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Week 1 IDP Rankings, Streamers, and Fades


It’s nearly here! After all of our waiting and hoping, a brand new season of the Bachelor is… I mean, football is here! Yay!

As we kick off this new and unprecedented NFL season, Rotoballer is going to be changing up how we do our weekly IDP rankings analysis. Taking over the weekly IDP rankings article will be Yours Truly, and I will be putting my own spin on things. If you are one of my 14 devoted followers on Twitter, you know what to expect. If you are anyone else, let me tell you that you should expect some bad jokes mixed with some mediocre commentary. We will then grind those two ingredients together and sprinkle them on top of our weekly IDP rankings. It’s going to be incredibly… digestible! I promise you that much!

Note: These rankings will be split into Rotoballer’s three primary IDP positions (DL, LB, and DB), and they will typically come with some flyer/fade notes for each position as well. Expect edge-rushing linebackers like T.J. Watt to regularly appear on both our DL and LB rankings each week, because they are categorized as Defensive Linemen on some prominent fantasy apps (ESPN) while being dubbed Linebackers on others. Now that we've covered all that let's get to the good stuff!

Editor's Note: Love the strategy of season-long fantasy sports? Live for the short term gratification of DFS? Try Weekly Fantasy Sports on OwnersBox - a new weekly DFS platform. Sign up today for a FREE $50 Deposit Match. Sign Up Now!

 

Top-25 Fantasy Defensive Linemen for Week 1

Rank Player Opponent
1 T.J. Watt Giants
2 Joey Bosa Bengals
3 J.J. Watt Chiefs
4 Frank Clark Texans
5 Nick Bosa Cardinals
6 Cameron Heyward Giants
7 Aaron Donald Cowboys
8 Khalil Mack Lions
9 Bud Dupree Giants
10 Chandler Jones 49ers
11 Deforest Buckner Jaguars
12 Cameron Jordan Buccaneers
13 Myles Garrett Ravens
14 Maxx Crosby Panthers
15 Melvin Ingram Bengals
16 Calais Campbell Browns
17 Bradley Chubb Titans
18 Chase Young Eagles
19 Shaquil Barrett Saints
20 Demarcus Lawrence Rams
21 Carlos Dunlap Chargers
22 Za’Darius Smith Vikings
23 Sam Hubbard Chargers
24 Yannick Ngakoue Packers
25 Dante Fowler, Jr. Seahawks

 

DL Streamer of Week 1: Maxx Crosby, Las Vegas Raiders

Teddy Bridgewater has a career sack rate of 8.3%. In fact, before playing behind the elite Saints line last year, Bridgewater never had a sack rate lower than 8% in any of his NFL seasons. That rate won’t get better in Carolina, where the starting Left Tackle is already dealing with injuries, while the starting Center and Left Guard combined to allow 93 total pressures last season. Remember that Crosby lined up on the interior of the Raiders' defense for 53% of his defensive snaps last year.

Expect Crosby to notch at least one sack, a couple of TFLs, and four total tackles in this matchup. Feel okay spot starting him this week if you are one of the many who lost Danielle Hunter to the IR today.

 

DL Fade of Week 1: Myles Garrett, Cleveland Browns

Myles Garrett is my pick for Defensive Player of the Year in 2020, but that campaign won’t start strong. Baltimore has a terrific offensive line that kept Garrett in check last year, and Lamar Jackson is notoriously hard to bring down. If you have Garrett, you’re playing him. Just don’t expect too much in Week 1, except maybe a junk sack where Lamar runs into his arms.

 

Underrated DL Matchup of Week 1: Frank Clark v. Houston O-Line

Frank Clark struggled early in his first year with KC, but he caught on in Week 7 and was a consistent threat for the rest of the season. That culminated in a big playoff game against the Houston Texans, in which Clark sacked Deshaun Watson three times. The Texans return pretty much the same offensive line this year as they had last, and their receiver corps is now missing DeAndre Hopkins. Expect the Texans to play from behind more this week than they did against KC in the playoffs and expect Clark to again take advantage to the tune of at least one sack and several solos.

 

Top-25 Fantasy Linebackers for Week 1

Rank Player Opponent
1 Darius Leonard Jaguars
2 Bobby Wagner Falcons
3 Cory Littleton Panthers
4 Joe Schobert Colts
5 Roquan Smith Lions
6 Fred Warner Cardinals
7 Blake Martinez Steelers
8 Devin Bush Giants
9 Jaylon Smith Rams
10 T.J. Watt Giants
11 Jordan Hicks 49ers
12 Leighton Vander Esch Rams
13 Deion Jones Seahawks
14 Christian Kirksey Vikings
15 Tremaine Edmunds Jets
16 Lavonte David Saints
17 Devin White Saints
18 Kenneth Murray Bengals
19 Alexander Johnson Titans
20 Zach Cunningham Chiefs
21 Shaq Thompson Raiders
22 Demario Davis Buccaneers
23 Jayon Brown Broncos
24 Eric Kendricks Packers
25 Patrick Queen Browns

 

LB Streamer of Week 1: Kenneth Murray, Los Angeles Chargers

Expectations for all rookie defenders, including Murray, should probably be tempered in 2020 due to the lack of pre-season games or camps in this unique offseason. There are some exceptional cases in some special situations, though. For example, do you know who else had a limited offseason and has zero NFL games under their belts? The Bengals’ starting Left Tackle and Quarterback, both of whom Murray is going against this week.

