Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Wide Receiver Snap Counts and Target Trends - Week 12 Analysis


Wide receivers are essential components toward your ultimate goal of securing league championships. As many of you prepare for your Week 13 matchups, an expanding collection of tools are available that can provide you with an extensive level of knowledge. Those results provide the foundation for this weekly statistical breakdown of the wide receiver position, which is designed to help you fulfill your championship aspirations.

This will be the 12th installment that examines game-specific data, including updated totals for targets, red-zone targets, snap counts, and a compilation of advanced statistics. The information that is contained in this weekly report will analyze how various receivers are being utilized, and how effectively they are capitalizing on their opportunities.

This week’s article will be functioning with 12 weeks of data, which bolsters the foundation from which the numbers that are generated in various categories can be evaluated. As we now approach the threshold of the fantasy postseason all noteworthy changes in usage and production will be blended into the equation. That will bolster your efforts to determine which wide receivers should be in your lineups, and which are worthy of remaining on your rosters. Pro Football Reference, NextGenStats, and Football Outsiders were all used as resources in compiling this data.

Editor's Note: Get any rest-of-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive DFS Tools, Lineup Optimizer and Premium DFS Research through the Super Bowl. Sign Up Now!

 

Week 12 Target Leaders  

Wide Receivers Total Targets  Targets-Per-Game Yards-Per-Target
Michael Thomas 124 11.3 10
DeAndre Hopkins 112 10.2 7.5
Julian Edelman 112 10.2 7.2
Keenan Allen 107 9.7 7.4
Mike Evans 105 9.5 9.9
Cooper Kupp 104 9.5 8.5
D.J. Moore 103 9.4 8.8
Tyler Boyd 103 9.4 6.8
Julio Jones 100 9.1 9.5
Chris Godwin 98 8.9 10.9
Odell Beckham Jr. 97 8.8 8
Jarvis Landry 97 8.8 8.7
Allen Robinson 96 8.7 8
D.J. Chark 91 8.3 9.2
John Brown 89 8.1 9.6
Courtland Sutton 85 7.7 9.8
Devante Parker 83 7.5 8.4
Amari Cooper 81 7.9 10.9
Kenny Golladay 80 7.3 9.9
Robert Woods 80 8 8.3
Curtis Samuel 79 7.2 6
Tyler Lockett 78 7.1 10.7
Marvin Jones 78 7.1 9
Calvin Ridley 78 7.1 9
Jamison Crowder 77 7.7 7.5
Larry Fitzgerald 76 6.9 7.8
Michael Gallup 75 8.1 9.8
Cole Beasley 74 6.7 7.1
Christian Kirk 72 9 7.1
D.K. Metcalf 70 6.4 9
Dede Westbrook 70 7 6.9
Auden Tate 69 7.1 6.9
Davante Adams 69 9.5 8,4
Sammy Watkins 68 7.6 7.9
Emmanuel Sanders 68 5.7 8.5
Terry McLaurin 68 6.8 9.4
Stefon Diggs 65 5.9 13.5
Mohamed Sanu 65 6.5 6.5
Nelson Agholor 63 6.3 5.1
Chris Conley 63 5.7 9
Mike Williams 61 6.1 10.8
Danny Amendola 61 6.1 7.8
JuJu Smith-Schuster 60 6 8.7
Will Fuller 60 7.5 9.8
Randall Cobb 60 6 9.7
Robby Anderson 58 5.8 7.7
Marquise Brown 58 6.4 9.4
Golden Tate 57 8.1 7.9
Diontae Johnson 56 5.1 7.3
Tyreek Hill 56 8 9.7
Alshon Jeffery 55 6.9 6.4
Deebo Samuel 55 5.5 9.5
T.Y. Hilton 52 7.4 7.3

Michael Thomas has maintained his league in overall targets with 124 for the season. DeAndre Hopkins and Julian Edelman are tied for second among all wide receivers with 112, while Keenan Allen (107), Mike Evans (105), Cooper Kupp (104), D.J. Moore (103), Tyler Boyd (103) and Julio Jones (101) are the only other players that have reached 100 targets. Chris Godwin is next (98), while Cleveland teammates Odell Beckham (97), Allen Robinson (96), and D.J. Chark complete the list of 14 wide receivers that have collected 90+targets for the season.

