The Gridiron Experts Wide Receiver Targets Analysis series takes you behind the scenes with the most advanced target information, including receiving fantasy points over expectation (reFPOE), air yards, receiver air conversion ratio (RACR), weighted opportunity rating (WOPR) and other metrics.
Kenny Golladay led all wide receivers in targets with 13. Zay Jones (0.44) and Corey Davis (0.42) were the only receivers who account for 40 plus percent of their team’s target share. Josh Gordon led all receivers in Air Yards with 195, but was only able to convert them into 81 receiving yards.
Tyler Boyd (3.61) led all receivers with four or more targets in Receiver Air Conversion Ratio. RACR is an efficiency metric that rolls up catch rate and yards after the catch into one number. It can be thought of as the number of receiving yards a player creates for every air yard thrown at him. Davis (0.98) had the highest Weighted Opportunity Rating. WOPR is a weighted combination of the share of team targets a player receives and the share of team air yards. You can find these statistics at AirYards.com.
When it comes to analyzing the WR positions targets and Air Yards per game are the most predictable statistics on a season to season basis. Fantasy points are a byproduct of a receiver’s targets. This week I will share statistical observations regarding one to two players from each tier that you should know about heading into Week 11.
- Kenny Golladay is averaging 6.8 targets per game this season. He is a receiver I mentioned in last week’s column as a bounce-back candidate. Golladay set a career high in targets last week. This was the first game he was targeted 10 or more times since Week 1. Golladay has averaged 5.3 receptions, 75.6 receiving yards, and 0.86 touchdowns per game in seven career games with five or more targets. ESPN Insider Adam Schefter reported Lions receiver Marvin Jones is day to day with a bone bruise. It is possible that he misses Sunday’s game against the Panthers. The Lions have a short week in Week 12 due to their annual Thanksgiving game.
- Brandin Cooks (20), Julian Edelman (22), and Josh Gordon (22) are three of seven wide receivers who have been targeted 20 or more times over their team’s last two games. The other four are Michael Thomas (23), Odell Beckham (22), Larry Fitzgerald (22), Julio Jones (21), and Corey Davis (20). Gordon (364) has accumulated the highest number of Air Yards amongst this group over that time frame.
|5||Odell Beckham Jr||NYG||10||11||4||73||164||23.3|
- It has been difficult to have confidence in any Bills receivers this season. Zay Jones actually leads the team in targets with 51 heading into Week 11. He is an excellent buy low, in my opinion, from a dynasty perspective and took advantage of a vulnerable Jets secondary. Jones is someone to target in deeper formats if he happens to be available.
Zay Jones' play today, and the way he's improved over the last two months of the season, has to make the #Bills think of what he could be with an established offense and a good QB. WR is becoming a bit of a "late-bloomer" position. Have to wonder if Jones is on that track, too.
— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) November 11, 2018
- Corey Davis is averaging 8.4 targets per game this season. He is one of five wide receivers tied for the highest number of red zone targets since Week 7. Davis, Amari Cooper, Fitzgerald, Mike Evans, and T.Y. Hilton are all tied with 5 each. The Titans offense is starting to come together under new offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur now that quarterback Marcus Mariota is healthy.
Corey Davis saw a shadow from Stephon Gilmore on 82% of his routes and caught 6-of-8 balls for 98 yards and score against him. This performance shouldn't be understated. Gilmore was one of the toughest matchups in the league entering the week.
— Jeff Ratcliffe (@JeffRatcliffe) November 12, 2018
- Allen Robinson has averaged 7.28 targets per game in the seven he’s been active. He missed two games due to a groin injury. Did you know this was Robinson’s first multi-touchdown game since Week 3 of the 2016 season when he was with the Jaguars? He accumulated 64 percent of his 31.3 fantasy points in PPR formats while running routes from the slot.
Allen Robinson doubled his season TD total Sunday and topped his best yardage as a Bear by 50. pic.twitter.com/m9DGHfuQS8
— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) November 13, 2018
- Davante Adams continues to be underrated. He is averaging 10.4 targets and 99.4 Air Yards per game. Adams enters Week 11 with 35 career touchdowns and will not turn 26 years old until next month.
- Anthony Miller has the third most targets on the team amongst wide receivers with 41. He generated 95 percent of his fantasy production in PPR formats lined up in the slot.
- Robert Woods is averaging 7.9 targets per game. The season-ending ACL injury to teammate Cooper Kupp will allow him to see additional targets per game and also open up the opportunity for Woods to run additional routes as a slot receiver as NFL.com Managing Editor Graham Barfield mentioned below.
Cooper Kupp's absence opens up 17% of #Rams targets, 17% of air yards, 22% of end zone targets, and 23% of inside-the-ten targets.
Without Kupp in Weeks 7-8, Robert Woods ran 61% of his routes from the slot — where Kupp aligns on the majority of his snaps.
— Graham Barfield (@GrahamBarfield) November 13, 2018
- Tyler Boyd matched his season low in targets in the Bengals first game without A.J. Green. The team’s offense was in disarray and it negatively impacted all the position players from a fantasy perspective. Boyd will look to get back on track against the Ravens this week.
|58||Equanimeous St. Brown||GB||10||3||2||3||35||2.3|
- Kelvin Benjamin matched his season low in targets and had his fewest number of Air Yards since Week 3. All signs are pointing to a potential breakout of Jones and Robert Foster.
Pryor's stay in Buffalo did not last long. There is always opportunity in chaos. Zay Jones and Robert Foster's stock is trending up for the ROS. https://t.co/cBbjzl2dq5
— Moody (@EricNMoody) November 14, 2018
- Antonio Callaway has played an average of 73.2 percent of the Browns offensive snaps over the last four weeks, but has only averaged 3.5 targets over that time frame. There simply isn’t enough passing volume to support multiple receivers from a fantasy perspective.
- Rashard Higgins did score a touchdown last week, but only played 41.5 percent of the offensive snaps. He has only been targeted five times over the last two games.
WHAT COMES NEXT?
This column will be published every week to help you make decisions for the upcoming matchup. I am very active on Twitter (@EricNMoody) and happy to answer any questions our readers have. I also encourage you to put specific questions in the comments for each week’s article. What was most useful to you after reading this column?