It seems it was only yesterday that the 2013 NFL season was getting underway, but as the calendar turns to November, the fantasy football campaign is entering its second half.
As is the case every year, there have been plenty of hits and misses among individual defensive players. Jacksonville linebacker
has performed as advertised, but the same can’t be said for Carolina’s
The same goes for my start/sit recommendations to this point in the season. There are some plays I’ve knocked out of the park, and others I’ve dribbled back to the pitcher or whiffed on altogether. With any luck there have been more of the former than the latter, but at any rate there’s no time to dwell on the past.
After all, there’s still a lot of work to be done.
Every week during the 2013 season, I’ll point out 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).
This 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).
Finally, Week 9 brings with it the second six-team bye. Arizona, Denver, Detroit, Jacksonville, the New York Giants and San Francisco all have this week off. Get players from those teams out of your lineup.
Adrian Clayborn, DE, Tampa Bay (at Seattle):
Seattle may have escaped St. Louis with a win last week, but its offensive line was abused by St. Louis’
. That bodes well for Clayborn’s chances of notching a sack in a second consecutive game this week.
Cameron Jordan, DE, New Orleans (at New York Jets):
Jordan makes his second straight appearance on the “studs” list after getting a sack against Buffalo a week ago. Jordan will try to make it three weeks in a row Sunday against the Jets, who have been a top-five IDP matchup for defensive linemen this year.
Derrick Morgan, DE, Tennessee (at St. Louis):
A shoulder injury has limited Morgan’s snaps, and the fourth-year pro has tallied only a single assist over the past three games. This week’s matchup with a Rams team allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to defensive linemen should afford Morgan a chance to get back on track.
Jerrell Freeman, ILB, Indianapolis (at Houston):
IDP owners who were left in a bit of a lurch last week by Freeman’s bye are about to get over it. The former Canadian Football League star should redeem himself with a big game against Houston, which has been the friendliest IDP matchup for linebackers in
Fantasy Sharks Default IDP Scoring
so far this season.
D’Qwell Jackson, ILB, Cleveland (vs. Baltimore):
Jackson has been a relative disappointment to this point in 2013, ranking outside the top-20 linebackers. However, Jackson had a solid showing last week, and this week Jackson and the Browns square off with a Ravens team surrendering the second-most fantasy points to linebackers in 2013.
Mychal Kendricks, ILB, Philadelphia (at Oakland):
Kendricks is a great example of a player who looks better in the box score than on the football field. That bodes well this week against Oakland, a run-heavy team that’s been a top-5 IDP matchup for the position this season.
Ryan Clark, FS, Pittsburgh (at New England):
Clark is coming off a huge outing against Oakland, logging 12 total stops in the loss to the Raiders. The 34-year-old should be able to keep that momentum going this week, as the Steelers face a New England Patriots team giving up the most fantasy points to safeties this year.
LaRon Landry, SS, Indianapolis (at Houston):
The bye-week gave Landry some extra time to get healthy, and this week’s fantasy matchup with the Texans is highly favorable. If you’ve been hanging onto Landry waiting for the right time to plug him back into the lineup, it’s here.
Brandian Ross, FS, Oakland (vs. Philadelphia):
Ross has performed fairly well since being thrust into the starting lineup at safety in Oakland. What really makes the second-year pro attractive this week is the combo of a juicy matchup with the Eagles and his positional eligibility as a cornerback with many providers.