John Brown (89), Courtland Sutton (85), Devante Parker (83), Amari Cooper (81), Kenny Golladay (80), and Robert Woods (80) complete the top 20 in overall targets, while Curtis SamuelTyler Lockett, Marvin Jones, Calvin Ridley, and Jamison Crowder spearhead the group of 11 additional receivers that have captured 70+ targets as we enter Week 13.

Thomas also leads in total games with at least 10 targets (9). Edelman is second (8), followed by Allen (7), then Hopkins, Kupp, and Moore with six. Thomas has also captured at least 10 targets in seven consecutive games, while Edelman has reached a double-digit target total in six straight contests. It is worth noting that Parker is the only other wide receiver that has collected 10+ targets in three consecutive matchups.

Hopkins has captured accrued 10+ targets in five of his last six games, while Landry has achieved it during four of his last five, and  Moore has reached double-digits in three of his last four. Boyd had attained a double-digit target total during his first three games and also accomplished it during five of his first seven matchups. However, he has only averaged 7.25 per game since that sequence of games.

Moore leads all receivers in targets during the last four weeks (45), followed by Landry (43), Evans (38), Parker (37), Brown (36), Beckham (36), followed by Thomas, Godwin, and Gallup all tied with (35). Davante Adams and Edelman are next with 33, followed by Marvin Jones, Hopkins, and Cooper (31). Robinson, Chark, Randall Cobb, Tyreek Hill, and Deebo Samuel are next with 30, which completes the collection of receivers that have attained 30+ targets during the last four weeks.

Moore also leads the position in targets since Week 11 (24), followed by Calvin Ridley and Edelman with 22. Parker, Thomas, and Chark are next with 21, followed by Hopkins, Landry, and Anthony Miller with 20. Gallup is next with 19, followed by Brown and Beckham 18, Julio Jones, Sutton, Chris Conley and Taylor Gabriel with 17, while Evans, Robinson, Marvin Jones, and Terry McLaurin have all collected 16 during their last two games.

 

Largest Weekly Changes

Wide Receivers Total Targets  Week 11 Targets Week 12 Targets Weekly Changes
Terry McLaurin 68 4 12 8
Cooper Kupp 104 3 10 7
Jakobi Meyers 28 2 9 7
Tyler Boyd 103 3 9 6
Jarvis Landry 97 7 13 6
Marvin Jones 78 5 11 6
Calvin Ridley 78 8 14 6
Russell Gage 36 4 10 6
Cole Beasley 74 4 9 5
Allen Robinson 96 6 10 4
Dede Westbrook 70 6 9 3
Marquise Brown 58 4 7 3
Julian Edelman 112 10 12 2
Chris Godwin 98 6 8 2
Robby Anderson 58 3 5 2
Diontae Johnson 56 4 6 2
Michael Thomas 124 10 11 1
Julio Jones 100 8 9 1
DeVante Parker 83 10 11 1
Chris Conley 63 8 9 1
Courtland Sutton 85 9 8 -1
Kenny Golladay 80 5 4 -1
Odell Beckham 97 10 8 -2
Danny Amendola 61 5 3 -2
Curtis Samuel 79 7 4 -3
Auden Tate 69 6 3 -3
DeAndre Hopkins 112 12 8 -4
Jamison Crowder 77 8 4 -4
Emmanuel Sanders 68 5 1 -4
Zach Pascal 41 6 1 -5
D.J. Moore 103 15 9 -6
Tim Patrick 11 8 3 -5
Amari Cooper 81 8 2 -7
Michael Gallup 75 13 6 -7
Deebo Samuel 55 10 2 -8
D.J. Chark 91 15 6 -9
John Brown 89 14 4 -10
Taylor Gabriel 48 14 3 -11

Calvin Ridley captured the highest target total during Week 12 (14), which also established a new career-high. Landry was second for the week with 13 targets, followed by Adams, Edelman, and McLaurin with 12. Thomas, Parker, Marvin Jones, and Will Fuller were next with 11, while Robinson (10), Kupp (10), and Russell Gage (10) were the only other receivers that collected at least 10 during their Week 12 matchups.

Will Fuller reemerged in Houston’s lineup for the first time since Week 7, which leaves his 11 targets outside the usual qualifications for a week to week variance. However, his usage was noteworthy, and will be discussed further in the Five Things I Noticed section.

