In this weekly article, Ryan Ramsarran uses the Advanced Stat Explorer and other RotoViz tools to dive deep into wide receiver usage trends. Usage is key for making waiver wire adds, start/sit decisions, and finding the next blow-up WR in DFS.
Week 1 was a great start to the year: finally, a full slate of regular season NFL football. More importantly, after months of debating which receivers will breakout and which will bust, we finally have some concrete numbers to analyze. Week 1 is a bit weird sometimes. A perfect example is in 2021 when the Saints beat the Packers 38-3. There’s a reason why some people call it the “fourth preseason game.” However, it does give us a pretty good idea of certain situations, types of usage certain players will get, and what to monitor going into Week 2.
Many of these stats come from the Advanced Stat Explorer. I highly recommend checking it out — you can get lost in it for hours.
Routes Run and Routes per Target
Routes run is the first key statistic I’ll focus on because WRs need to be on the field to produce. The second statistic is routes per target. Unlike RBs usage, targets are earned as a WR and routes per target is a helpful measure in figuring out which players are good (or which players coaches want to get the ball to).