2014 In-Season Accuracy: 60.8% (7th out of 23 Experts, 64.5% Highest, 42.8% Lowest)

Week 3 Results: 61.4% (6th out of 24 Experts, 65.0% Highest, 44.5% Lowest)

After a week off with post-wedding festivities, I’m snapping back to reality this week with a look at the contenders and pretenders so far in 2014. We’ve seen breakouts from no-names, bounce-backs from fallen stars and a flurry of injuries ranging from torn Achilles to disastrous Discount Double Checks. So what’s real and what’s not? Let’s take a closer look and see.

Jason Pierre-Paul – Three years removed from his world-beating breakout, JPP is back in the top 5 DLs so far. What’s better than his stats is the way he’s played. Similar to 2011, JPP is influencing every play and causing havoc in the backfield. Over his next 5 games, he gets to face a series of pass-happy offenses that should bolster his sack total, so I would not consider selling high. It’s probably too late to buy low on his lackluster 2012 and 2013, but if you got JPP at a discount this year, sit back and enjoy the ride.

DeMarcus Ware – He has 2.5 sacks in 3 games, so that’s nice. But outside of that, he only has 3 other tackles. So unless you’re in a big-play league with a 5:1 sack to tackle ratio or more, Ware has not been startable. The good news is that Denver figures to be leading for the majority of their defensive snaps, so Ware will get plenty more sack chances. The bad news is that in standard IDP leagues, sacks rarely win championships. If you’re in a big-play league, hold on to Ware for now, but if you’re not, I would sell after a multi-sack game against Arizona or the Jets.

Jelani Jenkins – What the what? In less than three full games, Jenkins has racked up 35 tackles and 1.5 sacks. The Miami LB situation figured to be a mess this year, so even if/when Koa Misi comes back, Joe Philbin would be crazy to bench Jenkins. That would be like benching Ryan Tannehill for Matt Moore. That doesn’t sound like Philbin at all. I like Jenkins, but I wouldn’t blow his start out of proportion. If you get a nice offer for him, by all means take it. But I wouldn’t be shocked if he finished the year in the top 20 LBs.

Vontaze Burfict – My love affair with Burfict has been obvious over the last 2 years, but I’m not liking what I see so far. One subpar game, one mediocre game leading to a concussion, and then a missed game is not the way to start the year. What’s worse for Bengals owners, his replacements have done a prettay, prettay good job. Emmanuel Lamur has come out of nowhere to put up big numbers, and Vincent Rey has a history of big games when he’s been called on. Don’t give up on my boy Vontaze just yet, but I would have a contingency plan in place if he misses more time.

Reggie Nelson – Sticking with the stripes, Nelson has had a typically solid yet underrated year. He’s never rated in the top 20 DBs by the “experts” (yours truly included), but he continues to produce at a consistent level. Arguably the most dominant unit in the league so far has been Cincy’s defense, and with the aforementioned Burfict struggling, Nelson has been the biggest reason why. If he’s given more freedom to roam the field, look for Nelson to have his first truly elite season at age 31.

Barry Church – Last year’s DB1 overall has been a whole lot of “meh” this year. Some of that has to do with limited chances. Dallas has let up a lot of quick TDs this year, along with more three-and-outs than expected, so Church is simply not on the field as much as he was last year. But this start does reinforce the thought that Church’s 2013 was more fluky than it was skill. If I own Church I’m not bailing just yet, but I’m by no means buying low on him, as we might not see the type of resurgence that you would expect from a top DB.

Time will tell how this season turns out for these six IDPs, but three weeks can sometimes be enough to tell whether a player will be a stud or a dud.

Week 4 Rankings:


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  1. J-FOH

    J-FOH says:
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    I’m calling mcCoy as my sleeper DL this week…if he plays. The Bucs D are on the field more than the refs.

    How is the RazzDP league going?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @J-FOH:

      I always hate ranking guys who are questionable, but I’m prepared to move McCoy up the list if he’s close to 100%.

      RazzDP going well, lots of high scores and waiver activity. Your team could use some help though….

      How’s your league?

      • J-FOH says:
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        @Kevin Kumpf: really solid league, lots of activity, 6 teams with double digit moves and only one guy is a no show so far

    • Principal Blackman says:
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      Does anyone know if there are going to be update posts on the RCL & RazzDP leagues this year?

      • Kevin Kumpf

        Kevin Kumpf says:
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        @Principal Blackman:

        I’ll start including RazzDP updates in my posts within the next two weeks. Not 100% sure about the RCL updates though.

