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Monday, August 13, 2007

How To Become An IDP Master.....

One thing I love about fantasy football is leagues that involve IDP's (Individual Defensive Players). Playing smart fantasy football and organizing an effective draft strategy to include IDP's will help aid you in your league champiionship ambitions. For those who say you should wait until the end of the draft to pick defensive players....BAH! Choosing wisely and timely will give you a quick advantage before the season even starts. Follow the path I lay.....

One of my big money leagues is one that includes IDP's. Usually I wait until I have my starting offense (QB, 2RB, 2WR, 2FLEX, TE) and any big time sleepers I really want. Usually by the 7th or 8th rounds, two or three of the top defensive players are gone. Last year, the Cream of the Crop of Brian Urlacher, Jonathan Vlima, and Keith Bullock were gone before the 8th.

So lets say your doing 18-23 rounds depending on bench size. Me personally, I like to make sure I have a top notch defensive squad because they are players you can depend on every week. Last year, I think I nabbed Urlacher in around the 8th or 9th, Lewis in the 10th round and then Adalius Thomas in the 11th or 12th. Overall, I had a nice squad and I made key waiver pick ups during the season when I did not have Lewis. Also, taking the sleeper in Thomas paid huge dividends and was a major key to me making it into th eplayoffs in this particular league. I also drafted Roy Williams as a 4th defender whose hype I used to trade in a deal that landed me Cadillac Williams before week 3. That deal was a bust of course but trading the "hype" for a starting RB seemed like the smart thing to do at the time. Point here is that I am not waiting until the late rounds to pick up IDP's because I truly believe they are important to winning teams. My belief is that to get the best IDP's, you have to start plucking them once you have 6 or 7 offensive stars on your team including QB, at least 2 RB, and at least 3 WR. Once you start picking back ups and maybe waiting on a sleeper TE, you should start picking IDP's. The team with the worst IDP squad after draft day will have the toughest season, guaranteed.

As for what you should be looking for, you want guys who can consistently score 8-10 points minimum every week with potential for huge break outs. So you want to look for guys who do it all...95+ solo tackle potential, 2-3+ Interception potential, 2-5+ sack potential and the potential to recover fumbles, pass deflections, etc. Basically, you want the best , most effective middle linebackers you can get. A good fantasy mag that includes these guys can help. But just in case, here is the quick list I am looking at in no particular order. I feel if I can get 3 or 4 of these guys, I'll be good to go. You'll have to assume that most guys in your league get lazy when it comes to IDP's. They all say..."ah, I'll just look them up in the magazine as I draft". Thats a no no if you want to win. Do your homework and take notes on the following....

Brian Urlacher
Shaun Merriman
Adaliuis Thomas
Zach Thomas
Demico Ryans
Will Witherspoon
Shaun Phillips
London Fletcher
Ray Lewis
AJ Hawk
Keith Bullock
Keith Brooking
Kawika Mitchel
Nick Barnett
Daryl Smith
Donnie Edwards
Kirk Morrison

Thats the list I am concentrating on. Like I said, get 3 or 4 of these guys and and your all set, but by the 15th round, they could all be gone, so draft accordingly.

Mike Kuchera
Creator & Editor
Fantasy Football Express

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