One of the most frustrating things in IDP leagues is seeing your stud linebacker fly all over the field on game days only to see the home score keeper dilute his performance by divvying up his tackles as assists. On the flip side, if your league doesn’t score solos and assists too differently, you’ll have a better idea of which teams hand out assists like candy. Not everyone knows this, but the NFL does not recognize a tackle as an official statistic. Tackles are scored by the home team’s official score keeper and those are the stats you see on the news and websites. The league made an effort to standardize what is and isn’t a solo tackle back in 2007 when they sent a video to all NFL teams, but it is still the discretion of the home score keeper. Even after this effort there is a still a large discrepancy from team to team and week-to-week. I will be tracking this throughout the season to give you a better idea of what to expect when choosing your IDPs each week.
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That’s two weeks in a row Bobby Wagner has led the league in total tackles but what a difference a week makes. In week six he had 14 total tackles, but 11 were assisted tackles. This week, only one of his 13 was a shared tackle, even if he had a dreadfully slow mundane extra quarter of overtime to accrue these statistics. Seriously, what was that? I mean, I love defense as much as the next guy but I like good defense, not crappy offense. Thankfully, The Walking Dead returned so I didn’t have to! Also in this game we saw Deone Bucannon continue his up and down 2016 campaign. He recorded his second double digit tackle game this year which is encouraging but he has yet to record a sack or generate a single turnover of any sort. I expected so much more from him this year. These numbers would be easier to swallow if he was still defensive back eligible but from a linebacker I want more consistency.
Jerrell Freeman is putting up very similar numbers to Bucannon, and he was a whole lot cheaper this off-season. On the other side of the coin is my boy Tahir Whitehead. He has had double digit tackles in four of seven games and at least seven total tackles in all but one game. He was one of my favorite sleepers coming into 2016 and he has in no way disappointed.
Karlos Dansby played the lowest percentage of snaps among the top-ten tacklers this week but has 19 total tackles over the last two weeks. His 11 total tackles in week seven were the most since Vontaze Burfict returned from suspension. He deserves to be getting more snaps for the Bengals. My disdain for Rey Maualuga is well-documented and this defense would benefit greatly by leaving him out of the rotation. Lawrence Timmons always seems to put up great numbers when the Steelers play the Patriots and this week was no different. He played 95% of the defensive snaps while Ryan Shazier (56%) and Vince Williams (44%) cannibalized each others’ statistics by splitting the playing time. This is pretty much a worst case scenario for IDP purposes. The playing time moving forward might be hard to predict.
I want to believe Jordan Hicks is finally going to be a dependable IDP linebacker after his 11 total tackles and a sack against the Vikings, but I won’t. The Eagles only started two linebackers, Hicks and Nigel Bradham, and they played every snap, just like in week six. For now I’ll play Hicks as a bye week fill-in as a LB3 with upside. There are rumors the Eagles might try to acquire Torrey Smith from the 49ers, if they send Mychal Kendricks in that trade it would tell me they’re finally settled on their linebacker situation. As a Niners fan and a Kendricks fan, I pray the guy gets out of IDP purgatory.
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