COOKIE CONSENT
Create
Notifications
Favorites Edit

FANTASY PLAYS: Judging the quality of targets for wideouts

NEWS
News
53   //    29 Aug 2018, 02:06 IST
AP Image

While volume is the most integral part to measuring a wide receiver's fantasy value, the quality of each opportunity matters along with the quantity of opportunities.

Measuring the quality of opportunities is tougher.

One method is to break down each target a receiver earns and come up with some base expectation based on the depth of the pass (air yards) and where the play starts. We can come up with this base expectation by comparing each target to historically similar targets and their mean yards per target and touchdown rate.

It isn't a perfect system since the expectation doesn't take quarterback play or opposing defenses into account, but it's a good start. It's one way to spot regression candidates from one year to the next — players who have played far better or worse than what can be expected going forward.

Pittsburgh wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster excelled in 2017 in large part because he averaged 11.5 yards per target and had an 8.6 percent touchdown rate. However, his expected yards per target and expected touchdown rate were just 7.0 yards and 5.4 percent respectively. Even if we acknowledge that actual production is likely to exceed expected production due to playing with a good quarterback and a good offense, it is unlikely that Smith-Schuster will see the same level of production if he receives similar opportunity this season.

One wide receiver to buy low on is Chris Godwin of Tampa Bay, another second-year player. Godwin is a highly athletic wide receiver who was unlucky in the touchdown department last year. He scored on just 1.8 percent of his targets, but his expected touchdown rate was 8.0 percent. Regression in the touchdown department combined with an expanding role should result in a big jump in fantasy value for Godwin this season.

GOLF

While there is plenty of golf to look forward to this fall with the Ryder Cup, the fantasy golf season is drawing to a close with the FedEx Cup playoffs, where TPC Boston hosts this week's Dell Technologies Championship. TPC Boston is a 7,342-yard, par 71 course that is the 10th longest on tour in par-adjusted distance. While long, the wider fairways and landing zones place more of an emphasis on strokes gained approach and putting, leading to an overall scoring environment where the winning score should hover around 15 under par. One strategic wrinkle this week that fantasy golfers will need to consider is that the field features only 98 golfers with a standard cut line of the top 70 players plus ties. This means that 75 percent of the field is likely to play on the weekend and it will be a high scoring fantasy environment.

Justin Rose is DailyRoto's top value again this week despite missing the cut at last week's Northern Trust event. At face value the missed cut is concerning, but digging deeper it is worth noting that Rose averaged 3.1 strokes lost to the field last week putting and had the second worst putting performance of last week's event. Putting is historically volatile, and if Rose can bounce back with the putter he should contend on a course that he finished ninth last year in strokes gained tee-to-green. Rose's 45 percent odds to finish inside of the top 20 rate as the third highest in the field this week and his price of $11,500 on Fanduel and $9,300 on DraftKings offer a discount for fantasy lineups.

Alongside Rose, Zach Johnson presents himself as a strong value this week. Johnson has made the cut at this event 10 straight appearances, including four finishes inside of the top 25. He also comes into the event in good form, making 18 of 19 cuts on tour this season and finishing inside of the top 20 in six of his previous seven events. While he only has one top 10 finish on the season, his propensity to play on the weekend provides balance to your fantasy lineups.

___

This column was provided to The Associated Press by DailyRoto, http://dailyroto.com

NEWS
Fetching more content...