It’s Week 13 of the 2012 NFL season, and in many Individual Defensive Player (IDP) leagues the upcoming week’s games are the last of the regular season, making this week a playoff of sorts for fantasy teams fighting to keep their postseason hopes alive.
That makes it absolutely imperative that these teams hit the waiver wire hard in Week 13, especially those unfortunate souls who lost yet another linebacker when Dallas’ Bruce Carter suffered a season-ending elbow injury.
Unfortunately, another sad fact of this point in the season is that in many IDP leagues there just isn’t a whole lot left on the waiver wire, making it very difficult to find impact players. With that said, that doesn’t mean that there’s nothing out there, and here’s a look at some players that are available in the majority of IDP leagues that have enough fantasy value to at least be worth a look.
PICKUP OF THE WEEK
Brandon Spikes, MLB, New England:
Despite the fact that Spikes has left the field for more than 20 snaps in each of the past three games, it hasn’t really hurt his IDP production, as the third-year pro has tallied 31 tackles and two forced fumbles over that stretch. Granted, the fact that only 13 of those tackles were solos is a bit disconcerting, but for IDP owners reeling at linebacker, the prospects of a player averaging double-digit stops is just too good to pass up.
Cliff Avril, DE, Detroit:
One of a number of defensive linemen that came out of the gate woefully slow it appears that Avril may be turning a corner just in time for the fantasy playoffs. The fifth-year pro is now up to 7.5 sacks on the season after notching two on Thanksgiving. With four tackles, three sacks and a pair of forced fumbles over the past two games, it appears that Avril’s heating up just as his fantasy owners could desperately use the bump in production.
Mario Williams, DE, Buffalo:
Speaking of defensive linemen that have picked it up of late, after spending the first half of the season being one of the biggest IDP disappointments at the position, Mario Williams has finally started showing the Buffalo Bills why they spent all that money on him. With three sacks against the Indianapolis Colts the seventh-year pro is now up to 8.5 on the season, and it’s time for IDP owners to give Williams another chance as well.
Erin Henderson, OLB, Minnesota:
Henderson started out the 2012 season strong, but after somehow puzzlingly losing nickel snaps to Jasper Brinkley, Henderson’s IDP production fell off a cliff. However, over the past couple of games Henderson’s snaps are on the upswing again, and after posting his highest tackle numbers since Week 2 in Sunday’s loss to the Chicago Bears, it appears that Henderson may have played his way back onto the IDP radar.
Anthony Spencer, OLB, Dallas:
With Bruce Carter out for the season, many IDP owners will scramble to add inside linebackers Dan Connor and Ernie Sims, but savvy IDP owners may wish to look outside for help. The sixth-year pro now has a career-high 6.5 sacks and has tallied 20 total tackles over the past three games, and given the multitude of IDP owners hurting at linebacker, Spencer’s recent hot streak has come at a very opportune time.
Drayton Florence, CB, Detroit:
This week’s matchup cornerback du jour, Florence took over for the injured Jacob Lacey last week and had a decent game, racking up five solos in the Thanksgiving loss to the Houston Texans. Whether it’s Florence or Lacey in the starting lineup this week, that player has an excellent IDP matchup, as no team in the National Football League has allowed more fantasy points to cornerbacks to this point in the season than the Indianapolis Colts.
Kerry Rhodes, FS, Arizona:
At first glance this recommendation may seem a bit strange, especially given that Rhodes hasn’t racked up more than six solos in a game this year. With that said, however, the 30-year-old is coming off one of his beat games of the season and travels this week to face his old team, and given that acrimony that accompanied Rhodes’ departure from the New York Jets, the eighth-year veteran could be set to make a statement in Week 13.
Looking for more IDP information? Be sure to check out all the other great IDP articles by the rest of the Fantasy Sharks’ crew, the IDP Forum, IDP Manor, for the latest injury news follow @IDPManor on Twitter, and if you have an IDP question feel free to shoot me an email at email@example.com.