2023 IDP Football Players to Avoid

by Steve Hungarter (IDPHunter)
2023 IDP Football Players to Avoid

We love fantasy football. We love IDP, more specifically, but none of us love drafting a bust or overpaying for a player's premium. I will share some secrets in 2023 IDP Football Players to Avoid; of course, that's why we all came here to read this article. But first, some basics.

For me, it's all about value. I mean, I will utilize any player, but if you take a player whose ADP is too high, it will screw you over somewhere else in your draft. High ADP values are what I am avoiding.

Funny story, for IDP value is all over the place. This is because we are all on different variants of scoring. That could bring up and down players and change their values. In this article will use the Sleeper ADP standard to determine players' thoughts. For these draft articles, we are using FantasyPros basic scoring below; that way, we all understand the reasoning behind these rankings.

Those players I mentioned above go up and down off a strictly ADP. This all works because ADP, which stands for Average Draft Position, refers to the average position a player selects during fantasy drafts. This value is determined by analyzing many drafts and recent years' scoring, often excluding computer-generated picks.

Players in high demand tend to be chosen early and thus have a lower ADP. That system could always be flawed because no one is the same player they were the season before, and that will always leave the door open for players to rise and fall in this format. I'm specifically speaking about the players to avoid in this article.

But that is not the only criterion that makes us avoid it. Sure, the ADP is one thing, but how about decreasing the player's snap count? We have one of that examples below. Another example is playing a less attractive position but having some success, and now unaware owners are using the household name to select their team. We have another example of that below.

How about a player who had success and his team tinkered with his position based on the scheme? You will see two of those examples below. Lastly, we have an example of circumstance, and the office politics surrounding the player may have more implications than casual fans would think. Savy off-season owners look at contracts, player age, snap count, usage, and what coachspeak and beat reporters are writing. Here are five players I am avoiding in 2023.

2023 IDP Football Players to Avoid

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Chase Young, DL, Washington Commanders

Injuries have heavily affected Young's performance, as he was limited to just nine games in 2021 and only managed to play in 3 games in 2022. Chase Young's real struggles involve a crowded defensive line in Washington. In 2022, Montez Sweat, Daron Payne, and Jonathan Allen demonstrated impressive performances, contributing to the team's success. As the 2023 season approaches, this crowded situation will likely continue, potentially impacting Young's opportunities and production.

Not to mention connecting the dots on what the team thinks is pretty easy to tell. They did not pick up his 5th-year option but just resigned Daron Payne to a four-year 90 million contract.

Lost in all that talk, Montez Sweat is also in the last year of their contract. These two will likely have to duke it out and play for the next contract, but realistically Washington only keeps one with rookie K.J. Henry waiting in the wings. At the time of this writing, a trade rumor is emerging in the NFL, and you should work one in your leagues too.

This is a case of following the trends and realizing this player is losing his value before the rest of your league does, so take advantage of what he did his rookie season, exploit the fact he is just 24 years old, and has an awesome pedigree and draft capital. So the question becomes, is he a buy or sell?

Fantasy owners looking for a deal can see this as a buying opportunity, while the rest of those owners may want to get off before the ship sinks. For this article, he is indeed an avoid because his drafting ADP rate is so high because of his rookie season.

Frankie Luvu, LB, Carolina Panthers

Luvu, out of nowhere last season, exploded onto the IDP scene, making himself a legitimate LB1. At 26, Luvu showcased an impressive performance, accumulating 111 tackles, seven sacks (within six games), one forced fumble, one interception, four pass breakups, and 19 tackles for loss.

But here is the thing, you will have to pay up to get him, and it won't match the results. It is being reported that we will be seeing a lot of three-safety sets with Xavier Woods or  Jeremy Chinn playing down in the box and Xavier Woods platooning the defense, and Shaq Thompson being the guy.

So at the very least, expect a reduced snap count role for him. This is the case where you want to get maximize value and sell on the low. If I don't see the usage, I will try to trade Luvu before it's too late. At a minimum, expect a decrease in snap counts due to the playing scheme.

