I'm back again to deliver some vital IDP Start-Sit advice for Week 3 of the 2023 Fantasy Football season, let's go!
Your 2023 IDP Football Week 3 Start-Sits lie in the paragraphs within this article. Unless the situation requires it, it's likely that the IDP Start-Sits on this series won't contain the most obvious choices and should give plenty of food for thought.
With some stats and analysis of previous weeks as well as a look into team dynamics and team set-up. Set a weekly reminder and keep an eye out on the Fantasy Six Pack website for the upload each week, and whilst you're there sign up to be a member and join our IDP Discord channel to stay up to date with all the latest IDP info, including live responses from the whole of the Fantasy Six Pack IDP Team.
Also, check out our Week 2 IDP Rankings.
2023 IDP Football Week 3 Start-Sit
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Linebackers to Start
Kwon Alexander, Pittsburgh Steelers
Kwon Alexander has been one of the biggest surprises at the linebacker position after the first two weeks. After signing for the Steelers from the New York Jets this off-season, it was assumed that he would be a depth piece behind two fellow free agent signings Cole Holcomb and Elandon Roberts. It seems as though Alexander has now cemented his place alongside Holcomb as a starting middle linebacker with Roberts dropping to a rotation role.
In this week's match-up against the Las Vegas Raiders, Alexander will have plenty of opportunities. The Raiders were very reserved in the running game in Week 2 against a dominant Bills, but against a Steelers team who have invited an average of thirty-four rushing attempts per game from opposition, a lot of tackling opportunities should fall the way of Alexander.
So glad to see we finally have a steady physical presence at LB in Kwon Alexander, been looking for that guy since we lost Shazier
— EC (@EC_DET313) September 19, 2023
Germaine Pratt, Cincinnati Bengals
Unbelievably I was able to pick up Pratt in more than one league right before the Week 1 Sunday games, and wow, did he show out! The fifth-year veteran is well on track to make over a hundred tackles this season after putting up twenty tackles in total across the first two weeks of the NFL season.
Considered the LB2 in Cincy behind Logan Wilson, Pratt will be up against the Los Angeles Rams and this should bring an additional positive week against a Rams team who have thrown thirty-five times to Puka Nacua who operates predominantly in the slot. With former-Notre Dame running back Kyren Williams securing his position as the Rams' lead back, this could produce fifteen to twenty additional opportunities for Pratt to get to the ball.
Linebackers to Sit
Leighton Vander Esch, Dallas Cowboys
Leighton Vander Esch has had a seemingly average start to the football season so far. Making ninety tackles in 2022, Vander Esch will need to pick up production if he wants to surpass the hundred tackle mark, a feat he hasn't managed since his rookie year.
Facing off against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 3, it may seem a good game on paper for both the Cowboys and Vander Esch. In the two weeks of the season so far, the Cardinals have only allowed an average of eleven tackles to the opposing starting middle/inside linebacker pair. While this might be a nice game for the EDGE rushers in Dallas, it should prove to be a risky production game for the linebackers.
Willie Gay, Kansas City Chiefs
Willie Gay, as assumed with the introduction of Drue Tranquill into the frame would see limited action but this hasn't been the case. Gay has been on the field for the most snaps at linebacker, after Nick Bolton. It does however feel, as a result of the first two performances that the position is slipping away from him with each game.
It is likely that we see the introduction of Tranquill more as the Week 3 match-up against the Chicago Bears progresses. In addition to the team dynamic, the Bears have only offered up a limited amount of opportunities for opposition linebackers to score points. In the Bears' last match-up against the Packers De'Vondre Campbell managed seven total tackles and Preston Smith totalled five tackles, meaning there won't be much work to go around this week for Willie Gay.
Defensive Linemen to Start
Khalil Mack, Los Angeles Chargers
Return of the Mack! While Mack is still yet to record a sack this NFL regular season, it doesn't mean that he is past his best. Mack has performed well in both games for the Chargers this season and was very very close to getting his hands on both Tagovailoa and Tannehill but, good quarterback play saved their bacon.
This week against the Minnesota Vikings, the former Chicago Bears EDGE will be looking to dominate a Vikings offensive line that have allowed four sacks so far this season on Kirk Cousins. Cousins since 2022 has been sacked fifty times by opposition defensive players and Mack will want to get on that action on Sunday.
Khalil Mack was outstanding against the run on Sunday. Plays like this all over the tape. pic.twitter.com/0tBmc9lhRj
— Daniel Popper (@danielrpopper) September 21, 2023
Sam Hubbard, Cincinnati Bengals
Similarly to Mack, Hubbard has been a solid performer for the Bengals, so far this season. In two tough match-ups against the Cleveland Browns (in the heavy rain) and the Baltimore Ravens has meant that Hubbard has under-produced.
However, this week against the Los Angeles Rams will prove to be a nice affair for both Hubbard and his opposite counterpart Trey Hendrickson. In the Rams' last outing against a dominant San Francisco 49ers team, the two defensive backs who were working the outside of the Rams offensive line had a lot of joy. Attacking from all angles on Sunday by the Bengals should see both a win for the Bengals and a big game for Sam Hubbard.
