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Week One Receiving Efficiency Report – Comparing Actual vs. Expected Fantasy Points for WRs

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One of the things we can do with target data is create an expectation of the value of a target from any yard line (line of scrimmage) on the field and then compare expected fantasy points versus actual fantasy points. This gives us some sense as to how fluky a player’s fantasy production is. For instance, Kenbrell Thompkins was targeted 14 times in his game against the Bills. Those targets (based on the line of scrimmage) would on average produce about 18 standard fantasy points. Instead they produced 4.2 FPs. The difference between the two numbers is what I’ll call Fantasy Points Above Par on a gross basis. I typically divide FPOP by targets to get a number that is per target. In Thompkins case he was a full fantasy point below par (per target). That means each target produced one fewer fantasy point than average. Sorry if I’m beating this into the ground but I just want to explain it fully.

Looking at players that are well above or below par on FPOP is a good way to identify buy low/sell high candidates. For instance, I don’t think that Thompkins is likely to be that bad every week so he might make sense to target in a trade. Remember that he had a very good training camp and preseason.

The table below contains all of the calculations for Expected Points and FPOP for the games prior to the Sunday night game. Some notes:

  • AJ Green’s 28 standard points can be considered against his 15.5 expected points. For a point of reference Green’s .98 FPOP is about 0.8/target higher than his season average for 2011 or 2012. So there’s probably some room for Green to regress to the downside.
  • Randall Cobb scored about exactly the number of fantasy points that an average player would score with his targets on Sunday. But Cobb has historically not been an average player (or at least the Rodgers-Cobb combo has not been average). On that number of targets Cobb actually probably has a little room to improve to the upside.
  • Danny Amendola was slightly below average in terms of FPOP, but FPOP typically has possession WRs as below average because they produce relatively few touchdowns with their targets.
  • That brings us to Wes Welker. Welker has historically produced slightly fewer fantasy points than average over his career and yet on Thur. he was above average. If I was a betting man I would say that he underperforms the bar he’s set from here on out.
  • If I had ordered this table by FPOP then Andre Caldwell’s 1 target, 1 touchdown performance would have been at the top.