Terry McLaurin collected at least seven targets in each of his first five games, while also capturing 6+ targets in seven of his first eight contests. But he never reached a double-digit target total until Week 12,  when he established a new career-high against Detroit (12). That increase of +8 targets from his Week 11 total, represented the largest week-to-week surge among all receivers.

Rookie Jakobi Meyers entered Week 12 with 19 targets for the season, including two that were registered in Week 11. But he collected a career-high nine against Dallas which resulted in a weekly rise of +7. That tied him with Cooper Kupp, who registered a double-digit total for the sixth time this season. Ridley’s 14 targets resulted in a surge of +6, which tied him with teammate Russell Gage, along with Landry, Boyd and Marvin Jones. Cole Beasley’s nine targets increased his weekly total by +5, while Allen Robinson experienced a rise of +4.

Taylor Gabriel’s career-best 14 targets in Week 11 resulted in the second-largest weekly increase between Weeks 10-11. But he was targeted just three times in Week 12, which was the largest week to week reduction (-11). John Brown’s 14 targets in Week 11 expanded his two week total to 25. But Josh Allen only launched four passes in his direction during Buffalo’s Week 12 matchup with Denver, which resulted in a decrease of -10. D. J. Chark (-9) and Deebo Samuel (-8) also registered significant reductions in their weekly totals.

Dak Prescott launched 46 passes during the Cowboys’ matchups in Weeks 10 and 11, while he only distributed 33 targets in Week 12. That had a distinct impact on the weekly totals for Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup, after the tandem combined for 21 targets in Week 11. Cooper experienced a decline of -6 (8/2), while Gallup’s weekly total decreased by -7 (13/6).

Chris Conley has now accumulated 38 targets during his last five matchups by collecting 7+ in each of those contests (7.6 per-game). Zack Pascal had averaged 6.3 targets per game from Weeks 9-11, and 5.0 per game from Weeks 3-11. But he was only targeted once in Week 12.

 

Week 12 Yards-Per-Target Leaders

Stefon Diggs leads all wide receivers with a 13.5 yard-per-target average. Mecole Hardman remains second overall (12.2), followed by A.J. Brown (11.6), Chris Godwin (10.9), Amari Cooper (10.9), Kenny Stills (10.8), Tyler Lockett (10.7), Mike Williams (10.7), and Michael Thomas (10.0). No other wide receivers are currently retaining an average of 10+. Mike Evans, Courtland Sutton, Kenny Golladay, and Tyreek Hill are all tied with an average of 9.9 and are followed by Michael Gallup, Tyrell Williams and Will Fuller at 9.8.

Randall Cobb and Tyreek Hill are next (9.7), followed by John Brown (9.6), while Julio Jones, Deebo Samuel, and Marquez Valdes-Scantling are all tied at 9.5. Terry McLaurin 9.4 and James Washington (9.3) are among the collection of seven additional receivers that are averaging at least 9 yards-per-target, and Washington’s recent surge in usage and production will be examined further in the 5 Things I Noticed section.

DeAndre Hopkins’ average of 11.8 yards-per-target in Week 12 established a new season-high, as he had averaged 6.58 from Weeks 6-11, and 5.55 in Weeks 10-11. T.Y. Hilton averaged just 3.0 yards-per-target during his Week 12 return, which was his lowest average of the season by a significant margin. Hilton has averaged 8.0 per target from Weeks 1-8, and his previous low had occurred in Week 3 (6.5).

Allen Robinson’s season-long average rose from 7.4 to 8.0 after he averaged a season-high 13.1 in Week 12. Courtland Sutton had been averaging 10.5 yards-per-target but his average dropped to 9.8 after he registered a season-low 3.4 in Week 12. Terry McLaurin’s averaged decreased from 10.1 to 9.3 after he averaged 6.0 in Week 13. That was the lowest number since Week 7, and his second-lowest average of the season.

 

Week 12 Targeted Air Yards Leaders 

Mike Williams leads all wide receivers in targeted air yards (16.8), followed by Ted Ginn 16.4, Marquez Valdes-Scantling (16), Kenny Golladay (15.8), Robby Anderson (15.8), James Washington (15.5), Chris Conley (15.4), Mike Evans (15.1), and Stefon Diggs (14.9), and Brandin Cooks (14.9), complete the top 10. Curtis Samuel (14.8), and Tyreek Hill (14.8) are next, followed by Tyrell Williams (14.6), Terry McLaurin (14.5), Darius Slayton (14.4), Demarcus Robinson (14.2), Will Fuller (14.1), and John Brown (14.0). No other receivers have eclipsed 14 through Week 12's game action.

