Just in case you’re late to the party, let’s get you up to speed. Volume and opportunity are the biggest drivers of a NFL player’s fantasy football success. There’s little correlation between a player’s efficiency and his fantasy output. As a result, we want our receivers and tight ends to be peppered with targets.
Keeping that in mind, let’s take a quick look at the teams that have been the most pass happy over the course of the last three season:
|New Orleans Saints||651||659||667||659|
|New England Patriots||628||610||629||622|
|New York Giants||567||607||623||599|
|San Diego Chargers||544||574||668||595|
|Green Bay Packers||570||536||573||560|
|New York Jets||480||498||604||527|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||514||531||535||527|
|Kansas City Chiefs||546||493||473||504|
|Los Angeles Rams||506||515||473||498|
|San Francisco 49ers||417||487||526||477|
As expected, the Saints, Falcons and Patriots find themselves in the top 10, whereas the Seahawks, Rams and Vikings have been less apt to air it out. Of course, we can’t just pick guys from the teams that pass the most. We need to account for the percentage of targets that specific receivers and ends represent within their offense. Still, we can use the above as another data point in projecting reasonable 2016 outcomes.
For example, let’s take a look at the chargers. Between 2013 and 2015, Philip Rivers was good for approximately 595 passing attempts a season, with 140 or so going to tight ends. Antonio Gates was on the receiving end of the overwhelming majority of these targets. Keenan Allen, the top WR target in San Diego figures to absorb somewhere around 30% of the remaining targets in 2016. This leaves roughly 280 targets to be distributed to the rest of the team. Newcomer, Travis Benjamin, will likely be the No.2 wide out in San Diego, with Steve Johnson playing in the slot. With Malcolm Floyd no longer on the depth chart, it’s likely that Benjamin gets more than 70+ targets and has the potential for 90. With this kind of volume, he could definitely finish the 2016 season as a fantasy WR3. Yet, he’s being drafted as the 42nd receiver off the board, based on ADP as of May 27th. If this ADP holds, he’ll be a nice option to round out your receiving corps, for those of you that go WR heavy early.
We’ll refer to the above table in a couple of future posts, but for the time being get acquainted with each team’s propensity to work through the air.