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We now have a quarter of a seasons worth of data at our fingertips and the cream has well and truly risen to the top. There are still some interesting names high in the rankings at quarterback and tight end. However, these are generally more variable positions. That is why both positions are often streamed on a weekly basis while running backs and wide receivers are more consistently used. However, we can still see that at every position the consistency rankings are matching the eye test in a big way.

The information I am going to use in this articles comes fromĀ FFstatistics.com, founded by the person who used to write this article, Addison Hayes. Here are the links to the main articles last year where Addison introduced his key terms. The three main elements are standard deviation (explained here), calculations of players floors and ceiling (explained here) and then finally the use of the Coefficient of Variation to calculate Consistency Ratings or COR (explained here). This paragraph is going to be present a lot this year for those of you interested in the math behind the numbers below.

A final note for this article is that although this article will be published following Thursday Night Football, the numbers from those games will not be included. I will also be unlikely to touch on those players unless they stand out as major players you should be targeting on the following weeks waiver wires. Therefore, do not be surprised to not see much mention of New England Patriots or Indianapolis Colts players below.

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Quarterbacks

Rank Player Total Avg Std. Dev Floor Ceiling CV% COR
1 Patrick Mahomes 115.3 28.83 7.04 21.78 35.87 0.24 146.79
2 Joe Flacco 79.08 19.77 3.16 16.61 22.93 0.16 143.27
3 Philip Rivers 86.44 21.61 4.26 17.35 25.87 0.2 131.24
4 Cam Newton 75.44 25.15 6.06 19.08 31.21 0.24 129.42
5 Aaron Rodgers 77.9 19.48 3.99 15.48 23.47 0.21 114.42
6 Alex Smith 49.48 16.49 3.27 13.22 19.76 0.2 99.66
7 Deshaun Watson 91.94 22.99 7.5 15.48 30.49 0.33 93.41
8 Kirk Cousins 97.58 24.4 8.7 15.7 33.09 0.36 92.8
9 Andy Dalton 81.98 20.5 6.13 14.37 26.62 0.3 89.06
10 Matt Ryan 104.94 26.24 11.97 14.26 38.21 0.46 83.72
11 Jared Goff 98.44 24.61 10.64 13.97 35.25 0.43 81.55
12 Carson Wentz 35.92 17.96 6.73 11.23 24.69 0.37 65.88
13 Drew Brees 96.3 24.08 13.94 10.14 38.01 0.58 65.65
14 Russell Wilson 61.72 15.43 4.77 10.66 20.2 0.31 65.35
15 Ryan Fitzpatrick 100.44 25.11 16.39 8.72 41.5 0.65 63.59
16 Ben Roethlisberger 86.86 21.72 11.44 10.27 33.16 0.53 62.93
17 Tom Brady 66.12 16.53 6.14 10.39 22.67 0.37 61.05
18 Matthew Stafford 72.98 18.25 7.8 10.45 26.04 0.43 60.95
19 Andrew Luck 80.34 20.09 10.92 9.16 31.01 0.54 57.02
20 Jimmy Garoppolo 46.02 15.34 5.76 9.58 21.1 0.38 56.19
21 Blake Bortles 79.04 19.76 10.73 9.03 30.49 0.54 56.14
22 Eli Manning 57.2 14.3 5.25 9.05 19.55 0.37 53.23
23 Mitch Trubisky 81.5 20.38 15.82 4.56 36.19 0.78 46.62
24 Dak Prescott 50.82 12.71 4.77 7.93 17.48 0.38 46.51
25 Derek Carr 64.92 16.23 9.76 6.47 25.99 0.6 43.22
26 Ryan Tannehill 60.88 15.22 10.2 5.02 25.42 0.67 37.92
27 Baker Mayfield 24.64 12.32 6.34 5.98 18.66 0.51 36.28
28 Case Keenum 47.12 11.78 6.19 5.59 17.97 0.53 34.21
29 Tyrod Taylor 40.98 13.66 10.33 3.33 23.99 0.76 31.72
30 Sam Darnold 41.52 10.38 5.18 5.2 15.56 0.5 31.17

The table above (and each table in the article) is sorted by players 2018 COR through three games from largest to smallest. There are some really interesting names in the quarterback consistency rankings. No one is surprised to see Mahomes at the top and right now he is the hottest commodity in fantasy football. However, Flacco in second and Smith in sixth are somewhat of a surprise. Flacco finally appears to have guys he trust around him and the motivation to get it right. He is unlikely to ever have monster weeks but in deeper leagues he is a nice safe start. Smith has an even lower ceiling but again once you get into the two quarterback format he becomes a nice safe low-end start each week.

