Congratulations if you are participating in your league’s playoff rounds, no matter how you arrived there. There are a handful of IDP to troll for on your waiver wire profiled below, with the most options available in the DL category. All should be available on most waiver wires, too, in each IDP group.

Elevator Going Up


Donald Payne JAX

With Myles Jack listed as questionable for Week 14, after sitting out last week’s contest, look for Payne to see significant snaps on defense once again. If he comes close to his 13 total tackle (TT) production from Week 13, he will be an extremely valuable wire pickup for those looking for LB help. He also pitched in against the Bucs with a sack and a QB hit/hurry (QH) as well as providing for a loss of yards on one of those double-digit tackles (TFL).

Bud Dupree PIT

Dupree was a former 1st round draft pick, and has been quietly putting together an impressive IDP portfolio. He picked up 1.5 sacks against the visiting Browns offense, contributing six TT (four solo) and some additional big play stats: a pair of QH, a pass deflection (PD) and a forced fumble (FF). The Steelers do not feature an every-down LB on their defense, but Dupree is lining up for significant playing time along with standout LBs T.J. Watt and Mark Barron .

Bernardrick McKinney HOU

Seems difficult to believe that McKinney has not been featured yet this season, but now is a fine time to grab the LB before your league mates realize his value. He has two great matchups and one decent one over the next three weeks, which arrive at just the proper time as playoffs hit. Since the Week 10 bye, he has collected 26 TT tackles.

Defensive Linemen

Carlos Dunlap DE CIN

Dunlap has turned it on for the past three contests, racking up 4.5 sacks and 19 TT (10 solo) over that time span. He had seven TT against the visiting Jets last week (six solo, three TFL), and a whopping six (!) QH and a PD in that game as well. The next two weeks do not look overly promising but he has racked up 4.5 sacks over the past three weeks, coinciding with a significant uptick in his snap count as the primary left DE for the Bengals.

Derek Barnett DE PHI

Barnett finally took advantage of the snaps he is playing for the Eagle defense, sacking the Dolphin QB and racking up four QH in Week 13’s contest on the road. He also collected six solo tackles (two TFL) in the game. He has a pair of good matchups on the schedule, with the Giants coming to Philly this week, and then a trip to the nation’s capital in Week 15.

Jacob Martin DE HOU

Martin is an edge rushing LB that qualifies at DL in both Yahoo and ESPN formats, making him a valuable IDP. He has been credited with his first sacks of the season the past two games, snagging 1.5 in Week 13 along with a trio of QH, and three TT (one solo, one TFL). He is coming on at the exact correct time if you need to add a big play DL to your roster.

Jabal Sheard DE IND

The Colt DE has a nice matchup in store this week, taking on the Buccaneers who allow the fifth most points to opposing defensive ends on the season. He has four sacks on the season, and gets to face Carolina in Week 16, another good sources of sacks.

Ed Oliver DT BUF

Oliver lost his starting role earlier this season, but is seeing a more consistent share of the snaps on defense of late. He had two sacks on 40 snaps in Week 13 against the host Cowboys, to go with four TT (three solo, one TFL). He also was credited with some big plays, with a PD, FF and QH showing up on his stat sheet. Buffalo is rotating three DTs on defense, so Oliver as a low percentage owned IDP is a find in DT-required leagues.

Defensive Backs

Chuck Clark S BAL

Clark will be the starting strong safety for the Ravens with Tony Jefferson now on the IR. He is a dependable commodity in a strong Baltimore defense, picking up a sack in Week 13 against the 49ers, along with seven TT (five solo). He also forced a fumble and had a QH in that contest.

Andrew Wingard S JAX

The rookie took advantage of the additional playing time generated by a concussion suffered by Ronnie Harrison , and he collected seven TT (six solo) along with a sack, a QH and a FF against the visiting Buccaneer offense. If Harrison cannot play in Week 14, look for Wingard to shine again in a great matchup against the Chargers.

Bradley Roby CB HOU

Roby returned to action as essentially an every-down DB and he produced at a high level, coming off a hamstring injury that held him out of action since Week 6. He had four TT (three solo, one TFL), and added big play production with a sack, a QH, and INT and a PD. Unfortunately, he does not have a great matchup until Week 16 when the Texans take on the Buccaneers on the road.

Escalator Going Down


Khalil Mack CHI

Mack has seen his production fall off dramatically over the past five games, with just 12 TT (10 solo) over that period, and just one sack. He can bust out any time, naturally, as a top LB in the NFL, but has not been worth starting of late.

Hasson Reddick ARI

Reddick was on the field for just a single snap on defense in Week 13 (he did have 10 special teams snaps), and the talk is that he is being considered for a move to edge rusher. While that may seem positive, the lack of sacks in his career does not inspire great confidence in him going forward.

Tahir Whitehead OAK

Despite being an every-down LB, his stat lines are woefully inadequate for fantasy purposes. Over the past three weeks, he has collected just 10 TT, and just a single solo last week against the Chiefs. The matchup in Week 14 against the Titans is a poor one, although Week 15 has the Jaguars visiting, and he could break out against a more favorable offense in terms of allowing LB production, but there are enough better options available to not risk continued limited tackle numbers.

Defensive Linemen

Jerry Hughes DE BUF

The Bills have seen the production of their starting right DE dry up entirely the past two weeks, despite still playing substantial snaps on defense. Weeks 10 and 11 saw just a pair of solo tackles on the stat sheet, so the trend makes him unusable at present.

Defensive Backs

Donte Jackson CB CAR

The Panthers season is trending in a southward direction, and Jackson’s value is suffering with that tendency. He has just five assists over the past two weeks, and that is not the type of fantasy production you want on your squad as playoffs begin.