Mike Evans maintained his league lead in air yards (1,546), which is 273 yards more than second-place Julio Jones (1,273). John Brown is third (1,228), followed by Kenny Golladay (1,222), D.J. Chark (1,207), Keenan Allen (1,199), DeAndre Hopkins (1,191), Curtis Samuel (1,149), teammate D.J. Moore (1,118), and Amari Cooper (1,097), and Marvin Jones (1,097) completing the top 10.

They are followed by Odell Beckham (1,087), DeVante Parker (1,076), Calvin Ridley (1,062), Allen Robinson (1,059), Courtland Sutton (1,046), Chris Godwin (1,034), and Mike Williams (1,011). Only those 18 receivers have accumulated 1000+ yards. Stefon Diggs (975), Terry McLaurin (974), Julian Edelman (970), and Michael Thomas ( 963) lead a group of 17 receivers that have accrued 800+ air yards.

 

% Share Of  Team’s Air Yards Leaders

Courtland Sutton leads all wide receivers in percentage share of team’s air yards (43.88), followed by McLaurin (42.5), John Brown (41.1), Diggs (40.2), Beckham (38,02), Michael Thomas (37:7), Chark (37.3), Robinson (36.9), Evans (36.8), Robby Anderson (36.1), Hopkins (35.8), Curtis Samuel (35.3), Julio Jones (33.9), and Moore (33.8). Golladay (32.8), Tyrell Williams (32.7), Edelman (32.3), Allen (32.0), and Parker (32.0), and Landry (31.0) complete the top 20 in this category.

Kenny Golladay leads the Lions with a 31.4 share, while Marvin Jones remains second with 28.2. Deebo Samuel now paces the 49ers with a percentage share of 20.1, while Darius Slayton (22.2) leads the Giants by a full seven yards over second-place Golden Tate (15.2). Samuel and Slayton join McLaurin, D.K. Metcalf and A.J. Brown as the five first-year receivers that are garnering the largest percentage share of their teams' air yards.

 

Week 12 Red Zone Target Leaders

Wide Receiver Total Red Zone Targets  Week 11 Red Zone Targets Week 12 Red Zone Targets Largest Weekly Changes Targets Inside 10 
Julian Edelman 19 1 0 -1 8
Michael Thomas 19 1 1 -1 8
Julio Jones 10 2 2 0 5
Mike Evans 16 1 0 -1 8
Jarvis Landry 16 1 2 1 11
Keenan Allen 16 0 BYE BYE 7
Tyler Lockett 14 BYE 0 BYE 5
Auden Tate 14 0 0 0 7
Chris Godwin 14 1 2 1 10
Marvin Jones 13 1 1 0 7
Cooper Kupp 13 0 2 2 4
Marquise Brown 13 0 6 6 6
D.K. Metcalf 12 BYE 0 BYE 4
Kenny Golladay 12 0 0 0 10
Courtland Sutton 12 BYE 0 BYE 5
D.J. Chark 12 1 1 0 4
Cooper Kupp 11 0 0 0 4
Deebo Samuel 11 1 0 -1 4
Allen Robinson 11 0 2 2 7
Mike Williams 10 0 BYE BYE 5
Larry Fitzgerald 10 1 BYE BYE 8
Curtis Samuel 10 1 0 -1 4
Jamison Crowder 10 0 1 1 2
Terry McLaurin 10 0 2 2 7
Davante Adams 10 2 2 0 3
D.J. Moore 10 2 3 1 1
Emmanuel Sanders 9 1 0 0/INJ 5
DeAndre Hopkins 9 0 0 0 4
T.Y. Hilton 8 0 0 INJ 6
Zach Pascal 8 0 0 0 3
John Brown 8 4 0 -4 3
DeVante Parker 8 1 0 -1 1
Phillip Dorsett 8 2 0 0 3

Michael Thomas and Julian Edelman are now tied for the lead among all wide receivers with 19 red zone targets. They are followed by Mike Evans, Jarvis Landry and Keenan Allen who are all tied with 16. Chris Godwin, Tyler Lockett, and Auden Tate are next with 14, Marvin Jones, Cooper Kupp and Marquise Brown are tied with 13, while D.J. Chark, Courtland Sutton, Kenny Golladay, and D.K. Metcalf have all collected 12 red zone targets for the season.

