Period Accuracy Rank High Low Percentile
Week 4 54.3% 15 out of 21 59.9% 31.5% Top 75%
2015 59.2% 5 out of 19 61.9% 50.1% Top 30%

In August, it’s easy to draft a guy who’s going to miss the first four games with a suspension. “I’ll be patient,” you tell yourself. “I’m getting him at a discount, and worst-case scenario I’ll be 2-2 when he comes back.” You probably also talked yourself into Jeff Janis and Devin Funchess. As soon as the games start, things change, and even the best laid plans can go awry. I bring this up because both Rolando McClain and Greg Hardy return from suspension this week, and there is a decent chance that at least one of them is on your waiver wire. If that’s the case, pick them up NOW. McClain had a resurgent 2014, proving himself as a borderline weekly starter when he was healthy. I’d be hesitant to start him this week, as he will likely rotate with Anthony Hitchens, but given the uncertainty surrounding Sean Lee’s concussion status, McClain is absolutely worth picking up. The bigger deal is obviously Hardy, who has the potential to inject some life into what has been a miserable DL position so far in 2015. He immediately becomes a top-20 DL, with top-5 upside.


Fantasy Football Rankings powered by FantasyPros

I led with that positive news, because the rest of the news from Week 4 is all injury-related. The headline goes to Alec Ogletree, who will likely miss most of the season, if not all of it, with an ankle injury. But in addition to Ogletree and the aforementioned Lee (who is supposedly going to be fine), injuries of varying degrees were suffered by Paul Posluszny (ankle), Jelani Jenkins (shoulder), Mychal Kendricks (hamstring), Jerrell Freeman (hamstring), David Harris (knee), Calvin Pryor (knee) and Antrel Rolle (ankle). There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding all of these players, not to mention guys like Luke Kuechly, who still haven’t returned to the field from previous injuries. This makes roster management and managing the waiver wire more important than ever. I’m happy to answer specific questions in the Comments section, but as a rule I wouldn’t panic in the face of injuries if I’m .500 or better. If I’m 1-3 or 0-4, it’s time to make moves so I would try to sell low on injured players or bite the bullet and drop them for better options.

But enough of the bad news, here are the bright spots from Week 4:

Stephon Tuitt – As I mentioned above, this has been a rough year for the big guys up front in IDP leagues. J.J. Watt has shown off his usual dominance, but there are disappointments all across the league (specifically in Miami and Buffalo), and IDP owners have been left scrambling. Enter Tuitt, currently DL2 on the year, who has put on a tour de force the last three weeks, with 21 tackles and 3.5 sacks. I expected this to be the year that Cameron Heyward became an every week starter, which has been the case, but I did not see this level of play coming from his bookend. Given the lack of high-ceiling options out there, as well as his matchup, I have Tuitt as one of my biggest one-week risers of all time.

Ziggy Ansah -There was considerable doubt that Ansah would even play last week after a painful-sounding groin injury, and given that he played on MNF, I wouldn’t have blamed you for looking elsewhere. But you would have been wrong, as Ansah raised some serious hell in Seattle’s backfield, putting up three tackles and two sacks. His numbers understate the impact he had, and given the departures that Detroit’s front four has faced since last season, his 4 sacks in four games is even more impressive. I was probably too low on Ansah in the preseason, because he is one of the few legit studs that we have left at DL.

Malcolm Smith – There has been a ton of turnover at Linebacker for the Raiders. It started with the signing of Curtis Lofton, followed by shifting Khalil Mack to DE (not in most IDP leagues yet, however), trading Sio Moore, and ending with promoting and then demoting Ray Ray Armstrong as a three-down LB. The one constant through all of that has been Smith, who looked for a while like he might go down as nothing more than the answer to a trivia question. Smith’s play in Oakland has been a revelation, and for IDP owners, he’s been an unlikely LB1 through four weeks. He will never be the most talented player, but he has a nose for the ball, and will rack up consistent points in both run and pass coverage through tackles. If you bought low on him I applaud you, and if for some reason he’s still out there, I’d move on him as a legit LB2 for the rest of the season.

Hau’oli Kikaha – Before the season, the rookie LB in NOLA on everyone’s mind was first rounder Stephone Anthony. And after a slow start, Anthony has started to deliver on his pedigree. But the true stud so far has been his second round counterpart. Kikaha was a sleeper before the season, but there was a lot of uncertainty surrounding how he would be used. He’s got above average pass rush skills, but as a 4-3 OLB, Kikaha would need to be more versatile than he showed in college. He’s delivered so far, with 26 tackles, 3 sacks and 2 forced fumbles in four games. Things are not looking great for New Orleans, but they seem to have found their LB duo of the future.

Jonathan Cyprien – It’s about time! I had Cyprien ranked as my #2 DB heading into the season, but injuries and ineffectiveness have gotten his season off to a rocky start. He bounced back with a vengeance against the Colts, racking up 14 tackles and a fumble recovery to lead the way among DBs in Week 4. As long as he stays healthy, Cyprien remains one of the highest ceiling DBs out there, but I wouldn’t want to pair him with another injury risk like Charles Woodson, because it’s hard enough to justify holding one extra DB on your roster, let alone two.

