IDP Free Agency Gauge: UFA Nick Kwiatkoski
March 5, 2020 No Comments Article Gary Van Dyke

Welcome to the IDP free agency gauge, where we’ll use an assortment of available information to gauge a player’s potential fantasy football outlook. And signed or unsigned, we’ll accumulate what we’ve learned in the process to gauge how to proceed from an IDP point of view with each player. So sit back and enjoy as the NFL ramps up their free agency period, and we break down those scenarios along the way.

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2020 Free Agent Fantasy Football IDP Player

Nick Kwiatkoski

Designated IDP Positions: ILB/MLB/LB

H/W: 6-2 – 243lb – Age: 26

2019 Team / Bears  –  Scheme / 3-4

Experience: 4 years

Status: Unrestricted Free Agent

2019 Gridiron Ratings

Overall

64

Performance

46

opportunity

88

Availability

99

solo

66

idp free agency

Note: PFR’s advanced metrics are only available from 2018 onward.

Additional IDP Free Agency Information According To…

2019 PFF NFL Grade: 72.6 – Ranked: #77 Free Agent / #15 ILB Overall


2020 Spotrac Projected Calculated Market Value:

NA yrs, $NA / Avg. Salary: $NA

Speculated: $8 – $10 Million Per year


Four “rumored” landing spots, if not resigned.

Bengals, Browns, Broncos, Packers

0

Gauging  IDP Free Agency Scenarios

The following information is provided by, or in part by, the following resources, including PFF, NFL.com, PFR, and ESPN, to list a few. And the information provided by these resources varies from website pages, writers, or analysts. Additionally, player reports and news from the player’s 2019 team’s trusted local resources are considered in combination when gauging the final scenario.

Applying The Information

After diving into the offseason reports/news, Kwiatkoski might be the most undervalued inside linebacker on the free-agent market this year. The journeyman has developed into an all-around solid run defender, tackler, pass-rusher, and above-average coverage linebacker. And the only draw-back in this statement, we don’t have a full season’s worth of production or playing time to fully grasp his potential. But there is one thing that will be clear for 2020, where ever he lands he earned it the old fashion way. And that’s a great IDP perspective to approach this scenario from.

When it comes to players in the NFL, some are immediate standouts, those expected to and don’t, and those that earned what they got. And Kwiatkoski has certainly earned his way into the spotlight right now after being a Bear’s depth player for the last four years. He has only been utilized by the Bears when one of the two main starting inside linebackers can’t play. And granted, there has been some hype here and there he would be named a mainstay starter on the defense over the years. But his development hadn’t peeked at the time of the hype, so it simply didn’t get the chance to stick for fantasy football owners.

Kwiatkoski Being Gauged

Kwiatkoski has come a long way from being selected 113th overall in the 2016 NFL draft as a raw rookie. And now, when it comes to his future from this point as a viable IDP option, owners need to look hard at the potential scenarios. Because over the last four seasons Kwiatkoski has been with the Bear, he has started 22 of 47 possible games he was capable (healthy) to play in. And it is those contests we’ll review while we break down and gauge him for our fantasy football purposes. Also noting here, when listing and reviewing game film, all 22 games he was a starter in over the four years were under consideration. All to get the complete growth in him fine-tuning his craft into our IDP free agency gauge.

In Four Seasons

  • 2016, he started seven contests, played 393 snaps, and made some form of play every 8.7 snaps he was on the field. earning an overall grade of just 54.8 by PFF. And his coverage skills were at a 45.7 grade while earning a solid grade of 70.4 in run-stopping.
  • 2017, he started six contests, played 280 snaps, made some form of play every 7.6 snaps he was on the field. He was a standout performer, ranked third in the NFL among inside linebackers in run-stop percentage and fourth in pass-rush productivity by PFF.
  • 2018, he started one contest, played 47 snaps in that contest and made some form of play every 11.5 snaps he was on the field.
  • 2019, he started eight contests, he played made some form of play every 5.9 snaps he was on the field. In contrast to his 5.9 average, that is comparable to any great ILB concerning IDP production, and the next tier up would be considered Elite. And he had a plus passer rating of 66.0 when targeted, while only giving up 4.0 yards against the pass when targeted.

idp free agency

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

The Bears currently have $24,696,679 in cap space according to Spotac

This Author’s IDP Game Film Reviewed

In the process of reviewing game film, at least four games are reviewed based on the player’s most productive contests. And the opponent’s overall offensive efficiency rankings are added according to the Football Outsiders.