Allen Robinson and Deebo Samuel have captured 11 targets, while Julio Jones, D.J. Moore, Mike Williams, Terry McLaurin, Larry Fitzgerald, Jamison Crowder, and Davante Adams have all been targeted 10 times through Week 12. DeAndre Hopkins and Emmanuel Sanders have collected nine targets, while  John Brown and DeVante Parker lead a group of five wide receivers that have accrued eight red zone targets during the season.

Jarvis Landry now leads all wide receivers with 11 targets inside the 10 after collecting two during his Week 12 matchup with Miami. Landry has also accumulated a whopping nine targets since Week 9.

Marquise Brown collected a whopping six targets in Week 12, which led all receivers. Anthony Miller was second after Mitchell Trubisky targeted him four times. Miller had entered Week 12 with just one target throughout the entire season until his four targets versus the Giants. Moore and Cole Beasley both collected three targets in Week 12, while Godwin, Landry, Robinson, and Calvin Ridley led a group of seven wide receivers that were targeted twice.

Davante Adams has now been targeted four times during his last two games. D.J. Moore has accumulated eight red zone targets during his last four matchups, after only receiving two during his first seven games. D.J. Chark has now collected at least one target in five straight games while accruing a total of seven during that sequence.

 

Week 12 Snap Count Leaders

Wide Receiver Week 12 Snaps Week 12 % Total Snaps Total Snap %
Chris Godwin 58 87.88 767 95.16
DeAndre Hopkins 59 100 745 97.39
Odell Beckham 75 98.68 736 96.71
Mike Evans 61 92.42 729 90.45
Julian Edelman 68 97.14 719 89.21
Jarvis Landry 71 93.42 713 93.69
Tyler Lockett 56 86.15 713 91.06
D.J. Moore 63 82.89 708 91.71
Michael Thomas 58 87.88 694 91.92
Tyler Boyd 58 100 693 91.55
Marvin Jones 67 89.33 693 88.62
John Brown 74 92.5 692 89.64
Kenny Golladay 68 90.67 687 87.85
Allen Robinson 69 90.79 683 93.43
Curtis Samuel 64 84.21 671 86.92
Cooper Kupp 53 98.15 670 88.16
Courtland Sutton 50 100 662 92.2
Keenan Allen BYE BYE 656 88.41
Robert Woods 36 66.67 653 85.92
Nelson Agholor INJ INJ 643 80.27
D.K. Metcalf 57 87.69 642 81.99
Robby Anderson 52 82.54 632 89.9
D.J. Chark 83 96.51 631 80.79
DeVante Parker 63 100 628 88.2
Larry Fitzgerald BYE BYE 623 83.85
Chris Conley 65 75.58 616 78.87
Calvin Ridley 74 85.06 607 76.45
Julio Jones 49 56.32 587 73.93
Mike Williams BYE BYE 586 78.98
Stefon Diggs BYE BYE 585 79.05
Auden Tate 50 86.21 584 77.15
Emmanuel Sanders 32 66.67 577 38.24
Amari Cooper 52 81.25 572 74.09
Terry McLaurin 59 98.33 560 86.15
Michael Gallup 63 98.44 551 71.37
Demarcus Robinson BYE BYE 551 75.17
Zach Pascal 59 88.06 539 69.01
Jamison Crowder 41 65.08 539 76.67
Mohamed Sanu INJ INJ 535 33.44
Cole Beasley 65 81.25 529 68.52
Dede Westbrook 74 86.05 518 66.33
Corey Davis 39 73.58 508 72.16
Willie Snead 47 60.26 505 63.44
Christian Kirk BYE BYE 499 67.16
Sammy Watkins BYE BYE 495 67.53
Marquez Valdes-Scantling 30 37.5 495 65.82
JuJu Smith-Schuster INJ INJ 492 68.33
Tyrell Williams 45 76.27 489 69.56
Ted Ginn 39 59.09 489 64.77
Brandin Cooks 42 77.78 488 64.21
Randall Cobb 29 45.31 480 62.18
Deebo Samuel 35 72.92 477 60.3
Darius Slayton 51 85 473 63.07

Chris Godwin leads all wide receivers in total snaps for the season (767), followed by DeAndre Hopkins (745), Odell Beckham (736), Mike Evans (729), Julian Edelman (719), Jarvis Landry (713), Tyler Lockett (713), D.J. Moore (708), Michael Thomas (694), Tyler Boyd (693), and Marvin Jones (693), completing the top 10.

