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IDP General Admission - Week 8

  Updated 10/29 by Dave Baker, Exclusive for Footballguys.com

A look at Week 7...

Ernie Sims has shined often in his NFL career. The Lion's LB was drafted ninth overall in the 2006 NFL draft and as a rookie quickly tossed up over 125 total tackles. His second season saw an increase in production, adding three forced fumbles and an interception to 96-38 tackles. Last year, though, saw a decline in his numbers and a general lack if big plays had some wondering what was wrong...

As this year approached, some thought that Sims was overvalued anyway in IDP world, since he was often taken as an LB1 but the results were more like an LB2 or LB3. Others thought that new Defensive Coordinator Gunther Cunningham would lead to an increase in output from Sims, as Cunningham preaches a more aggressive style seemed to fit better into Sims' style...

But as we reach the midpoint of this season, it looks like Sims career has taken a nosedive. With the recent play of rookie DeAndre Levy, it looks like Sims has become almost expendable to a franchise seemingly always looking to regroup. Indeed, head Coach Jim Schwartz has stated that Levy is more than capable of being a starter...

Sims started every game his first three seasons and has suggested since that the previous Detroit coaching regime would play him despite persistent injuries. In the second quarter of week two's game against the Vikings, Sims injured his shoulder in the fourth quarter. Although he only missed one game, it's clear he hasn't been the same since. When assessing Sims' value, the question then becomes how long will it take to get near 100% and how much of his decreased production has been due to injury? For this season, it could be likely that Sims does not rebound enough to a valuable contributor. But for dynasty leagues, you should consider holding on to Sims, as he's still only 24 years old and was generally considered a blue chip, elite prospect who has been a solid IDP performer, especially in leagues that score highly for tackles...

San Francisco DE Justin Smith has been one of the better IDP DEs in the league for a while now. While he's never had eight or more sacks in any single season, he's consistently put up solid tackle numbers that have allowed him to remain a DE1 or DE2 in most leagues. Last year, his first as a 49er, saw Smith obtain 49-25 tackles and seven sacks...

This year, though, the switch to a 3-4 defense in San Francisco meant trouble for Smith owners. Indeed, through his first five games Smith only had 9-2 tackles and one sack. Finally against Houston last week, Smith stepped up with 8-2 tackles in arguably his best game of the year. It was noted that San Francisco used more 4-3 defensive fronts this week, which could be a significant reason for Smith's increased output. Still, I'd see how the situation evolves in the next week or two before jumping back on him...

In fairness, Smith has recorded an unofficial 24 quarterback hits and another 34 quarterback pressures, and Smith's value to the team far exceeds his IDP value. But this is the wonderful world of IDP fantasy leagues and the 3-4 defensive front is not the best formula for your DE...

When Pittsburgh cornerback William Gay was drafted in the fifth round a few years ago, he was considered by many to be too small to be anything beyond a nickel back. But in the offseason, Gay put on about 15 pounds and is now dangerously close to 200 pounds. Considered by the coaching staff as their most fundamentally sound corner, the team felt confident enough in Gay to move him into Bryant McFadden's starting spot...

Admittedly, Gay is better in zone coverage than in man, and he's been burned more than once this year, but when given the opportunity to roam a bit in the secondary, Gay can be productive. Just witness his 8-1 tackles last weekend against the Vikings. Speaking of getting burned, in case you missed it, check the video of William Gay getting absolutely destroyed by Vikings RB Adrian Peterson. I don't think even think destroyed is an apt enough description for what Gay went through...

Rams DE C.J. Ah You had against the Colts Sunday. Nothing really to see here since I don't think you can count on any kind of production going forward for him, but I just liked typing CJ Ah You....

Panthers DE Julius Peppers has been a notoriously slow starter every season for his sacks. In 2002, he had three in his first five games and nine in his last seven. In 2003, he had two in his first nine games and five in his last six games. This trend has continued, often to even more dramatic effect, in every year he's played other than 2006. With five sacks in his last three games, the fact that Peppers may be turning it on early can only be scary for Carolina opponents and pleasing for his IDP owners...

Until next week...

Please e-mail me with any comments or suggestions at baker@footballguys.com.