Josh Norman – If you’ve watched any highlight shows this week, you’ve heard Norman’s name on loop as the next shutdown corner in the NFL. As an IDP owner, that’s usually bad news. Quarterbacks tend to avoid throwing the ball near shutdown corners. I’m not sold on Norman as that big of a threat yet, but I’m still not super high on him, despite his DB2 status on the year (behind Reshad Jones, who may or may not be my man crush). For one, Norman has relied heavily on the big play to put up his points, with 4 interceptions in four games, including 2 pick sixes. But primarily, I just don’t see a former 5th round pick turning into a shutdown corner or an IDP starter in his 4th season, with no prior evidence that he has the talent to do so. With a bye this week, I see no reason to treat Norman as anything other than a streamer at DB.

  1. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
    (link)

    Whaddya think of thomas davis? So far he’s been a stud and a guy who has anchored my team. Is he droppable over the bye week or do you think he will resume his dominance when kuechly comes back? Thanks.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @TobiasFunkeAnalRapist:

      Even with Kuechly back, Davis is in the LB3-4 range so I wouldn’t drop unless your roster is really shallow. And given that Kuechly has progressed slowly through the concussion protocol (and the money that Carolina has invested in him), Davis may still get another game or two as the top dog.

  2. Clint says:
    (link)

    I’ve heard a lot of talk about Norman lately specifically pertaining to his effects on #1 WR’s in that he’s said to be ascending to a guy you can’t start anyone against which I gather you don’t buy into. I own Julio Jones in my ppr league who faces him twice during the fantasy playoffs and has been owned by Norman in the past statistically. Would you suggest shopping Julio somehow while his value’s high for a top 10 guy with better matchups then or just cross my fingers & pray you’re right Norman isn’t what he seems?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @Clint:

      The only way I would trade Julio right now is if you were desperate for depth and could get at least two above average starters for him. It’s been a weird year so far, and Julio has been one of the only constant producers.

      While I understand the fear of a shutdown corner, I’m clearly not there on Norman at this point, and I think you need to trust your studs come playoff time.

    • Mike Hunt's Honorable Discharge says:
      (link)

      @Clint: when’s the last time you saw a CB really cause julio any problems?

  3. Scott says:
    (link)

    “I’m getting him at a discount, and worst-case scenario I’ll be 2-2 when he comes back.”

    Hey, get out of my head! :)

    1) So I drafted Calais Campbell, Rob Ninkovich, and Greg Hardy, with the idea I would drop Ninko once Hardy came back. Well, lo and behold, somebody dropped Mario Williams during Nink’s bye week. So now I have 3 great DLs. I have to keep them all, right?

    2) Now the bad news, my two LBs are Posluszny and Ogletree. I already dropped Ogletree and some Offensive schlub so I could have Hightower and Zach Brown to fill in. Now according to other spurts, the sky’s the limit with Brown. What’s your take?

    3) I’m a total newb when it comes to IDP. Is it normally good practice to have backup IDPs? Should I get one for my DBs also or just stream during bye weeks? I have Weddle and Cyprien.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @Scott:

      I’d keep the Campbell/Hardy/Mario trio. I like Ninkovich as well due to his generally high-floor, but Campbell satisfies that for you as well, with Hardy and Mario as the big-play threats.

      Tough break at LB, though it’s looking like Poz is at least going to suit up even if he doesn’t play his usual number of snaps. I like Hightower so far this year, but with the Pats trading for Jon Bostic, and Jerod Mayo looming, I don’t like him as much long-term. I’ve never been super high on Zach Brown (hence why I forgot to add him back into the rankings after his bye), but you can definitely do worse. My main aversion to him is that he’s injury prone, so even when he is playing, he rarely gets 100% of the snaps.

      As for backup IDPs, it depends on the size of your league and your rosters. My general rule of thumb is to avoid backups if you drafted studs early enough, because they’ll be weekly starters no matter what. If you’re facing byes and/or injuries, that obviously complicates things, so you can adjust as needed from there. With your team, I like the trio of DLs given the scarcity that position has shown so far. I would even look to potentially flip one of them if Hardy or Mario has a big day. At LB, you’re in a little bit of trouble given the injuries, but if Poz plays, I wouldn’t hold both Brown and Hightower, as you’ll be able to find equal talent on the waiver wire most weeks. At DB, you can’t do much better than Weddle and Cyprien, so I wouldn’t add anyone else unless one of them is injuried or on a bye.

  4. Blake says:
    (link)

    Is sean lee going to play? Usually a concussion is a multiple week injury

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @Blake:

      He practiced on Thursday, and if he does the same today, that’s usually a good indicator that he’ll play. Concussions are scary, and given his injury history I can see them being cautious, but things are at least progressing in the right direction.

  5. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
    (link)

    Thoughts on the vikings lbs? I own barr and hodges just got traded so that skyrockets kendricks value right? Is it worth owning barr and kendricks? Thanks.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @TobiasFunkeAnalRapist:

      Hodges trade is definitely good for Kendricks (and he’ll be in the top 50 next week), but it’s still a crowded LB corps with Barr, Greenway and Audie Cole. For now Barr still has the highest ceiling, but if Kendricks starts playing three downs then he’ll move into LB2-3 territory.

