January 2009 IDPs Rankings: Linebackers

Football Maniaxs@@FantasymaniaxsSenior Writer IJanuary 3, 2009

By Sean Haugh

Linebackers (LB) are generally the highest scoring Fantasy Football's IDPs, and are at the core of any strong dynasty lineup.

The good news is that quality LBs are plentiful. In most IDP leagues, there are no more than 40 LBs on a roster at any time. This is my take on the top 50 dynasty LBs currently in the league, but it could well happen that someone not on this list emerges as a top option in 2009.

These being dynasty rankings, younger players are favored over older ones, which also leaves room for the possibility that someone left off this list could still have a great year or two left in them.

Rule No. 1 of drafting LBs is do not be the fool who uses high draft picks on them. Until this year, I allowed myself one top 10 pick on a defensive player. No more. I've learned my lesson!

My sixth round pick in the Maniaxs Dynasty League was DeMeco Ryans, who struggled through injuries all year and finished 20th in big play IDP leagues. Load up on offensive talent first, second, and third and wait until late in your draft to stock up on LBs.

Of the top 10 LBs in big play IDP leagues in 2008, only two, Patrick Willis and Jon Beason, were deemed worthy of a high draft pick, and they finished fifth and sixth. So who were the top four? DeMarcus Ware, D’Qwell Jackson, James Harrison, and Barrett Ruud.

Ware and Ruud generally went in the middle rounds, while Harrison and Jackson went in the late rounds, if they were drafted at all.

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