The first week of NFL free agency 2013 is nearly in the books, and there are Individual Defensive Player (IDP) fantasy ramifications aplenty. While the market value of a lot of the big name free agent defenders has been less than anticipated, the signings have been fast and furious.
Examining the fantasy implications of the signings to-date is still a very fluid situation as the exact positions that each player will line up at has yet to be determined. The NFL Draft in April will also muddy the waters as rookies will be in the mix to fill some starting roles that as of right now appear covered by some of the recent signings.
Offseason workouts and minicamps will help to clarify a lot of these situations, but until teams begin to actually convene and release depth charts, we can only surmise what fantasy value players may hold on their new teams.
For the sake of brevity and clarity, I felt it best to break down the analysis of the free agency effect on 2013 IDP fantasy landscape to one of examining a single division at a time.
Starting with the NFC West seems like a good idea, as there has already been a plethora of signings that are sure to shake up plenty of IDP leagues in 2013.
SEATTLE: The Seahawks don't always go out and sign free agent defensive ends, but when they do it's two of the biggest names on the market. There were concerns at the conclusion of the 2012 season that Seattle would have trouble replacing the sack production of defensive end Chris Clemons as he recovers from an ACL injury.
Those concerns are laid to rest as the Seahawks have brought on board Cliff Avril, formerly of the Detroit Lions, and emerging defensive end talent Michael Bennett from Tampa Bay. For those of you counting at home, they bring a combined total of 18 1/2 sacks accumulated last season.
Seattle can allow Clemons to take his time returning from injury and ensure he is 100 percent before hitting the field as Avril, Bennett and second-year pass rushing specialist Bruce Irvin get after the quarterback. The rich got richer and the Seahawks are serving notice to the league that their defense is going to be bringing consistent pressure from all sides.
Over the past three seasons, Avril has amassed 29 1/2 sacks with nine forced fumbles and one interception that he returned for a touchdown. While he has never surpassed more than 41 total tackles in a season, Avril is that nice IDP combination of sack and big play potential that adds up to above...