  • A few of the names at the top of this list that underwhelmed are probably worth targeting in trades where you make it look like you’re asking for another player and you ask for that player as a throw in merely for the usage. Most NFL teams haven’t spent a month preparing for the season just to change their usage habits right away. That might be Ace Sanders, Greg Little, or the aforementioned Thompkins.
  • The interesting thing for Calvin Johnson isn’t necessarily the 3.7 FPs he produced, but the 10 that would have been expected. That’s about 30% lower than his expected point rate from last year. That could just be variance but it could also be a renewed focus on the run in DET. However, for Johnson I think you’ll see his efficiency spike if the Lions do have success running the ball this year. Despite Johnson’s otherworldly physical skills he was just barely above Par in FPOP last year. That was likely due to the heavy usage.
  • Note that while Rod Streater out-targeted Denarius Moore, Moore got him in Expected Points. Not all targets are created equal.
Name TRGS RECS YDS TDS Actual FP Expected FP recFPOP (per target) YPT YPR
Anquan Boldin 17 13 208.0 1.0 26.8 18.6 0.5 12.2 16.00
Kenbrell Thompkins 14 4 42.0 4.2 17.9 (1.0) 3.0 10.50
Larry Fitzgerald 14 8 80.0 2.0 20.0 16.6 0.2 5.7 10.00
Randall Cobb 12 7 108.0 1.0 16.8 16.2 0.0 9.0 15.43
A.J. Green 13 9 162.0 2.0 28.2 15.5 1.0 12.5 18.00
Brian Hartline 15 9 114.0 1.0 17.4 14.5 0.2 7.6 12.67
Wes Welker 11 9 67.0 2.0 18.7 14.1 0.4 6.1 7.44
Danny Amendola 14 10 104.0 10.4 14.0 (0.3) 7.4 10.40
Emmanuel Sanders 12 7 57.0 5.7 11.9 (0.5) 4.8 8.14
Vincent Jackson 13 7 154.0 15.4 11.8 0.3 11.8 22.00
Julio Jones 9 7 76.0 1.0 13.6 11.0 0.3 8.4 10.86
Demaryius Thomas 11 5 161.0 2.0 28.1 10.8 1.6 14.6 32.20
Greg Little 10 4 26.0 2.6 10.7 (0.8) 2.6 6.50
Ace Sanders 9 3 14.0 1.4 10.7 (1.0) 1.6 4.67
Julian Edelman 9 7 79.0 2.0 19.9 10.5 1.0 8.8 11.29
Denarius Moore 7 5 43.0 1.0 10.3 10.5 (0.0) 6.1 8.60
Jordy Nelson 10 7 130.0 1.0 19.0 10.4 0.9 13.0 18.57
Brandon Stokley 10 4 34.0 3.4 10.3 (0.7) 3.4 8.50
Calvin Johnson 9 4 37.0 3.7 10.3 (0.7) 4.1 9.25
Cecil Shorts 11 3 40.0 4.0 9.9 (0.5) 3.6 13.33
Jerricho Cotchery 7 4 34.0 1.0 9.4 9.8 (0.1) 4.9 8.50
Davone Bess 10 5 47.0 4.7 9.7 (0.5) 4.7 9.40
Steve Smith 8 6 51.0 1.0 11.1 9.7 0.2 6.4 8.50
Brandon Marshall 10 8 104.0 1.0 16.4 9.6 0.7 10.4 13.00
Brandon Gibson 10 7 77.0 7.7 9.3 (0.2) 7.7 11.00
Stephen Hill 9 6 39.0 3.9 9.0 (0.6) 4.3 6.50
Andre Roberts 9 8 97.0 9.7 8.3 0.2 10.8 12.13
Harry Douglas 6 4 93.0 9.3 8.2 0.2 15.5 23.25
Eric Decker 7 2 32.0 3.2 8.1 (0.7) 4.6 16.00
Reggie Wayne 8 8 96.0 1.0 15.6 8.1 0.9 12.0 12.00
Rod Streater 8 5 70.0 7.0 8.0 (0.1) 8.8 14.00
