IDP Waiver Wire Pickups For Week 17
For most, Championship Week was last week, but if you are still playing this week because you're either in a two-week title game, or you just have the title game set for Week 17, I'd adjust your schedule next year.
But, for those who have their title games this week, I have some IDP waiver wire suggestions that may be able to help you on your title chase.
Malcolm Smith, LB, Cleveland Browns
It was a wild Saturday night that led into Week 16. BJ Goodson tested positive for COVID which knocked him out for Week 16 and should keep him out Week 17, as well. From there, the dominoes fell. The entire wide receiver group was deemed close contacts, as was Goodson's backup, Jacob Phillips. This thrust Malcolm Smith into a starting role and he ended up wearing the dot and appeared in 97% of the snaps. Smith was the lone LB in Cleveland's one-LB sets and he finished with nine tackles.
Willie Gay, LB, Kansas City Chiefs
There was no Anthony Hitchens or Damien Wilson. Ben Niemann exited with a hamstring injury. Willie Gay received his highest usage of the season, appearing in 72% of the snaps. Gay was not fooled on a Calvin Ridley end-around and knocked him out of bounds for a loss. In all, he finished with nine tackles - including seven solos. Six of his nine tackles were impact tackles, meaning they went for three or fewer yards. The Chiefs have the top-seed locked up and could use Week 17 as a chance to get some of their main guys healthy, so I think Week 17 is a great audition for Gay. I already think he's one of the most talented defenders on the team.
Blake Lynch, LB, Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings have been officially eliminated from the playoffs. Eric Kendricks didn't have a tangible date for return, so I don't foresee him playing in Week 17. Todd Davis and Troy Dye were inactive this past week, as well. Hardy Nickerson and Blake Lynch were the linebackers that filled in alongside Eric Wilson. It was Lynch, however, who received the three-down role - appearing in 96% of the snaps. Lynch paced the defense with 10 total tackles, including seven solos. Four of his tackles were impactful, resulting in three or fewer yards. He looked sharp and didn't hesitate to mix things up. It looks like he'll be the full-time LB alongside Wilson in the event Kendricks and Davis don't suit up this week.
Bryce Hager, LB, New York Jets
Harvey Langi ended up on IR after the Week 15 win over the Rams. Bryce Hager got the start in Week 16 and appeared in 90% of the snaps alongside Neville Hewitt. Hager seemed to be a bit quicker to the ball and every time a play was made, the announcers were saying Hager's name. Hager finished with 10 tackles. He limited yards after the catch and did his job setting the edge and filling in gaps to stuff the run. Hager will be the Jets LB to target in Week 17 off the wire.
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