2022 IDP Dynasty Rookie Rankings

Last Rankings Update: May 23, 2022

Rankings finally updated post-draft, with some explanations of how I’ve ranked.

I mostly weight towards draft capital. Pre-draft I used expected draft position from Grinding the Mocks. If you want to see my work on draft capital and what it means for IDP players, click here.

These ranks are intended to be true to “True Position” Settings where edge rushers are actually edge rushers. If you play in a league where positions are based on base packages that defenses only run 20% of the time, you will have to adjust these rankings for your league. In most cases that will mean moving the elite DE players to about tier 4 of the linebackers, and ignoring the rest of the affected edge rushers completely.

Otherwise my basis for ranking can be found at theundroppables.com here -> Defensive End, Linebacker, Safety

Defensive Line

Tier One

  • Kayvon Thibodeaux – NYG
  • Aidan Hutchinson – DET

Thibodeau checks all my boxes. Hutchinson is a little light on collegiate production (0.65 career TFL/g, my threshold is 0.8), but I’m mostly willing to look the other way on that. If you like Hutchinson as #1 I’m not going to argue with you.

Tier Two

  • Travon Walker – JAC

Walker’s 0.36 TFL/game is the lowest of any first round pick in the last 12 years. His underlying metrics at PFF also seem to be bad. Alas, he is the #1 overall pick, and that cohort has an excellent hit rate. He simply can’t fall past Jermaine Johnson and George Karlaftis.

Tier Three

  • Jermaine Johnson – NYJ
  • George Karlaftis – KC

Johnson didn’t meet my threshold in the vertical, and didn’t do agility drills, so I’m not sure what to make of him. Karlaftis pretty much checks all by boxes (a little slow in the 40), but he’s now projected to be drafted around pick 20. The back half of the first round is a disaster for Defensive End hit rates.

Tier Four

  • Arnold Ebiketie – ATL
  • Nik Bonitto – DEN
  • Drake Jackson – SF
  • Sam Williams – DAL
  • Cameron Thomas – ARI

This group is all 2nd and 3rd rounders who I consider to have good profiles.plus Ojabo. Ojabo, Mafe and Ebiketie are all projected at the end of round 1, early round 2, but there isn’t much of a difference in terms of success rate between round 2 and round 3 – or the end of round 1 for that matter – these guys are all pretty interchangeable to me.

Tier Five

  • DeAngelo Malone – ATL
  • Boye Mafe – SEA
  • David Ojabo – BAL
  • Myjai Sanders – ARI
  • Alex Wright – CLE
  • Josh Paschal – DET

The rest of the 2nd and 3rd round picks who have questions about their profile. In most of these guys cases, they weren’t productive in college, but unlike Walker and Hutchinson, aren’t top picks.

The 3 year hit rates for 2nd and 3rd round Defensive Ends reaching a top 24 finish is 18% and 15% respectively.


Tier One

  • Devin Lloyd – JAC
  • Quay Walker – GB

Lloyd has a much cleaner path to playing time than Walker so you could split this tier if you wanted to. Still, 1st round Linebackers have excellent hit rates. This time last year we weren’t exactly sure what Micah Parsons role in Dallas would be, and we wouldn’t have guessed what it ended up being.

Tier Two

  • Troy Andersen – ATL

There is a big drop off in hit rate after the 2nd round, so Troy Anderson has to be above everyone else despite being a project.

Tier Three

  • Nakobe Dean – PHI

Nakobe Dean was projected to be a first rounder before falling due to injury concerns. In early drafts he is still being drafted like a 1st rounder. In drafts I’ve seen he is always drafted ahead of Troy Anderson and often ahead of Quay Walker. Doing that is assuming that he would have been a 1st rounder – which we don’t know for sure – and allowing no discount whatsoever for his injury concerns. His ADP is the riskiest of any rookie IDP this year.

Tier Four

  • Channing Tindall – MIA
  • Brian Asamoah – MIN
  • Terrel Bernard – BUF
  • Chad Muma – JAC
  • Christian Harris – HOU
  • Leo Chenal – KC

Take your pick of any of the remainder of the 3rd round guys. Some consider the 3rd round as good draft capital. The hit rate is 22% for a top 24 season and 33% for a top 36 season, so it’s not all that great.

After Tier Four

The top 24 hit rates in round 4 and 5 (15%, 12%) don’t fall off a cliff like other positions, so if you like the landing spots of Brandon Smith and Micah McFadden, feel free to take one or the other ahead of a tier four player you don’t like.

The hit rate for a top 36 season for a 6th round linebacker is 4% (Foyesade Oluokun, Danny Trevathan). Neither broke out as a rookie. If Detroit saw a year one starter in Rodriquez, they would have drafted him earlier than the 6th round.