John Brown is next (692), followed by Kenny Golladay (687), Allen Robinson (683), Curtis Samuel (671), Cooper Kupp (670), Courtland Sutton (662), Keenan Allen (656), Robert Woods (653), Nelson Agholor (643), D.K. Metcalf (642), Robby Anderson (632), D.J. Chark (631), DeVante Parker (628), and Larry Fitzgerald (623) completing the top 25.

Hopkins continues to lead his position in total snap count percentage (97.4), followed by Beckham (96.7), Godwin (95.2), Landry (93.7), Robinson (93.4), Sutton (92.2), Thomas (91.9), Moore (91.7), Boyd (91.6), Lockett (91.1), Evans (90.5), Anderson (90.0), Brown (89.6), Edelman (89.2), Marvin Jones (88.6), Allen (88.4), and Parker completing the top 20 at (88.2).

Chark led all receivers in total offensive snaps during Week 12 matchups (83), while Beckham (75), Brown (74), Westbrook (74), Ridley (74), and Landry (71) completed the select group of six receivers that performed on at least 70 snaps during their games. Hopkins, Parker, Boyd, and Sutton, all played on 100% of their teams' offensive snaps in Week 12, while Beckham (98.7), Gallup (98.4), McLaurin (98.3), Kupp (98.2), Edelman (97.1), and Chark (96.5), completed the top 10 in snap count percentage.

It is noteworthy that Sterling Shepard was 11th (95%) as he re-emerged for his first game action since Week 5. Woods performed on 67% of the Rams' offensive snaps, which was his lowest percentage of the season. He had entered the matchup with an average of 95%. Julio Jones was limited to 56% of Atlanta's snaps due to his shoulder issue. The 67% count that was obtained by Emmanuel Sanders was his highest since Week 9, while Amari Cooper returned to his customary 80%+ count range (81) after performing on just 55% of the Cowboys’ snaps in Week 11.

 

Five Things I Noticed

1. Will Fuller owners were understandably euphoric following his prolific return in Week 12. He had been 14th overall in targets prior to his Week 7 hamstring injury (48/8 per-game), and was 12th among all receivers in both receptions (33) and receiving yards (444).

But he had also been sidelined since playing on just three snaps in Week 7, before his productive return to game action against the Colts in Week 12. Fuller played on 53/90% of Houston’s offensive snaps, proceeded to capture seven of his team-high 11 targets, and accrued 140 yards.

It was the second game in which he has surpassed 100 yards this season, and also represented the eighth time in 39 career games that he has exceeded 100 yards. Fuller also averaged 12.7 yards-per-target, which was his third-highest of the season. Kenny Stills only averaged 4.0 targets-per-game during Fuller’s absence, while manufacturing just 3.6 receptions and 59.6 yards-per-game - even though he also averaging 65 snaps during that span. All of which failed to reach match the expectations of owners who pursued him on their waiver wires before Week 8.

Fuller’s history of missed games cannot be ignored, as a combination of issues have sidelined him for 20 games since 2016 (hamstring/knee/shoulder/ribs). His track record also suggests that he will intersperse games of high-quality production with other matchups in which his numbers are less favorable.

However, his potential to explode for significant output makes him a valuable asset for owners if he can achieve sustained health. If he is functioning as your WR3, his output could conceivably become the final ingredient that you need in order to secure a fantasy championship - providing that your top two receivers deliver numbers that reach projected levels. Fuller’s appealing Week 16 matchup with Tampa Bay can also be anticipated with great enthusiasm.

 

2. After Pittsburgh invested a second-round pick on James Washington during the 2018 NFL draft, he proceeded to finish 15th in receptions and 16th in yardage among members of his rookie class. He also finished seventh on the Steelers in targets (38) and receiving yards (217), and eighth with just 16 receptions.

