant prediction like the Giants knocking off the Packers, at some positions the pool may already be looking more like a puddle.

Hey, I went 3-1 last week. It could be worse.

This week’s games are that much harder to predict, and with the number of playoff teams about to be cut in half this is the point in the postseason where things get really interesting.

In order to help you in a final quest for fantasy glory this season, I’ll be publishing IDP rankings each week during the 2016 playoffs here at Fantasy Sharks. These rankings assume a league format where teams start two defensive linemen, two linebackers, two defensive backs and a “flex” spot.

They also assume a “one/two and done” format where players are concerned. In other words, while the entire pool of individual defensive players is available, each player can only be used once (or twice, in some formats). So, while matchup and talent are still the primary considerations, it’s also important to identify which teams are going to be eliminated in a given week and use those players where possible.

Otherwise, by the time we get to Super Bowl LI (Back to Roman numerals – order is restored to the universe) IDP owners won’t have anyone left to slot in starting lineups.

With those caveats in mind, here’s a look at:

The Top 10 IDP Players for the 2017 Divisional Round

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

  1. Cliff Avril – DE, SEA (at ATL)
  2. Michael Bennett – DE, SEA (at ATL)
  3. Trey Flowers – DE, NE (vs. HOU)
  4. Rob Ninkovich – DE, NE (vs. HOU)
  5. David Irving – DE, DAL (vs. GB)
  6. Stephon Tuitt – DE, PIT (at KC)
  7. Frank Clark – DE, SEA (at ATL)
  8. DeMarcus Lawrence – DE, DAL (vs. GB)
  9. Adrian Clayborn – DE, ATL (vs. SEA)
  10. Jabaal Sheard – DE, NE (vs. HOU)

LINEBACKERS

  1. Bernardrick McKinney – ILB, HOU (at NE)
  2. Bobby Wagner – ILB, SEA (at ATL)
  3. Sean Lee – ILB, DAL (vs. GB)
  4. Ryan Shazier – ILB, PIT (at KC)
  5. Ramik Wilson – ILB, KC (vs. PIT)
  6. Lawrence Timmons – ILB, PIT (at KC)
  7. Deion Jones – ILB, ATL (vs. SEA)
  8. Dont’a Hightower – ILB, NE (vs. HOU)
  9. De’Vondre Campbell – OLB, ATL (vs. SEA)
  10. Justin Houston – OLB, KC (vs. PIT)

DEFENSIVE BACKS

  1. Morgan Burnett – S, GB (at DAL)
  2. Eric Berry – S, KC (vs. PIT)
  3. Barry Church – S, DAL (vs. GB)
  4. Kam Chancellor – S, SEA (at ATL)
  5. Keanu Neal – S, ATL (vs. SEA)
  6. Hasean Clinton-Dix – S, GB (at DAL)
  7. Sean Davis – S, PIT (at KC)
  8. Deshawn Shead – CB, SEA (at ATL)
  9. Marcus Peters – CB, KC (vs. PIT)
  10. Ron Parker – S, KC (vs. PIT)

About Gary Davenport

A member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association and Pro Football Writers of America who resides in Columbus, Ohio, Gary has been featured on a number of fantasy websites and in nationally circulated publications. These publications include the USA Today Fantasy Football Preview and the magazines distributed by Fantasy Sports Publications Inc., for whom Gary is a both a contributing author and associate editor. Gary is an eight-time FSWA Award finalist and two-time winner who has been a finalist for that organization's Fantasy Football Writer of the Year award each of the last three years. He won the honor in 2017. Gary also appears regularly on Sirius XM Radio (including live from Radio Row at Super Bowl XLIX) and over-the-air stations across the country. Gary was one of the co-founders of, and Head Writer at, Fantasy Football Oasis before joining Fantasy Sharks as an IDP Senior Staff Writer in 2011. He knows football. Or so he's heard.