I’ve seen rankings that have Malcolm Rodriguez in the top 5 rookie LBs and ahead of Troy Anderson. Drafting Rodriquez that high is a bet against historical hit rates that are wildly not in your favour.

Defensive Back

Tier One

  • Kyle Hamilton – BAL

Hamilton missed being a rare safety to be a top 10 pick. Regardless, he’s very talented and deserving of a tier of his own.

Positional value and where he fits into an overall IDP ranking is a different debate. Personally, I think he fits in after the first 3 Defensive Ends and first 2 Linebackers, somewhere around the 4th to 6th overall IDP.

Tier Two

  • Lewis Cine – MIN
  • Daxton Hill – CIN

Both sunck into the first round and end up in a cohort with much better floor outcomes (top 12, top 24 hit rates) than the remainder of the class.

Tier Three

  • Nick Cross – IND
  • Jaquan Brisker – CHI
  • Bryan Cook – KC

The 2nd and 3rd round have similar hit rates for safeties (37%, 31%), so I’m grouping by the profile elements I like. Those are early declare (Cross) and good NFL.com film grade (Cross, Brisker, Cook)

Jaquan Brisker is often drafted ahead of Hill and/or Cine. If you like him, you have to pick him earlier than what he’s ranked as here.

Tier Four

  • Jalen Pitre – HOU
  • Kerby Joseph – DET
  • Cam Taylor Britt – CIN
  • JT Woods – LAC

The remainder of the day 2 players who don’t have the profile elements I like. All are late declares with poorer film grades.

Tier Five

  • Derek Stingley – HOU
  • Ahmad Gardner – NYJ
  • Trent McDuffie – KC
  • Kaiir Elam – BUF
  • Roger McCreary – TEN
  • Kyler Gordon – CHI
  • Andrew Booth Jr. – MIN
  • Alontae Taylor – NO
  • Marcus Jones – NE

I’m not advocating for the “rookie Cornerback rule”, because it’s a myth, I’m just saying that since 2011, only 1 out of 125 day three safeties have had a top 12 DB season within 3 years of being drafted. The 1st and 2nd round Cornerbacks are better bets. Not a very good bet mind you, but regardless, better. At this point I would make sure there isn’t anything you like in any of the other positions before drafting corners.

Marcus Jones is a 3rd rounder, but is an elite level return prospect. Worth keeping an eye on in return yard leagues.

You can find me on Twitter to complain about these rankings @djkelltown.

IDP Draft Capital and Hit Rates: 2021 Edition

“NFL Draft 2010 Set at Radio City Music Hall” by Marianne O’Leary is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Soon it will be rookie draft season for dynasty leagues. Every year we get a new group of young players to debate, rank and then draft. You can probably tell yourself a story about how any player can succeed and have a long productive fantasy career. None of them have had a chance to disappoint us yet.

Draft capital is unquestionably predictive of future success. There are several places to read about the impacts of draft capital for offensive players. I personally like Peter Howard’s work on his Patreon (free).  However for Individual Defensive Players (IDPs), there’s not so much out there.  This article comes in to fill that void.

This article is intended to help with rookie drafts in dynasty leagues, by showing you the historical hit rates of IDP players with similar NFL draft capital.

Updates from Last Year

If you have read last year’s article you will find that there are several changes this year

  • All the players are now grouped by their “True Position”.  This means that nominal 3-4 Outside Linebackers like T.J. Watt and Von Miller are classified as Defensive Ends, and 3-4 Defensive Ends like Leonard WIlliams become Defensive Tackles.  Sleeper is using true position already, ESPN changed to this format in 2020 and MFL is changing to true position in 2022.  The hit rates are different across each position, so it makes sense to group players with similar roles together, instead of a depth chart position which can have different roles from team to team.  Every fantasy website classifies players a little bit differently, and I’ll discuss how I’ve assigned positional designations further down.
  • In addition to adding the 2021 season, I’ve gone back and added the 2012 and 2011 seasons.
  • In past years I’ve presented the hit rates for a top 24 finish only, but this year I have included multiple thresholds.  There are many variations of starting requirements in IDP – I play in 5 dynasty leagues and none of them are the same. My hope is it gives you, the reader, some flexibility to apply this to your own leagues.
  • Previously I’ve shown hit rates for “3 position” (DL/LB/DB, think Sleeper) and “5 position” (DT/DE/LB/CB/S, think MFL) leagues.  This year I’ll only present “5 Position” hit rates, with some quick rules to help adjust for your “3 position” leagues.
  • I’ve added some info on repeat rates at each position.  We can’t just assume that each position has repeat performers at equal rates (and they don’t).

Comments on Methodology, Scoring, Position Designations

All hit rates shown are for players who hit in their first 3 NFL seasons. Waiting more than 3 years for a player to breakout clogs your roster, and there’s a good chance you have cut the player by that point.

