2013 Fantasy Football IDP Dark Horse Sleeper: Daryl Washington

By Dustin Manko

For the record, I didn’t want to have to call Daryl Washington an IDP dark horse, but you fantasy football owners left me no choice. Washington is owned in only 42 percent of Yahoo! leagues but should be owned in 100 percent. Leodis McKelvin, Barry Church and Devin McCourty all have a higher ownership percentage than Washington. Some of you are sleeping out there.

I want to understand the low ownership percentages with his four game suspension, but not after week five. In his first game back, Washington rewarded fantasy owners who started him with eight solo tackles (three for a loss), two sacks, a pass defended, and an interception that was returned 41 yards, en route to about 28 fantasy points.

Week six saw the tackles decline, but still had a respectable fantasy output combining on three tackles, two passes defended, a fumble recovery.

Going into week seven, Washington should be in all lineups as the Arizona Cardinals host the Seattle Seahawks (who allow the sixth most fantasy points to linebackers) tonight. The Seahawks employ a run heavy attack which is a great setup for opposing linebackers. Also, the Seahawks pass short on 76 percent of their passing plays. This means that the bulk of their offensive attack is targeted at the linebacker level, which will provide Washington with plenty of opportunities to make plays. On my board, he is a top five linebacker this week.

Over the longer term, Washington should finish among the linebacker leaders in scoring over the remaining games. Of the remaining 10 games on the Cardinals schedule, half are against teams that are allowing the most, fourth most, eighth most and sixth most fantasy points to linebackers. Weeks 16 and 17 are against the Seahawks (sixth most) and San Francisco 49ers (eighth most), both good matchups during your fantasy playoffs and/or Super Bowl.

Washington has the power and speed to get to the quarterback, he rarely misses tackles and has good anticipation. The fourth year pro has had issues off the field, but has progressed on it in every season in his career, increasing his sacks, tackles, fumbles forced and recovered every season thus far. Keep in mind that in 2011, Washington finished third in all defensive scoring, and missed the second place by nine tenths of a point.

He is as sure fire a LB1 as there is. Get in on him before another owner scoops him up.

As always, I welcome your comments. If you think I’m wrong, I’m willing to listen. Just back it up with some facts and solid evidence. Thanks for reading and good luck this season.

Dustin Manko is an author at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @DustinManko, ”Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

Read more from Dustin here.





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