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IDP Watch: Four Linebackers On The Rise

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If you're in an IDP league, then you're a die-hard fantasy football player. The IDP leagues separate those who just play fantasy football from those who engross themselves in fantasy football. Hell, even your wife knows the key offensive guys to start: Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Arian Foster, etc. etc. But does she know who Wesley Woodyard is? Or Mayo?

Watch. Turn to your wife or girlfriend and ask her if having "mayo" is a good or bad thing. After shooting you a "WTF?!" look, she'll say "bad." She's wrong. Ask that same question to an IDP'er and you'll get an appropriate response: "He looks good this year."

Here's us, separating the mayo's from the Mayo's. These are four defensive players who may be available on your waiver wire that could sustain LB1 elite status this season.

A.J. Hawk - ILB - Green Bay Packers

Hawk put up 14 total tackles (10 solo) in the Packers loss to the San Francisco 49ers. He led all Packers defenders in tackles and showed signs of the dominant force he was at The Ohio State University. He won't notch many sacks, but has real value in racking up tackles and a few interceptions. He's a decent LB2 now with the ability to rise to LB1 status.


Wesley Woodyard - WLB - Denver Broncos

Woodyard filled-in for suspended linebacker D.J. Williams (6 games). As a "replacement," Woodyard tallied the highest number of solo tackles (12) for all defenders in Week 1. His remarkable start to the season is no fluke. Last season, Woodyard racked up 97 total tackles in just seven starts, chipping in two forced fumbles. He's F&C's pluck-and-play defender this week.


Jerod Mayo - WLB - New England Patriots

In his rookie campaign, Mayo dominated the Pats defense with 174 total tackles (113 solo) and two sacks. Mayo hit a forgettable sophomore slump and got a mere 58 solo tackles in 14 games last season. That horrific performance left Mayo balancing on the waiver wire in many leagues this year. It's time to cast Mayo a safety net and scoop him up.

In Week 1, Mayo showed that he still has the ability—and opportunity—to return to IDP elite status. He got nine solo tackles against the Tennessee Titans, and was instrumental in bottling up Chris Johnson. He's worth a roster spot in all IDP leagues.


Jon Beason - MLB - Carolina Panthers 

In almost all fantasy football leagues, Beason went undrafted. He was just too much of an injury risk. First, he was recovering from tearing his Achilles tendon in last year's opener. Then he suffered a significant thigh injury that caused him to miss most of the preseason. 

Beason showed that those injury concerns are unfounded. He started at middle linebacker and led all Panthers with 10 total tackles (9 solo). There is plenty of upside with Beason on Carolina's defense, a guy who was typically drafted right after Patrick Willis in most redraft IDP leagues. If he's still available, he's a nice addition to any fantasy football team.

Cedric Hopkins

Cedric Hopkins Bio

Cedric Hopkins runs this sports law/fantasy football blog. If you have issues with it, it's all his fault. Cedric was an athlete-student at the University of New Mexico (Basketball - Go Lobos!). He then morphed into a student-athlete when he attended law school in San Diego. Age replaced athleticism and now he writes appellate briefs for criminals (alleged criminals, of course) in state and federal cases, including writing U.S. Supreme Court briefs.

For years Cedric has researched and written about legal issues but maintained a love for sports. With FieldandCourt.com, he's combining his two passions: researching and writing about sports. When he's not in court arguing a case before a judge (or writing about himself in the third person), he'll be doing the same with his articles on FieldandCourt.com. Follow me, er, him on Twitter (opens in a new window).

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Cedric Hopkins

Cedric Hopkins runs this sports law/fantasy football blog. If you have issues with it, it's all his fault. Cedric was an athlete-student at the University of New Mexico (Basketball - Go Lobos!). He then morphed into a student-athlete when he attended law school in San Diego. Age replaced athleticism and now he writes appellate briefs for criminals (alleged criminals, of course) in state and federal cases, including writing U.S. Supreme Court briefs.

For years Cedric has researched and written about legal issues but maintained a love for sports. With FieldandCourt.com, he's combining his two passions: researching and writing about sports. When he's not in court arguing a case before a judge (or writing about himself in the third person), he'll be doing the same with his articles on FieldandCourt.com. Follow me, er, him on Twitter (opens in a new window).