The scoring used here is IDP123, which is a 2 point per solo tackle system, and the current scoring default on Sleeper.  The best place to learn more about that scoring is Jordan Rains’s Dynasty Nerds article here, or his tweet thread on the topic here.  However for the purposes of rookie hit rates, the scoring doesn’t change the analysis unless you are using something completely different than this or the Fantasypros standard scoring.  I’ve done some review on IDP scoring previously here.

Defensive statistics are from Pro Football Reference and scored myself, so there are some small variations between what I have scored and what you might see on your favourite fantasy site if they use different statistic providers.  It also means that I have not captured any offensive statistics, so I don’t have Christian Wilkins’s touchdowns in 2019 or 2021, Jeremy Chinn’s rushing yards in 2020, or anyone else’s offensive stats accounted for.  This is defensive stats only.

Positional designations were primarily determined using free information available PFF – I don’t have the budget for an Elite subscription to get the snap counts by alignment – as well as any other info I could find on old rosters or depth charts.  Since every platform has variations on how they assign positions, there will be some differences between what each site has and what I have, and I’ve chosen to live with those differences.  This is also somewhat of a retroactive continuity for the early years in the data set, because while we have complained about the way pass rushers get classified by their depth chart position for as long as I can remember playing IDP, The true position revolution on fantasy platforms is relatively new (at least as far as I know).

Some players legitimacy change positions over the course of their careers.  For the purposes of rookie hit rates those players are grouped with their initial position, unless it was clear that they were changing positions when you would have drafted them as rookies.


Defensive End

Defensive End is influenced the most by early draft capital.  The top half of the first round is very good, but that very quickly changes and the hit rates drop substantially by the end of the round.  Generally all subsequent rounds have worse hit rates than any other position shown here. I would argue that for Defensive End, only the first round should be considered “good” draft capital.  It is the only position with no top 36 hits in either the 6th or 7th round.  Day 3 Defensive Ends should generally be avoided in rookie drafts.

Moving all the pass rushing Linebackers to this group hasn’t changed the hit rates very much at all – the top 24 hit rate for top 16 picks is exactly the same as last year.  This validates re-classifying all the players to True Position for the purposes of determining hit rates.

Defensive Tackle

I’ve chosen to not include a Top 36 hit rate for Defensive Tackle because after the 24th Defensive Tackle, they score significantly fewer points than any of the other positions.

Defensive Tackle is otherwise very similar to Defensive End, except the hit rates look marginally better  after round 1. That difference is 1 or 2 extra players from each draft round having a hit season.

Whether you are required to start 1 or 2 Defensive tackles will make a big difference in terms of how you apply this table to your league.  There is only 1 player out of the 134 day three picks to have a top 12 season this early in their career, whereas there are 10 players in that group with top 24 finishes in their first 3 season.

The gap in hit rate from the top to the bottom of the 1st round appears to be unique to Defensive Ends and Tackles.


Linebackers have similar hit rates the in the top and bottom halves of the first round, and the sample size is much smaller than Defensive End and Defensive Tackle, so the split in the round isn’t presented here.

The big difference from this year to last year is once you remove the Linebackers who primarily pass rush (they have become Defensive Ends), the hit rates rise dramatically, especially in the first round.  A 76% hit rate for a top 24 season is the best of any position and round, though they still lag behind top 16 pick Defensive Ends and Defensive Tackles for hit rates for top 6 and 12 finishes.

The third round has a 22% hit rate for a top 24 finish, which is about where I would draw the line of having good draft capital.  That said there are many more players who have fantasy relevant seasons from rounds 4 through 7 than there is on the defensive line.


I’m inclined to stream Cornerbacks as much as possible, but some dynasty leagues don’t have good options on waivers so you have to keep several on your roster.  Unfortunately for our rookie drafts the hit rates on Cornerbacks with 1st or 2nd round draft capital is the worst of any of the defensive positions, with the exception of Defensive Ends (the 1st round for Defensive Ends as a whole is worse, but that position has a noticeable difference between the top and bottom halves of the round while Cornerback does not). 

Late round picks don’t make up the difference either.  More Cornerbacks are drafted than any of the other defensive positions, which dilutes their hit rates.


Safety is the flattest position.  The hit rate for elite seasons (top 6 finishes) is about the same for each of the first three rounds.  This is a red flag to me.  Safety is so dependent on deployment for a good fantasy season, and NFL teams are looking for different things from that position in real life than we are as fantasy players (we are looking for a bunch of tackles, mostly).