Matchups to Exploit

Remember, the first team listed is the one to use your IDPs against. Do not go crazy, and play a LB5 against the Giants, but certainly you will do well if you own a top LB or DE on the Falcons or a DL on the Raiders that you can plug in this week, for the most part.


New York Giants vs Green Bay

Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta

Indianapolis Colts @ Tampa Bay

Atlanta Falcons vs Carolina

Cleveland Browns vs Cincinnati

Defensive Ends

New York Jets vs Miami

Tennessee Titans @ Oakland

Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta

Defensive Tackles

Tennessee Titans @ Oakland

Miami Dolphins @ New York Jets

Minnesota Vikings vs Detroit


Atlanta Falcons vs Carolina

New York Giants vs Green Bay

Los Angeles Chargers @ Jacksonville


Seattle Seahawks @ Los Angeles Rams

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Indianapolis

New England Patriots vs Kansas City

Cincinnati Bengals @ Cleveland

Waiver Wire Targets

This section is intended to serve as a shortened cheat sheet listing those waiver wire targets you should be considering if you need to plug a hole in your starting lineup. All these players are spotlighted above, and you can read my comments about them in the "Elevator Going Up" section of this article. This group consists of those that you may have a chance of locating on your league's waiver wire in that they are owned in significantly less than 50% of leagues. Happy claiming for your weekly matchups.


Donald Payne JAX

Bud Dupree PIT

Bernardrick McKinney HOU

Defensive Linemen

Carlos Dunlap DE CIN

Derek Barnett DE PHI

Jacob Martin DE HOU

Jabal Sheard DE IND

Ed Oliver DT BUF

Defensive Backs

Chuck Clark S BAL

Andrew Wingard S JAX

Bradley Roby CB HOU

Ouch (My Aching Roster)

All the injury reports below need evaluation prior to kickoff.  Teams are notoriously sketchy about injury reports, and we often do not know a player's status until just before game time. Consider the list below as a "heads up" as to what is going on early in the week, and should not be considered definitive.


Patrick Onwuasor BAL ankle

Danny Trevathan CHI elbow

Leighton Vander Esch DAL neck

Sean Lee DAL pectoral

A.J. Johnson DEN neck

Von Miller DEN knee

Brennan Scarlett HOU shoulder

Dylan Cole HOU knee-ACL IR

Myles Jack JAX knee

Najee Goode JAX knee IR

Jerome Baker MIA chest

Ben Gedeon MIN concussion IR

Kiko Alonso NO thigh

Kareen Martin NYG knee IR

C.J. Mosley NYJ groin IR

Paul Worrilow NYJ quadriceps

Anthony Nelson TB hamstring

Darren Bates TEN shoulder

Cameron Wake TEN undisclosed IR

Ryan Kerrigan WAS concussion

Montez Sweat WAS quadriceps

Defensive Linemen


Jonathan Bullard ARI hamstring

Michael Bennett DAL foot

Derek Wolfe DEN elbow IR

Angelo Blackson HOU shoulder

Carlos Watkins HOU hamstring

Josh Allen JAX concussion

Lerentee McCray JAX hamstring IR

Frank Clark KC shoulder

Emmanuel Ogbah KC pectoral IR

John Franklin-Myers NYJ undisclosed IR

Dee Ford SF hamstring

Damontre Moore SF forearm IR


Gerald McCoy CAR ankle

Dontari Poe CAR quadriceps IR

Bilal Nichols CHI knee

Akiem Hicks CHI elbow IR

Antwaun Woods DAL knee-MCL

Damon Harrison DET knee

Tyler Lancaster GB neck

Jalyn Holmes MIN undisclosed

Byron Cowart NE head

Steve McLendon NYJ undisclosed

Julian Taylor SF elbow

D.J. Jones SF ankle

Defensive Backs


Jalen Thompson ARI head

SherrickMcManis CHI groin IR

Brandon Wilson CIN hand

Eric Murray CLE knee

Robert Jackson CLE ankle

Jeff Heath DAL shoulder

Darian Thompson DAL biceps

Tony Brown GB heel

Ronnie Harrison JAX concussion

D.J. Hayden JAX neck

Rashad Fenton KC hamstring

Darious Williams LAR ankle

Steven Parker MIA groin

Bobby McCain MIA shoulder IR

Reshad Jones MIA undisclosed

Jabrill Peppers NYG back

Corey Ballentine NYG concussion

Jamal Adams NYJ ankle

Rudy Ford PHI Achilles IR

JaquiskiTartt ribs

Neiko Thorpe SEA groin

Tedric Thompson SEA shoulder-Labrum

Jamel Dean TB shoulder


Prince Amukamara CHI hamstring

Dre Kirkpatrick CIN knee IR

Greedy Williams CLE shoulder

Anthony Brown DAL triceps IR

Bryce Callahan DEN foot IR

Rashaan Melvin DET ribs

Jamal Agnew DET ankle

Will Redmond GB foot

Gareon Conley HOU hip

Kenny Moore IND ankle

Ken Crawley MIA shoulder

Jason McCourty NE groin

Brian Poole NYJ concussion

Arthur Maulet NYJ calf

Artie Burns PIT knee

Richard Sherman SF knee

M.J. Stewart TB knee

LeShaun Sims TEN ankle

Adoree’ Jackson TEN knee

Chris Milton TEN undisclosed IR


As ever, good luck and Godspeed in your fantasy efforts. Make sure to read all of our great articles to help you win your fantasy match ups every week and ultimately bask in championship glory. FANation Chat is live on the site, to help you work through your fantasy football dilemmas. Or if you have any fantasy football questions, especially about IDP leagues, you can also send a message to for a personal response from the writer of this article. Naturally, the more detail you can send about your league, such as number of teams, platform you play in (Yahoo, ESPN, etc.), scoring and roster system, the better the ability to provide accurate advice.