Torrey Smith 8 4 92.0 9.2 7.9 0.2 11.5 23.00
Doug Baldwin 8 7 91.0 9.1 7.8 0.2 11.4 13.00
Alshon Jeffery 8 5 42.0 4.2 7.6 (0.4) 5.3 8.40
Mike Williams 8 4 52.0 1.0 11.2 7.6 0.4 6.5 13.00
Travis Benjamin 8 3 44.0 4.4 7.3 (0.4) 5.5 14.67
Austin Pettis 6 3 16.0 1.6 7.3 (0.9) 2.7 5.33
Tavon Austin 7 6 41.0 4.1 6.9 (0.4) 5.9 6.83
Golden Tate 7 4 51.0 5.1 6.6 (0.2) 7.3 12.75
Nate Washington 7 4 46.0 4.6 6.5 (0.3) 6.6 11.50
Nate Burleson 6 6 78.0 7.8 6.3 0.3 13.0 13.00
Greg Jennings 7 3 33.0 3.3 6.3 (0.4) 4.7 11.00
Antonio Brown 7 5 71.0 7.1 6.2 0.1 10.1 14.20
Jerome Simpson 7 7 140.0 14.0 6.2 1.1 20.0 20.00
Marlon Brown 6 4 65.0 1.0 12.5 6.1 1.1 10.8 16.25
Donnie Avery 5 2 11.0 1.0 7.1 5.9 0.2 2.2 5.50
Steve Johnson 6 3 39.0 1.0 9.9 5.8 0.7 6.5 13.00
Marques Colston 6 5 68.0 1.0 12.8 5.7 1.2 11.3 13.60
Michael Floyd 6 4 82.0 8.2 5.6 0.4 13.7 20.50
Kyle Williams 6 3 36.0 3.6 5.5 (0.3) 6.0 12.00
Dwayne Bowe 6 4 30.0 3.0 5.5 (0.4) 5.0 7.50
Ty Hilton 5 3 20.0 2.0 4.8 (0.6) 4.0 6.67
Mohamed Sanu 5 4 19.0 1.9 4.7 (0.6) 3.8 4.75
Lance Moore 4 2 23.0 2.3 4.7 (0.6) 5.8 11.50
Kendall Wright 4 2 11.0 1.1 4.6 (0.9) 2.8 5.50
Mike Wallace 5 1 15.0 1.5 4.5 (0.6) 3.0 15.00
Kenny Stills 5 2 86.0 8.6 4.5 0.8 17.2 43.00
Chris Givens 3 2 27.0 2.7 4.2 (0.5) 9.0 13.50
Edmond Gates 4 1 17.0 1.7 3.8 (0.5) 4.3 17.00
Jacoby Jones 4 3 24.0 2.4 3.7 (0.3) 6.0 8.00
Darrius Heyward-Bey 4 3 33.0 3.3 3.6 (0.1) 8.3 11.00
Jeremy Kerley 4 3 45.0 4.5 3.6 0.2 11.3 15.00
Roddy White 2 2 19.0 1.9 3.0 (0.5) 9.5 9.50
Patrick Edwards 3 3 30.0 3.0 2.8 0.1 10.0 10.00
Brian Quick 2 1 16.0 1.6 2.7 (0.6) 8.0 16.00
Josh Boyce 2 0 2.7 (1.4) NaN
Sidney Rice 3 2 35.0 3.5 2.6 0.3 11.7 17.50
Mike Brown 3 1 14.0 1.4 2.6 (0.4) 4.7 14.00
Santonio Holmes 3 1 13.0 1.3 2.6 (0.4) 4.3 13.00
Junior Hemingway 1 1 3.0 1.0 6.3 2.6 3.7 3.0 3.00
Kris Durham 2 1 11.0 1.1 2.5 (0.7) 5.5 11.00
Tori Gurley 2 1 15.0 1.5 2.3 (0.4) 7.5 15.00
Robert Woods 2 1 18.0 1.0 7.8 2.2 2.8 9.0 18.00
James Jones 2 0 1.9 (1.0) NaN
Damian Williams 2 1 13.0 1.3 1.9 (0.3) 6.5 13.00
Jermaine Kearse 2 2 49.0 1.0 10.9 1.9 4.5 24.5 24.50
Jacoby Ford 2 1 2.0 0.2 1.8 (0.8) 1.0 2.00
Kenny Britt 2 1 15.0 1.5 1.8 (0.2) 7.5 15.00
Marvin Jones 2 1 7.0 0.7 1.8 (0.5) 3.5 7.00
Jarius Wright 2 0 1.8 (0.9) NaN
Jaron Brown 2 1 14.0 1.4 1.8 (0.2) 7.0 14.00
Kevin Ogletree 2 0 1.8 (0.9) NaN
Cordarrelle Patterson 1 1 10.0 1.0 1.5 (0.5) 10.0 10.00
Andre Caldwell 1 1 28.0 1.0 8.8 1.1 7.7 28.0 28.00
Earl Bennett 1 1 6.0 0.6 1.1 (0.5) 6.0 6.00
Brice Butler 1 1 8.0 0.8 1.0 (0.2) 8.0 8.00
Stephen Williams 1 0 1.0 (1.0) NaN
T.J. Graham 1 0 1.0 (1.0) NaN
Marlon Moore 1 0 0.9 (0.9) NaN
Marquise Goodwin 1 1 0.9 (0.9)
Ted Ginn 1 1 10.0 1.0 0.9 0.1 10.0 10.00

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