Adjustments for 3 Position IDP Leagues (DL/LB/DB)

I chose to only show only the 5 position tables for clarity, however you may play in a 3 position league where DT/DE and CB/S are combined.  I looked at the scoring results since 2011 to see how the top 12, 24, 36 and 48 split between each of the positions.  I said above that the scoring used doesn’t matter much for hit rates, but that is less true here. In particular, the scoring for passes defended (PD) relative to tackles will affect the number of Cornerbacks and Safetys with high finishes at the DB position (generally Cornerbacks get a few more PD’s).  It is important to check your own league scoring and past results.

Defensive Line

  • On average 2.2 Defensive Tackles finish in the top 12 DLs (range 0 to 5)
  • On average 4.3 Defensive Tackles finish in the top 24 DLs (range 1 to 8)
  • On average 8.7 Defensive Tackles finish in the top 36 DLs (range 5 to 13)
  • On average 13 Defensive Tackles finish in the top 48 DLs (range 7 to 18)

Defensive Back

  • On average 2.5 Cornerbacks finish in the top 12 DBs (range 1 to 6)
  • On average 6.8 Cornerbacks finish in the top 24 DBs (range 5 to 9)
  • On average 13 Cornerbacks finish in the top 36 DBs (range 7 to 15)
  • On average 18 Cornerbacks finish in the top 48 DBs (range 10 to 20)

If you are playing in a league with a combined DL or DB position and you only start 2 of each, you are really looking for elite outcomes from Defensive Tackles or Cornerbacks. If you start more than 2 of each, then those positions are more viable, but they look very much like floor plays to me as most of those players appear to slot in your 3rd and 4th DL/DB spots.

Repeat Rates and Late Hits

We want players that hit, but it’s even better if they hit for multiple seasons. The following table shows the average number of top 24 seasons per player, split by players who had at least one top 24 season within their first 3 NFL seasons, and players who had their first top 24 season later.  I restricted this to the 2011 to 2018 draft classes to only include players who have had the opportunity to have repeat top 24 seasons.

Defensive Linemen are more likely to repeat that performance than other positions.  Linebacker and Safety share the same repeat rate, while Cornerbacks have the lowest frequency of repeating.

I haven’t presented this by draft round here, but generally the earlier rounds have better repeat rates than late rounds. That said, the group sizes outside of the early rounds are all small. After round 3 the biggest group is 4th round linebackers with 6 players who have early top 24 hits.

Tom Kislingbury of Dynasty League Football (DLF) has looked at this through the lens of year-to-year repeats and found similar results.

Depending on the position, the number of players who have breakout seasons later in their career is about 35-55% of the number of players who have breakout seasons earlier. There also isn’t a distinct pattern of what rounds these players are coming from, except for Defensive End, where 9 of the 17 late breakouts are first round draft picks.

The average number of top 24 finishes from late breakout players varies between 1.4 and 1.7 for each position, suggesting that late breakout players don’t have the same longevity as their early breakout peers, but there are exceptions. Jordan Poyer changed positions from Cornerback to Safety and has had five consecutive top 12 Safety finishes, starting with his 5th NFL season. There is also a little bit of skewing in this sample, in particular with the 2018 class who’ve had a chance to breakout in their 4th year, but haven’t had a chance to repeat it yet.

Conclusions and Next Steps

If you have read my past work on IDP rookie hit rates, the biggest change is that once you filter out edge rushers from the Linebacker group, the remaining Linebackers have excellent hit rates compared to the other positions. Before you filter out edge rushers, the best hit rates come from Defensive Ends with early 1st round draft capital. Tripp Brebner of Dynasty Football Factory made the following comment when I posted my first study of IDP draft capital in 2020.

I think the higher repeat rates at Defensive End are significant enough that a Defensive End drafted with a very early 1st round pick should still be considered ahead of a 1st round Linebacker, although that is going to depend on your league lineup requirements, scoring and whether the league is using True Position designations or not.

A couple of things I haven’t addressed here that I think will make for good future articles:

  • More work on repeat rates of players who have hit.
  • A closer look at successful and unsuccessful players with 1st round draft capital to see if the middle of the round is an appropriate place to split players, or if other spots are better (I’ve shown here that Defensive Linemen have a break point in the first round. It is worth looking at again for all IDP positions).
  • The choice to use the first 3 years as a cut off for hit rates was somewhat arbitrary, and necessary for me when I first started this with the computer knowledge I had at the time. I think that is probably the correct spot but checking whether the 3rd and 4th year breakout players have similar career trajectories to 1st and 2nd year breakouts or to late breakout players is worthwhile.

Thank you for reading this study on draft capital and its impact on fantasy IDP players. Feel free to reach out to me with any questions or comments. You can find me on Twitter @djkelltown.

The Cornerback Streaming Experiment: 2021 Edition

“WR Edgar Poe 1” by West Point – The U.S. Military Academy is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

NOTE: This is a article that will be updated throughout the season.


