It was another frustrating week for our IDP streamers, as several of our choices came very close to having big weeks. For example, Colts lineman Henry Anderson led all 3-4 ends with an impressive six (!) quarterback pressures, yet all that translated to was one quarterback hit and three tackles. Packers linebacker Clay Matthews inexplicably played his lowest snap count of the season with 42, despite the Lions offense being on the field for 36 minutes or 60 percent of the time. Raiders safety Reggie Nelson, who is now ninth among all defensive backs with 50 tackles, had only six tackles against Miami despite seeing the fifth-most passing snaps among safeties this week with 43. The same goes for Saints cornerback Ken Crawley, who played a Tampa offense that threw the ball a season-low 28 times. Crawley ended up with just three tackles. Our one saving grace this week was Titans linebacker Wesley Woodyard with 14 tackles, two of them for a loss, and a pass defended.
So all of our recs had the opportunities, but many just couldn’t close the deal. Now we move on to Week 10 to bring it home.
While Demarcus Lawrence and David Irving have gotten most of the attention on the Dallas defensive line, and are likely not available, another Cowboy lineman has scored some fantasy points and should be available in your IDP league.
Crawford wasn’t naturally an end but the Cowboys had a surplus of interior lineman the last two seasons in Maliek Collins and Irving, which pushed Crawford outside. Crawford has never totaled a high sack total, with a career-high of just five in 2015. But Crawford has had a mini-breakout so far with already four sacks on the season, including three over his last four games, and is currently PFF’s 13th-ranked 4-3 end.
Crawford and the Cowboys will be at Atlanta in Week 10. On the season, the Falcons give up an average of two sacks per game, including last week against the Panthers, and give up the 13th-most fantasy points to edge rushers. Their offensive line is the 12th-ranked pass-blocking unit in the league but cumulatively still has a poor grade. As a whole, the Cowboys defensive line should be able to get to Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and Crawford is in a good position to be the guy that gets there.
It might be hard to believe, but Compton was a top-20 fantasy linebacker last year after he recorded more than 100 tackles and five passes defended. Yet, despite the statistically productive season, he had to battle middle linebacker Mason Foster for the other inside linebacker job after the Redskins signed linebacker Zach Brown in free agency, a battle Compton eventually lost before the season started. Fast forward to Week 7 and a torn labrum for Foster and Compton is back to starting again, which is great news for streamers.
In his first start in Week 8, Compton only saw 29 snaps but turned that into seven tackles. Last week, he busted out even more, playing all 82 snaps and totaling nine tackles, three passes defended and converting one of those into an interception.
Compton now draws the Vikings in Week 10, who have been very kind to inside linebackers. They give up the fourth-most fantasy points to linebackers and in their last game against Cleveland, Browns linebackers Joe Schobert and Christian Kirksey had 12 and eight tackles respectively. The Browns are also fifth in the league in pass attempts per game at 38.4, which means a lot of chances for Compton to pick off more passes.
While it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Aaron Donald is a leader in sacks, Barwin might. He has had multiple double-digit sack seasons over the course of his career with multiple teams. One of those teams was Houston when he was under defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, his current coordinator with the Rams. And much like his time under Phillips in Houston, Barwin is an outside linebacker who does nothing but rush the quarterback, a strategy that’s resulted in four sacks for Barwin on the season.
Barwin and the Rams face one of our favorite punching bags this week, the Houston Texans. They continue to have one of the worst offensive lines, currently ranked second-to-last in pass-blocking according to PFF, and are giving up 3.5 sacks per game. Tom Savage will for some reason be the Texans quarterback again this week and should be easy prey for Barwin. The Colts, Houston’s opponents last week, only sacked Savage twice but got to the quarterback eight times. And if the Texans offense last week is any indication of future performance, Houston will trail behind the 6-2 Rams and pass often, maybe even matching the season-high 44 pass attempts by Savage and Houston last week. In short, the Texans should be behind and passing which gives Barwin plenty of opportunities to take advantage of a weak Texans offensive line. Barwin’s designation as a linebacker makes him more attractive in big-play leagues.
Reid has had a weird season. The former first-rounder was drafted as a safety for his first four seasons until he was injured. Instead of just benching him, San Francisco wanted to find a way to keep Reid on the field, so they converted him to weakside linebacker and he played over 30 snaps in Week 7. But then, the starting safeties that took Reid’s job, Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt, both broke their forearms — Ward in Week 7 and Tartt in Week 8 — and were placed on injured reserve, ending their seasons. Reid then went back to safety to fill the injury void and, barring an injury, will finish out the season there.
In Reid’s first two games of the season, during his first stint at safety, he had respectable tackle numbers, with five and seven in Games 1 and 2, respectively. In his return to safety last week, Reid had five tackles again but added a pick. Reid and the 49ers play the Giants in Week 10 and should see plenty of tackle and interception opportunities. Giants quarterback Eli Manning averages 37 pass attempts per game and the Giants are ninth in fantasy points allowed to safeties. Reid will hope to emulate Rams safety John Johnson who himself had seven tackles and a pass defended against Eli and the Giants this week.
Reid’s roller coaster of a season means he’s available in a lot of leagues and is a high-floor option if your starter is on a bye.
This pickup is almost too good. The first round pick out of LSU averages over 67 snaps per game this season and is a top-10-graded cornerback according to PFF. He only has 31 tackles this season but leads the league in passes defended with 12, while averaging six targets thrown at him a game. He now draws the Saints who, while only ranking 16th in the league in pass attempts, are literally giving up the most fantasy points to cornerbacks of any team. White will also be seeing a lot of Ted Ginn on Sunday, which should lead to a handful of jump balls between the two and increase White’s chances to make a big play. It will almost be an upset if White doesn’t have a good fantasy game.