5 Wide Receivers Primed to Score More in 2019: Positive Touchdown Regression
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Image Credit: Stephen Lew/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Julio Jones.

Last year I found that while it may be difficult to project touchdowns year-over-year, touchdowns usually regress to the mean based on a Wide Receiver’s targets and receiving yards. Every year there are outliers who catch touchdowns at a higher or lower rate than one would expect based on their targets and yards in that season. Perception about a player’s ability to score touchdowns — and thus score fantasy football points — may be drastically skewed if their actual touchdowns doesn’t align with their expected number.

In Part 1 of this WR touchdown regression article series, we’ll look at the Wide Receivers who scored at a lower rate than expected, and thus who we can expect to score more touchdowns in 2019, assuming their targets and yards remain the same.

Last year, this methodology helped us identify Julio Jones (three TDs in 2017; eight in 2018), Michael Thomas (five in 2017; nine in 2018), and Adam Thielen (four in 2017; nine in 2018) as three of our five favorite positive touchdown regression candidates.

Methodology

As an update to last year’s touchdown regression equation, below is the RotoViz Screener output for the correlation between targets and receiving yards with receiving touchdowns, from 2011-2018 for WRs with at least 50 targets.

Expected reTDS = 0.271 + (-0.012 * Total reRTGS) + (0.007 * Total reYDS)

Wide Receivers Who Scored Fewer Touchdowns Compared to Expectation

The following are WRs who saw 50-plus targets in 2018 and underperformed their predicted touchdown total by at least 1.0 touchdowns.

RankPLAYERreTRGSreYDSreTDSExpected reTDSDifference
1D.J. Moore8278824.8032.803
2Willie Snead9565113.6882.688
3Danny Amendola7957513.3482.348
4Brandin Cooks116120457.3072.307
5Taylor Gabriel9368823.9711.971
6Julio Jones170167689.9631.963
7Keelan Cole7049112.8681.868
8Taywan Taylor5646612.8611.861
9T.Y. Hilton120127067.7211.721
10Jarius Wright6044712.681.68
11Quincy Enunwa6944912.5861.586
12Marquez Valdes-Scantling7258123.4741.474
13Jordy Nelson8873934.3881.388
14Jarvis Landry14897645.3271.327
15Kenny Golladay118106356.2961.296
16Mike Evans139152489.2711.271
17Robert Woods131121967.2321.232
18Corey Davis11289145.1641.164
19Emmanuel Sanders9886645.1571.157
20Kelvin Benjamin6738012.1271.127
21Sterling Shepard10787245.0911.091
22Josh Doctson7953223.0471.047
23Mohamed Sanu9483845.0091.009
24Michael Gallup6850723.0041.004

Top Positive Touchdown Regression WRs for 2019

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Michael Dubner

RotoViz Featured Writer. Emphasis on NFL DFS and Best Ball.

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