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More Fuel on the Big Wide Receiver Fire

One of the contentions that has been made as to RotoViz’s infatuation with big WRs is that we’re only hurting ourselves because reality isn’t as pro-Big WR as we are. Related to this claim is the idea that size is something that people generally account for with WRs, like route running or any other WR attribute. According to our critics there is no exploitable advantage.

Well in terms of fantasy football, I’d be willing to bet that’s not the case and I’d bet that the market doesn’t properly account for WR size.

I would make that bet because when I was doing the research for this post, I had ADP and end of season scoring all in the same table, so it was trivial to add the additional weight variable and test this idea. If it’s true that everybody already accounts for WR size, then WR weight should be an insignificant variable when combined with ADP (and when trying to predict end of season fantasy points).

Except it’s not insignificant. In fact the regression that I ran made 2.3 pounds equal to about one positional slot of ADP.

Here’s a screenshot from R, so that you can see the coefficients. POSRNK is just positional ADP, like WR28 or similar.  This is based on data from 2011-2013.

As positional ADP increases, end of season expected scoring decreases. But as weight increases, so does end of season expected scoring. Remember, the wisdom of the crowd allegedly takes into account all information. Except in this case it doesn’t.

I can actually take those coefficients and apply them to this year’s ADP in order to get what you might call ADP+.  Below is a table that shows the revised ADP.

I should say that it’s probably reasonable to expect that even if drafters haven’t fully incorporated the size variable into their actions in the past, it is reasonable to expect that over time they’ll incorporate more of that information. So if you wanted to be conservative then you might only give partial credit for WT.

However, it’s also worth noting that the implication that the Big WR crowd can be taken advantage of, because we’re allegedly pushing a view of the world that isn’t true… isn’t true.

*PRED is the predicted end of season points

Pick Name Pos Team WT  PRED Suggested POSRNK Difference
1.05 CALVIN JOHNSON WR DET 236      268.23 1 1 0
1.07 DEMARYIUS THOMAS WR DEN 229      258.51 2 2 0
2.01 BRANDON MARSHALL WR CHI 230      252.46 3 5 2
1.09 DEZ BRYANT WR DAL 220      246.70 4 3 -1
2.03 JULIO JONES WR ATL 220      239.60 5 6 1
1.11 AJ GREEN WR CIN 211      234.89 6 4 -2
3.11 VINCENT JACKSON WR TB 230      233.51 7 13 6
2.07 JORDY NELSON WR GB 217      231.71 8 8 0
2.1 ALSHON JEFFERY WR CHI 216      228.30 9 9 0
4.04 ANDRE JOHNSON WR HOU 225      221.16 10 16 6
3.09 PIERRE GARCON WR WAS 210      214.90 11 12 1
3.06 KEENAN ALLEN WR SD 206      213.07 12 11 -1
4.07 LARRY FITZGERALD WR ARI 218      209.08 13 18 5
3.12 RODDY WHITE WR ATL 208      208.06 14 14 0
4.08 CORDARRELLE PATTERSON WR MIN 216      204.61 15 19 4
4.11 MICHAEL FLOYD WR ARI 220      204.07 16 21 5
2.06 ANTONIO BROWN WR PIT 186      201.56 17 7 -10
4.02 VICTOR CRUZ WR NYG 204      201.50 18 15 -3
2.12 RANDALL COBB WR GB 192      200.75 19 10 -9
4.1 MICHAEL CRABTREE WR SF 214      200.14 20 20 0
7.02 MARQUES COLSTON WR NO 225      185.63 21 31 10
8.07 KELVIN BENJAMIN WR CAR 240      184.79 22 38 16
4.06 WES WELKER WR DEN 185      176.83 23 17 -6
5.07 JULIAN EDELMAN WR NE 198      173.89 24 24 0
6.03 TORREY SMITH WR BAL 205      171.76 25 28 3
6.01 JEREMY MACLIN WR PHI 198      169.15 26 26 0
6.02 KENDALL WRIGHT WR TEN 196      164.68 27 27 0
9.06 JOSH GORDON WR CLE 225      164.32 28 40 12
5.01 PERCY HARVIN WR SEA 184      163.93 29 22 -7
8.05 ERIC DECKER WR NYJ 215      160.93 30 37 7
5.05 TY HILTON WR IND 183      160.52 31 23 -8
7.03 GOLDEN TATE WR DET 202      159.13 32 32 0
8.04 SAMMY WATKINS WR BUF 211      159.10 33 36 3
7.1 TERRANCE WILLIAMS WR DAL 208      158.32 34 35 1
9.09 RILEY COOPER WR PHI 222      156.43 35 42 7
7.05 MIKE WALLACE WR MIA 199      153.62 36 33 -3
10.06 MIKE EVANS WR TB 230      152.98 37 47 10
6.08 BRANDIN COOKS WR NO 189      152.60 38 29 -9
7.06 REGGIE WAYNE WR IND 198      150.20 39 34 -5
5.08 DESEAN JACKSON WR WAS 175      147.39 40 25 -15
10.02 DWAYNE BOWE WR KC 221      145.91 41 46 5
9.06 RUEBEN RANDLE WR NYG 208      144.11 42 41 -1
9.12 DEANDRE HOPKINS WR HOU 214      143.30 43 44 1
6.09 EMMANUEL SANDERS WR DEN 180      140.79 44 30 -14
10.1 ANQUAN BOLDIN WR SF 220      140.13 45 48 3
9.1 JUSTIN HUNTER WR TEN 196      126.79 46 43 -3
9.04 DANNY AMENDOLA WR NE 186      125.77 47 39 -8
11.07 KENNY BRITT WR STL 215      125.41 48 52 4
10.1 HAKEEM NICKS WR IND 208      125.17 49 49 0
11.04 JORDAN MATTHEWS WR PHI 212      124.63 50 51 1
11.12 JARRETT BOYKIN WR GB 218      121.45 51 55 4
11.02 CECIL SHORTS WR JAC 205      119.65 52 50 -2
11.09 KENNY STILLS WR NO 194      101.01 53 53 0
10.01 TAVON AUSTIN WR STL 174         98.97 54 45 -9
13.12 BRANDON LAFELL WR NE 211         97.53 55 62 7
12.12 GREG JENNINGS WR MIN 198         95.73 56 57 1
13.03 BRIAN HARTLINE WR MIA 199         94.41 57 58 1
11.1 MARKUS WHEATON WR PIT 189         93.39 58 54 -4
14.01 JAMES JONES WR OAK 208         89.64 59 64 5
13.12 ROBERT WOODS WR BUF 201         89.40 60 61 1
14.02 AARON DOBSON WR NE 210         89.37 61 65 4
13.06 MARQISE LEE WR JAC 195         87.84 62 59 -3
14.04 MILES AUSTIN WR CLE 217         87.24 63 69 6
12.06 STEVE SMITH WR BAL 185         84.46 64 56 -8
13.12 KENBRELL THOMPKINS WR NE 190         73.13 65 63 -2
14.04 MARVIN JONES WR CIN 200         71.78 66 68 2
14.04 DOUG BALDWIN WR SEA 189         64.97 67 66 -1
13.11 ANDREW HAWKINS WR CLE 175         64.49 68 60 -8
14.04 JOHN BROWN WR ARI 190         63.65 69 67 -2
14.07 HARRY DOUGLAS WR ATL 182         48.15 70 70 0

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