It’s the fantasy playoffs, so most questions are about confidence this week. How much confidence can we have that the recent changes in opportunity continue or regress? I’ll try to offer the best actionable opinions I have on the most recent risers and fallers this week. Good luck this week, I hope you win all the championships you can carry.
Now, let’s dig in.
Data and Links
I’m writing my opinion on data. You can, and should disagree at will. I hope these are links that can help you do that.
You can see snapshots of the receiving opportunity for all 32 NFL teams here.
You can see the complete data with extra stats and metrics I’m collecting, including snap and touch %, here.
Sources: Airyards.com, ffstatistics.com, and 4for4.com
The Top 12
Here are the players who have led in receiving opportunity in the last three weeks.
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- Kenny Golladay is third in the league in opportunity and while he may have disappointed last week with 8PPR points, his PPG is in line with his opportunity. So, he does not have regression due, but we should expect around a 15 point median projection for Golladay in week 14.
- Despite scoring 14, 12 and 16 PPR points over the last three weeks DeAndre Hopkins opportunity share has been so high he has actually been underproducing.
- Davante Adams has yet to score less than 15 PPR points in any game this season. He is slightly overproducing his opportunity but I see no reason to expect anything less in the fantasy playoffs.
- Antonio Brown is the only other WR to have 100% of his games go over 15 PPR points. He’s showing some concerning inefficiency compared to his high standard but his volume is still elite and so is his fantasy potential every week.
- Christian Kirk is still one of my favorite Dynasty targets from this year’s rookie class.
- Michel Gallup could have a “surprise” week coming his way based on his opportunity the last three weeks.
- Dede Westbrook, continue to fade the ups and downs of the Jaguars opportunity pie.
Here are the top 12 players to gain the most opportunity in the last three weeks.
- DJ Moore’s Opportunity continues to grow in Carolina. He is a locked in starter for my during the fantasy playoffs as a rookie. His dynasty star is rising.
- This is the first positive sign for Courtland Sutton’s volume and efficiency since week four for me. However, he excelled with new opportunity in week 13.
- TY Hilton is sixth in Airyards over the last three weeks with a 7.9 aDot. He’s also seen 2.4 targets a game rise in his usage and a 27% target share. Last week was a tough get, but he should be a good start in the playoffs.
- Tre’Quan Smith’s usage is still propped up by that monster game two weeks ago. I’m still waiting for another data point to feel comfortable about his volume as he’s yet to record a reception since then.
- Curtis Samuel is also seeing a rise in his target share with an injured and limited Devin Funchess and Greg Olsen. He could be having an end of the seasons Tyler Boyd-like breakout. There have been lots of interesting volume changes in Carolina.
- Doug Baldwin is slowly crawling his volume back. Since David Moore and Tyler Lockett continue to outpace their receptions to touchdown ratio his PPG could see a rise.
- Bruce Ellington is volume based emergence start you’re looking floor. He has a very safe floor, but a low ceiling with an aDot of 3.3.
Here are the players who have lost the most opportunity over the last three weeks.
- AJ Green is gone for the season.
- Danny Amendola has been injured, no one has picked up the mantle of reliable “productive fantasy player” in his absence with Leonte Carroo (off one reception) Kenny Stills and DeVante Parker have each had a game over 12 PPR points over the last three weeks, but none of them have scored more than four points in any other game. Don’t play Dolphins players if you can avoid it in your playoffs..
- James White has lost some of his role with the return of Rex Burkhead but is still a very solid start in any week as he showed in week 13
- Jarvis Landry‘s volume continues to decrease overall for the last three weeks.
- Todd Gurley has gone from six targets per game to three targets per game in the last three weeks. This could bounce back up, but in games where the Rams need to score it’s clear his receiving volume can take a hit in favor of more aggressive throws over his -0.03 (lol) aDot
With the loss of Emmanuel Sanders for the season, there is a lot of mystery about how the targets will flow in the Denver passing game. I thought I’d take a look at the players on that roster so far in 2018.
Here is the target share for every wide receiver this season from week one to week thirteen
Obviously, DaeSean Hamilton has not had much of a role but it’s interesting to me that Tim Patrick is the only one who has approached a 10% target share this season (in week nine, and almost in week two.)
Here is their efficiency, measured by RACR, of how well they have converted their targets into yards.
Neither Hamilton nor Patrick has had the volume to truly get a sense of their efficiency in 2018. However both have had good weeks on low volume, Patrick leads with his peaks being generally higher. Neither had targets in week 13.
Let’s take a look at the team snapshot to get an idea of how this works together with the other positions.
While Hamilton looks like the more likely player to get an increased opportunity behind Courtland Sutton, I believe Tim Patrick’s higher aDot and earlier positive signs make him worth a pickup if he’s available on your waiver wire. However, Matt LaCosse was the player getting more targets and airyards then both of the wide receivers over the last two weeks.
I don’t think any of these players are playable in the fantasy playoffs. However, in dynasty leagues, we have a chance to learn something about players we haven’t seen with the opportunity before. It’s a situation I’ll be watching closely in the next few weeks.
Anyway, thanks for checking this out. Please comment below or contact me on twitter with any thoughts or questions.
Good luck out there!
Zeno James, from ffstatistics.com, has been invaluable in collecting this data on a weekly basis. Give him a follow at @theDude_Z on Twitter
I’m using a mix of data from 4for4.com and Airyards.com
CoV = The Coefficient of Variation, it measures the variance in a sample (i.e. how much change there is week to week)
Airyards = the total distance before the player caught his targets (essentially receiving yards minus yards after the catch)
Regression = a rate should return closer to “normal” or average when it is greatly over or under that average over a long sample size
WOPR = Weighted Opportunity Rating. It weights target share by the player’s share of air yards. It is one of the most stable (week to week and year to year) opportunity metrics and has extra utility because it describes some of the value in opportunity. It’s also useful because it can highlight potential regression when compared with fantasy points.
RACR = Receiver Airyards Conversion Ratio. Essential a players receiving yards divided by their airyards. It describes how well they have converted airyards into yards. It’s one of if not the most stable efficiency metrics (not a high bar) for the wide receiver position. It’s’ also very description of how well a player has performed on their targets. Higher numbers are better, numbers over 1.5 are general nose based on erratic or small samples. League average of WR’s is 0.8.
It should be noted that the WOPR calculation is my own and imperfect when compared Airyards.com. It has a slightly different player order at times, however, it is ranking them in ranges appropriately.
UDFA's matter | British ex-pat | Writer of things
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