  2. Travis says:
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    Hey man which defensive player would you roll with this week;

    Rob ninkovich vs Alex smith & KC

    Revis vs Alex smith & KC

    Donta Hightower vs Alex smith & KC

    Kenny vaccaro vs romo & Cowboys

    Jarius Byrd vs romo & Cowboys

    Charles Woodson vs tannehill & fins

    Paul worrilow vs Bridgewater & vikes

    Lastly Harrison smith vs Matt Ryan & atl

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @Travis:

      Worrilow all the way.

  3. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
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    Nice read, a couple questions: do you think Cushing is reliable now? and is Jon Beason worth a pick up?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @TobiasFunkeAnalRapist:

      I’m a big Cush fan, and my LB9 ranking matches ECR, so I think it’s safe to say that he’s reliable. He’s still not playing every snap, but that should change in the coming weeks.

      Beason is hurt, and not worth stashing if he’s not on the field, so I wouldn’t pick him up at this time.

  4. J-FOH says:
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    I’m chomping at the bit to get one of those raiders linebackers in there this week and with everyone banged up I can’t believe in the practice squad guy Bojay Filimoeatu is set to be the middle linebacker. Moore could be a beast, but every day it looks less likely he plays.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @J-FOH:

      That Raiders LB situation has been a cluster since they drafted Mack. So much talent, so many injuries. That’s so Raiders…

  5. Brett says:
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    Who would you rather have rest of the year 1pt per tackle so tackles are huge chancellor or earl Thomas?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @Brett:

      It’s essentially a coinflip. I’m more of a Thomas guy because his ceiling is higher, but Chancellor tends to be more reliable week-to-week.

  6. goodfold2 says:
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    since you were last spotted i lost D.Hall for season, but did grab Amerson (you aren’t only person high on him). Some twit dropped Weddle and he passed waivers since i didn’t remember who he was (and for most owners since he hadn’t had a good game till week 3 he went through). i feel like an ass since this is a dynasty missing weddle. now team is this
    LB (start 3): david/riley/butler/foster (hurt), i see minter fell off yr rankings too, i dropped minter for butler.
    DE (start 2): tuck/heyward/m.johnson (likely back this week)
    DT (start 2) donald/brockers (both on bye this week, but my opp is CLE, and he has like 16 players on bye and is going to lose, but he’s also the guy who was less stupid than 19 other owners and grabbed weddle)
    CB verner/amerson (p.cox got thrown away when his return duties went away)
    S clark/moore/bucannon
    1. keep bucannon and clark over all of mitchell (PIT)/meriweather/ihedigbo/harper?
    2. i have a trade offer from the PIT owner of his tj mcdonald (S) for my heyward (DE). am i right in valuing a high future valued DE over a S? it seems it’s easier to find S than DE. damn it sucks to not have grabbed weddle from forgetting his name value.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @goodfold2:

      Missing on Weddle hurts, and I’m as surprised as you are on Robinson (when will Riley every become dominant?).

      I would definitely keep Bucannon, and as for Clark, the only one I’d drop him for is Meriweather. That’s always a risk due to injury and possible suspension, but I’ve always been a fan of his talent.

      Definitely hold on to Heyward. As you’ve already seen, DBs can and should be streamed at all times, and Heyward is primed to turn into an IDP beast.

      • goodfold2 says:
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        @Kevin Kumpf: all my WAS guys (and meriweather too) had good tackle games yesterday. amerson the fill in too. i’ll turn down that trade offer (i told guy i’d think about it, it’s been there for like 10 days).

        • goodfold2 says:
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          @goodfold2: ahhhh WEDDLE!

  7. goodfold2 says:
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    wish we’d have known about k.robinson being good preseason, i could’ve kept him.

  8. JoeMorgan'sMustache says:
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    IDP’s dropping like flies this year…it’s been driving me nuts. So, have a question. I know you have Jamie Collins ranked above Bradham. Is there not much concern over Collins low snap count last week I assume? I am assuming it was because of the thigh injury, but playing only 20 snaps last week is a concern of mine. Would you still roll with him or start Bradham? Thanks.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
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      @JoeMorgan’sMustache:

      From everything I’ve seen, last week’s limited play was due to injury. He seems to be in better shape this week, however with the game on MNF, Bradham might give you some peace of mind. Collins definitely has the higher ceiling, and with Preston Brown’s emergence in Buffalo, I’m expecting less and less from Bradham as we move forward.

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