As a native Coloradan and current resident of the beautiful state, naturally you’d assume I have a raging affinity for my home team, but I’m here to say that nothing could be further from the truth. In my first article, I explained how my addiction to fantasy football has corrupted my “fandom”, and yes, the situation still applies.
Yes it’s disgusting, yes I should be ashamed of myself, and yes, whenever I try to explain it to someone who doesn’t play the game we love, they look at me like I’m crazy. And maybe I am, but it is what it is at this point. I’ve made peace with it. I’ve quit trying to be something I’m not; a real fan.
With that in mind, I segue into a new division: the AFC West. A division that should be a tad more competitive this year, but should still be handled relatively easily by our first subject.
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Denver Broncos (Base: 4-3)
As a unit last year, the Broncos closed out the regular season as the 4th overall team in scoring defense. The defense will look slightly different in 2013 as some familiar faces have left, but regardless of their departure the team still boasts some solid options for your sole protective participant team.
Derek Wolfe: Wolfe had some up’s and down’s in 2013 as all rookies do, but he did play over 1,000 snaps (including playoffs) and recorded 6 sacks in the process. If you were to merely glance at his grades on PFF it wouldn’t look pretty, but he’s very good against the run and the 6 sacks can’t be ignored, no matter how bad his pass rushing grades were. He’s likely to build on his strong rookie showing and could challenge for double digit sacks this next season (playing alongside Von Miller helps). He could be a low-end DL2.
Sylvester Williams: This year’s first round draft pick probably won’t be a major contributor this year as he’ll likely be in a rotation with Kevin Vickerson and Terrance Knighton, but should be someone to watch in keeper/dynasty leagues that have a separate DT position. In his college career he demonstrated a quick first step to go along with a knack for shedding blocks and chasing down ball carriers.
Von Miller: The best edge rusher in the game is perhaps the ultimate risk/reward player in IDP. Miller fits my classic “Game Changer” profile: a player that can get two or three sacks and a forced fumble or two while leading you to victory one week, and the next he’ll get you a couple of tackles and be a hole in your lineup. In big play-heavy leagues he’s a monster and should be an LB1, but in standard IDP leagues where tackles are more highly-valued he’s really no more than a situational player who should only be utilized when facing a poor offensive line.
Wesley Woodyard: In his second full season as the starting weak-side linebacker in the “Mile High City”, Woodyard catapulted himself into star status. And with 117 total tackles, 5.5 sacks, and 3 INT’s, it’s clear to see how. Woodyard plays with a non-stop motor and is relentless in his pursuit of the ball carrier. He’s 26 and is entering his 6th season, so it’s very likely we haven’t even seen his best ball yet. If you miss out on some of the elite backer’s, don’t hesitate to pull the trigger on Woodyard.
Defensive BackRahim Moore: Moore’s 2nd season saw his IDP stock rise considerably. Going from 553 snaps as a rookie to 1,161 this last year, he clearly matured enough to the point where the team was comfortable having him on the field in a full-time role. He registered 72 total tackles and finished the year as PFF’s #10 overall safety. As long as he can fend off Quentin Jammer (which shouldn’t be too hard), he can be a solid DB2 with upside for a little more. P.S. Our FakePigskin 2013 Draft Guide will be released on August 1st in PDF form for FREE! Simply go to our home page and sign up to receive it and our newsletter in the upper right corner right under our banner.