So I’m back to take a look at the offensive points per snap data I posted a few weeks ago. Specifically, I’ll be looking at the WR’s. I took the analysis a little deeper and used a points per target analysis I put together. I’m sure a lot of you out there subscribe to the belief in building around wide receivers because of their shelf life. So if you’re one of those managers, this data should be of particular interest. Below, you’ll see a link to Top 25 lists for both metrics. The points per snap raw data can be found in a Google doc at the end of the article.
The biggest surprise for me is the rookie representation in the top 25 of both metrics (you can see both below). Most of all that Martavis Bryant is the top ranked of all wideouts in 2014. His participation in the offense was very low (27% of snaps) compared to everyone else in the top 25 so I would expect his metrics to come back into the stratosphere when given more snaps.
OBJ and Mike Evans look like the studs everyone is confident they are, as does Jordan Matthews. Those high on Matthews are more than justified in my eyes. Those worried about Nelson Agholor putting a dent in Matthews’ value, can rest easier now as these lists suggest the Eagles’ offense can sustain two star talents (Jeremy Maclin outranks Matthews on both lists).
Although I’ve been high on Jarvis Landry for a while now, his points/snap make him even more intriguing when you also take into consideration his participation in the offense. He played only 62% of the Dolphins snaps but sits at 25 on the list. Brandin Cooks and Donte Moncrief certainly took full advantage of the snaps they were afforded in 2014—good news for their owners. I’m beginning to feel out the owners of these guys in my leagues to see if any of them are undervaluing them.
Notable rookies who didn’t perform well according to these metrics are Sammy Watkins (61st in pts/snap, 63rd in pts/tar), and Kelvin Benjamin (30th in pts/snap, 61st in pts/tar). Sammy’s standing is largely a function of the QB play he dealt with. As a Watkins owner, I’m not confident this season will be any different. Maybe will draw some coverage away from Watkins and McCoy in the backfield will keep defenses honest but he still needs a competent QB slinging the rock, which the Bills don’t have. Benjamin, on the other hand, worries me. He was 7th most targeted in the league but 61st in points/target. He had 10 drops. There is a lot of talk about 2014 being his ceiling. With the Panthers drafting Devin Funchess, I have to wonder if there is more merit to that argument than I originally thought. At the least, Funchess should eat into this redzone targets eroding his TD’s.
Dez Bryant and OBJ are the only players besides Martavis Bryant to land themselves in the top 5. Dez is my 1.01. I’m of the opinion that 2014 was OBJ’s ceiling. I don’t yet believe that he is the next Calvin Johnson. If he sustains his 2014 pace through 2015 then I’m on board. Dez has been at a high level for 3-4 seasons now, OBJ for 12 games. He’s led the league in receiving touchdowns (56) since entering the league in 2010. At 1.01, give me the mid-20s stud with proven consistency every time.
Jordy Nelson was close to including himself in the Top 5 Club but narrowly missed out. Some managers may be sleeping on him because he’s getting older (age 30) but if you’re in win-now mode, Jordy he is a phenomenal piece to grab for multiple championship runs. Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Demaryius Thomas, AJ Green, and Randall Cobb (who I think is undervalued when comparing his 2nd round ADP to these metrics plus he’ll be barely 25 by Week 1, just signed for another 4 year with Rodgers) should all be considered in the First Round as well. And while Jones, Thomas, and Green fall out of the Top 25 for points per target, I think that is a function more of how many targets they receive (and thus how many poor targets they receive) than anything else.
Two other big surprises for me are DeAndre Hopkins (48th in pts/snap, 30th in pts/tar) and Keenan Allen (56th in pts/snap, 91st in pts/tar). Like Watkins, I can give Hopkins the benefit of the doubt here. His QB play was inconsistent at best and erratic at worst in 2014. Further, Andre Johnson still drew 147 targets (to Hopkins’ 127) –many of which will be headed Hopkins’ way in 2015. For Allen, I think this throws more fuel on the fire that his rookie season was a mostly a fluke—the result of lack of options for Rivers to throw to thus high targets and high TD%. I think he’ll settle in as a competent WR2. He just won’t be the WR1 stud his rookie season made him out be. He may be a nice piece to acquire if you can use these metrics to get him on the cheap.
You can find the Points/Snap data here
I’ll look at potential sleepers per these two metrics in a follow up to be published soon.