Top 5 Underrated Safeties

Ross Miles breaks down his Top 5 most underrated safeties for the 2013 season.

| 3 years ago
Tyvon Branch

Top 5 Underrated Safeties


Tyvon BranchFor individual defensive player (IDP) gamers, the safety position can provide some of the best value picks during your fantasy draft. Generally speaking, linebackers and defensive ends get drafted earlier than defensive backs, which means the under-the-radar safeties can fall into the middle and later rounds of your draft leaving you to draft depth elsewhere for your roster. This list will look to identify safeties who will be overlooked on your fantasy draft day for their flashier counterparts, as well as players that can outperform their current average draft position (ADP).

Based on rankings from Jeff Ratcliffe and myself, here are the top-five most-underrated safeties as of July 28.


Tyvon Branch – Oakland Raiders

Ross’s Rank – DB No. 2, Jeff’s Rank – DB No. 2

Few safeties offer the consistency that Tyvon Branch does, especially at such an elite level of fantasy production. Despite missing two games last season, Branch still racked up 94 total tackles and a very impressive tackle frequency of 11.68%, over 1% higher than his 2011 figure (10.39%) when he accumulated 109 total tackles and was the No. 1 fantasy safety in most scoring formats.

Branch has suffered a slide in his perceived value due to the rise of Morgan Burnett and additions of Harrison Smith and Mark Barron into the elite defensive back tier. This has resulted in him currently being drafted as the ninth defensive back off the board according to MFL’s ADP data, which is exceptional value for a player who is a lock to be a top-five scorer if he plays all 16 games.

2013 Projection

Rk

Name

Tk

Ass

Sk

TFLs

INT

PDs

FF

FR

Pts

2

Tyvon Branch

90

25

2

6

1

4

2

1

190

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Ross Miles is a Lead Writer for Pro Football Focus Fantasy. Follow him on Twitter – @PFF_RossMiles

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Ross Miles is a lead fantasy writer on PFF Fantasy. He contributes IDP content to the site. He was the 2011 winner of the FantasyPros IDP Expert Rankings contest for both weekly in-season rankings and also for pre-season rankings and finished second in IDP rankings in 2012 and 2015. Ross is also a member of the FSWA.

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