Everyone who participates in fantasy football knows full well that Jimmy Graham is the unanimous number one tight end. Well, I'm here to tell you that if you play in a league containing individual defensive players, J.J. Watt from the Houston Texans is the unanimous defensive end (or defensive lineman depending on how your league is set up) and can be viewed as the equivalent to Jimmy Graham on the offensive side of the ball.
When you are sitting in front of your computer screen on draft day or looking over your cheat sheets during a draft party, you will always question whether you take the number one player among his position or do you play the draft and get yourself a middle player among the run on running backs or wide receivers and hope that the number one guy falls to you in the next round. This is not a strategy session but a painted scenario in which you might find yourself. You know you are going to get the best player at his position, hands down, if you go with Jimmy Graham with your selection. However, most fantasy players who have never played in an IDP league format before can most definitely find themselves struggling to value the defensive players as easily as the offensive players. I'm here to tell you that if you find yourself in the same situation as described among the defensive side, you have got to value and equate J.J. Watt as the Jimmy Graham of an IDP league.
Both the tight end position and the defensive end position in fantasy football have far less depth than say the wide receivers and linebackers among the entire league. Standard starting lineups in most fantasy leagues dictate you must start at least 1 tight end and most likely a flex position that could be a tight end. This means that the disparity among all tight ends is going to have a greater impact than say the disparity among the wide receivers, therefore guaranteeing yourself a couple of extra points among tight ends by going with the number one guy. This is pretty much known to most fantasy owners, whether it is cognitive reasoning or simply intuition. In IDP leagues, most of the time (not all) the starting lineup dictates that you start at least 1 if not 2 defensive ends (or lineman depending on league format). Similarly to the tight end position, there are very few elite defensive ends that are going to score big points when all is said and done and among those elite there is one man that separates himself, J.J. Watt.
Obviously I am not guaranteeing that both Jimmy Graham and J.J. Watt are going to finish first in points among their respective positions every year but you know with full confidence that they will be among the top five consistently, year-in and year-out. So, when you are sitting there agonizing about who you draft next and J.J. Watt is still on the board, you know you have the Jimmy Graham of defense sitting there waiting to be selected.