Two interesting quarterbacks facing each other this week are Ryan and Roethlisberger. If we were to take away Ryan's Week 1 outing he would be much higher up this ranking. Right now he is much safer than Roethlisberger. However, we will see this week whether that safety is only available at home or whether he can do it on the road as well.

Two names I just want to touch on are Trubisky and Mayfield. We saw the potential from both of these guys last week but we have also seen big floors. They are great quarterback options in best-ball formats but they are going to be extremely hard to trust. If we see a period of consistent production then they might become safer but for now they are matchup and bye week starters only in most leagues. That is unless you need to shoot for the moon to try and win one week.

 

Running Backs

Rank Player Total Avg Std. Dev Floor Ceiling CV% COR
1 Todd Gurley 104.2 26.05 1.92 24.13 27.97 0.07 379
2 Saquon Barkley 90.3 22.58 1.68 20.9 24.25 0.07 326.28
3 Melvin Gordon 101.5 25.38 6.33 19.04 31.71 0.25 127.04
4 Alvin Kamara 132.1 33.03 11.9 21.13 44.92 0.36 124.7
5 Marshawn Lynch 64 16 2.64 13.36 18.64 0.16 112.99
6 Christian McCaffrey 64.8 21.6 6.2 15.4 27.8 0.29 96.82
7 Malcolm Brown 13.1 4.37 0.21 4.16 4.57 0.05 95.97
8 Ezekiel Elliott 88.1 22.03 8.08 13.95 30.1 0.37 82.09
9 Tevin Coleman 51.4 12.85 2.57 10.28 15.42 0.2 77.14
10 James White 76.3 19.08 8.11 10.96 27.19 0.43 63.94
11 Carlos Hyde 64 16 5.61 10.39 21.61 0.35 61.64
12 Alex Collins 48.8 12.2 3.11 9.09 15.31 0.26 60.02
13 Adrian Peterson 56.6 18.87 9.42 9.45 28.28 0.5 56.67
14 TJ Yeldon 65 16.25 6.57 9.68 22.82 0.4 56.46
15 Austin Ekeler 60.1 15.03 5.91 9.12 20.93 0.39 53.23
16 Kerryon Johnson 43.9 10.98 2.91 8.06 13.89 0.27 52.36
17 Javorius Allen 53.9 13.48 4.73 8.74 18.21 0.35 51.85
18 David Johnson 60.1 15.03 6.18 8.84 21.21 0.41 51.53
19 Jay Ajayi 39 13 4.56 8.44 17.56 0.35 50.08
20 James Conner 75.6 18.9 12.29 6.61 31.19 0.65 47.97
21 Royce Freeman 41.4 10.35 2.86 7.49 13.21 0.28 47.84
22 Joe Mixon 35.6 17.8 11.46 6.34 29.26 0.64 45.46
23 Stevan Ridley 3.5 1.75 0.07 1.68 1.82 0.04 45.06
24 Kareem Hunt 62.8 15.7 8.84 6.86 24.54 0.56 43.59
25 Derrick Henry 20.5 5.13 0.73 4.39 5.86 0.14 41.01
26 Chris Thompson 49.8 16.6 12.1 4.5 28.7 0.73 39.37
27 Matt Breida 55.8 13.95 8.1 5.85 22.05 0.58 37.97
28 Nyheim Hines 57.3 14.33 9.52 4.81 23.84 0.66 35.89
29 Lamar Miller 41.9 10.48 4.72 5.75 15.2 0.45 33.71
30 Theo Riddick 35.5 8.88 3.33 5.54 12.21 0.38 32.51
31 Dion Lewis 49.9 12.48 7.79 4.69 20.26 0.62 32.46
32 Phillip Lindsay 48.2 12.05 7.16 4.89 19.21 0.59 32.34
33 Giovani Bernard 55.3 13.83 10.74 3.09 24.56 0.78 31.63
34 Bilal Powell 43 10.75 5.57 5.18 16.32 0.52 31.51
35 Jordan Howard 44.1 11.03 6.37 4.65 17.4 0.58 30.1
36 Ito Smith 26.7 8.9 4.24 4.66 13.14 0.48 27.56
37 Aaron Jones 20.9 10.45 6.72 3.73 17.17 0.64 26.71
38 Isaiah Crowell 48.5 12.13 10.1 2.02 22.23 0.83 26.68
39 Tarik Cohen 50.8 12.7 12.08 0.62 24.78 0.95 26.05
40 Chris Carson 33.7 11.23 9 2.23 20.24 0.8 25.25
41 Ty Montgomery 31.6 7.9 3.68 4.22 11.58 0.47 24.88
42 Corey Clement 32.6 10.87 8.46 2.41 19.32 0.78 24.83
43 Wendell Smallwood 30.5 10.17 7.21 2.95 17.38 0.71 24.49
44 Dalvin Cook 29.5 9.83 7.01 2.83 16.84 0.71 23.64
45 Sony Michel 28.2 9.4 6.77 2.63 16.17 0.72 22.46
46 Leonard Fournette 13 6.5 2.83 3.67 9.33 0.44 21.44
47 Jalen Richard 35.7 8.93 7.12 1.8 16.05 0.8 20.11
48 LeSean McCoy 20.6 6.87 3.85 3.01 10.72 0.56 19.11
49 Alfred Morris 29.3 7.33 4.79 2.53 12.12 0.65 18.52
50 Kyle Juszczyk 26.2 6.55 3.74 2.81 10.29 0.57 18.03