Big kudos to Sam Hubbard for sniffing this one out.
After the bomb to Zay Flowers they try and set him up with a screen with Mark Andrews essentially pulling as a blocker.
Unconventional, but Hubbard sniffs it out. If he doesn't Andrews has a DB to block for 6 pic.twitter.com/zvu6ozGiuJ
— Cole Jackson (@ColeJacksonFB) September 19, 2023
Defensive Linemen to Sit
Zach Allen, Denver Broncos
For the third week in a row, I have featured yet another Denver Broncos defensive lineman. This week I'm predicting that Zach Allen is the odd man out against the Miami Dolphins. After pocketing a hefty contract during this off season after leaving the Arizona Cardinals, Allen is yet to get off the mark in Denver. Averaging fifty-six defensive snaps per game so far this season, Allen has been overshadowed by the rest of the Broncos front-line.
Allen has been out-produced by Jonathan Harris, Matt Henningsen, Randy Gregory, Jonathon Cooper and Nik Bonitto. In a game against the Dolphins this week, they will be set to protect their quarterback through the middle meaning Allen will have a tough day at the office. Last week against the Patriots, Davon Godchaux, Deatrich Wise and Christian Barmore all struggled to produce through the middle. Safe to bench Allen this week.
Vita Vea, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Vita Ve-a had himself a day-a in Week 2 against the Chicago Bears. In what was a highly productive game for Vea, he notched his first sack since Week 9 of the 2022 season. This week against the Philadelphia offensive line will be a whole different kind of game and Vea won't get much joy working the inside against Lane Johnson and Jason Kelce, two of the best in the business.
Whilst Vea does have the capacity to produce some high scoring in IDP, he is very much sack dependent and this is a risky game to gamble on Vita Vea getting a sack from the defensive tackle position. The Eagles offered up a lot of sacks last week in Thursday Night Football against the Minnesota Vikings but, these came from the outside. With injury doubts also surrounding Vea, do the safe thing and bench Vea this week.
Defensive Backs to Start
Andre Cisco, Jacksonville Jaguars
Is it just me or is it every time the Jaguars are on defense, I hear the name Andre Cisco. The guy is everywhere. With twelve tackles, an interception and a forced fumble Cisco is tallying up points all over the field. In the past two weeks Cisco has shown great versatility and given us an indication of how productive this season will be for him.
In a game against the Houston Texans this week, it will prove to be a very interesting match up, against rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud who has thrown thirty-three stray passes so far through two weeks. With a plethora of wide receivers available to Stroud, Cisco will have his hands full in both zone and man-to-man coverage. Expect tackles and expect points on the board for Andre Cisco.
Andre Cisco is set to have a breakout season in 2023. Through two weeks, he is the #Jaguars highest graded defender.
Cisco has allowed an NFL Rating of just 26.2 when targeted. He also has 2 PDs, 1 INT, and 1 FF.
— Daniel Griffis (@DanDGriffis) September 19, 2023
Marcus Epps, Las Vegas Raiders
Marcus Epps was a really shrewd pick up by the Las Vegas Raiders during this past offseason. Having appeared in the Superbowl nearly 9 months ago, Epps has established himself as a key playmaker across the first two games of this season.
Epps looks to have secured a permanent role alongside Tre'Von Moehrig and they are proving to be a productive partnership. Epps has eleven total tackles, including two tackles for loss so far this year, and this week against a Pittsburgh Steelers offense that have struggled to gel, it could prove to be a big day for Epps.
— Matt Holder (@MHolder95) September 21, 2023
Defensive Backs to Sit
Jaquan Brisker, Chicago Bears
Jaquan Brisker left the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers citing illness before returning to the action. Brisker was also dealing with an undisclosed injury prior to the season start which seemed to be dealt with before Week 1 against the Green Bay Packers. To boot, Brisker allegedly liked a message on X (formerly Twitter) referring to the Chicago Bears as "trash".
— Let Ryan Poles Eat (@POLESPLSEAT) September 21, 2023
A lot of unnecessary drama seems to be unfolding in Chicago and I'm keeping well away for this week in a match-up that the Bears are destined to lose. Up against Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs will not be an easy game, with Travis Kelce back in contention, it isn't going to be a good day for anyone who has to go up against him and so I'm leaving Brisker on my bench this week.
Harrison Smith, Minnesota Vikings
Harrison Smith has underwhelmed so far this season in terms of fantasy football production. Through no fault of his own Smith has been used a lot more in coverage this season under new defensive coordinator, Brian Flores. The introduction of undrafted free agent rookie Ivan Pace to the dynamic has meant that Smith has been kept away from the action a little more than he'd like.
Playing against the Los Angeles Chargers, asking for a big week is a tough ask from Harrison Smith, against Justin Herbert who has only thrown three interceptions in his last ten NFL regular season games.
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions or comments, please reach me at @DynastyGuruNFL on Twitter.
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