2016 vs. 49ers in week thirteen, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 23rd

2016 vs. Lions in week fourteen, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 15th

2017 vs. Lions in week fifteen, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 12th

2017 vs. Vikings in week seventeen, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 5th

2018 vs. Packers in week one, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 7th (the only contest started in 2018)

2019 vs. Vikings in week four, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 10th

2019 vs. Lions in week ten, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 18th (Did Not Start, but played 78% of snaps available)

2019 vs. Chiefs in week four, opponent’s offensive efficiency rank: 3rd

Three Least Productive Contests

Listed in the least productive order are the player’s contests he recorded the least amount of stats for our gauging purposes. And their opponent’s offensive overall efficiency ranking is added according to the Football Outsiders. These contests are not among the game film reviewed unless noted as such.

All From 2019

Rams in week eleven recorded three solos, one assisted tackles with 65% of the available snap counts. The Rams offensive efficiency rank: 16th

Giants in week twelve recorded four solos, one assisted tackle, one tackle for loss, and one pass defended with 95% of the available snap counts. The Giants offensive efficiency rank: 23rd

Packers in week fifteen recorded three solos and two assisted tackle, one sack, one tackle for loss, and one pass defended with 100% of the available snap counts. The Packers offensive efficiency rank: 8th

*All three of these “least productive” contests in 2019 were still serviceable to highly IDP productive, pending the league’s scoring format.

IDP Free Agency Scenario Gauged

As A Resigned Bear In 2020 +

Stable
Descending Ascending

Taking everything into account, and after consulting with Gridiron Ratings founder Jeff DiMatteo. It’s this writer’s opinion the Bears should find a way to make more cap and resign Kwiatkoski. And insert him next to Roquan Smith for the next three to five years, forming a formidable tandem for the foreseeable future. But the odds are not in favor that it’ll be possible or viable for the Bears to pull it off. They simply have too many other positions to address this off-season. And keep it in mind, we are not in the organization, and anything can happen at this point.

If the Bears do manage to resign or franchise tag Kwiatkoski, he instantly receives a boost to a potentially low LB1 ceiling. And a mid LB2 floor based on the idea he’ll be inserted next to Smith, who is clearly the Bear’s most talented inside linebacker. Leaving Kwiatkoski fewer opportunities to ascend any higher unless Smith isn’t capable of playing for some reason. And he definitely would still ascend, with the idea they would have to pay him like a starter and certainly would mean treating him as such.

Signed Elsewhere In 2020 +

Stable
Descending Ascending

Again taking everything into account, this writer believes that if Kwiatkoski signs elsewhere, the odds are he’ll be a more ascending LB1 than resigning with the Bears. And the odds increase by a half a tier on his IDP production ceiling and floor. Also adding here, that speculated yearly salary above, it’s likely a low ball estimate by the time everything is said and done.

Fantasy Football owners will want to look at the defensive scheme and personal where ever he lands because it will affect his potential long term outlook. IDP owners will want to instantly celebrate a 4-3 scheme if named the middle linebacker off the top. And should be very happy if he lands in a 3-4 inside linebacker scheme or as a weakside linebacker in the 4-3. Either way, there will be a few teams that will want to pay Kwiatkoski. And whoever the higher bidder ends up being certainly will plan on getting what they paid for. Giving him every opportunity to be an IDP producing monster that we’ll all want our fair shares of in fantasy football leagues.

idp free agency

Thank you for joining us at Gridiron Ratings.  

Gary VanDyke

“The IDP Tipster”

The IDP Tipster

Would you like directly have access to Gary VanDyke and his fantasy Football IDP “takes” or interact? You can find him here @TheIDPTipster via Twitter. His most active account. Or chat with us using our member’s chat on site. We look forward to hearing from you.

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