There are not too many surprising names in the top-15 outside of Brown, whose ceiling is so low you are essentially ignoring outside of insanely deep leagues. Allen fell back into the pack this week as he failed to score a touchdown. In fact this week it seemed to be Collins who got the red-zone looks which casts massive doubt over Allen's value. However, another fumble near the goal line from Collins might hand that roll back to Allen.

David Johnson had a better week in Week 4, carrying the ball over 20 times for the first time this season. Hopefully that is the start of him turning his season around. Conner is another guy who has been hard to trust lately. However, a matchup with the Falcons should be nice for him. It certainly will not help his consistency ratings though if he suddenly has another good week.

The Denver, Detroit, Green Bay, New York Jets and Tennessee situations are frustrating for all involved. Until we see a clear number one emerge in those situations all of them remain volatile players who will be hard to trust on a weekly basis. You can add the number nine ranked Coleman to that list this week with the return of Devonta Freeman from a knee injury. Coleman has not really made a case for remaining the lead back and I expect him to go back into a time share with Freeman in the short term. Both of those could be really frustrating for the next few weeks.

 

Wide Receivers

Rank Player Total Avg Std. Dev Floor Ceiling CV% COR
1 Davante Adams 74.5 18.63 1.92 16.7 20.55 0.1 199.07
2 Adam Thielen 99.3 24.83 6.35 18.47 31.18 0.26 121.85
3 Geronimo Allison 59.9 14.98 2.35 12.63 17.32 0.16 110.52
4 Antonio Brown 74.2 18.55 3.89 14.66 22.44 0.21 106.99
5 Will Fuller 61.3 20.43 5.23 15.2 25.67 0.26 100.24
6 Mike Evans 89.6 22.4 7.14 15.26 29.54 0.32 92.7
7 Brandin Cooks 78.8 19.7 5.41 14.29 25.11 0.27 91.4
8 John Brown 67.2 16.8 3.82 12.98 20.62 0.23 90.75
9 Jarvis Landry 61.2 15.3 3.13 12.17 18.43 0.2 90
10 Kenny Golladay 68 17 4.03 12.97 21.03 0.24 88.79
11 Tyler Lockett 60.4 15.1 3.48 11.62 18.58 0.23 80.65
12 Michael Thomas 104.5 26.13 13.57 12.55 39.7 0.52 76.42
13 Golden Tate 85.8 21.45 8.53 12.92 29.98 0.4 75.36
14 DeAndre Hopkins 85.6 21.4 8.58 12.82 29.98 0.4 74.79
15 AJ Green 79.7 19.93 7.94 11.99 27.86 0.4 69.96
16 Julio Jones 80.3 20.08 8.3 11.77 28.38 0.41 68.62
17 T.Y. Hilton 62.4 15.6 4.61 10.99 20.21 0.3 68.35
18 Juju Smith-Schuster 78.6 19.65 8.81 10.84 28.46 0.45 63.49
19 Odell Beckham Jr 65 16.25 5.85 10.4 22.1 0.36 61.41
20 Cooper Kupp 84.1 21.03 11.05 9.98 32.07 0.53 61.05
21 Emmanuel Sanders 72.7 18.18 8.09 10.08 26.27 0.45 58.99
22 Quincy Enunwa 54.8 13.7 4.2 9.5 17.9 0.31 58.35
23 Tyler Boyd 73.4 18.35 8.78 9.57 27.13 0.48 56.71
24 DeSean Jackson 77.4 19.35 10.53 8.82 29.88 0.54 54.91
25 Robert Woods 76.2 19.05 11.28 7.77 30.33 0.59 51.24
26 Tyreek Hill 78.5 19.63 12.22 7.4 31.85 0.62 51.14
27 Marvin Jones 50.3 12.58 4.19 8.39 16.76 0.33 50.35
28 Stefon Diggs 77 19.25 12.13 7.12 31.38 0.63 49.81
29 Tyrell Williams 30 7.5 1.35 6.15 8.85 0.18 49.12
30 Willie Snead 43.8 10.95 3.3 7.65 14.25 0.3 47.25
31 Devin Funchess 38.5 12.83 5.06 7.77 17.9 0.39 45.35
32 Cameron Meredith 14.3 7.15 1.34 5.81 8.49 0.19 45.2
33 Michael Crabtree 42.4 10.6 3.33 7.27 13.93 0.31 44.39
34 Keenan Allen 58.2 14.55 7.33 7.22 21.88 0.5 43.43
35 Calvin Ridley 78.7 19.68 16.66 3.01 36.34 0.85 42.91
36 Allen Robinson 46.7 11.68 4.54 7.14 16.21 0.39 41.71
37 Martavis Bryant 20.5 6.83 1.36 5.48 8.19 0.2 41.23
38 Dede Westbrook 57 14.25 7.61 6.64 21.86 0.53 40.92
39 Paul Richardson 28.1 9.37 2.82 6.55 12.19 0.3 40.5
40 Chris Godwin 52.3 13.08 6.31 6.76 19.39 0.48 40.16
41 Darius Jennings 3.3 1.65 0.07 1.58 1.72 0.04 40.15
42 Sterling Shepard 58.9 14.73 8.56 6.17 23.28 0.58 40.07
43 Ryan Grant 42.8 10.7 3.94 6.76 14.64 0.37 39.79
44 Corey Davis 59.2 14.8 11.24 3.56 26.04 0.76 34.28
45 Albert Wilson 41.8 10.45 4.69 5.76 15.14 0.45 33.72
46 Danny Amendola 25.1 6.28 1.48 4.8 7.75 0.24 32.93
47 Nelson Agholor 49.5 12.38 7.65 4.72 20.03 0.62 32.39
48 Taylor Gabriel 56 14 10.96 3.04 24.96 0.78 31.88
49 Demaryius Thomas 42.8 10.7 5.53 5.17 16.23 0.52 31.39
50 Jordy Nelson 55.4 13.85 11.46 2.39 25.31 0.83 30.59

There are no major surprises in the top-25 here. Most of that group are heavily featured in their offense, either as a clear number one or in a scheme which spreads the ball around. Just outside that group are Hill and Jones. Hill is so big play dependent that his consistency is always going to be frustrating. As for Jones he has been marginalized a little by the emergence of Golladay and I expect to see him continue to be inconsistent week-to-week.

Allen Robinson finally got in the end zone which is nice to see but his value is so dependent on which Trubisky we see that it is scary. Further down, we have Corey Davis who could come into his own now as the lead receiver for Marcus Mariota. His quarterback struggles have meant he is low on this list but right now he is a must-start for me heading into Week 5.

The Miami receivers are extremely frustrating because they are talented. However, they have a lot of similar skill sets which means that on any given week any of them could see targets. It will be hard to trust any of them outside of best-ball formats this season. Finally, I am now officially terrified of Demaryius Thomas who is having a rough start to the season consistency wise. Thomas is now a borderline sit for me in 10- and 12-team leagues despite his immense talent. If I have a solid team that week I am likely sitting him but if I need a gamble then I will still throw him out there for his big-play ability.

 

Tight Ends

Rank Player Total Avg Std. Dev Floor Ceiling CV% COR
1 Demetrius Harris 16.2 8.1 0.28 7.82 8.38 0.03 240.07
2 Jordan Reed 36.8 12.27 2.25 10.02 14.52 0.18 79.14
3 Eric Ebron 50 12.5 3.24 9.26 15.74 0.26 60.75
4 Zach Ertz 63.7 15.93 5.73 10.19 21.66 0.36 60.18
5 Kyle Rudolph 48.8 12.2 3.47 8.73 15.67 0.28 55.15
6 Jared Cook 75 18.75 11.95 6.8 30.7 0.64 48.16
7 Travis Kelce 71.7 17.93 11.84 6.09 29.76 0.66 45.07
8 Tyler Conklin 3.3 1.65 0.07 1.58 1.72 0.04 40.15
9 George Kittle 55.6 13.9 8.32 5.58 22.22 0.6 37.13
10 Hakeem Valles 3.1 1.55 0.07 1.48 1.62 0.05 35.53
11 Vance McDonald 38 12.67 7.9 4.76 20.57 0.62 32.97
12 Tyler Eifert 38.9 9.73 4.65 5.07 14.38 0.48 30.05
13 Geoff Swaim 27.4 9.13 4.08 5.05 13.21 0.45 29.58
14 Jimmy Graham 38.9 9.73 5.27 4.46 14.99 0.54 27.68
15 Trey Burton 40.6 10.15 5.89 4.26 16.04 0.58 27.65
16 Ricky Seals-Jones 28.3 7.08 2.47 4.6 9.55 0.35 27.3
17 Rob Gronkowski 46.3 11.58 9.48 2.09 21.06 0.82 25.7
18 David Njoku 26.1 6.53 2.56 3.97 9.08 0.39 23.19
19 Mark Andrews 27.9 6.98 3.15 3.83 10.12 0.45 22.42
20 OJ Howard 39.2 9.8 7.97 1.83 17.77 0.81 21.84
21 Jordan Akins 14.4 3.6 0.77 2.83 4.37 0.21 20.43
22 Ben Watson 28.7 7.18 3.91 3.26 11.09 0.55 20.33
23 Jack Doyle 17 8.5 6.36 2.14 14.86 0.75 19.85
24 Austin Seferian-Jenkins 26 6.5 3.23 3.27 9.73 0.5 19.57
25 Jesse James 38.8 9.7 10.54 -0.84 20.24 1.09 18.62
26 Will Dissly 35.6 8.9 8.98 -0.08 17.88 1.01 17.72
27 Cameron Brate 24.3 8.1 7.02 1.08 15.12 0.87 17.45
28 Evan Engram 26.4 8.8 9.45 -0.65 18.25 1.07 16.99
29 Austin Hooper 30.5 7.63 6.29 1.33 13.92 0.82 16.87
30 Maxx Williams 23.9 5.98 3.52 2.46 9.49 0.59 16.13

I am going to ignore Demetrius Harris for now and focus on the guys ranked two or below. Reed has become one of the safest guys in the NFL and with Smith at quarterback I am not surprised. Expect another big week from Reed in Week 5 as the Redskins face the Saints. Ertz and Kelce are now truly rising to the top as expected and remain a must-start.

Rudolph will always frustrate but as long as he is getting red-zone targets he is impossible to ignore. Cook now appears to have fully emerged as a safe fantasy tight end weapon with Carr looking his way more and more.Graham and Burton are interesting. Graham is going to be touchdown dependent and Burton is Trubisky dependent. Both remain players you should consider starting but both are going to drive you wild.

This is such a variable position it is hard to get too deep. There are a handful of must-start options and then after that it truly is about playing the matchups at the tight end position.

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