  6. Blake says:
    (link)

    I have Ansah in my lineup but Cameron Jordan is available on the wire. I dropped Wilkerson since he is on a bye. would you pickup Jordan or just stand pat with Ansah?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @Blake:

      I like Jordan over Ansah this week. Rest of season will be close so I can see it going either way, but for this week I would make the move.

  7. And Now the Jon Lovitz Dancers! says:
    (link)

    got these IDPs in 14 person league. start 2 DB, 1 DL, 2 LB, and i use one bench spot for them

    S ihedigbo/pryor
    DL quinn
    LB collins/david/rey

    Better off grabbing Cyprien right now and dropping Rey, or just drop Pryor and keep Rey on bench?

    • And Now the Jon Lovitz Dancers! says:
      (link)

      @And Now the Jon Lovitz Dancers!: this is really just too obvious, esp with pryor (i forgot he was screaming in pain when last seen)

      • Kevin Kumpf

        Kevin Kumpf says:
        (link)

        @And Now the Jon Lovitz Dancers!:

        I put Cyprien and Pryor in the same boat as young safeties who have the potential to be DB1 overall, but have yet to show the consistency. Ihedigbo is essentially the opposite. So I like keeping one of Cyp/Pryor starting them opposite Ihedigbo, and keeping your 3 LB rotation.

        • And Now the Jon Lovitz Dancers! says:
          (link)

          @Kevin Kumpf: yeah, dropped Pryor, it’s also possible that injury of his would keep him out anyway, only reason we’ve not seen updates is their bye.

  8. The Harrow says:
    (link)

    why so low on david, does JAX not give up much tackles to MLB’s?

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @The Harrow:

      Jaguars are middle of the pack in terms of points allowed to LBs, but David just hasn’t looked like the stud he’s been the last two years. That, along with the emergence of Kwon Alexander, has my expectations lower than usual for him until he proves otherwise.

      • The Harrow says:
        (link)

        @Kevin Kumpf: had a good game finally. Is Parker losing snaps at KC, or are they just rotating all of branch/parker/abdullah/berry now? Parker had his first small pts game.

        • Kevin Kumpf

          Kevin Kumpf says:
          (link)

          @The Harrow:

          I think it was just a weird game without a ton of opportunities for KC’s safeties. Parker and Berry have been at essentially 100% of snaps for the last two weeks, so the rotation is just between Abdullah and Branch. It’s still a potentially volatile situation, but Parker and Berry are the guys to own right now.

          • The Harrow says:
            (link)

            @Kevin Kumpf: david finally looked good too.

  9. I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
    (link)

    any idea why ogletree hasn’t been IR’d by STL yet? i have him and levy (one was a bench, so till levy went out it didn’t hurt me) in a start any 4 IDP (shallow as it gets, so i’ll be able to find two new guys hopefully soon IF these guys get IR’d) dynasty league.

    • Kevin Kumpf

      Kevin Kumpf says:
      (link)

      @I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail:

      Looks like STL is playing the wait-and-see game with Ogletree and IR, which makes life tough for you. If you’re 3-2 or better, I’d be comfortable dropping Levy and picking someone else up, and having Ogletree potentially return and make an impact late in the season. If you’re 2-3 or worse, then you need more help now so I would either look to deal Ogletree to a team that’s doing well, or just drop him. I’m not super high on Levy after he got re-injured, but he does look like he’ll make a more immediate impact than Ogletree.

      • I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
        (link)

        @Kevin Kumpf: I’m 3-2 and favored by like 50 or something ridiculous, and have the IR slot for one more (jordy in the other). So looking like i’ll have to wait on one of them to hit IR and grab 2 guys (one will be bench, bye weeker). Guessing Levy is first dropped then.

        • I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
          (link)

          @I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail: thing i’m worried about is if STL is really assuming Ogletree is gonna beat the IR time (can they back log that time like in baseball to the date of the injury or no? if no i gotta drop Levy right now of course) and they have no intention of IR’ing him or are they just being lazy with this? it’s well known that their owner doesn’t want them to win this season, or have any reason to make STL look as if it’s a for sure supporting their team NFL town.

          • I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
            (link)

            @I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail: the mesoraco example shows when a team does this in baseball. he was hurt for a long time, and they had no intention of him playing, yet they waited like 32 days or something awful to DL him. made no sense at all, team is run by gang of idiots over there.

            • Kevin Kumpf

              Kevin Kumpf says:
              (link)

              @I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and $6,000 for you to bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail:

              That’s a great question about how the in-season IR dates work. From what I can tell, all that matters is the date that the player was actually put on IR, not when they started missing time. Obviously bad news for Ogletree.

              For your situation, I would hold Ogletree over Levy if I had to decide. Everything I’ve heard about Levy’s injury seems pessimistic, and with Tulloch back, he doesn’t have that top-10 ceiling that he showed last year.

Comments are closed.