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WR Historical Distribution Scores: Brown A Monster, Tate a Surprise, and Baldwin A Disappointment

Earlier in the week, I introduced the concept of Historical Distribution Scores (HDS). The score is a simple and efficient way to describe a player’s range of outcomes based on his historical projections.

In this post, we’ll first visual historical distributions for the top-50 WRs, based on MFL10 ADP, and then review calculated HDS scores.

Distributions Visualized

As a reminder, the historical projections used to create the visualizations plot the number of comparable players that produced the included points per game (PPG) totals in year n+1. As a result, the y-axis counts the number of comparable players that produced the PPG that span the x-axis.1 I used 2016 data when creating the projections for Julian EdelmanAllen Robinson and other players who missed substantial time in 2017.

1 – Antonio Brown

A Brown

2 – DeAndre Hopkins

D Hopkins

3 – Odell Beckham Jr.


4 – Julio Jones

J Jones

5 – Michael Thomas

M Thomas

6 – Keenan Allen

K Allen

7 – Davante Adams

D Adams

8 – A.J. Green

A Green

9 – Mike Evans

M Evans

10 – Doug Baldwin

D Baldwin

11 – T.Y. Hilton

T Hilton

12 – Adam Thielen

A Thielen

13 – Tyreek Hill

T Hill

14 – Stefon Diggs

S Diggs

15 – Larry Fitzgerald

L Fitzgerald

16 – Amari Cooper

A Cooper

17 – Allen Robinson

A Rob 2

18 – Demaryius Thomas

D Thomas

19 – Brandin Cooks

B Cooks

20 – Golden Tate

G Tatew

21 – Juju Smith-Schuster

J Smith-Schuster

22 – Josh Gordon

J Gordon

23 – Jarvis Landry

J Landry

24 – Alshon Jeffery

A Jeffery

25 – Marvin Jones

M Jones

26 – Sammy Watkins

S Watkins

27 – Michael Crabtree

M Crabtree

28 – Corey Davis

C Davis

29 – Chris Hogan

C Hogan

30 – Julian Edelman

J Edelman

31 – Devin Funchess

D Funchess

32 – Robert Woods

R Woods

33 – Emmanuel Sanders

E Sanders

34 – Will Fuller

W Fuller

35 – Cooper Kupp

C Kupp

36 – Pierre Garcon

P Garcon

37 – Marquise Goodwin

M Goodwin

38 – Jamison Crowder

J Crowder

39 – Randall Cobb

R Cobb

40 – Nelson Agholor

N Agholor

41 – Jordy Nelson

J Nelson

42 – Robby Anderson

R Anderson

43 – DeVante Parker

D Parker

44 – Sterling Shepard

S Shepard

45 – Kenny Stills

K Stills

46 – Dez Bryant

D Bryant

47 – Kelvin Benjamin

K benjamin

48 – Marqise Lee

M Lee

49 – Rishard Matthews

R Matthews

50 – Allen Hurns

A Hurns

Historical Distribution Scores

Targets, receptions, yards and touchdowns are based upon the average year n+1 stat lines generated by comparable players. The low, median, and high historical projections assume 16 games. HDS percentage is calculated by dividing the max score, Antonio Brown’s 177, by each player’s HDS.