Welcome to the first edition of the Cornerback Streaming Experiment. The Streaming Cornerback Experiment is a living document that will be updated throughout the season, and will detail my Cornerback plays in the 2021 IDP Invitational run by IDPguys.org.

Cornerbacks can be unpredictable, at least season to season as noted in the tweet below from Tom Kislingbury of Dynasty League Football.

The IDP Invitational uses 22 total starters and 8 bench spots, so bench allocation is important. In fact, there are less bench spots than unique positions (9) in this league. Only 1 Cornerback is required in the starting lineup (2 if used in the flex), so this is an ideal league to try streaming, as there are plentiful options on waivers.

The benefit of being able to stream the position is the draft capital freed up to spend on another position. For example, here are all the Cornerbacks taken during my draft.

By spending a pick in 12th to 14th round on a Cornerback, teams were passing up on drafting their 4th WR, or their first edge rusher

The idea of streaming Cornerbacks is not new. Johnny The Greek wrote a weekly series last season detailing his start and sit recommendation at the position for IDP Guys. He described his process as follows:

We’re going to be looking at things like expected game script, opposing offensive tendencies, snap counts, role and historical production to inform our weekly decisions on what corners are an “ideal” streaming option. (From: http://www.idpguys.org/johny-the-greeks-cornerbacks-corner-week-sixteen-16/)

I will be generally following that method, but also adding some of my own ideas, which may evolve throughout the season. For example, I plotted team CB points allowed by pass attempts, interceptions, etc., and found that the strongest correlation was to pass attempts to Wide Receivers, as opposed to total attempts.

One issue with the chart above is that it is using team CB points allowed. It doesn’t adjust for the number of total Cornerback snaps being played against a team. Pittsburgh and Cincinnati among other ran a lot of 3WR sets last year. It would make sense that they also play against more nickle or dime than other teams, reducing the effect.


As this is a start 1 Cornerback league, we are aiming for streaming to cover at least the CB12 score, but ideally higher than CB6. Based on last year’s scoring, we are aiming for about 12.2 ppg for a top 12 finish and 15.2 ppg for a top 6 finish.

I want to note that past work I’ve done on rookie hit rates shows that the CB6 finish generally finishes around DB24. So if you can successfully stream the CB6 in a league, it’s potentially valuable even in leagues that start Defensive Backs as a group instead of Cornerback & Safety

Picks and Results

Week 1

Joe Haden, PIT vs BUF – Based on ESPN’s projections from July 14, 2021, Buffalo was projected to have the 2nd most WR targets this season. While Buffalo is the favourite in this game (-6.5 per The Score app), they passed on 57% of plays when up 7 or more points (via sharpfootballstats.com).

Pittsburg is also a good match up for cornerbacks, and project to have a more favourable game script as the underdog, however Tre’Davious White and Taron Johnson were both drafted earlier in the draft, and I didn’t feel comfortable that Levi Wallace will play 100% of snaps.

Result – 12.5 points (3 solo tackles, 2 assists, 1 forced fumble). The matchup ended up being better than anticipated as Buffalo trailed late and attempted 51 passes. Haden made the best of only 4 targets. Cam Sutton ended up being the better play as he was targeted 7 times and had 19.5 points. Regardless, Haden’s 12.5 points was right around the expected CB12 season average.

Week 2

Chris Harris Jr., LAC vs DAL – Dallas is expected to be leading the league in pass attempts in 2021, and attempted 58 passes (41 to WRs) in week 1. Dallas is a 3 point underdog (via The Score app). Both Dallas and Los Angeles were in the top 12 in offensive pace (via sharpfootballstats). Numberfire projects this game to be one of the fastest in week 2, and projects Dallas to have a 77% pass rate.

Chris Harris played 98% of snaps in week 1 and – as far as I could tell – played primarily in the slot .

Saturday night revision: Michael Davis, LAC vs Dallas – same as above. Harris was declared out for this game. I lost having the player who is playing in slot, but I’d rather Davis, who just about played every snap last week. Asante Samuel Jr. played about 85% of snaps in week 1, but I feel less comfortable projecting his usage.

Result – 12 points (4 solo tackles, 2 assists). Davis played 100% of snaps, but was only targeted twice. Samuel got the interception, so in the end he was the better play.

Week 3

Byron Murphy, ARI vs JAX – Through 2 weeks Murphy has been the only Cardinals CB to play near 100% of snaps in both games. Both Arizona and Jacksonville are near the top of the league in pace of play. Jacksonville is about a touchdown underdog, and are leading the league is pass rate so far. As a bonus, we get a rookie QB who hasn’t played well so far this year.

Result – 31.5 points (3 solo tackles, 1 assist, 2 passes defended, 2 interceptions, 1 touchdown) – So this obviously was a good result, but I think it’s noting that this wasn’t actually a good game to stream off of in the end. Jacksonville had 34 passing attempts, which is right around the league median through 3 weeks. Jacksonville had 29 rushing attempts in this game, including 6 from Trevor Lawrence), something that is happening a lot to Arizona this year.

