If you’re still reading this then congratulations, you made the playoffs. Or you’re in one of those weird leagues that includes Week 17. Or you’re bored at work and can’t get enough IDP talk. But, other than that last group, if you’re here then you can’t afford to waste any time with fluff before getting to the good stuff. So let’s get right into the Week 14 IDP action…
Vontaze Burfict – I talked him up for weeks leading into the game against San Diego, but then he goes and rolls his ankle in practice three days before the game. I never changed my rankings, as I figured that if he played, he would produce, but for those who questioned me in the comments and on Twitter, I was hesitant. Well Burfict responded with what has become a standard game for him: 11 solo tackles, 2 assists and general chaos creation all over the field. Rey Maualuga came back from injury and ended the Vincent Rey Experience, but Burfict has reigned supreme all year, and should continue to do so Sunday against the Colts.
Jon Beason – We move from the model of consistency to its exact opposite. Since coming to the Giants, Beason has had four games of 8 or more tackles (including 17! on Sunday), and three games of 4 or fewer tackles. His “stud” games have come against teams that vary in their styles, but he’s set up pretty nicely on Sunday against those same Chargers that allowed Burfict and Maualuga to put up points last week. I’m feeling as positive as I can about Beason this week, as he should spend most of his afternoon chasing down the runs and short passes that make up the San Diego offense.
Olivier Vernon – I had Cameron Wake’s name in bold last week, but it was my afterthought, Vernon, who came through. Wake did manage 4 tackles, but didn’t register a sack, and watched his counterpart rack up 10 tackles and 2.5 sacks in the Fins’ romp of the Jets. While Wake struggles with injuries and ineffectiveness, and 3rd overall pick Dion Jordan deals with growing pains, Vernon has quietly put up 10 sacks already. He gets a DL-friendly schedule with the Steelers this week and Buffalo in Week 16, so he could very well be the anchor of a championship IDP team this year.
Justin Tuck – As much as I’d like to say he’s back, I’m not reading too much into Tuck’s monster performance on SNF. RG3 has been sacked at least 4 times in each of the last four games, and while 4 sacks in 10 plays is impressive, it’s also not likely to happen again. Tuck’s next three opponents all rank in the bottom 10 in sacks allowed, and that’s where he gets his value, as he hasn’t had more than 5 tackles since Week 2. He’s a strong DL3/fringe DL2, but I wouldn’t treat Week 13 as Tuck’s coming out party.
Johnathan Cyprien – Many had Cyprien pegged as a top-10 DL heading into the season, and he’s had some inconsistent but positive results. He currently ranks as DB8 on the season, but he’s had 5 tackles or less in half the games he’s played this year, which has led to some frustration from his owners. On Sunday, Cyprien put up 10 tackles and a pick, the first of his short career, and he has a nice schedule to end the season. I have him as my top DB this week, and I expect to have him top 5 for the rest of the year.
Week 14 IDP Rankings