How to approach IDP options in your fantasy draft

IDP drafting means adding at least three new positions to the mix, and as Sean Kirby notes, that means new strategy wrinkles.

| 4 months ago
(AP Photo/Patric Schneider)

(AP Photo/Patric Schneider)

How to approach IDP options in your fantasy draft

Heading into your IDP league draft, you will undoubtedly question how to balance offensive and defensive players. Conventional wisdom suggests waiting on IDPs, but that can be an oversimplification. One helpful practice for visualizing the value of the various positions involves plotting out their average production. Here is a graph showing how the positions fared in our balanced scoring, as averaged over the past five years.

Standard Scoring

PPR Scoring

Initial impressions

There is a disproportionate dropoff in elite tiers at defensive line, tight end and running back. Grabbing one of the top players at those positions provides a big advantage. However, it’s notable that tight end and defensive line level off fairly quickly. After the elite tier is off the board, urgency to address those positions should wane. Meanwhile, wide receivers, linebackers and defensive backs decline much more gradually. This alleviates pressure to address those positions early, but there are still obvious appeals for elite players at those positions. More on that later.

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  • blabanow357

    Love the article Sean! I agree at defensive back for the most part. But I find Reshad Jones to be the JJ Watt of that position. I’ve owned him 3 of the past 4 season. While three years ago I picked him up very late(two years ago he was a WW add because of the 4 game suspension), last year I spent a 9th rounder on him and it paid off well. The drop after him is just as significant as the drop after Watt at DL. So in a re-draft, if he is there rd 9 again, is it a no brainier, or would you wait?

    • Kirby

      He has been impressive over the last few years and is far and away the #1 DB in most opinions. While the advantage was huge last year, I think he is closer to the #2 DB this year, as the historical data shows us there’s generally only a 16 pt difference between the two. That, and the new coaching regime, make me nervous that he won’t be quite as dominant as he was last year. In his favor, he will be fighting for a big pay day.

      Ultimately, where I draft him depends on my scoring. At 1 pt/tkl, that definitely seems high. Starting around 1.5 pt/tkl, I’d consider taking 1-2 IDPs in the single digit rounds. I think Jones is a reasonable investment there if you haven’t spent too many picks at LB and DL. If you have already addressed a couple IDPs, taking another may be too detrimental to your offense.