Do you need to make lineup decisions??? Here are the top 5 NFL defenses through week 5 according to “fantasy points against” versus the QB, RB and WR:
Most Fantasy Points Allowed to QB:
Most Fantasy Points Allowed to WR:
Most Fantasy Points Allowed to RB:
Ray Lewis retired.
Ed Reed is now a Houston Texan.
Those grumblings alone will make many downgrade the Ravens defense this year. In fact, most people probably won’t want to touch them for their 2013 fantasy team. I’m here to tell you that there is actually some real value with the 2013 Ravens defense. They are being undervalued actually and will become a steal in drafts as you wait to pick your defense. I heard Joe Flacco say today that their defense looks dominant. So I headed back over to their Depth Chart and found it to be really surprising. I knew they loaded up on defense in the April draft already, but I also found that they seemed to be stacked at many positions 2-deep…sometimes 3-deep. I never see that on defenses like the Chicago Bears.
Let’s start off with one of the four defensive rookies they took in the first 4 rounds that I like for their team. Matt Elam, University of Florida Safety, was a huge 5 star recruit out of high school that continued his success in the SEC was picked to fill in four Ed Reed. Nobody can replace Ed Reed especially his mind for the game and knack for getting turnovers, but Elam fills a need here. They re-signed safety Ihedigbo for one year so they don’t have to throw Elam right into the fire, but he also gets to play alongside safety Michael Huff out of the University of Texas. They are going to make a great tandem eventually. Along side them at left cornerback, they go 2-deep with Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith. At right corner, they have Corey Graham. Their defensive backs are their weakest link but still rather impressive.
Their defensive line is even more impressive as they are a solid 2-deep at each position based out of a 3-4 defense. At left defensive tackle they have big Arthur Jones out of Syracuse being backed up by 3rd round pick Brandon Williams who stands 6’1″ 330 lbs. Big boy. At nose tackle, they have one of the best in the business Halota Ngata being backed up by Alabama’s Terrance Cody. Each weighing in at 340 pounds. At right defensive tackle, their 2-deep is 6’7″ 315 lbs. Chris Canty and former first round pick out of LSU by the Cowboys Marcus Spears. Pretty solid interior defensive line.
Equally impressive is the Ravens linebacking crew starting with Terrell Suggs at left outside linebacker. Their left inside linebackers goes 3-deep with Jameel McClain, then Josh Bynes (Auburn), followed up by Arthur Brown (Kansas State) who was the Ravens 2nd round pick. Brown originally attended University of Miami before transferring to KSU. He was the #1 overall recruit out of high school by some recruiting analysts like his brother Bryce Brown (Eagles). Daryl Smith mans the right inside linebacker spot. And right outside linebacker is tough 3-deep with Elvis Dumervil, big Courtney Upshaw from Alabama, and 4th round pick John Simon from Ohio State.
All these guys mentioned were only mentioned because they are solid defensive players. The Ravens have restocked their defense and are ready to go in 2013. It’ll be fun to watch them again.
Some of my favorite defensive players have all since gotten old and are not relevant anymore (except number 9 on my list below). Happy retirement Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher. Our society tends to like lists. So here is a list of my favorite IDP (Individual Defensive Players) for 2013. Notice, I only like linebackers. It’s the way I draft if there are no position requirements as tackles are ultra important, and I like my defensive players always around the ball.
1. Luke Kuechly – Carolina Panthers (LB)
2. Chad Greenway – Minnesota Vikings (LB)
3. James Laurinaitis – St. Louis Rams (LB)
4. Jerod Mayo – New England Patriots (LB)
5. NaVarro Bowman – San Francisco 49ers (LB)
6. D’Qwell Jackson – Cleveland Browns (LB)
7. Lavonte David – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LB)
8. Paul Posluszny – Jacksonville Jaguars (LB)
9. London Fletcher – Washington Redskins (LB)
10. Daryl Washington – Arizona Cardinals (LB) *going to be serving a 4-game suspension but watch out after that. If he is available at that time, GET HIM!
As a follow up to an earlier Urlacher post (http://www.fantasyfootballmagic.com/?p=75) here is a list of the NFL players with the most tackles since 2000 which happens to be Brian Urlacher’s first season. Most leagues should include IDP. By the way, how underrated was/is London Fletcher, Keith Brooking, James Farrior, Donnie Edwards, Takeo Spikes and Keith Bullock among the casual football fan?
Despite living in Chicago, I have never been a Bears fan or an Urlacher fan, but this situation that transpired between them is a little baffling. Yes, Brian Urlacher is now slow and not the same player, but the last offer on the table was only $3.5 million. The Bears offered $2 million, and ,when they didn’t agree, they just hung up the phone. Why not at least say $2 million with $1.5 million in incentives or some other combination with incentives? The Bears have absolutely nothing at linebacker besides Briggs. I mean that cupboard is so bare, it’s pathetic. With Manti Te’o falling out of the picture, the Bears almost have to take Alec Ogletree if he is there or Barkevious Mingo. I just can’t get over the fact that they have Lance Briggs and no middle linebacker, no strongside linebacker and zero backups at any of the three linebacker positions. Words cannot describe that situation. Do the Bears not realize that $3.5 million is cheap and that they have no other players to play linebacker besides Briggs? Urlacher’s name on the back of the jersey alone makes up for a lot of the money as his jersey sales are one of the most popular in the NFL. The bottom line is that he is in charge of that defense, he is a leader, and he does know the X’s and O’s of playing middle linebacker. The Bears fantasy football defense will definitely take a step back next year.