Here we are in Week 11 and I'm ready to give you the 2023 IDP Football Matchups for the week. The playoff race is heating up (in fantasy football and real football)! So we're in for some exciting few weeks.
Let's hope you're in a better position than the Cincinnati Bengals are after Thursday Night Football.
Most leagues will start the playoffs in Week 14. 12 team leagues should have only four playoff teams, if you ask me, and the playoffs should start in Week 15. But I'm in one fun 12-team dynasty IDP league with eight playoff teams and a two-round championship contest from Weeks 15 to 16. I've already got my ticket to the tournament punched, but every single team is still technically in contention right now.
These weeks will be important! That's why you need to read my IDP matchup previews and find the best DL, LB, and DBs to start.
2023 IDP Football Week 11 Matchups
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Best Defensive Line Matchups
Bills DL vs Jets OL
The Jets' offensive line was not very good at the start of the season, and it has only gotten worse. It has been decimated by injuries and the poor play of the remaining players. In four of the past five games, the Jets have allowed sacks at a rate of higher than 10% of all passing plays. That's why PFF ranks the Jets as the single worst offensive line in the league and why I rank Buffalo vs NYJ as the single best defensive line matchup in my full Week 11 DL matchup chart.
As for the Bills, they have one of the strongest all-around defensive lines, but they don't have a single star. That's good for IDP purposes in one sense--there are a lot of capable Bills available as free agents to stream--but it's bad in another sense: you don't know who will go off. The Bills have four defensive linemen with 4.0 or more sacks: DE Leonard Floyd (7.0), DE A.J. Epenesa (6.5), DT Ed Oliver (5.0), and DE Gregory Rousseau (4.0).
In the Bills' Week 1 loss to the Jets, the Bills only made two sacks, but that was when the Jets' O-line was still healthy.
Best Starts: DE Leonard Floyd, DE A.J. Epenesa
Quality Starts: DT Ed Oliver
Quality Streamers: DE Gregory Rousseau, DT DaQuan Jones
Steelers DL vs Browns OL
The Browns are starting fifth-round rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson this week in place of the injured Deshaun Watson. Both are sack-prone quarterbacks, and the Steelers vs Browns might show up as a top matchup, too, even if Watson were starting. But Steelers' stars like T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith, Cam Heyward, and the Steelers LBs and DBs, too, even against DTR, are especially appealing plays given that they get to tee off against a rookie deer in the headlights.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson's lone start:
19/36, 121 yards. 0 TD, 3 INT
He took 4 sacks and had an ANY/A of -1.55
— Ross McCorkle (@Ross_McCorkle) November 15, 2023
Thompson-Robinson took four sacks, threw three interceptions, and fumbled the football once in his first start, a blowout loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Now comes the Steelers. The Steelers are tied for the league lead in turnovers. Many of the turnovers are generated by their feisty front seven. Expect big plays galore from Watt and Highsmith.
Must Starts: DE T.J. Watt, DE Alex Highsmith
Quality Starts: DT Cameron Heyward
Deep League Streamers: DE Markus Golden
Vikings DL vs Broncos OL
The Broncos might have a slightly above average offensive line (PFF ranks them No. 13), but Russell Wilson just likes holding onto the ball and ends up getting sacked a lot. Among quarterbacks with over 300 dropbacks, Wilson has the second-highest average time from snap to throw, the third-highest sack rate on pressures, and the third-most gross sacks.
— SKOLLEGE (@riprocketfizz) November 13, 2023
The Vikings have one superstar defensive lineman in Danielle Hunter, but D.J. Wonnum has shown sparks in recent weeks. The former fourth-round pick now has three sacks in the past three weeks. His PFF pass rush grades since Week 6 have increased since his early struggles.
Must Start: DE Danielle Hunter
Quality Streamer: DE D.J. Wonnum
Other Good Pass Rush Matchups
- Cowboys DL vs Panthers OL
- Dolphins DL vs Raiders OL
- Lions DL vs Bears OL
- Browns DL vs Steelers OL
- Titans DL vs Jaguars OL
Best Linebacker Matchups
Commanders LBs vs Giants
The Commanders' linebackers, of whom one or two are likely to be available as free agents in many IDP leagues face a New York Giants team with a run-heavy offense and a weak quarterback. The Giants run the ball an average of 29.0 times per game, the ninth-most in the league, but they've been doing it even more of late: 33.3 rushes per game in the past three games.
