We get our first bye-week of the season with both the San Francisco 49ers and New York Jets getting some rest meaning key players like Fred Warner, Kwon Alexander, Neville Hewitt and Jamal Adams will not be in our lineups come Sunday. There are some players out there who should be rostered not only as bye-week fillers, but also for the rest of the season. Here are some key options for individual defensive player leagues.
Haason Reddick, LB, Arizona Cardinals
Jordan Hicks was a pick up/start in Week 2 and now it’s his teammate, Haason Reddick, who needs to be scooped up this week. Reddick played 100 percent of the snaps in Week 3 and has now averaged just under nine combined tackles per game. The Cardinals have given up the sixth most rushing attempts and ninth most rushing yards to opposing running backs and face the most run heavy team in the Seattle Seahawks who’ve run the ball the fifth highest on the road in the NFL so far.
Ryan Connelly, LB, New York Giants
Alec Ogletree exited last week’s game with a hamstring injury and rookie, Tae Davis left the game with a concussion leaving Connelly playing the rest of the way racking up seven combined tackles and an interception with 13 return yards on 92.2 percent of the snaps. The timetable for both Davis and Ogletree to get healthy is undetermined and the Giants need to lean on Connelly for the time being. Connelly isn’t the most athletic, but he was a tackle machine in college averaging 88.5 tackles over his last two seasons at Wisconsin. He has a tough matchup against Washington this week, but we just saw Danny Trevathan record eight combined tackles, a sack and a pass defense on Monday night.
Notables: Mack Wilson, LB, Cleveland Browns
Terrell Edmunds, S, Pittsburgh Steelers
In his second year, Edmunds has totaled 28 combined tackles in three games, which is close to half of his tackle production last season. The Steelers spent a first round pick on Edmunds last season and he’s becoming a breakout candidate in IDP leagues where he’s now totaled double-digit combined tackles in back-to-back games. The Pittsburgh Strong Safety position has been a fantasy gold-mine in the past and it appears Edmunds (and his IDP owners) are reaping the benefits. He now gets a Cincinnati Bengals team in Week 4 who’s given up the 10th most points to Safety position.
Notables: Kermel Ishmael, S, Atlanta Falcons
Brian Burns, DE, Carolina Panthers
Burns got going last week against Tampa Bay with four solo tackles and a sack, which makes it back-to-back games Burns has recorded a sack on only 65 percent of the snaps in Week 2 and 74.7 percent in Week 3. Burns was the 16th pick overall in this year’s draft and has a 99 percentile score in the 40-yard dash, is in the 94th percentile in speed score and 88th percentile in burst score. Translation: He’s extremely athletic. He now gets to go up against a Houston offensive line who’ve given up the fifth most points to opposing defensive ends, has given up 10 sacks through the first three weeks (which is the most so far this season) and rank dead last in pass protection per DVOA.
Notables: Stephon Tuitt, DE, Pittsburgh Steelers