Welcome to the 2018 Game Level Similarity Projections (GLSP) for wide receivers, a weekly column designed to help you identify high-upside standouts and set your season-long lineups.
GLSP uses historical matchup, team, player, and Vegas lines to generate situation-agnostic projections. The low projection is equivalent to the 25th percentile point total from the comparable matchups. The median projection provides a benchmark, with even odds of the player producing more or less. The high projection is equivalent to the 75th percentile point total from the comparable matchups.
Please note that the model is run three times: 6 weeks back, 4 weeks back, and 3 weeks back and that the results are averaged. As a result, rookies that are trending well will be somewhat overstated and second-year players who did not score well last year will be underprojected.
Remember, the most valuable way to incorporate GLSP into your lineup-setting process is to identify surprisingly high and low projections, then strategically start or fade the outliers. All of Dave’s Week 14 WR GLSP projections are included below.
|Odell Beckham Jr||NYG||WAS||10.3||18||21||17.7|
These are the projections from Dave Caban. They’ll be available each week on Wednesdays as part of the Weekly Explorer. The apps version of the GLSP is available here for your own research.
Surprisingly Strong Projections
It is no news that both Antonio Brown and Juju Smith-Schuster have top-10 projections, as that has come to fruition numerous times this season. What is worth acknowledging is that they hold the number-one and number-two projections by a sizable margin over the field.
Pittsburgh, who is currently installed as a massive 11-point road favorite, is projected to feast on a miserable Oakland squad in Week 14. Oakland’s box scores versus wide receivers leaves a bit to be desired, as they have surprisingly surrendered just the tenth most points to the position. Oakland does not appear to be a target for passing offenses based off the counting stats accrued against them because teams switch to run-heavy game scripts so frequently. Their defensive strength is misrepresented by the counting stats, though. Oakland is dead last in opponent yards per attempt allowed and opponent overall offensive yards allowed.
WR Fantasy Points Allowed
Pass Attempts Allowed
Opponent Pass Percent
Opponent Pass TDs Allowed Per Game
Opponent Yards Per Play
Yards Per Pass Attempt Allowed
Pittsburgh leads the league in pass attempts per game and pass play percentage and faces the defense surrendering the highest passing efficiency per game.
Mike Tomlin is known to hold no reserves when trouncing an opponent, so there is no fear of Pittsburgh’s receivers getting game-scripted out of their usage. Expect ridiculous numbers from Ben Roethlisberger and his two favorite targets.
The viability of both Brown and Smith-Schuster as top-10 receivers was a story line to watch this year, and it appears Roethlisberger is certainly able to sustain multiple elite wide receivers. Via the Weekly Explorer, Smith-Schuster and Brown are both top-10 in the following six categories for wide receivers: fantasy points per game, targets, receptions, receiving yards, and red zone targets.
D.J. Moore sneaks into the top-10 this week with the eighth highest ceiling projection. I have written a lot on Moore, so I will just leave it at another reminder that he is grossly outproducing his wide receiver cohorts.
Moore’s elite prospect profile suggests he will continue to ascend.
Dante Pettis and Adam Humphries are the two most over-projected players this week.
Pettis has flashed with 48 PPR points over the last two weeks and has certainly put himself into starter consideration, but he does not belong as a top-15 option at his position.
Via the Weekly Explorer, Pettis’ expected fantasy output based on his 6.7 targets per game over his last three games lags behind his actual output these last few weeks. Pettis had one red zone target in both Week 12 and Week 13, but it is fair to doubt his current touchdown pace of three touchdowns on his last 14 targets.
Consider Pettis a viable starter, but more of a top-36 option than a top-15 option per GLSP. A factor that hints at his upside, though, is his massive 40 and 35 percent air yards market shares in Week 13 and 14, respectively.
Humphries has managed to produce as of late, but his usage profile leaves something to be desired. With such disappointing air yards totals, Humphries likely showed his ceiling the last few weeks.
On the other hand, whether any fantasy analyst wants to admit it or not, Humphries does have a decently voluminous role with seven targets on average since Week 7 and seven red zone targets.
It is hard to describe Humphries’ role, really, as his minuscule depth of target and high catch rate suggest his scoring is invariable and low upside, yet his consistent red zone usage suggests he has the chance to spike a multi-touchdown box score. Given these considerations and Humphries’ history of non-production, roll him out as a top-36 option who has a higher floor and lower ceiling than Pettis.
DeAndre Hopkins inexplicably has the 16th best average projection this week. Since Week 6, Hopkins has a 33 percent target share and 44 percent air yards share, which rank first and second best, respectively, since then.
However, Houston’s league leading run percentage1 this season has dampened Hopkins’ raw volume, as Deshaun Watson has cleared 25 pass attempts just once in the last seven weeks. Although he is a leader in market shares, Hopkins is 14th in targets since Week 6. Nevertheless, fire him up as an elite option, as always.
Michael Thomas, the overall WR5 this year, is also lowballed this week with just the 20th best average projection. GLSP might be picking up on Tampa Bay’s upward-trending pass defense and Thomas’ downward-trending volume, but Thomas should still be considered a top-10 option as the premier target in one of the NFL’s best offenses.
- Second only to Seattle (back)