I seem to have become obsessed with correlation matrices, so I’m just going to lean into it. Below you’ll find a correlation matrix with many of our favorite WR prospect evaluation metrics. This is admittedly a simplistic way to look at the predictiveness of various metrics. But there are a number of interesting things going on here, which I’ll point out below.
First, let me explain what some of these metrics are. Many are self-explanatory, but some might be unfamiliar.
- First 2 Seasons PPR measures the total number of PPR points scored in a player’s first two NFL seasons.
- Senior is a categorical variable indicating whether a player declared early or not. (Declaring early is coded as “0” while playing as a senior is coded as “1.”, which explains why it’s positively correlated with draft age.)
- Career and Final YPTA measure a player’s college receiving yards per team passing attempt over their career and in their final college season.
Some Things Worth Noting
The first thing to note is that all the production metrics are highly correlated with each other. This isn’t a surprise, as they all measure largely the same thing — namely a WR’s share of his college team’s receiving production. Dominator rating pulls in touchdowns in addition to yards, and YPTA partially accounts for individual yards per target, so there are some minor differences.