IDP Matchups to Exploit and Avoid: Week 16

Dave Larkin breaks down the key clashes to target and fade for IDP production

Each week, this column will take a critical look at key statistical trends to highlight pass rushing and tackle matchups to exploit and avoid. We'll be heavily relying on another great feature at FBG this season, the IDP Matchup Spreadsheet that will be generated by Aaron Rudnicki. That spreadsheet will contain weekly average statistical measures to help identify those defensive teams who are facing the best and worst opportunity as the season progresses. While this column will include analysis of tackle and pass rush opportunity and matchup data, it's only a fraction of the data available in the spreadsheet. We hope that the Matchup Spreadsheet and this column will join John Norton's weekly IDP projections, Doug Drinen's Matchup Analyzer Tool and our customizable MyFBG function as useful tools to assist in making weekly line-up and waiver wire decisions.

You are very welcome to the 16th edition of the IDP Matchup column here at Footballguys in 2019. I have been penning this defensive diary for the past several years and I am delighted to be able to share some tidbits to help you secure a league title come December.

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Dave Larkin. I am a veteran IDP player and what some would call a diehard fan of this game of football that we all love so much.

Defense is my passion. Over the past few years, I have assimilated countless pages of data from various sources to hone my knowledge of the defensive side of the football. Every week I will study film from the previous week’s games and provide you with nuggets of wisdom that will lead you to a championship.

It is championship week in most fantasy leagues, its arrival creating a sense of anticipation and intrigue. Line-up decisions become magnified, the prospect of upside versus a safe floor must be accounted for, and sometimes you just have to rely on your gut. Whatever happens, ensure your preparation is airtight. After that, let the chips fall where they may – and enjoy the ride.

Without further ado, let’s kick off with this week’s match-ups.

Team Defense Team Offense
LEAGUE AVG Pressure Applied QB QB Drop Backs Pressure Allowed QB Sacks QB Hits Drop
AVERAGE Sacks Hits Faced Allowed Allowed Backs
2016 NFL Average 14.2% 2.18 5.37 37.8 14.2% 2.18 5.37 37.8
2017 NFL Average 15.1% 2.33 5.49 36.5 15.0% 2.33 5.49 36.5
2018 NFL Average 15.0% 2.50 5.56 37.0 15.0% 2.50 5.56 37.0
2019 NFL Average 15.0% 2.51 5.59 37.3 15.0% 2.51 5.59 37.3
Team Defense Team Offense
Pressure Applied QB QB Drop Backs Pressure Allowed QB Sacks QB Hits Drop
Sacks Hits Faced Allowed Allowed Backs
ARIZONA Cardinals 13.6% 2.4 5.4 39.9 10.9% 3.4 4.1 37.9
ATLANTA Falcons 11.9% 1.7 4.3 36.0 17.7% 3.1 8.0 45.1
BALTIMORE Ravens 19.2% 2.4 7.1 37.1 12.6% 1.9 3.7 29.6
BUFFALO Bills 16.2% 3.0 6.1 37.6 16.8% 2.5 5.8 34.4
CAROLINA Panthers 17.4% 3.5 6.6 38.2 14.8% 3.6 6.2 42.1
CHICAGO Bears 13.7% 2.2 5.4 39.1 12.4% 2.7 4.9 39.1
CINCINNATI Bengals 14.2% 1.6 4.5 31.6 13.0% 3.1 5.4 41.1
CLEVELAND Browns 14.9% 2.6 5.2 35.1 11.5% 2.4 4.2 36.6
DALLAS Cowboys 15.6% 2.3 5.9 37.4 13.7% 1.6 5.3 38.7
DENVER Broncos 12.8% 2.4 4.6 35.8 15.6% 2.8 5.4 34.4
DETROIT Lions 11.1% 1.9 4.4 39.2 14.6% 2.7 5.8 39.6
GREEN BAY Packers 16.2% 2.5 6.0 37.1 15.1% 2.4 5.5 36.5
HOUSTON Texans 15.0% 2.1 5.9 39.0 15.4% 2.9 5.6 36.1
INDIANAPOLIS Colts 14.1% 2.4 5.1 36.5 17.9% 1.9 6.2 34.8
JACKSONVILLE Jaguars 17.3% 3.1 6.1 35.0 13.2% 2.6 5.2 39.6
KANSAS CITY Chiefs 15.0% 2.8 5.8 38.6 12.5% 1.7 4.9 38.7
LOS ANGELES Chargers 13.1% 1.9 4.1 31.1 15.3% 2.1 5.9 38.7
LOS ANGELES Rams 15.0% 3.1 5.7 38.2 12.5% 1.5 5.0 40.1
MIAMI Dolphins 11.3% 1.3 3.9 34.1 22.9% 3.9 9.4 40.9
MINNESOTA Vikings 15.8% 2.9 6.4 40.4 12.8% 1.6 4.0 31.1
NEW ENGLAND Patriots 17.2% 2.9 6.2 36.2 14.0% 1.9 5.9 41.8
NEW ORLEANS Saints 16.7% 3.4 6.9 41.1 9.9% 1.2 3.7 37.6
NEW YORK Giants 16.1% 2.3 5.9 36.4 18.0% 2.7 7.1 39.7
NEW YORK Jets 16.4% 2.1 6.3 38.4 19.5% 3.4 7.1 36.2
OAKLAND Raiders 11.5% 2.1 4.0 34.9 8.9% 1.7 3.0 33.6
PHILADELPHIA Eagles 17.4% 2.6 6.4 36.9 15.8% 2.5 6.4 40.6
PITTSBURGH Steelers 19.4% 3.5 7.1 36.9 13.3% 1.9 4.5 33.9
SAN FRANCISCO 49ers 16.2% 3.4 5.6 34.3 15.1% 2.0 4.9 32.6
SEATTLE Seahawks 10.8% 1.7 4.4 40.9 19.5% 3.0 6.8 34.9
TAMPA BAY Buccaneers 15.4% 2.6 6.8 44.1 16.3% 3.1 7.0 42.9
TENNESSEE Titans 13.4% 2.6 5.4 39.9 19.7% 3.6 6.4 32.2
WASHINGTON Redskins 16.0% 3.0 5.8 36.2 18.3% 3.1 5.9 32.0
Strong Matchup
Neutral
Weak Matchup

Pass Rushing Match-ups to Exploit

Cincinnati pass rushers at Miami

The Bengals may be a 1-13 team, but they have stretches where they look as if they could topple superior outfits. Even against the Patriots last week there was a period when they appeared feisty, with defensive stalwarts like Carlos Dunlap making his presence felt. Cincinnati’s pass rush has averaged pressure on a paltry 14.2% of dropbacks this season, a statistic as much about opportunity as anything else. With the team trailing in most games, the chances to rush the passer simply haven’t been forthcoming. That may change this week.

The Dolphins have been a defense resembling soft butter this season, with every NFL offense acting as the knife that cleaves it down its soft center. Ryan Fitzpatrick can move around the pocket, extend plays and gives the offense a chance, but they have allowed 3.9 sacks and 9.4 hits on average and consistently fail to run the ball (40.9 dropbacks per game). Vegas predicts a close game, but even the Bengals’ much-maligned pass rush can thrive in this spot.

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