As I’m updating this late in the week, I’ll note that Jacksonville only had 24 attempts on Thursday Night Football. It is looking like their 51 attempts in week 1 against Houston might be noise, and they aren’t going to be as pass happy as I thought after 2 weeks.

Week 4

Vernon Hargreaves, HOU vs BUF – So I have going back to streaming against Buffalo this week, a team near the top of the league in pace and passing rate in all situations. Houston is a 15 point underdog here, so the hope is that Buffalo passes even while winning and/or Houston keeps this game closer than expected for a while.

I could have used Byron Murphy again against the Rams, who also pass at a high rate a run a lot of plays. I didn’t want to partly because I don’t want to re-use someone here in back-to-back weeks, and also because Arizona has been run on a lot… a lot more than you would think…

It is entirely possible that I’m putting too much weight into this, because the Rams are otherwise a good match-up for streaming the Arizona Cornerbacks.

Result – 2.5 points. Hahahaha this was a horrible pick. Hargreaves lost his starting spot and played only 14 snaps in the game

Week 5

Charvarius Ward, KC vs BUF – Taking advantage of a game with two very pass heavy offenses, this pick is going back to playing against Buffalo (see week 1 & 4). Not much to say here. Buffalo one of the fastest and highest neutral-script passing teams. They re a slight underdog in this game.

Result – 0 points. Hughes played 32% of snaps this week, before going back to 80% the following week.

Week 6

Anthony Averett, BAL vs LAC – I didn’t do a proper update before this game, but LAC passes a lot and plays fast. The betting line was also close so a decent script was expected.

Result – 16 points

Week 7

Donte Jackson, CAR vs NYG – Some of my favourites are on bye (LAC, BUF). The giants actually play fairly fast. They throw a lot, because they don’t win a lot. I didn’t want to play a Lions (vs Rams) or Bears (vs TB) player because I don’t expect those games to stay close.

Result 12.5 points (YTD 87 points (12.4 ppg; tied with Avonte Maddox for CB4 on the year (not accounting for bye weeks) <- That’s wrong. Not sure how I got mixed up there.

Week 8

Taron Johnson, BUF vs MIA – both teams play quickly. Miami is expected to trail, and they’ve thrown a lot more with Tua back (47 pass attempts vs Jacksonville)

Result 12.5 points

Week 9

Darius Slay, PHI vs LAC – 7.5 points

Week 10

Jamel Dean – 11 points

Week 11 –

Xavian Howard – 12.5 points

Week 12 –

Fabian Moreau – ATL vs JAC. Jacksonville has given up a lot of points to CBs this year

Result – 7.5 points

Week 13

Nevin Lawson (JAX vs LAR) – 17.5 points

Week 14

Sean Murphy-Bunting (TB vs BUF) – 18.5 points

Week 15

I’m finally doing this early enough in the week to write a proper write up.

Xavian Howard (MIA vs NYJ) – The Jets are a sneaky 4th in WR targets this year and 8th in point allowed to CB’s (via idpguru.com). The Jets are also about a 10 point underdog on the road, so it’s a good script for Howard.

Result – 7 points

Week 16

Desmond King (HOU vs LAC) – At least the third time I picked a chargers opponent this season. Same story as the previous weeks

Result – 27.5 points – With Houston surprisingly winning this game, it led to a better script for King.

Week 17

I was fortunate enough to make it through to the final week of the tournament, and got to select a full week of picks this year.
Byron Murphy (ARI vs DAL) – I’ve used Murphy once before. Since week 9, both Dallas and Arizona are top half of the league in pace, and Dallas is close to the league lead in team attempts and WR attempts.

Result – 20 points – 7 solo tackles and 1 pass defended is a nice result to end the year. Dallas attempted 38 passes in this game.

Season Summary

Total points scored – 228 (13.4 ppg), I beat the benchmark of 12.2 ppg which was projected to be a top 12 CB finish, but was below the 15.2 ppg benchmark for a top 6 finish.

Having said that, here are the top 12 Cornerbacks on the season, after week 17

Source: IDP Invitational League on Fantrax

It’s notable that the 13.4 ppg I achieved this season was beat by every player on the list. 13.4 ppg ends up around 14th or 15th at the position this year (varies because I’m sorting by total points). Of the top 12 players shown above, Moore, Ryan, Diggs, Lattimore and Terrell were drafted in my division, with the other 7 players undrafted.