Murray’s style of play is one that typically transitions well to the NFL. He is a fast, athletic, downhill thumper who should rack up tackles in the middle of a talented Chargers Defense. It's hard to imagine him having many problems with a rookie Left Tackle or a  Right Tackle who has been dubbed a bottom-10 run blocker two years in a row at Pro Football Focus. He also shouldn't struggle coming up the middle against three blockers (Trey Hopkins, Michael Jordan, and Xavier Su’a-Filo) whose PFF ratings are all below average. Murray should notch eight tackles and two or three TFLs in this game, even if he hasn't ever played an NFL game. Feel free to start him if you're nervous about the health (Fred Warner) or fantasy opportunities (Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch) of your usual starter.

 

LB Fade of Week 1: Lavonte David, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

In two games against these same Saints last year, David collected 10 solo tackles and only one half-tackle total. He got no sacks, no PDs, no INTs, and no TFLs. If anything, this offensive line has improved since then, and this Week 1 matchup will be even more of a shootout than usual. Don’t expect David to get a sack against this veteran unit that allowed the fourth-lowest sack rate in the NFL last year. Don’t expect a pick (Drew Brees is the QB after all) or a PD, either. Instead, expect to fade David, and feel comfortable starting at least 12 other LBs before him this week.

 

Underrated LB Matchup of Week 1: Pittsburgh LBs v. Daniel Jones

The Giants are starting a Left Tackle with zero NFL experience, and who many ranked as just the third or fourth-best pass-blocking tackle in his class. Their Right Tackle allowed pressure on nearly 10% of his snaps last year, and the interior of this line was part of a unit that ranked as only the 25th best in Adjusted Line Yards by Football Outsiders in 2019.

To make matters worse, Daniel Jones turned the ball over 24 times and took 38 sacks in less than 13 full games last year. His 12 fumbles as a rookie should have T.J. Watt licking his lips in anticipation of at least one strip-sack this week, while Devin Bush Jr. should be a comfortable Week 1 fantasy start in even the shallowest of fantasy leagues. Bud Dupree should even be considered a spot starter at LB in leagues that pay a lot of points for big plays (sacks, FF, etc.).

 

Top-25 Fantasy Defensive Backs for Week 1

Rank Player Opponent
1 Budda Baker 49ers
2 John Johnson III Cowboys
3 Landon Collins Eagles
4 Harrison Smith Packers
5 Tracy Walker Bears
6 Jabrill Peppers Steelers
7 Jamal Adams Falcons
8 Jordan Poyer Jets
9 Taylor Rapp Cowboys
10 Minkah Fitzpatrick Giants
11 Keanu Neal Seahawks
12 Tyrann Mathieu Texans
13 Chuck Clark Browns
14 Justin Simmons Titans
15 Vonn Bell Chargers
16 Jeremy Chinn Raiders
17 Jessie Bates III Chargers
18 Marlon Humphrey Browns
19 Carlton Davis Saints
20 Terrell Edmunds Giants
21 Logan Ryan Steelers
22 Johnathan Abram Panthers
23 Juan Thornhill Texans
24 Kareem Jackson Titans
25 Malcolm Jenkins Buccaneers

 

DB Streamer of Week 1: Jeremy Chinn v. Las Vegas

For those who have followed my IDP reports this summer, you know that Chinn is one of my big IDP sleepers in dynasty and deeper redrafts. While it’s true that rookies often need time to adjust to life in the NFL secondary, a matchup with Las Vegas could be the perfect introduction for this talented rookie thumper. The Raiders are likely to try to establish the run in this one and try to control the game early, and we should expect Chinn to spend a lot of time in the box as a result. It won’t surprise anyone if Chinn is assigned to follow Josh Jacobs around for most of the day, and Jacobs projects for at least 20 rushes and a few targets in this contest.

Don’t start Chinn if you have an elite DB on your roster, but if you play in a deep league or need a spot starter, you could do worse than taking a flyer on the Southern Illinois alum. His floor looks to be three or four tackles, but this former corner could get you far more if the Raiders test him regularly.

