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Week 3 IDP Fantasy Football Rankings

Week 2 is in the books, and most fantasy-relevant defenders made it out unscathed. The same is true for most offensive players as well. So, all-in-all it was a good day… except for Trey Lance and his fans. Lance suffered a gruesome injury early in Week 2, damaging his progression and many fantasy rosters. Which brings me to a point I'd like to make about how we, as fans, analysts, and talking heads react to athlete injuries. Just jump to my rankings if you want to skip this short lecture. If not, you were warned!

To be brief, the reaction of many to Lance’s injury was disgusting. While fans often practice callous or optimism when an injury helps them, the reaction to Lance’s injury felt unique. The level of gloating and "I told you so's" spewing from numerous known analysts and sources bordered on schadenfreude. How these people reacted says a lot about them, and it isn’t that they were right about Lance. Even when fans and fantasy managers stand to gain from injuries, we stand to gain more as people if we practice empathy and class.

With that said, as always, these rankings primarily use my Casual Scoring system that rewards 0.5-points per half tackle, 1-point per solo, 2-points per PD or FR, 4-points per sack, and 6-points per forced turnover (INT or FF). However, these rankings will also consider our new Rotoballer IDP scoring (Premium Defensive Scoring). We will also cover positional Gambles worth taking, defenders you should Fold on, and occasionally defenders On the Rise this season. With that covered, let’s get on to our rankings!

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Top Fantasy Defensive Linemen of the Week

Rank Player Team Opponent
1 Micah Parsons Cowboys Giants
2 Myles Garrett (Q) Browns Steelers
3 Nick Bosa 49ers Broncos
4 Joey Bosa Chargers Jaguars
5 Aaron Donald Rams Cardinals
6 Danielle Hunter Vikings Lions
7 Trey Hendrickson Bengals Jets
8 Maxx Crosby Raiders Titans
9 Khalil Mack Chargers Jaguars
10 Za’Darius Smith Vikings Lions
11 Rashan Gary Packers Buccaneers
12 Matthew Judon Patriots Ravens
13 Josh Allen Jaguars Chargers
14 Brian Burns Panthers Saints
15 Cameron Jordan Saints Panthers
16 Shaquil Barrett Buccaneers Packers
17 Aiden Hutchinson Lions Vikings
18 Alex Highsmith Steelers Browns
19 Marcus Davenport Saints Panthers
20 Von Miller Bills Dolphins
21 Charles Harris Lions Vikings
22 Sam Hubbard Bengals Jets
23 Demarcus Lawrence Cowboys Giants
24 Haason Reddick Eagles Commanders
25 Cameron Heyward Steelers Browns
26 Chandler Jones Raiders Titans
27 Jeffery Simmons Titans Raiders
28 Carl Lawson Jets Bengals
29 Robert Quinn Bears Texans
30 Kwity Paye Colts Chiefs
31 Bradley Chubb Broncos 49ers
32 Jaelan Phillips Dolphins Bills
33 Gregory Rousseau Bills Dolphins
34 Leonard Williams (Q) Giants Cowboys
35 Leonard Floyd Rams Cardinals
36 Kayvon Thibodeaux (Q) Giants Cowboys
37 Randy Gregory Broncos 49ers
38 Azeez Ojulari (Q) Giants Cowboys
39 Chris Jones Chiefs Colts
40 Montez Sweat Commanders Eagles
41 Travon Walker Jaguars Chargers
42 Oshane Ximines Giants Cowboys
43 Uchena Nwosu Seahawks Falcons
44 Rashad Weaver Titans Raiders
45 Preston Smith Packers Buccaneers
46 Deforest Buckner Colts Chiefs
47 Daron Payne Commanders Eagles
48 Jonathan Greenard Texans Bears
49 Bud Dupree (Q) Titans Raiders
50 Quinnen Williams Jets Bengals

 

DL Gamble(s) of the Week: Chandler Jones, Las Vegas Raiders

Anyone who reads our offseason IDP articles knows we were pretty low on Jones coming into this season… and he's played down to those expectations. In two games, he's accrued a 33% missed tackle rate, just four quarterback pressures against two offensive lines that have graded poorly in pass blocking, and he's registered zero big plays. Everything, from metrics to film, suggests he is past his prime.