Giants QB Tommy DeVito has thrown three interceptions in the past two games, and Commanders LB Jamin Davis has made an interception, a forced fumble, and two sacks this season. If DeVito targets the tight ends or receivers running slants, Commanders' linebackers could make a play on the ball. Since Cody Barton went on IR, David Mayor has taken over as the Commanders' No. 2 LB. He has made 29 combined tackles in four games.
Best Streamer: LB Jamin Davis
Quality Streamer: LB David Mayo
Bears LBs vs Lions
The Lions are the fifth-most run-happy team in the league, averaging 30.6 rushes per game. They also throw to the tight end a lot, so Bears linebackers will have to play the pass. Chicago LBs T.J. Edwards and Jack Sanborn are some of the better linebackers at defending against the pass and are always capable of making a pass breakup.
Jack Sanborn has shown time and again he’s a starting caliber LB in the NFL.
— Clay Harbor (@clayharbs82) November 9, 2023
Sanborn has started in Weeks 9 and 10 with Tremaine Edmunds injured. Edmunds (knee) missed practice again on Wednesday, so his status for Sunday is questionable. If Edmunds starts, Sanborn moves to LB No. 3. He is still likely to play one or two dozen snaps, but he would only be a starter in the deepest of leagues. If Edmunds is fully healthy, he's a start.
Must Start: LB T.J. Edwards
Quality Start: LB Tremaine Edmunds (if healthy)
Quality Streamer: LB Jack Sanborn
Other Good LB Matchups
- Chiefs LBs vs Eagles
- Bucs LBs vs 49ers
- Panthers LBs vs Cowboys
Best Defensive Back Matchups
Seahawks DBs vs Rams QB + WRs
Matt Stafford is back to practicing in full, so he is expected to start this week. That means the Rams will be back to tossing the ball all over the field. The Rams attempt an average of 35.1 passes per game, the eleventh-highest total in the league, and they were throwing it even more before Stafford went down. The over/under is 46.5, which reflects the consensus that SEA - LAR will be a shootout.
Lowest yards per coverage snap allowed among outside corners with at least 200 coverage snaps:
1. Riq Woolen, 0.8
2. Sauce Gardner, 0.9
3. Jaylon Johnson, 0.9@NextGenStats
— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) November 16, 2023
The Seahawks' best defensive back is rookie Devon Witherspoon, but if he's not available, safeties Julian Love and Quandre Diggs are fine streamers. Riq Woolen, who made six interceptions his rookie year, has only made a single interception this season and just tallied his first fumble recovery in Week 10. Although Woolen is playing more snaps than Tre Brown, Brown is a better start because Woolen is missing so many tackles.
Must Start: CB Devon Witherspoon
Quality Start: S Julian Love, CB Tre Brown
Quality Streamers: S Quandre Diggs, CB Riq Woolen
Rams DBs vs Seahawks QB + WRs
The Rams' defensive backs are strong starts for the same reason as the Seahawks'. This is going to be a shootout, so the Rams corners and safeties will also be busy. They aren't as well known (and they aren't as highly rostered), but you've got a couple to choose from.
Quality Streamers: S Jordan Fuller, S Russ Yeast
Deep League Streamer: CB Cobie Durant
Cardinals DBs vs Texans QB + WRs
This could be an ugly matchup for the Cardinals, but that's also why the Cardinals' secondary could accumulate numbers in their stat lines. Texans QB C.J. Stroud has thrown for 826 yards in the past two games. True enough, he has only thrown two interceptions in the whole season (both coming in the past four games), so the Cardinals will mostly have to rely on making tackles. Stroud has also thrown six touchdown passes in the past two games, so that's six plays where no defender was able to make a tackle, but that still leaves about 30-40 tackles for corners and safeties to make.
The Cardinals have been through a couple of cornerbacks, but Marco Wilson is their No. 1 CB now.
Quality Starts: S Jalen Thompson
Quality Streamers: CB Marco Wilson, S K'Von Wallace