 

DB Fade of Week 1: Justin Simmons, Denver Broncos

Against these same run-heavy Titans last year, Simmons secured an INT and four tackles. That is probably his ceiling in this matchup, and he may not come close to reaching it if the Titans have their way. With the recent injury to Vonn Miller and Bradley Chubb reportedly being eased back into the defense slowly, Denver may struggle to get after and pressure Ryan Tannahill in this one. The Titans will try to run the clock out and run as few plays as possible, and when they do pass, they should have plenty of time to do so.

A calm Tannahill should limit Simmons' big-play opportunities. If the Titans control the clock like they want to, there may be a limited opportunity for Simmons to make any plays at all. After all, Simmons only spent about 32% of his time in the box or at the line last season, and he did so even less against Derrick Henry.

 

Underrated DB Matchup of Week 1: Keanu Neal vs. Seattle

Dan Quinn has lined Keanu Neal up at the line of scrimmage or in the box on 46.7% of Neal's career snaps. That's a high amount, and it explains why Neal has averaged an impressive seven tackles per game in his short career. That kind of usage also spells a good week against a typically run-heavy Seattle offense that finished sixth in the NFL in run percentage last year, and first in run percentage the year before that. When an offense that likes to pound the rock goes against a sure tackling in-the-box safety, it spells a promising fantasy floor for your DB.

Neal is also often used to contain Tight Ends on passing downs, which is noteworthy since Russell Wilson targeted the TE position on 19.7% of his passes last year, despite Will Dissly and others being out with injury for most of the year. If Neal is healthy, which all reports indicate he is, this could be a good return game for him and for fantasy managers in need of a DB to replace the injured Derwin James.



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Fantasy GMs are to be commended for rising to the unique challenges that have unfolded during this regular season. Injuries to critical players is an unwelcome reality that occurs every year. This is also the case for backs that were expected to operate as RB1s, but have been relegated to committees. However, this season has... Read More


Wide Receiver Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 7

Six weeks of NFL football are behind us, aside from a pair of Monday games, including a late afternoon game between the Bills and the Chiefs. In terms of wide receiver production this week, we didn't have the huge breakouts like we had in Week 5. Chase Claypool didn't score four touchdowns. In fact, only... Read More


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Dissecting Contact Quality In Search Of Fantasy Bargains

Of the 1,015 hitters sampled(1) between 2015 and 2019, there were only 14 instances of hitters making more productive contact against pitches outside of the strike zone than against pitches inside of the strike zone based on xwOBAcon. Based on the same sample, the average hitter was a whopping .116 points better against pitches inside... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 23rd, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 23rd, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Lineup Order Risers and Fallers: AL West 2020 Review

It’s the offseason and there are about to be a bunch of moving parts. This allows for speculation in terms of players gaining or losing playing time, moving up or down a batting order and much more. The idea here is to highlight some lineup situations for each team and some potential winners or losers... Read More


2021 1st & 2nd Year Players with James Anderson - Benched with Bubba (Episode 317)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by James Anderson (@RealJRAnderson) on episode 317. The guys will go over 30+ first and second-year players. They will discuss their current ADP's in the 2 Early Mocks, what to expect of the players in 2021, and much more. They also go over some listener questions, compare Juan Soto to Mike... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 21st, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 21st, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 20th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 20th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Bubba and Bat Flip 54: 2 Early Mocks APD Player Debates - Benched with Bubba (Episode 316)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by Bat Flip Crazy (@BatFlipCrazy) to take a deeper look at the 2 Early Mocks ADP. They go over some of the positions and look at players with similar ADPs and debate. Going around the diamond discussing some players people are high on and some they are down on with a... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 18th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 18th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 17th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 17th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


2021 Early Mock ADP Values & Reaches: WPC+ Videocast

Pierre Camus and Nicklaus Gaut prepare for the 2021 fantasy baseball season with a look at early mock draft results from the RotoBaller Expert mock. Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us on iTunes and BlogTalkRadio as well! Be sure to also tune into RotoBaller... Read More


Statcast Season Review: 2020 Barrel Leaders (Hitters)

The 2020 MLB season will always be one for the record books, even if everything that took place will have multiple asterisks attached to it. Evaluating Statcast numbers is a nice way to find hot and cold hitters, as well as underachievers and overachievers. Now that the regular season is over, let's reflect on the... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 16th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 16th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 15th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 15th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 14th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 14th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Bubba and Bat Flip 53: 2 Early Mocks APD Trends & More - Benched with Bubba (Episode 315)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by Bat Flip Crazy (@BatFlipCrazy) to take a deeper look at the 2 Early Mocks ADP. They dig into trends, some interesting risers/fallers, and much more. They also go over some listener questions at the end to keep the Fantasy Baseball information coming even in the offseason. Be sure to subscribe... Read More