That said, Jones has a terrific matchup this week against a Titans offensive line that has surrendered 20 pressures in two games. The right side of their line has graded particularly poorly, allowing 17 of Tennessee's 20 total pressures. Jones has spent every snap in Vegas on that side, so this is the time for him to rebound if he does. We no longer consider Jones a locked-in DL2 every week, but in ideal situations like this, he has that sort of upside.

 

DL Fold(s) of the Week: Bradley Chubb and Randy Gregory, Denver Broncos

While the interior linebackers for Denver have a premium matchup against a run-oriented 49ers team, San Francisco offers an equal and opposite situation for their pass rushers. The 49ers currently field the highest graded pass-blocking unit on Pro Football Focus, with four of their five starters grading as elite in that category across two weeks.

Of particular concern for players like Chubb and Gregory is the low volume they will see in sack opportunities, thanks to San Francisco's scheme and their All-World left tackle (Trent Williams). While Denver's defense is talented enough to force the 49ers into turnovers and sacks, the opportunities project to be too limited for us to endorse any Denver pass rusher this week. Gamble on a big play from them if you must, but we won’t if we can help it.

Top Fantasy Linebackers of the Week

Rank Player Team Opponent
1 Jordyn Brooks Seahawks Falcons
2 Roquan Smith Bears Texans
3 Devin White Buccaneers Packers
4 C.J. Mosley Jets Bengals
5 Shaquille Leonard (Q) Colts Chiefs
6 Micah Parsons Cowboys Giants
7 Bobby Wagner Rams Cardinals
8 De’Vondre Campbell Packers Buccaneers
9 Nick Bolton Chiefs Colts
10 Cole Holcomb Commanders Eagles
11 Devin Lloyd Jaguars Chargers
12 Logan Wilson Bengals Jets
13 T.J. Edwards Eagles Commanders
14 Eric Kendricks Vikings Lions
15 Denzel Perryman Raiders Titans
16 Foyesade Oluokun Jaguars Chargers
17 Jordan Hicks Vikings Lions
18 Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah Browns Steelers
19 Myles Jack Steelers Browns
20 Cody Barton Seahawks Falcons
21 Pete Werner Saints Panthers
22 Kamu Grugier-Hill Texans Bears
23 Zaven Collins Cardinals Rams
24 Fred Warner 49ers Broncos
25 Ernest Jones Rams Cardinals
26 Lavonte David Buccaneers Packers
27 Demario Davis Saints Panthers
28 Frankie Luvu Panthers Saints
29 Bobby Okereke Colts Chiefs
30 Divine Deablo Raiders Titans
31 Christian Kirksey Texans Bears
32 Tremaine Edmunds Bills Dolphins
33 Shaq Thompson Panthers Saints
34 Leighton Vander Esch Cowboys Giants
35 Patrick Queen Ravens Patriots
36 Quay Walker Packers Buccaneers
37 Jerome Baker Dolphins Bills
38 Dre Greenlaw 49ers Broncos
39 David Long Jr. Titans Raiders
40 Quincy Williams Jets Bengals
41 Malcolm Rodriguez Lions Vikings
42 Alex Singleton Broncos 49ers
43 Zaire Franklin Colts Chiefs
44 Tae Crowder Giants Cowboys
45 Nicholas Morrow Bears Texans
46 Mykal Walker Falcons Seahawks
47 Zach Cunningham Titans Raiders
48 Josh Allen Jaguars Chargers
49 Kyzir White Eagles Commanders
50 Jamin Davis Commanders Eagles

 

LB Gamble(s) of the Week: Josey Jewell or Alex Singleton, Denver Broncos

Jewell has been inactive with a calf issue for the first two games this year, and he hasn’t actually played an NFL game in over a year. So, there is obviously risk there, which is why we list Singleton as an able fill-in who will continue to get fantasy-relevant snaps if Jewell misses another game. That said, whoever starts on the interior for Denver this week should be a good bet to outperform their current rank/projections.

The 49ers are calling run plays with the second most frequency in the NFL this year after finishing fourth in that category last year. This team has always wanted to run the ball, even with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. The only thing that should change with Jimmy G. is Denver defenders should have an easier time forecasting the run without the threat of Lance's legs. Look for the starter in the middle of Denver's D to have an LB2 upside this week.

 

LB Fold(s) of the Week: Rashaan Evans, Atlanta Falcons

We are calling to fade all Atlanta linebackers this week, due in part to the fact that the unit hasn't been overly productive without Deion Jones and Foyesade Oluokun on the field. In fact, their starters have yet to put up anything but LB4-tier numbers this year. That unit faces a truly awful matchup this week too, as Seattle runs the fewest offensive plays per game in the NFL.