PlayerTargetsRecsYardsTDLowMedHighHDSHDS RankHDS %
Antonio Brown16210313058.723028433517711
DeAndre Hopkins1559112007.722427228912020.68
Odell Beckham Jr1478511107.52052432829930.56
Jarvis Landry14889110061892442819140.51
Michael Thomas1428610767.31952432669140.51
Keenan Allen14382109771872422698760.49
Davante Adams1358210447.41972382828760.49
Adam Thielen1358010316.91882102698280.46
Julio Jones1418110716.91882232738090.45
Larry Fitzgerald142841071618920926779100.45
AJ Green1347510136.116320727463110.36
Devin Funchess11767971614819925552120.29
Golden Tate124779775.717221624951130.29
Robert Woods121729776.116521125350140.28
Julian Edelman128829444.715920723350140.28
Mike Evans125709825.616919225045160.25
Josh Gordon113649266.414419223143170.24
Juju Smith-Schuster118699185.614220724540180.23
Allen Robinson58324292.6628611540180.23
Sterling Shepard116739255.315919925138200.21
Michael Crabtree121709344.917119224138200.21
Tyreek Hill114659705.416820223132220.18
Marvin Jones108628675.114117322821230.12
Pierre Garcon11467857513318822221230.12
Kenny Stills107648394.712318723821230.12
Alshon Jeffery109607994.410716620819260.11
Brandin Cooks109638605.514018421918270.1
Randall Cobb10163737510717221117280.1
Demaryius Thomas113668244.812318819816290.09
Stefon Diggs112638184.812417320714300.08
Robby Anderson97547865.211015122114300.08
Nelson Agholor91556784.58314520812320.07
Will Fuller99578115.712917818612320.07
Doug Baldwin10863810512617521711340.06
Dez Bryant104597564.81191701919350.05
Cooper Kupp99587563.81001612228360.05
TY Hilton95557214.51151681937370.04
Kendall Wright95607064.61021442357370.04
Rishard Matthews98586933.8961672056390.03
Mohamed Sanu102607753.91211751986390.03
Devante Parker101587965.71381681986390.03
Amari Cooper96517284.2951561943420.02
Jamison Crowder91576544.2991431993420.02
Marqise Lee106617954.11331651962440.01
Marquise Goodwin90536924.51111531862440.01
Chris Hogan104617824.11411721870460
DeSean Jackson93567284.2107157191-147-0.01
Paul Richardson90527134.3108150179-147-0.01
Emmanuel Sanders101567053.5105135210-249-0.01
Jermaine Kearse92546563.989153193-450-0.02
Mike Wallace86506463.366134193-551-0.03
Danny Amendola86546684.2101116183-852-0.05
Sammy Watkins90506704.494115179-953-0.05
Adam Humphries88546593.593132175-1054-0.06
Ted Ginn81506512.996132172-1255-0.07
Allen Hurns8651664385136182-1255-0.07
Kenny Golladay86476444.1102119177-1255-0.07
Cole Beasley78486063.371127184-1358-0.07
Chris Godwin84486693.2106132161-1358-0.07
Dede Westbrook95546933.3118137176-1460-0.08
Donte Moncrief78425804.387132161-1561-0.08
Jordy Nelson81445572.860122152-1561-0.08
Brandon Marshall82445633.772130150-1561-0.08
Curtis Samuel65404702.24686142-1664-0.09
Tavon Austin57344282.85772134-1765-0.1
Zay Jones80435903.271106188-1765-0.1
Trent Taylor7847612379127181-1867-0.1
Roger Lewis81466013.184105174-1867-0.1
Tyrell Williams84496543.698118171-2069-0.11
Seth Roberts73415542.463116147-2069-0.11
Martavis Bryant78425943.895125160-2069-0.11
Brice Butler55324343.25388119-2069-0.11
Ryan Grant72425522.367111141-2173-0.12
Kelvin Benjamin77415914.796125146-2374-0.13
Corey Davis75425733.182119147-2374-0.13
Eric Decker77466132.690126151-2476-0.14
Terrelle Pryor81446183.698126149-2476-0.14
Josh Doctson78435293.278103155-2678-0.15
Albert Wilson83485792.188109157-2678-0.15
Corey Coleman7842571379102175-2678-0.15
John Brown78455731.967108146-2678-0.15
Travis Benjamin70415421.766102139-2678-0.15
Chris Conley70385233.167117148-2783-0.15
JJ Nelson69415442.878118154-2783-0.15
Taylor Gabriel69434992.268111148-2783-0.15
Jakeem Grant65384852.96799135-2886-0.16
Taywan Taylor57334052.16078106-2987-0.16
Bennie Fowler64334822.86094118-2987-0.16
Chester Rogers71395312.565110142-2987-0.16
Jaron Brown70394792.56699130-3090-0.17
Terrance Williams73466042.279124139-3090-0.17
Willie Snead66374712.87196123-3192-0.18
John Ross59334402.46495127-3293-0.18
Josh Reynolds60334362.96384116-3394-0.19
Mike Williams61364692.96794120-3495-0.19
Kenny Britt60324342.96688124-3495-0.19
Braxton Miller553038225377113-3495-0.19
Carlos Henderson53313922.46779124-3698-0.2
TJ Jones53313922.46779124-3698-0.2
Geronimo Allison72405352.875101138-37100-0.21
Tyler Lockett694047827694117-37100-0.21
Amara Darboh56304042.56685103-37100-0.21
  • The separation between Brown and DeAndre Hopkins is significant. It speaks to just how strong a range of outcomes Brown possesses.
  • While Jarvis Landry’s projection loses some context as he’s no longer a Dolphin, his HDS is impressive and places him in elite company.
    • If you’ve yet to come to the realization that Landry is both a fantastic fantasy and real life WR, it’s time that you do.
  • Despite his age, Larry Fitzgerald remains one of the game’s best WRs and is poised for another phenomenal season.2
  • Golden Tate’s HDS positions him near the top-12. With an ADP of WR20, he’s an excellent way to acquire a strong range of outcomes at a reduced cost.
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster ranks 18th in HDS. His projection highlights the significant regression in efficiency experienced by players that, like Smith-Schuster, have finished in the point per target danger zone. Still, he has a solid HDS and, for the most part, his comparable players did not become inefficient in year n+1.
  • Heading into the season, Doug Baldwin was a player I was looking to roster everywhere. Unfortunately, there are questions surrounding his health and an HDS rank of 34 is troubling for a player going as the WR10.
  • While he will be in a different situation as a Ram, it’s hard to ignore Brandin Cooks’ HDS of just 18 which ranks 27th. Cooks is being selected as the WR19 but there are analysts viewing him as a fantasy WR1.
    • While working through NFC South projections, I concluded that a WR1 finish is in his range of outcomes, however, it’s more likely than not that he fails to finish in this territory.
  • Some fantasy players may consider Devin Funchess and Sterling Shepard surprises in the top-20.
    • In the case of Shepard, his historical projection is likely overly optimistic as his target volume, and the stat line dependent on it, will surely drop with Odell Beckham Jr. back in the Giants’ lineup.
    • Funchess benefited from the absence of Greg Olsen in 2017. However, it’s easier to picture Funchess maintaining a similar target share in 2018 when compared to Shepard.

  1. 20 comparable players were included for each projection.  (back)
  2. Age factors into historical projections. However, it’s assigned one of the lowest weightings of all included inputs.  (back)

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