Can Atlanta’s Offense Support a Pair of 300-Point Scorers? The Many Worlds of the Projection Machine
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Image Credit: Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Matt Ryan.

Blair Andrews uses the projection machine to explore a few of the many possible futures for the Atlanta Falcons offense.

Only once since 2000 has a team produced two 300-point wide receivers — Denver did it in 2014 with both Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders reaching that threshold while catching passes from Peyton Manning.

If 2020 ADP is any indication, there are probably only two teams who have a remote shot at doing that again this year. One of those teams is the Atlanta Falcons.1 Julio Jones is going off the board as the WR4, while Calvin Ridley is not far behind him as the WR14. With Atlanta running the most high-volume passing offense, could we be looking at a season where both Jones and Ridley push for the overall WR1 finish? Are there scenarios in which they could both reach that milestone in the same season?

What Should We Expect for Atlanta’s 2020 Offense?

For this to happen, Atlanta would need to keep up their high-flying attack. Key personnel continue in the same roles from last season, so we have good reasons to think they will attempt to keep largely the same offense in place. Still, Atlanta’s 683 pass attempts are the third most this millennium.

Neither Detroit nor Pittsburgh were able to keep up the pace. The 2013 Lions were still near the top of the league with 634 attempts. But an injury to Ben Roethlisberger meant that he and a bevy up backup quarterbacks combined to throw only 510 passes for the 2019 Steelers.

Of the top-10 teams in pass attempts since 2000, only the 2015 Ravens attempted more passes the following year. Every other team saw their attempts drop by at least 50.

So projecting Atlanta for 680 passing attempts again is probably not the best process. If we remove teams from the top 10 who had coaching or quarterback changes in Year N+1, we’re left with an average of 622 pass attempts the year following an all-time top-10 showing.

Is This the Year Ridley Overtakes Jones?

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Blair Andrews

Managing Editor, Author of The Wrong Read, Occasional Fantasy Football League Winner. All opinions are someone else's.

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