Opportunity Depth Chart is the second article in a series that explores the concept of Fantasy Points per Team Attempt.
The introductory article can be found here. This is an extension of the larger concept of evaluating fantasy football through market share, the idea in which RotoViz signature concepts Dominator Rating and Workhorse Score are rooted.
The following table appeared in the first article discussing this project, showing which wide receiver roles produced the most fantasy points per team attempt in the 2015 season:
|TEAM||PASS ATT||FPS/ATT (ALL)||WR1 FPS/ATT||WR2 FPS/ATT||WR3 FPS/ATT|
The next step is to weigh that efficiency against volume to see which roles had the highest value from an opportunity standpoint. In order to do this, I used the following information below, calculated the same way as the first table, using weekly snaps to determine who the WR1, WR2, and WR3 were on a game-by-game basis.
|TEAM||PASS ATT||WR1 TGTS||WR1 SHARE||WR2 TGTS||WR2 SHARE||WR3 TGTS||WR3 SHARE|
When the fantasy points per team attempt in the first table is combined with the number of targets in the second table, it creates a combined number I’ll call Opportunity For All Common Enigmas (OFACE), representing the opportunity that the role provided to a non-specific player. While it’s a good place to start, this process is not intended to predict which roles will be the most valuable in 2016, but rather to state which were most valuable in 2015.
|TEAM||WR1 OFACE||WR2 OFACE||WR3 OFACE|
- Antonio Brown really is some wild shit. Only four teams had a higher combined WR1 and WR2 OFACE than the PIT WR1, and only seven teams had a combined WR1 and WR2 OFACE even over one hundred. Of those seven, Ryan Fitzpatrick, and whoever gets the quarterback job in Houston and Denver, seem like they could be overlooked arbitrage plays.
- One kind of bizarre, noteworthy thing is in Week 1 Roddy White outsnapped Julio Jones, and it takes a massive game away from the Atlanta WR1 line. While that also artificially boosts the ATL WR2 line, that was a very valuable role that has become vacant, along with the DET WR2,1 CIN WR2, and NYG WR2.2
- Kamar Aiken was the BAL WR1 in 12 of 16 weeks, and only ten of the 32 BAL WR1 and WR2 lines were by someone other than Aiken or Steve Smith. With Smith and Breshad Perriman recovering from very serious injuries, Aiken might be worth a longer look for this year.
In order to try and identify other overlooked situations, I put together a Fantasy Depth Chart by Role, showing the highest OFACEs overall. I also included the current MFL10 average draft position of each role using the Rotoviz Best Ball App3:
Some things will follow natural logic, such as the DAL, GB, CHI, and CAR WR1s being skewed significantly downward by long-term injuries. However, some things caught me by surprise:
- Doug Baldwin‘s role had roughly the same OFACE as Brandin Cooks‘, despite their respective teams’ massive gulf in team attempts. Baldwin won’t be the league winning value he was last year, and Seattle should return to a more balanced offense with a healthy running back stable, so his ADP probably isn’t the screaming value it appears to be. I also think Tyler Lockett is being drafted with an unsafe assumption that Jermaine Kearse nor Paul Richardson is a significant factor.4
- The DEN WR2 being above the WR1 shouldn’t be read into that much, because Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders alternated that role nine times to seven, respectively. Their ADPs should probably be closer, but avoiding Thomas or overloading on Sanders based on this, or anything else, probably isn’t shrewd.
- Larry Fitzgerald already stuck out as a drastic value at his current ADP. I wouldn’t expect that to last long. Michael Floyd, John Brown, and Carson Palmer all seem like fair values right now as well.
- Michael Crabtree at his ADP is very attractive, however I am not expecting him to outproduce Amari Cooper again in the latter’s sophomore campaign, so neither ADP really strikes me as problematic. Derek Carr may be the way to really capitalize on that high volume, high opportunity, high value situation.
- Robert Woods was someone that actually came to mind when I first ran these numbers because Chris Hogan is an unrestricted free agent. It might be a situation like Nick Toon last season where they make no significant acquisitions through free agency or the draft, and Woods still somehow doesn’t win that work, but I think there are far worse 20th round fliers.
- Speaking of New Orleans, Marques Colston has been released, so Willie Snead might be an exceptional value if he absorbs some of that market share, and increases his already gaudy 101 targets from last season.