Randall Cobb, Titus Young and the Odell Beckham Jr. Comparables


Continuing with my theme of including All-Pro names next to “throw up in your mouth” names in the headlines of my comps pieces, today is Titus Young day. Actually, it was probably cheating to include Young’s name in the headline because most of the OBJ comps are fairly positive. In the table below five of the names had one or more very good fantasy seasons. Devin Thomas and Titus Young were washouts, then there are some legitimately solid names, as well as some TBD names.

One note on methodology of this exercise. I don’t arrive at the comps by creating cutoffs with any of the stats. Every comp generated is based on absolute distance from the subject player on a number of measures. So it will never be the case that a player who is an exact match on 5 measures and then misses the cutoff on a 6th measure is somehow excluded. This results in the almost magical match that the averages tend to have when compared to the subject player.

More commentary below the table:

ODELL BECKHAM 2013 30 21.1 198 4.43 93.1 0.67 6 0.27
JUSTIN HUNTER 2012 34 21.5 196 4.44 90.3 0.75 6 0.23
JEREMY MACLIN 2008 19 20.7 198 4.45 90.0 0.93 8 0.27
STEVE SMITH 2006 51 21.7 197 4.44 83.3 0.69 11 0.30
DEREK HAGAN 2005 82 21.3 208 4.45 100.8 0.67 8 0.23
DEVIN THOMAS 2007 34 21.1 215 4.40 96.9 0.62 6 0.36
PERCY HARVIN 2008 22 20.6 192 4.39 58.6 0.64 6 0.31
RANDALL COBB 2010 64 20.4 191 4.46 83.2 0.58 9 0.28
ROBERT WOODS 2012 41 20.7 201 4.51 70.8 0.92 8 0.26
TITUS YOUNG 2010 44 21.4 174 4.43 92.5 0.67 10 0.26
SIDNEY RICE 2006 44 20.3 200 4.51 83.9 0.77 13 0.27
Average 44 21.0 197 4.45 85.0 0.72 9 0.28
  • It’s probably worth noting that the more successful names on the list are also the younger players on the list. Cobb, Harvin, Maclin and Rice all came into the league around 21 years old. The reason that I think it makes a difference for this group is because they all sport a fairly low Games Dominated number. So if you’re 21 and you’ve only dominated 6-10 games in college that’s one thing. If you’re older (like Justin Hunter) then maybe that’s a problem. It’s probably too early to say.
  • These are all smaller players. Only Devin Thomas really came into the league of the size of a real #1 WR. Justin Hunter reportedly cut weight so that he could run faster. But these are all smaller receivers. I would call them more prototypical #2 WRs. Maybe Sidney Rice had a brief window as a real #1.
  • I had to make a guess on draft position for purposes of the similarity search so I guessed #30 overall.
  • Recall that I said that the comps should show an almost magical match between the average and the subject player? In this case the draft position is off by a decent amount. That is to say that if OBJ did go at 30 overall, it might be slightly overpaying relative to where these other players have gone. Maybe a counter to that point would be to say that the comp group has over-performed their draft slot by enough to justify that slightly higher pick.
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