“Leading with the Helmet” is anything but “offensive.” (Get it?) Week to week I will tackle the IDP issues that you-the-owner care about most. Come back at the beginning of each week for a comprehensive overview of my IDP views and insights for the upcoming fantasy football season.
1) ILB Pat Angerer, Indianapolis
Well on his way to becoming a household name in Indianapolis, Pat Angerer has begun to make noise all over NFL nation. There is really no need to worry about veteran Gary Bracket getting in the way, as he will soon be released. The vet became expandable as coaches watched ILB Angerer wreck his way to 148 tackles. Already in a system where plays are funneled toward the only strength of the defense, its linebackers, Angerer should duplicate his 2011 production (at the very least). Remember his name come draft day, as he will become one of the “unknowns” you passed up on.
2) DE Brian Robison, Minnesota
You may already know of the DE in chilly Minnesota, but if you don’t, be prepared to let him into your heart. Fantasy Managers were nervous about adding the 6’3” 270 lb pass-rusher in 2011. Those who did reaped the reward of 8 sacks and close to 50 tackles. While he has been in the league for 5 years, Robison sat behind All-Pro Ray Edwards for 4 of them. In his first year as a full-timer, Robison was given more and more leash by Minnesota. This upcoming season there will be no collar or leash. Prepare yourself for double digit sacks and more tackles from Brian Robison.
3) ILB Akeem Dent, Atlanta
As Atlanta waves goodbye to Curtis Lofton, second-year man, Akeem Dent is chomping at the bit for the upcoming 2012 season. He will assume the role of the recently departed Lofton at ILB for Atlanta. Akeem dent steps in with plenty of scheme versatility (3-4 & 4-3 experience at UGA), and many have called him the “Curtis Lofton clone.” Not a bad thing when you consider Lofton finished 2011 with 147 tackles. If Akeem Dent comes close to that total, he will be a force for anyone’s fantasy team for 2012.
4) ILB Perry Riley, Washington
This was an easy one. I was one of the lucky ones to own him in 2011 after Rocky McIntosh wasted away his opportunity to remain the starter in Washington. Riley started the final eight games of the season and averaged over eight tackles per game. He is just 24 years old and is entering the prime of his career. Riley will, without a doubt, total well over 100 tackles as a full time starter. He is a prime example of a player going from fantasy obscurity to relevance in a short amount of time. Don’t let him slip away in the late rounds, because Riley should end up being a top-tier IDP for 2012
5) OLB Wesley Woodyard, Denver
There’s something special about this fourth year youngster out of Kentucky. The NFL sees it, and most importantly, Denver sees it. The team made it a priority to sign Woodyard to a 2 year deal. With 97 tackles last season, Woodyard is poised for his breakout 2012 campaign. It’s no secret that D.J. Williams is sitting on a six game PDE suspension and that plays right into the hands of the talented Wesley Woodyard. I will even go as far to say he is a strong bet to lead the team in tackles.
Robert comes from an extensive background in fantasy football. He has competed in competitive leagues for over 10 years, which he has won on numerous occasions. He should bring a fresh perspective to a side of fantasy football looked over by the bulk of fantasy informers. Individual defensive players are possibly the most important element to having a well-rounded fantasy football team, as most people look to the big names to carry their team. Robert comes from a back ground in sports, where he played D3 college basketball at Millsaps College. As an intense competitor he wants to share his knowledge to help you compete in this years fantasy football season.