The world of IDP (Individual Defensive Player) fantasy football is one of mystery to many fantasy regulars, but is gaining a bit of popularity year after year. Ready for a more intense challenge, the bravest of fantasy owners enter the IDP arena; the results can often be less than favorable.
But midway through the season, patterns start to form and players start to emerge, and every so often, a wise move can be made to capitalize and take control of the IDP monster. The Buccaneers, despite some inconsistencies in their team defense fantasy statistics, actually put forth quite a few IDP players that should be owned across the board.
We start at the defensive line positions, comprised of defensive tackles and ends. And it is not long until we find our first Buccaneer, ranked 12th overall, defensive end Michael Bennett. Consistent tackle numbers, five sacks and three forced fumbles have made Bennett a name in the IDP underground, and his five tackle performance last week against the Vikings is a promising sign going into a game against another big named runner, Darren McFadden of the Oakland Raiders, followed by a matchup with the San Diego Chargers who currently rank fourth in most points given up to opposing defensive linemen.
On to the linebacker position, we find another Buccaneer, this time cracking the top ten, Mason Foster. Foster’s solo tackle number is tied for 10th in the NFL, while he has also added an interception and multiple pass break-ups. In weeks two and four, Foster managed more than ten tackles, coming into this Week Nine game, Foster seems overdue for another breakout.
Finally, the Buccaneers most impressive numbers come from the defensive backs. Ronde Barber’s points per game put him at third in the NFL; Mark Barron is not far behind at 10th. Barber has pulled out three interceptions this season, one for a score and eleven pass breakups. With his numbers going up over the last three weeks, it certainly doesn’t look like a fluke either. Barron is racking up points as a tackling machine with five consecutive games of six or more solo tackles, a rare feat for a safety.
At least one more defensive back qualifies as a sleeper here. With cornerback Aqib Talib (whose average points per game is tied at 16th) out, replacement starter E.J. Biggers has registered a consistent 12 tackles, 10 solo. He should continue to see a lot of passes thrown his way, which generally results in some broken passes, tackles and an interception or two.
Have a Buccaneer-related fantasy football question for our next edition of Bucs Fantasy Brief? Leave a comment and you may see the answer next time.