Lastly, inspired by reading Adam Harstad’s Dynasty, in Theory: You’ll Never Stand in the Same Stream Twice (yes it is 6 years old now, yes, I read it for the first time 4 weeks ago, and also yes, it’s a better read than what you are currently reading so you can just stop and go read that), I compared the points I scored with the players I started vs their seasonal average. Here are the results:

Harstad looked at Quarterback and Team Defence Streaming and found that players did a bad job of picking matchups throughout the season. Here I scored a little more than 1.8 points per game higher for the players I started their combined season averages. So streaming Cornerback may be more viable than Quarterback or Team Defense, but this is also a sample size of 1 team, where Harstad looked at 42 teams.


So does streaming the Cornerback position work? I’m inclined to say that you can get pretty to your baseline starter production, in this case near CB12 production, without spending any draft capital. I’m not sure whether you can get a season of one of the elite players, but the challenge there is knowing exactly who those are and then you have to potentially spend the draft capital to get them (like a 14th round pick on Kenny Moore).

As the season went on I focused more on players with good matchups and had scored a bunch of points throughout the season, as opposed to just any corner getting full time snaps with a good matchup. I think that helped achieve better scores in the 2nd half of the year.

Find me on twitter @djkelltown. When I’m not talking about fantasy football, I’m probably talking about my NHL team (Winnipeg Jets) or CFL team (Winnipeg Blue Bombers)

A Comparison of IDP Average Draft Position and Fantasy Points Scored

“Jared Allen” by Mike Morbeck is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

This article is a look at Average Draft Position (ADP) and fantasy points scored for each IDP position, and a comparison, between each position, including the offensive positions.  Each year, the end of year results is different from how we project them in August.  This is a review to see which positions we were better or worse at, and if there is anything that can be learned for 2021 and beyond.

As there are many different scoring systems and league formats that affect ADP, I’ve chosen to use the IDP Guys 2020 Invitational (IDP Invitational) for the data set.  The IDP Invitational was a charity tournament that consisted of 8 divisions of 12 teams.  Participants included fans and a variety of writers from several websites that cover IDP fantasy football.  The benefits of using this league for the analysis is we can see 8 identical leagues, both in scoring and starting roster requirements, plus the group drafting can be assumed to be about as knowledgeable as any league you can find.  The downside is that this league had 8 bench spots for 9 unique positions, so the resulting data set for ADP doesn’t go as deep as it could.

The roster settings and IDP scoring settings are as follows:

The scoring and starting requirements for offensive players was identical to that year’s Scott Fish Bowl (SFBX).  All touchdowns were 6 points, yardage scoring was standard. Quarterbacks gained points for completions and lost them for sacks, incompletions and interceptions.  Non-quarterbacks received a half point per reception and per first down, with a half point premium to Tight Ends for both.


I took the draft results for each of the eight IDP Invitational divisions, and calculated the average draft position for each player drafted in at least five of the eight divisions. I also looked at the top scorers at each position at the end of the season to see which undrafted, or infrequently drafted players made significant impacts during the season. That’s important as well because if one position has a large number of undrafted players with high seasonal finishes, that’s also an indication of pre-season projections missing more for that position than other positions.

The notable limitation of this analysis is that fantasy football is a weekly game, and this is a look at seasonal finishes. Thus, it is hard to comment on fragility strategies like zero RB, for which you would need to look at frequency of high finishes, or something like win rate, which is more of a best ball analysis.

The Results


There wasn’t much too surprising at the Quarterback Position in 2020. Aaron Rodgers and Josh Allen both had incredible seasons, finishing 1st and 2nd in scoring with overall ADPs of 46 and 51 respectively. Taysom Hill was undrafted and finished as QB22 in this league. Mitchell Turbisky was drafted in 4 of the 8 leagues (ADP of 191 in those leagues) and finished as QB23.

Running Back

The McCaffery (ADP 1) and Barkley (ADP 3) injuries hurt the managers who selected those players at the top of the draft. Three undrafted players appear in the top 24 at the end of the season (James Robinson RB7, Mike Davis RB 15, JD McKissic RB20), as well as Myles Gaskin finishing just outside at RB 27.

Wide Receiver

With 73 Wide Receivers drafted in at least 5 of the 8 divisions, the only top 24 finish from an undrafted player was fellow Canadian Chase Claypool at WR 19. Tee Higgins (drafted 3 times) and Corey Davis (drafted 4 times) had top 36 finishes while just missing being drafted enough for to be included in the ADP set.

There were several players drafted in the second half of the draft to score around 200 points, which was just past the top 24 cut off. In a way it is similar to Running Back, where there were a couple of top 24 finishers who were not drafted, however with Wide Receiver they were just drafted late.

Tight End

With injuries to Kittle and Ertz, Tight End was very much Kelce & Waller, and then everyone else clustered around the same score. Logan Thomas, Robert Tonyan and Dalton Schultz all finished in top 12 after being undrafted in all divisions.

