Managing your Indvidual Defensive Player positions is similar to managing your Offensive Players --- with a couple key exceptions. Those exceptions are discussed below.
Q: How long should you stay with an underperforming IDP?
A: Not nearly as long as you would with an underperforming offensive player. But be careful that you don't get too impatient and drop your LB1 or DL1. A Patrick Willis or Jared Allen Tier 1 player should never be dropped other than in the case of any injury.
I personally tend to be much less patient with other IDP positions. The LB and DB rankings change greatly from year to year. My preference is to ride the horses who are getting it done this year.
Q: Should you drop an IDP during the bye week?
A: Well, Virginia, that answer depends – but here are some guidelines.
Again, never drop a Tier 1 player solely based upon the bye week. Tier 1 IDP players should be treated the same as your offensive starters. Rather than drop them, drop one of your offensive bench players and pick up a replacement IDP for one week.
Always drop a Tier 3 IDP. He can easily be replaced. (But, through savvy drafting, hopefully you have avoided this situation.)
Now for the Tier 2. Aye, there’s the rub. First, forget where you drafted him. He either is or is not performing for you this year. Fortunately, often you will find that your competitors have focused more on their offensive players (even though they are simply bench warmers) than on the IDP’s. Their oversight may allow you to pick up a solid Tier 2 player in exchange for your Tier 2 bye week man. In that case, drop your Tier 2 IDP in favor of the new player.
What if the IDP Free Agent landscape is barren? You’ll want to drop one of your offensive bench players and pick up a Tier 3 player for a week. It may hurt and you’ll need to use discretion. But again, a decent IDP who is in the lineup is better than a decent offensive player warming your bench.