However, if you must roll with a Falcons linebacker this week, it should be Mykal Walker. Given the low volume projected in this game, you have to chase big plays from the Falcons’ defenders and Evans has forced just six big plays in his career (three forced turnovers and three sacks). He is predominantly a tackle-dependent player, which is problematic against a Seattle offense that runs just 48 plays per game and has the seventh-highest passing rate in the league.

 

Top Fantasy Defensive Backs of the Week

Rank Player Team Opponent
1 Derwin James Jr. Chargers Jaguars
2 Minkah Fitzpatrick Steelers Browns
3 Johnathan Abram Raiders Titans
4 Jordan Poyer Bills Dolphins
5 Marcus Williams Ravens Patriots
6 Harrison Smith Vikings Lions
7 Talanoa Hufanga 49ers Broncos
8 Jalen Thompson Cardinals Rams
9 Antoine Winfield Jr. Buccaneers Packers
10 Jonathan Owens Texans Bears
11 Jeremy Chinn Panthers Saints
12 Kevin Byard Titans Raiders
13 Budda Baker Cardinals Rams
14 Grant Delpit Browns Steelers
15 Vonn Bell Bengals Jets
16 Tracy Walker III Lions Vikings
17 Jevon Holland Dolphins Bills
18 Kamren Curl Commanders Eagles
19 Jaquan Brisker Bears Texans
20 Kyle Dugger (Q) Patriots Ravens
21 Kenny Moore II Colts Chiefs
22 Brandon Jones Dolphins Bills
23 Andre Cisco Jaguars Chargers
24 Xavier McKinney Giants Cowboys
25 Xavier Woods Panthers Saints
26 Marcus Maye Saints Panthers
27 Richie Grant Falcons Seahawks
28 Marcus Epps Eagles Commanders
29 Jalen Pitre Texans Bears
30 Nick Scott Rams Cardinals
31 A.J. Terrell Falcons Seahawks
32 Jalen Ramsey Rams Cardinals
33 Jayron Kearse (Q) Cowboys Giants
34 Camryn Bynum Vikings Lions
35 L’Jarius Sneed Chiefs Colts
36 Marlon Humphrey Ravens Patriots
37 Jessie Bates III Bengals Jets
38 Nate Hobbs Raiders Titans
39 Carlton Davis Buccaneers Packers
40 Trevon Diggs Cowboys Giants
41 Jordan Whitehead (Q) Jets Bengals
42 Donovan Wilson Cowboys Giants
43 Taylor Rapp Rams Cardinals
44 Kyle Hamilton Ravens Patriots
45 Logan Ryan Buccaneers Packers
46 Taron Johnson Bills Dolphins
47 Kendall Fuller Commanders Eagles
48 Jeff Okudah Lions Vikings
49 Derek Stingley Texans Bears
50 C.J. Gardner-Johnson Eagles Panthers

 

DB Gamble(s) of the Week: Jeff Okudah, Detroit Lions

Last week, we listed Darius Slay as a CB streamer thanks to his matchup with Justin Jefferson. Slay then collected a whopping five PDs and two INTs against the Vikings. That’s incredible fantasy production, especially in Premium scoring.

This week, it’s Okudah who draws the Vikings, and he should also see plenty of Jefferson. While the Lions may not use the former Buckeye to shadow, he should see plenty of Jefferson either way. Look for Okudah to continue his strong fantasy start against a suddenly pass-happy Vikings offense, after he collected 15 tackles and a pass deflection in his first two weeks.

 

DB Fold(s) of the Week: Derek Stingley, Houston Texans

Stingley is an elite talent and arguably one of the most gifted corners to ever come out of college football. He's also started his IDP career off strong, with two fantasy-relevant performances to begin his rookie season. So, we do list him as a top-50 option, especially considering how thin the fantasy CB position is. However, this week’s matchup with the Bears is one of the lowest volume opponents he could ask for.

The Bears currently average the second-fewest offensive plays per game in the NFL. They are also the most run-heavy. Worse, they don't force targets to their top-two receivers… if they send them any at all. Across two games, Darnell Mooney has just five targets and Cole Kmet has none. Add all that together, and it spells incredibly low volume for a corner like Stingley.



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