Punch Drunk Wonderland

Fantasy IDP Review: Top Rookies of 2014

Today I’m taking a look at the 2014 fantasy football season with a focus on rookie defensive players. Below you’ll find the top rookie IDPs of 2014 (full table at the bottom). For reference, the fantasy numbers are based off of the PDW IDP Scoring System. (stats are for 2014 regular season)

C.J. Mosley (LB, Baltimore Ravens)

C.J. Mosley was the top scoring fantasy IDP of the 2014 class and showed that he should be a perennial top LB option. He had the most fantasy points (228.0) and by far the most snaps (1,101) of all rookies. He was the #8 overall IDP on the season and the only rookie to crack the top 25. Mosley is in a good system for his position as the Ravens tend to expect and get big production from their linebackers, and should be a top LB option going into 2015.

Chris Borland (LB, San Francisco 49ers)

Chris Borland was a statistical monster during his time in 2014. He just kept putting up gaudy numbers week after week. While he only played 9 games and 487 snaps as a starter filling in for injured Patrick Willis, Borland put up 190.0 fantasy points and averaged a ridiculous 21.1 points per game and 0.390 fantasy points per snap. Those are unreal numbers. Borland showed that he can produce despite some criticism that he’s undersized for the position. San Francisco will have an interesting linebacker situation in 2015 as they’ll have three stud inside linebackers at their disposal.

Telvin Smith (LB, Jacksonville Jaguars)

The Jags rookie quietly had a very solid 2014 season. In 16 games Telvin Smith amassed 181.0 fantasy points with a nice 0.250 points per snap. His production potential was certainly aided by the fact that someone needed to pick up the slack with veteran linebacker Paul Posluszny lost to a season ending injury, but he showed that he has viable IDP potential going forward.

Preston Brown (LB, Buffalo Bills)

Preston Brown had a good rookie season despite having to work his way into a role. He initially showed that he could produce filling in for suspended Nigel Bradham, and once Bradham returned he found a way to remain in the starting lineup.  Brown completed the season having played over 1,000 defensive snaps and logged a respectable 0.156 points per snap.

Khalil Mack (LB, Oakland Raiders)

Rushing linebackers tend to not get the sexy numbers with consistency that we want to see when looking at fantasy IDP viability, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t relevant. Despite his numbers not comparing with his inside linebacker counterparts, Khalil Mack actually had a great 2014 rookie season. In fact, he was the second best graded defensive player by Pro Football Focus behind J.J. Watt. Mack finished the season with 76 tackles, 4 sacks, and 40 QB hurries. While the sack totals may not tell the story, the hurries do. He was a disruptive force in 2014. Think Von Miller. Of all defensive rookies, I feel like Khalil Mack showed that he has the ability to dominate at his position more so than anyone else.

Rookie IDPs in the TOP 200 (Tot. FPts.)

Table is sortable

Player/Tm./Pos. G Snaps Fpts. Avg. Fpts. PPSnap
1 8 Mosley, C.J. BAL LB 16 1,101 228.0 14.3 0.207
2 28 Borland, Chris SF LB 9 487 190.0 21.1 0.390
3 38 Smith, Telvin JAC LB 16 723 181.0 11.3 0.250
4 62 Brown, Preston BUF LB 16 1,057 164.5 10.3 0.156
5 70 Mack, Khalil OAK LB 16 1,034 162.5 10.2 0.157
6 84 Roby, Bradley DEN CB 16 818 157.0 9.8 0.192
7 98 Barr, Anthony MIN LB 12 793 151.5 12.6 0.191
8 99 Gaines, E.J. STL CB 15 964 151.5 10.1 0.157
9 103 Fuller, Kyle CHI CB 16 877 150.0 9.4 0.171
10 105 Clinton-Dix, Ha Ha GB S 16 960 148.5 9.3 0.155
11 118 Donald, Aaron STL DT 16 724 145.5 9.1 0.201
12 120 Breeland, Bashaud WAS CB 16 885 144.0 9.0 0.163
13 136 Bucannon, Deone ARI S 16 705 134.5 8.4 0.191
14 143 Williamson, Avery TEN LB 14 834 133.5 9.5 0.160
15 168 Kirksey, Christian CLE LB 16 693 123.5 7.7 0.178
16 174 Hitchens, Anthony DAL LB 14 541 121.5 8.7 0.225

K. Smelser About K. Smelser
Kelly Smelser is Owner/Senior Writer for Punch Drunk Wonderland and PDFantasy Sports. Architect of the PDW fantasy football world and general spinster of NFL and Fantasy Football news and analysis. Long walks on the beach, sunsets, and other such niceties are also fine...