Time to begin the search for weekly rising defensive stars that you might want to plug into your fantasy football lineups for NFL Week 2. We have some notable players rising up IDP fantasy football rankings after the first week of games, like Denzel Perryman and Robert Spillane. These players may be top fantasy football waiver wire pickups if they're available in your leagues. It is also time to analyze whether players that grace your squad would be better off being dropped from active duty and either benched or shipped off to free market/waiver land in your leagues. One of the joys of playing in an IDP league is the recurring need to reevaluate your slate of defensive players and grab those unexpected players climbing the rankings. Plus, we look at the NFL Week 2 injury report as it pertains to IDPs. Let's now look at the biggest IDP risers and fallers heading into Week 2 fantasy football.

Bye Weeks coming up: None…until Week 5


Fantasy Football IDP Risers – Elevator Going Up


Denzel Perryman, Houston Texans

Perryman is shaping up to be an every-down LB in the Texan defensive scheme, which will result in great tackle numbers for the middle linebacker this season. He collected 11 total tackles (TT) in Week 1 (six solo), and one of those wrap-ups was for a loss of yardage (TFL). Taking on the Colts and their rookie signal-caller in Week 2 looks promising.

Robert Spillane, Las Vegas Raiders

Here is another every-down LB to set your sights on when setting an IDP lineup. He collected seven TT (four solo) in the contest against the Broncos, and should put up similar results when the Raiders head to Buffalo for their second road game to open the season.

Kwon Alexander, Pittsburgh Steelers

While not the starter for the Steelers, he still played a majority of snaps and was able to be involved in nine TT, eight of those solos. His nine tackles led the team and he is on track to continue the production going forward.

Terrel Bernard, Buffalo Bills

Bernard has been named as the starting middle linebacker for the Bills, and will therefore be the recipient of tackle numbers similar to those achieved in Week 1: 11 TT, four solos. Since the starting/every down role was not expected, he is an LB who should be a target for waiver wire claiming.

Germaine Pratt, Cincinnati Bengals

Pratt not only put up 11 TT in Week 1 (seven solo), he also tacked on a sack and a forced fumble (FF), making him a value in both tackle-oriented and big play IDP league formats. His snap count may drop back to its previous levels, but for now, he is worthy of a starting role in deeper leagues.

Defensive Linemen

Carl Granderson, New Orleans Saints, DE

Picking up 1.5 sacks against the Titans will thrust Granderson into the defensive end limelight. He also had three TT (one solo). He heads to Carolina to face a rookie QB, so the potential exists for additional big play production.

Arden Key, Tennessee Titans, DE

On the other side of the field, Key also picked up a sack and a half in the game, with a pass defended (PD) and a solo tackle as part of the four TT he accumulated in Week 1. He led the Titan defenders in pressures on the QB, despite playing only about half the snaps on defense.

Yannick Ngakoue, Chicago Bears, DE

The veteran has been on six teams over the past six seasons, and stepped into a role on the Bears defense that will likely find him collecting something approaching double digit sacks on the season (he has collected eight or better sacks in all of his seven prior seasons in the league). He collected a sack and four TT in Week 1 (three solo, two TFL).

Drake Jackson, San Francisco 49ers, DE

A DE that racks up three sacks in a game is going to draw attention. He did this while playing less than half the snaps on defense, along with three solo tackles (two TFL). He also had three QB hits/hurries (QH) in the contest. He is behind a couple of top IDP in the form of Nick Bosa and Arik Armstead on the 49er depth chart, but he is playing on a top defense that will generate stats for its players on a weekly basis.

Defensive Backs

Reed Blankenship, Philadelphia Eagles, S

Blakenship is a starting safety for a strong defense, and he picked up 11 TT in Week 1, eight of them solos. He also was credited with a pair of PD, making him a dual threat in tackle-oriented and big play leagues. (Note: Blankenship is on the Injury Report below and is listed as questionable due to rib issues)

DeShon Elliott, Miami Dolphins, S

Another starting safety to open the season, and another DB that had double digit tackles in the opening game of the season, 13 TT (eight solo). Look for the Dolphin safety tandem to be tackle producers going forward, which includes Jevon Holland.

Grant Delpit, Cleveland Browns, S

Delpit emerged as a tackle producer last season, and with the Brown linebackers not known for big tackle numbers, he should be able to improve on last season’s 72 solos. He collected 8 TT in Week 1 (seven solo, one TFL) and also stuck a PD and QH on his stat sheet. He also played 98% of the defensive snaps.

Trent McDuffie, Kansas City Chiefs, CB

McDuffie was inserted into the productive slot corner role half the snaps he played in Week 1, and that position in the Chief defense yields great IDP results. He had an 8 TT game (six solo) and also forced a fumble (FF) against the visiting Lions. If he sticks at the slot corner role, he is a DB to target for your roster.

D.J. Reed, New York Jets, CB

Reed is playing opposite Sauce Gardner in the Jet secondary, and with Gardner being a corner to avoid by offensive schemers, look to Reed to see plenty of action going forward. A targeted CB is a productive CB. He had 11 TT in Week 1 (10 solo) and the big plays will come if offenses keep testing him.

Fantasy Football IDP Fallers – Escalator Going Down


Rashan Gary, Green Bay Packers 

This is likely a temporary situation, as he recovers from a torn ACL. He was used for just 16% of the defensive snaps in Week 1, and had no tackles credited to him during that limited time on the field. If he sees his snap count grow as the season progresses, he will be a player you are glad to have added to your squad early on.

Anthony Walker, Cleveland Browns 

He had just one assist in the game against the Bengals to open the season, and while the Bengal offense was pathetic, that single assisted tackle is not going to cut it for a LB that was on the field for 59% of the defensive snaps. Keep an eye on this trend, and the propensity for the Browns to rely on an extra CB in their defensive schemes.

Defensive Linemen

Haason Reddick, Philadelphia Eagles, DE

Reddick was a non-factor, and may be limited by his recent thumb surgery. Even so, a single assist and one QH are not starting DE stats, and he was likely drafted as a starting DE in your league. If you were the one taking him, bench him for the present time.

Defensive Backs

Roger McCreary, Tennessee Titans, CB

He was part of the defensive actors for 88% of the snaps in New Orleans, and he came up with a goose egg in the stat column for tackles. He was moved out of the slot position due to an in-game injury to Kristian Fulton, which obviously had an effect on his production. 

Week 2 Matchups to Exploit

With just one week in the books, it is a bit too early to look for trends among teams as far as who you want to target when selecting your IDP starters. This portion of the IDP Report will highlight the best options for IDP usage where you have a coin-flip decision between two players.

Fantasy Football 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. Not all the players commented on are here, however, as there is no need to waste your time searching for players that are heavily owned. 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.


Defensive Linemen

Defensive Backs

NFL IDP Injuries – 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.


Defensive Linemen



Defensive Backs



As always, 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. If you have any fantasy football questions, especially about IDP leagues, you can also send a message to ia@fantasyalarm.com 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.