After Week 10, everyone was all “Vincent Rey this” and “Vincent Rey that,” and “Did you hear that Vincent Rey is the new IDP sheriff Cincinnati with Maualuga hurt?” Well Week 11 showed that you can shoot the sheriff, but you cannot kill the deputy. The deputy in this case is Vontaze Burfict, who had an all-world performance against the Browns with 15 tackles and a forced fumble, which he then recovered and took to the house. Burfict’s big Week 11 pushed him above Kiko Alonso to the top spot among all IDPs this season. There was some thought preseason that Burfict’s 2012 was a fluke, and Cincy’s bizarre fascination with Rey Maualuga would prevent Burfict from putting up true LB1 numbers, but those thoughts have been firmly put to rest.
Alas, Burfict is on a bye this week, but out of sight doesn’t mean out of mind. It might be more difficult now, but if Burfict’s owner needs LB stats this week, and your team has already clinched the playoffs, make an offer on the idle LB and see what happens. If you’re in an especially shallow league and Burfict’s owner dropped him due to the bye, make room on your bench for the man who I recently, like 200 words ago, nicknamed “The Deputy.”
Here are some other IDP happenings as we head into Week 12:
Gerald McCoy – Don’t look now but Gerald’s playing like The Real McCoy in Tampa (sorry, I couldn’t help myself). He’s had at least 5 tackles in his last three games, and has added 4 sacks in the last two. On top of that, he’ll get 30+ chances to rush Matt Stafford in Week 12, followed by a ton of tackle opportunities against Carolina, Buffalo and San Fran in the next three weeks. In DT-required leagues, McCoy is a must-start, and he’s looking like a DL2 down the stretch as well.
Akiem Hicks – The NOLA front seven has dealt with its share of injuries this year, and being stuck relying on Hicks was not what Saints fans were hoping for, but he has been surprisingly consistent. He’s has put up at least 6 tackles in four of his last five, and got to the QB for the second time this year last week. We may be seeing his ceiling right now, but his ceiling is putting up more tackles than JPP has put up in a game so far this season. Hicks is worth monitoring at the very least, and has a nice matchup with Atlanta on TNF.
Brad Jones – The book on Jones cannot be written without constantly using the phrase “when he’s healthy.” This year has been no different. He’s had some inconsistent individual games due to said injuries, but when he’s at full strength, Jones is the clear LB to own in Green Bay. With 13 tackles last week, Jones looked prettay, prettay good against the Giants. He gets Minnesota this week, which should mean quite a few meetings with Adrian Peterson. I’m confident that Jones will win at least some of those battles, a’hem, if he’s healthy.
Colin McCarthy – Sticking with the injury prone theme, when is the last time Brad Jones and Colin McCarthy were both healthy at the same time? I’m positive that this is the first time I’ve ranked them both inside the top 30 LBs, and considering that they were both top 10 LBs in Week 11, that might even be low. But given everything we know about this brittle pair, the odds are against both of them finishing a complete game. I like McCarthy’s matchup, and his performance in the last month, but I’d have trouble dropping someone like Nick Roach or Perry Riley for him. There’s something to be said for peace of mind, and McCarthy has yet to provide that in his career.
Andrew Sendejo – Remember that time I said that Sendejo’s value was only tied to Jamarca Sanford being injured? Yeah, it was last week. Well it turns out that the two safeties can co-exist and produce in the same secondary, even against a subpar matchup in Seattle. This week things should get significantly easier against Green Bay and their new QB. I’m not positive what his name is, but I know it’s not Aaron Rodgers, so that’s all I need to know. I would have no problem starting both Sanford and Sandejo in Week 12, and I like Sendejo a little better while Sanford isn’t completely healthy.
Dee Milliner – The Rookie Cornerback Theory hasn’t exactly held true this year. Some of that can be attributed to a lack of playing time for the rookies, due to poor play or injuries, but for whatever reason we have not seen a rookie CB make a surprising run to the top of the DB charts. I have a feeling that is about to change down the stretch, with Milliner (and Tampa’s Johnathan Banks to a lesser extent) being the prime beneficiaries. Milliner has had 6+ tackles in three of his last four games as he’s worked himself back into game shape, and he should be on the field for nearly every snap from here on out. Expect opposing QBs to test exactly how healthy and NFL-ready he is, which should lead to plenty of opportunities to rack up stats.
Week 12 IDP Rankings: