IDP Corner: TNF Week 2
Baltimore came out of week 1 looking like a very strong defense against a Bills offense that on paper and through preseason tape should have done a little better. Cincinnati had a little more of a fight to get through against the Colts, having not taken full control of the lead until the 4th quarter. Either way both of these teams will have to come back down to Earth off of what can be considered pretty high flying weeks.
If Cincinnati has been paying attention to what the Baltimore Defense did well in week 1, then they should establish strong inside run play early, or at least tight to the tackles. Baltimore is sporting a set of young motivated DBs in Marlon Humphrey and Tavon Young, making life easier for the seasoned vets of Brandon Carr and Tony Jefferson, oddly enough Eric Weddle didn’t produce a single statistic on 47 snaps. So, setting a short run game early could help draw in the BAL secondary to set up some later deep plays.
CIN on the other hand may have found some consistency in their secondary that they have been looking for in the past. Honestly this defense is full of talent at every level, with a wide variety of experience, and if they can continue to click like they did at the end of week 1, then Andy Dalton and the rest of the offense could be getting the ball a lot more often this year.
Here are the players likely to be owned/started in your league: Preston Brown, Carlos Dunlap, Geno Atkins, Vontaze Burfict (suspended), C.J. Mosley, Terrell Suggs, Tony Jefferson, Eric Weddle.
Now on to who I’m looking at in this matchup:
Za’Darius Smith, currently listed as LB on Yahoo and MFL (who used Rotoworld’s positions), Smith in week 1 put together great numbers for a DE… Given that the rest of the whole of the BAL D-line combined for Smith’s tackles total in week 1 and coming in at 6’4”, 272 lbs, it’s not the craziest idea to move Smith from OLB to DE, especially how crowded the BAL LB depth chart currently is. This all will matter more once we find out if he is even playing this week since he was carted off the field week 1 with a sprained knee. I’m keeping him on my radar to watch for if any sites do switch him over to DE at which time I think he is worth considering for your roster.
Jessie Bates III, I pointed him out in last week’s Saturday article, and then he goes and plays 100% of the snaps, yes even more than Clayton Fejedelem (84%). I wouldn’t fault you for picking up both players given Fejedelem’s performance this weekend, 9 Tackles, 1 Assisted Tackle, a Forced Fumble, a Recovered Fumble, and a Defensive TD (the last 3 all in one play), but he only got this opportunity because Shawn Williams was ejected in the first quarter so needless to say, his performance was a surprise. Meanwhile Bates had the quietest 8 solo tackle game of week 1. I feel like Bates’ floor will be higher over the course of the season, while Fejedelem is a great high risk add that could turn into something, maybe.
Nick Vigil, the only LB in CIN to see more than 60% of snaps (he played all 82 snaps) in week 1, the man can and will tackle. Well at least until week 5 when Vontaze Burfict is back from his four game suspension. Even after Burfict’s return Vigil should still see a hefty ownership of snaps.
Kenny Young, the rookie put up 4 Tackles and a Sack on 23 total Snaps, while his main positional competition Patrick Onwuasor contributed 1 Tackle on 26 Snaps. I expect we will be seeing Young starting soon enough. I have now pointed him out in a handful of articles, so it’ll be your own fault if you haven’t added him to your team by the time he beings to start games.
Good luck to everyone on your Thursday endeavors. And as always if you have questions feel free to reach out via twitter to me @decoylife or the other gurus @TFFGurus.