What’s going on, Rush Nation? Welcome to my second installment of the “Sleepy Series.” I analyze players to draft around the middle to end rounds of all defensive fantasy formats. This edition features players that play the linebacker position (LB) on your IDP rosters.
If you missed out on the first installment of the series, you could find it here. https://5yardrush.co.uk/idp-sleepy-safeties/
Ever been in a draft where you completely neglected a position? I’m sure you didn’t mean to; you just put it off for a tad too long. Now you have left yourself to search around the draft pool hastily. Don’t draft a random human to whom you have next to no knowledge. Please stick with me and slot yourself a sleepy linebacker!
Whether you have two linebacker slots on your roster or four and three defensive flex, you will want to have solid production from your backers. They are the heart and soul of most scoring systems. Tackles, more than likely, are the quickest way to tally points in your IDP leagues. (Check your league scoring)
The mentioned linebackers below are all efficient starters for their teams. They are worthy of a draft spot in all formats, specifically Bestball/Redraft IDP leagues.
If you aren’t familiar with our scoring system, here it is for you and the link to the article written by my friend Nath Davis. IDP + Scoring – A new UK industry standard
Josey Jewell, Denver Broncos
In 2020 Jewell totaled one thousand and eleven snaps on defense for the Denver Broncos. 38% in run defense, 8% in pass rush, and 54% in coverage. Eleven total pressures resulting in five hurries, four hits, and two sacks. In 2018 and 2019, Jewell combined for 674 defensive snaps. 2020 was Jewell’s most active year on an NFL field.
Josey Jewell is a projected starting linebacker in 2021. He is, however, in the last year of his four-year rookie contract. In dynasty, be cautious, although I believe he will find a home for the coming years.
Jewell could be in for another 100+ combined tackle season. He allowed a 75% opponent completion percentage and a touchdown in 2020. Opponents may target him in the passing game, so that could mean added tackles as well. Draft Josey late in all formats, but he is best used as a streamer in dynasty/redraft.
Cory Littleton, Las Vegas Raiders
In 2020 Littleton totaled eight hundred forty-nine snaps on defense for the Las Vegas Raiders. 39% in run defense, 4% in pass rush, and 56% in coverage. Four total pressures resulting in four hurries. Littleton saw a dip in his play during the 2020 season. Just under two hundred snaps compared to the previous two seasons, where he was on the field for over one thousand snaps each.
Cory Littleton is the projected starting Will linebacker for the Las Vegas Raiders. He has been known to be floated to middle backer sporadically throughout the season. He is under contract for another two years for the Raiders.
In the NFL Draft, the Raiders drafted Divine Deablo, who is currently behind Littleton on the depth chart. Littleton should be looking to get back to his form from 2019. He did play a combo of Will and Middle backer in 2019. Time will tell if Cory will play multiple linebacker positions. I would look to draft Cory Littleton late in deeper IDP leagues.
Germaine Pratt, Cincinnati Bengals
Germaine Pratt totaled six hundred and eighty-sixed snaps on defense for the Cincinnati Bengals in 2020. 52% in run defense, 3% in pass rush, and 44% in coverage. Germaine finished last season with seventy-two solo tackles. It would help if he improved his pass coverage as he allowed a 86% catch rate in 2020.
Germaine Pratt is the starting middle linebacker for the Bengals. Pratt will become an unrestricted free agent in 2023.
The Bengals increased Germaine’s defensive snap count last season by over two hundred compared to 2019. I expect more defensive snaps again in hopes that he can break the one hundred combined tackle threshold this coming season. Draft Germaine at the end of your drafts and keep him as a streamer. If you don’t draft him, be sure to look his way if he is available via waiver wire after the first few weeks.
That’s all I have for you today, Rush Nation; a huge thank you for reading this. I hope it helps, and if you have any questions, feel free to message or interact with me on Twitter https://twitter.com/caliking49er17.