Welcome to Week 3 of the ’53 Deep’ Individual Defensive Player (IDP) sleepers article. Through two weeks we can safely assume one thing in the IDP world … ASSUME nothing! After playing more than 60 snaps and posting double-digit tackles in Week 1, San Diego linebacker
played six snaps in Week 2. Yes, six snaps.
There is neither rhyme nor reason to why things happen in IDP leagues (other than, hey it’s the Chargers), and as confounding as it can be, it is honestly one of the reasons I love IDP formats.
It’s also why I love writing this column each and every week because it is akin to Rocky Balboa chasing that chicken in preparation for his rematch with Apollo Creed. The IDP landscape is tricky and constantly shifting and it is so satisfying when we catch ahold of that sweet sleeper choice that propels a team to victory.
With that in mind …
Joplo Bartu, OLB, ATLANTA at Miami:
Bartu saw 63 snaps last week due to the injury suffered by
and finished with six solo tackles as well as a quarterback hurry. Do not sweat the signings of Omar Gaither and
as they are depth players and Bartu is going to play three downs for the Falcons this week. Miami is a top-five opponent in allowing points to the linebacker position, so Bartu could not fall into a better fantasy situation. He’s athletic, and, in watching his performance last week and in the preseason, seems to have a nose for the football. Grab him and insert as a starter right away.
Geno Hayes, SLB, JACKSONVILLE at Seattle:
Surprisingly, Hayes has played every defensive snap for the Jaguars through two weeks. He’s amassed 14 total tackles (11 solos) and defended a pass. This week should be an excellent one for all the Jacksonville fantasy linebacker options and Hayes will get his share. Seattle will pound the ball early with
and then most likely late as they sit on a big lead with Robert Turbin.
That means a big day tackle wise for Hayes as a three down linebacker.
Demario Davis, ILB, NEW YORK JETS vs. Buffalo:
Davis finally has been given his chance to be an every down player for the Jets and has responded with 14 total tackles through two games. The Bills will look to get
on track early in this game and that will give Davis plenty of tackle opportunities. Davis has also been credited with four quarterback hurries this season and there is the chance that he gets a sack this week. Big play numbers could help vault him into the top-15 of linebacker scoring this week.
Josh Bynes, ILB, BALTIMORE vs. Houston:
After surprisingly emerging as the starting right inside linebacker for the Ravens out of training camp, Bynes has played solid football. He has posted 16 total tackles through two weeks while playing 114 snaps. Look for the Texans to return to a run first (second and third as well) offense after having to come from behind the last two weeks. A steady diet of
should offer up a plethora of tackle opportunities for Bynes this week.
Aldon Smith, OLB, SAN FRANCISCO vs. Indianapolis:
While the Colts may look to run the ball a bit more with new No. 1 running back
(sorry, Cleveland Browns fans), that doesn’t necessarily diminish Smith’s value. He has racked up 12 total tackles already this season, including eight solos. Smith has also posted 3 1/2 sacks and will be getting after
all day long. The Colts have allowed seven sacks through two games and I see Smith collecting at least two in Week 3.