Tyler Lockett joined the 40-point club, while Mike Evans and Kenny Golladay produced back-to-back monster performances. Shawn Siegele breaks down all of the top WR performances from Week 9, including Tyreek Hill’s success with Matt Moore and how Russell Wilson and Matthew Stafford are fueling big seasons in Seattle and Detroit.
Fantasy Points Over Expectation Leaderboard – Week 9
Only three receivers reached double-digit fantasy points over expectation (FPOE) in Week 9, but the Lions and Seahawks continue to come in near the top of the standings. This week they each had two receivers with 7.0 FPOE or more, all four finishing in the overall top 10.
Isabella has been active eight times this season but hasn’t been involved in the festivities. The target profile in his pass location chart is sparse but humorous.
That deep target represents his 88-yard TD on Thursday night. The Cardinals have an extra long week to get the No. 62 overall pick more involved. They drafted him to provide a field-stretching element, and he offered a glimpse of what it should look like against the 49ers.
Although Matt Moore tossed 19 passes in the direction of Sammy Watkins and Travis Kelce, Hill was the target on a key 40-yard score. The peripheral receivers have lost value with Patrick Mahomes sidelined, but the crafty veteran has made his money by featuring the stars.
Similar to the situation with Michael Thomas and Teddy Bridgewater, Hill remains a WR1 with even a serviceable backup. Hill now ranks No. 4 among WRs in FPOE/G.
Golladay earns back-to-back nods on the leaderboard and now has 37 FPOE over the last two weeks. Only six WRs have that much on the season (Chris Godwin, Amari Cooper, Lockett, Stefon Diggs, Thomas, Adam Thielen). We broke down his favorable target profile a week ago, and Golladay kept pace with Evans atop the TD standings.
In this TD-heavy group, he also ranks first in yards per reception (18.3) and second in air yards (959). He doesn’t have the same target ceiling that we get with Evans – he’s only reached double-figures once – but that comes with a high floor. He’s only been held below seven targets on one occasion.
After a big Week 1, Metcalf’s target share dropped to 15% between Weeks 2 and 6, the low point coming in a three-target game against the Rams.
Over the last three contests, however, Metcalf appears to be coming into his own. His target share jumped to 23% during that window, and he’s been a WR1 in scoring.
Metcalf registered a negative FPOE number through the season’s first month as he got acclimated to the NFL, but he’s averaged 4.0 FPOE per game since the beginning of Week 5. Even playing with the king of passing FPOE, Russell Wilson, those numbers are likely unsustainable, but his plus efficiency goes with an average of 10.6 Expected Points (EP) to make him a solid fantasy starter.
With David Johnson out, Evans is now almost single-handedly carrying the Main Event team that Ben Gretch and I co-own. He’s averaged over 27 PPG since the start of Week 3, and that’s with a zero in Week 5.
From the beginning of his rookie year in 2014 to the end of 2018, only Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, and DeAndre Hopkins had scored more fantasy points, yet the first-, second-, and fifth-highest scoring games of his career have all come during this span.
Pascal makes the leaderboard for the second time in three weeks, but his results have been frustrating. Each time Pascal’s workload has popped this season, he’s followed that up with a 3-EP game.
Pascal entered the weekend as a tricky start/sit decision even with T.Y. Hilton out. Byes may have pushed him into many lineups even after he busted in Week 8. He didn’t separate from Chester Rogers and Parris Campbell in the target column but easily distanced them in air yards.
Pascal and Rogers both found the end zone, but Campbell’s underneath profile may be the easiest to maintain in a discombobulated offense otherwise lacking playmakers.
When Stefan Lako claimed that while You Think You’re High on Tyler Lockett, You Aren’t High Enough, it turned out to be an understatement. In Week 3 Lockett exploded for the first 30-point game of his career. Week 9 provided the encore. His 40-point game played a pivotal role in Seattle’s overtime victory and also delivered fantasy wins to thousands of owners.
Lockett is dominating in all facets. Only eight WRs have a higher target share than his 26%. That might not have mattered much if the Seahawks had maintained last year’s 32nd-ranked 24.4 EP/G to WRs. Instead, the emergence of Lockett and the arrival of Metcalf have transformed Seattle back into the passing juggernaut from 2017. They rank 12th with 34.4 EP/G.
That context lays the groundwork for Lockett’s jump to WR3 due to the extreme efficiency with Wilson.
After a one-week absence, Jones re-joins the leaderboard and moves up to WR14 on the season. Given his four-score explosion in Week 7, it’s no surprise that Jones’ profile is buoyed by TDs. He ranks a solid 25th in targets and 28th in EP/G.
His Week 9 provides an opportunity to sell for anyone fighting to make the playoffs. The Lions have one of the worst WR schedules over the next four weeks.
Wide Receiver Strength of Schedule – Week 10-13
Owners who are sitting pretty may choose to hold, however. The Lions have a favorable schedule during the fantasy playoffs, and each additional week provides verification that Stafford’s 2019 turnaround is not a fluke.
The contrast from 2018 is jarring. Stafford averaged -0.2 FPOE a season ago. His 2019 average sits north of 6.0 and gives him the third-best total (49.4). Wilson leads the way at 65.8.
I’m always surprised at the depth and breadth of the information in tools built by Mike Beers, Dave Caban, and Anthony Shook. If you enjoyed some of the visualizations used in this piece, make sure to check out the NFL Stat Explorer, the Strength of Schedule Streaming tool, the Game Splits app, the RotoViz Screener, and the Weekly Stats tool.