Defensive End

Injuries to Danielle Hunter and Nick Bosa, as well as Myles Garrett’s Covid-19 illness made this a very tough year for those who invested early in Defensive End. It is worth noting that the first 5 Defensive Ends selected (Hunter, N. Bosa, J. Bosa, Young, Allen) were 2nd to 6th in overall IDP ADP (Darius Leonard was the first IDP, Bobby Wagner and Aaron Donald were 7th and 8th respectively). The trendline for Defensive End is the flattest of all IDP positions, indicating that for 2020 it was best to wait on the position.

There were only 33 Defensive Ends drafted in at least 5 leagues, so there’s no surprise that there would be many top 24 finishers who were not drafted. At Defensive End there was 11. They were Leonard Williams (DE2), Stephon Tuitt (DE7, drafted three times), Romeo Okwara (DE9), Quinnen Williams (DE13, drafted once), Emmanuel Ogbah (DE14), Kerry Hyder (DE16), Trey Hendrickson (DE17), Olivier Vernon (DE18, drafted two times), Aldon Smith (DE20), Chase Winovich (DE21) and Akiem Hicks (DE23, drafted four times).

Defensive Tackle

Defensive Tackle went as expected in 2020 with Buckner and Donald being drafted 2 rounds ahead and finishing 40 points ahead of all other Defensive Tackles. Former University of Manitoba Bison David Oynemata (DT8) and Dexter Lawrence (DT11) both had top 12 finishes after going undrafted in all divisions. Da’Ron Payne (DT5) and Ndamukoong Suh (DT6) were drafted 4 times each, and thus don’t appear in the chart above.

With just 16 Defensive Tackles drafted in at least 5 divisions, most drafters planned on streaming for bye weeks.


Darius Leonard was the only defensive player drafted inside the top 50 picks. He missed two games and finished as LB7. His 16 game pace would have been a close LB3 finish to Roquan Smith. Regardless, it’s hard to get value when drafted that far ahead of everyone else at the position.

The trendline for Linebacker is steeper than all other IDP positions, indicating that drafters got this position more correct than any other position. Five top 24 finishers were either undrafted or drafted in less than four divisions. They are Foyesade Oluokun (LB9), Eric Wilson (LB11), Neville Hewitt (LB12, drafted in one division). Alex Singleton (LB18) and Tyrell Adams (LB19). An additional four players were undrafted and achieved LB 3 finishes.


There isn’t much to say about Cornerback. There were only 11 players drafted in at least five leagues (32 total drafted at least once, none before pick 250). Their seasonal finish varies wildly. Cornerback is a position that is often streamed, and with the limited bench size in this league, it looks like some managers planned on doing during the season.


Safety was a very flat position in 2020, in part due to injuries to Derwin James and Landon Collins, as well as Jamal Adams missing four games. With several players scoring well with late ADPs (Jessie Bates S3, Jeremy Chinn S4), there was just five players that were undrafted that made the top 24. They are Daniel Sorenson (S11), Kamren Curl (S12), Eric Rowe (S21, drafted in four divisions), Marcus Maye (S23, drafted in two divisions) and Darnell Savage (S24, drafted in four divisions).

Most Safetys were drafted at pick 170 (Jordan Poyer) or later. This is much later than what’s seen at Linebacker and Defensive End. Drafters were right to wait on this position after the elite options (Adams, James, Baker, Collins, Walker and Johnson) were taken.

Final Thoughts

It’s important not to take too much from one season of data. That said the most notable thing for me was Defensive End could be faded early in drafts for Linebacker, as I’ve always prioritized Defensive Line positions early in my drafts. As some of the highest drafted Defensive Ends were injured, it’s hard to project that as a trend that will continue.

Safety is a position with a lot of turnover from season to season, making it hard to project. Like Defensive End, a couple of the top options were injured during the season, making that position look very flat once the season-long finishes are compared.

Defensive Tackle was the opposite of Safety and Defensive End, where the two players projected to be at the top of the position (Aaron Donald and DeForest Buckner) finishing as the top two players at their position. Aaron Donald’s positional advantage is often compared to Travis Kelce at Tight End, and if you compare those two charts, they look quite similar.

I’ve posted the link for the 2021 version of this tournament at the bottom of the page for those interested in this year’s tournament.

Find me on twitter @djkelltown. When I’m not talking about fantasy football, I’m probably talking about my NHL team (Winnipeg Jets) or CFL team (Winnipeg Blue Bombers)


IDP Guys 2020 Invitational League Link – https://www59.myfantasyleague.com/2020/home/60948#0

IDP Guys 2021 Invitational Sign-up Link – https://www.idpguys.org/2021-idp-guys-autism-speaks-invitational/

Scott Fish Bowl Ten (SFBX) Scoring Settings – https://scottfishbowl.com/2020/rules.php