- The Chicago Bears add two key names at linebacker: Tremaine Edmunds and T.J. Edwards head to Chicago to continue their IDP relevancy, while at the same time, crushing the hopes and dreams of Jack Sanborn managers.
- The San Francisco 49ers add another elite pass-rusher to the defensive line: Javon Hargrave brings his rare pass-rush skillset to an already strong 49ers defense.
- Two second-year safeties are presented with key opportunities: Kyle Hamilton and Daxton Hill are the beneficiaries as last year’s starters depart.
Estimated reading time: 19 minutes
IDP fantasy football benefited greatly from a very exciting first week of free agency, with a deep class of linebackers heading to new homes and plenty of other key names moving around the league. These are some initial fantasy thoughts about all the key IDP signings that have happened so far this offseason.
Be sure to check in on the IDP dynasty rankings page to see exactly where players should be valued now as free agency continues to update the dynasty landscape.
For offensive free agent analysis, check out Nathan Jahnke’s free agency tracker for fantasy purposes.
JUMP TO A TEAM:
- Two young pass-rushers who Arizona drafted in the third round last year, Myjai Sanders and Cameron Thomas, have significant opportunities. Both players were able to land three sacks each on limited snaps and performed well as pass-rushing rookies, creating hope that they will build on that potential in more significant roles this season.
- White’s addition to the Cardinals' linebacker room complicates things a bit further for Zaven Collins and Isaiah Simmons. Simmons was utilized more in the slot last season, which could be the plan again, while Collins received a fair amount of defensive line and pass-rush work. Under a new defensive coordinator, it’s difficult to say how much this will change, but White following head coach Jonathan Gannon to the desert could mean there’s a significant role for him, but it just might not be a full-time one with two first-round linebackers also in the mix.
- Re-signed Edge Lorenzo Carter
- Signed defensive tackle David Onyemata
- Signed linebacker Kaden Elliss
- Signed safety Jessie Bates
- Onyemata provides above-average pass-rush upside for the position and should get plenty of defensive snaps to remain a solid depth piece for IDP in DT-required leagues.
- Elliss reunites with Ryan Nielsen, the Falcons' new defensive coordinator, who was co-defensive coordinator last season with the Saints, where Elliss got his first opportunity to start. Elliss was an effective IDP option off the waiver wire last season and led all linebackers in sacks (seven). He figures to play significant snaps again in 2023 alongside 2022 second-round pick Troy Andersen as the team revamps its defense.
- Bates should continue in his primary deep safety role while Richie Grant is the more likely option to rotate down toward the line of scrimmage. Bates will continue to be a solid IDP option and the Falcons' confidence in him with a four-year contract should also bring confidence for dynasty managers.
#FFIDP – Kaden Elliss signs with the Atlanta Falcons!
Was an IDP waiver-wire star during the 2022 season and should have a shot to get on the field in ATL.
Significant pass-rush success last season as well which the Falcons desperately need. Led all LBs in Sacks vs. Expected. pic.twitter.com/hJTo1bxyd3
— Jon Macri (@PFF_Macri) March 14, 2023
- Released defensive tackle Calais Campbell
- Traded safety Chuck Clark to the New York Jets
- Re-signed cornerback Trayvon Mullen
- Re-signed safety Geno Stone
- Clark getting traded to the Jets opens up the full-time role for Kyle Hamilton that IDP dynasty managers were begging for last season. Hamilton was very productive on a limited workload as a rookie and should continue to be now that he’s expected to get full-time snaps. As covered earlier this offseason, this will greatly increase his IDP value, making him a potential top-five player at the position this coming season.
- Re-signed linebacker Matt Milano
- Re-signed linebacker Tyler Matakevich
- Re-signed safety Cameron Lewis
- Re-signed safety Jordan Poyer
- Re-signed cornerback Dane Jackson
- Tremaine Edmunds’ departure should open up a starting spot for 2022 third-round pick Terrel Bernard, assuming the Bills don’t add a new linebacker of note this offseason. If Bernard gets the nod, he should be considered a strong fantasy-relevant linebacker in 2023.
- Bell joins Jeremy Chinn in Carolina as another safety who saw strong usage in the box and closer to the line of scrimmage, complicating matters for his IDP value. Chinn was used more in the slot down the stretch last season due to the team deploying more big nickel (three-safety) looks, so it’s possible that this continues now with Bell mixed into the rotation and Xavier Woods playing primarily deep. Chinn is still the preferred IDP option as of now while Bell figures to be the most likely of the three safeties to come off the field when the team isn’t running those three-safety looks.
- Signed linebacker T.J. Edwards
- Signed linebacker Tremaine Edmunds
- Signed defensive tackle DeMarcus Walker
- Signed defensive tackle Andrew Billings
- Edwards and Edmunds should see significant workloads under head coach Matt Eberflus, who has a history of utilizing two full-time linebackers during his time in Indianapolis. With both players coming off career years, they should have a shot to be very relevant for IDP.
- Walker joins a defensive line that is desperate for help. He earned a career-high 72.8 overall grade last season in Tennessee on 427 defensive snaps. If Chicago doesn’t add significantly more to that line this offseason, Walker should expect to greatly exceed his career-high snap total (458) and be productive on volume alone.
#FFIDP – T.J. Edwards signing with the Chicago Bears for a 3-year deal!
One of the most productive and efficient linebackers over the past two seasons.
Has consistently performed at a high level when given the opportunity and should be a strong IDP option once again in CHI. pic.twitter.com/6io7gjYxoL
— Jon Macri (@PFF_Macri) March 13, 2023
- Pratt will continue to be a low-end LB3/high-end LB4 for IDP purposes while playing a rotational role in Cincinnati’s defense. Logan Wilson will be the only full-time linebacker again this season.
- Safety Daxton Hill is primed for a bigger Year 2 role with both Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell departing in free agency. He should be an every-down player in 2023.
- Scott, who played nearly 1,000 defensive snaps for the Rams in 2022, has the potential to be the other starting safety along with Hill. Scott played 24% of his defensive snaps in the box last season and earned his best grade in run defense (77.0) while also bringing (slightly) more size to the position. As of now, he makes the most sense to play the Bell role and rotate down toward the line of scrimmage more often. This will help his case to be the more consistent fantasy option among Bengals’ safeties.
- Signed edge Ogbonnia Okoronkwo
- Signed defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson
- Signed defensive tackle Trysten Hill
- Released safety John Johnson III
- Signed safety Juan Thornhill
- Signed defensive tackle Maurice Hurst