Jerome Baker, LB, Miami Dolphins

Baker's standout attribute as an IDP player has been his ability to generate pressure on the quarterback, evidenced by his impressive 16.5 sacks in the last three seasons, ranking him second among linebackers in this category. However, the Dolphins' defense is undergoing significant changes in 2023.

New defensive coordinator Vic Fangio is known for his conservative blitzing approach based on his previous coaching experiences in Denver and Chicago. This shift is expected to limit Baker's pass-rush opportunities and possibly make him an inside green dot play-caller, which can benefit IDP linebackers by providing more chances for tackles, but this isn't Baker's game.

Unfortunately, Baker has struggled with efficiency as a tackler, even when factoring in his pass-rushing responsibilities. This raises concerns about his ability to capitalize on the increased tackle opportunities that may come his way.

For IDP managers who are optimistic about Baker's potential for higher tackle numbers and believe he can outperform his previous LB3-level production in Miami, this could present a favorable opportunity to trade him. It is important to note that Baker's tackle production has been somewhat replaceable at best, so it might be wise to seize the chance to cash in on his current value.

You could sneakily trade him now to a League mate who doesn't keep up in the offseason by citing previous seasons' success. I hope this helps.

Trevon Diggs, DB, Dallas Cowboys

Here is another example of capitalizing draft value on a player's recent year success. Trevon Diggs began the 2021 season on an incredibly impressive note, recording seven interceptions and two touchdowns in his first six games. Although this performance was remarkable, it was unlikely to be sustainable, yet it captured the attention of casual fantasy managers who tend to remember such standout moments even in 2023.

Despite not maintaining the same level of productivity in 2022, Diggs continued to make notable contributions throughout the remainder of the season but still gets drafted too highly based on name recognition.

This is a case of a casual fan knowing the player and thinking he is a good selection. As the DB12 coming off your draft board, he will most assuredly be on one of your league-mates' rosters as a DB1. Don't let that be you, as much better options are available. While Diggs possesses real-life exceptional ball skills and remains a highly sought-after option in IDP leagues, his fantasy output may not consistently reach high levels of the round you would need to draft him in.

This is primarily due to his below-average tackling ability, which results in fewer overall statistics than other top-tier fantasy cornerbacks like Marlon Humphrey and Carlton Davis; he generally ranks around 72nd.

L'Jarius Sneed, DB, Kansas City Chiefs

I know he is good, but we mentioned and gave three examples of how ADP gets exploited from one season to the next. We also gave reasons why seasons based on previous years' stats determine ADP. Lastly, another example above mentioned how difficult a cornerback is to consistency. He is also a cornerback, which is sometimes hit or miss. Corners who yield high tackles are valuable. Here in lies the problem. When Sneed did this, it was from the slot, a role he no longer plays. Experienced Dynasty managers who watch tape know this. Here is something you may not know:

I want you to also look at how roles change as well. The Chiefs played him early in the year as a slot defender resulting in tackles, then moved him to play outside. So during Weeks 16-18, his production declined, averaging just 9.91 PPG. Sneed was moved from the valuable slot cornerback position to an outside cornerback role. At the same time, Trent McDuffie took on the slot cornerback duties and performed exceptionally, averaging 12.2 PPG in the later part of the regular season and playoffs. Not saying he is a bust, but that shift may not be worth the high investment you would have to pay to get him anyway. For someone like myself, who commonly punts this position it does not make sense to draft him as his ADP suggests DB7.

The change in role for Sneed had a significant impact on his ability to make big plays. In the first 14 weeks, Sneed had 59 pass rush snaps, resulting in 4 sacks. However, he had only four pass-rush opportunities in his last six games and failed to register a sack. Additionally, Sneed's tackle production decreased as well. While playing 20 or more slot snaps per game, he averaged 6.7 tackles per game, but with fewer than 20, his average dropped to just 3.2 tackles.

The challenges facing Sneed extend beyond potential drops in production. There is a historical trend in IDP for turnover among defensive backs. Looking at the last three seasons, there was a 75% turnover from 2020 to 2021 and an 83% turnover from 2021 to 2022. Furthermore, none of the top 5 performers at the position in one season managed to maintain their elite status and finish in the top 12 the following season. Given the likely role change for Sneed and the volatility at the defensive back position, it is advisable to avoid selecting him as the CB1/DB7.


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