His usage and production during the initial weeks of 2019 were equally unimpressive, as Washington attained a 60% snap count from Weeks 1-8, averaged 4.5 targets per game, collected 10 receptions, and manufactured 161 yards.

But during his last three matchups, the second-year receiver has accumulated 19 targets (6.3 per game), captured 12 receptions, and assembled 237 yards (79-per-game). He has also produced his first two touchdowns of the season, which includes the 79-catch and run against the Bengals in Week 12 that quickly emerged among the most popular highlights from Week 12.

Diontae Johnson is second to Washington during that three-game span with 16 targets (5.3 per game) receptions (9) and yardage (110), while JuJu Smith-Schuster owners are already aware that he has collected just five of nine targets for 65 yards during that span. He was unavailable during Pittsburgh’s Week 12 matchup with Cincinnati, due to a concussion that he suffered in Week 11. The target distribution will be impacted whenever Smith-Schuster reemerges in the lineup, while Washington’s 82.1% snap count percentage in Weeks 11-12 could be slightly altered.

However, Washington’s opportunity to remain relevant during the fantasy postseason should not be dismissed. He has performed proficiently during his recent surge in usage and should benefit from the transition to Devlin Hodges under center, Owners can also remain encouraged with the prospects of Washington performing as an upside WR3 option during a highly favorable matchup with Arizona in Week 14.

 

3. During Sam Darnold’s Week 7 matchup with New England, he threw four interceptions, manufactured just 86 yards and completed an anemic 34.4% of his passes. That forgettable performance launched a surge of overreaction concerning his viability as a fantasy option, which was enhanced when he tossed three more interceptions versus Jacksonville in Week 8. Darnold’s deficiencies negatively impacted Jamison Crowder, who was limited to just 50 yards during that two-game span.     

But Darnold has performed with far greater proficiency since Week 9, completing  66.2% of his throws, averaging 274.5 yards-per-game, and constructing an 8:2 touchdown to interception ratio. His improved performance has enabled Crowder, Demaryius Thomas, and Robby Anderson to generate favorable output during various points of that four-game sequence. This has also elevated the potential for each receiver to capitalize on the enticing matchups that await during the next two weeks.

Crowder captured 23 targets (7.7 per-game) from Weeks 9-11, which placed him 16th among all wide receivers. He was also seventh with 18 receptions, 13th in yardage (240), and tied for first with three touchdowns. Crowder’s 5.0 yard-per-target average from Weeks 1-8 also increased sizably to 10.4 during that three-game span. Anderson generated his second-highest yardage total for the season in Week 12 (86), while the fourth-year receiver also produced a touchdown for the second consecutive week. Thomas captured 10 of his 14 targets for 128 yards in Weeks 10-11 and scored a touchdown in Week 12 that was nullified by a penalty,

Crowder has also accumulated seven red zone targets since Week 9 and remains the Jets’ most productive Jet receiving weapon. However, Anderson can also be deployed as an upside WR3 during New York’s matchups against the Bengals (Week 13), and Dolphins Week 14), while Thomas can be used in a WR4 capacity.

 

4. We now have a five-game sample size from which to compare Ryan Tannehill’s target distribution and associated data with the numbers that had been accumulated while Marcus Mariota was distributing passes for the Tennessee offense.

Tannehill was summoned in Week 6 to replace Mariota and has generated respectable numbers since emerging under center. Tannehill is currently generating the highest completion percentage of his career (72.1), while also constructing a 10:4 touchdown to interception ratio. While his 202.9 yards-per-game average places him outiside the top 20, he still leads all quarterbacks with a 9.2 yards-per-attempt average.

A.J. Brown had averaged 3.8 targets per game with Mariota in Weeks 1-5 but has captured a team-high 27 targets (5,4 per-game) during Tannehill's five full games under center. Brown also leads Titan receivers in receptions (17) and receiving yards (308) during that span. Brown’s team-high 11,4 yards per-target average has been bolstered by the season-best 27 yards-per-target average that he attained in Week 12.

Corey Davis has accrued 21 targets 5.3 per game, along with 14 receptions and 166 yards. Adam Humphries is third in targets during that sequence (18/ 3.6-per-game) but has exceeded Davis in receptions (15) and yardage (172). Davis averaged 4.4 targets per game while operating with Mariota, while Humphries registered 4.2 per game.

Brown is the primary resource for potential fantasy owners during the remaining weeks, as he is the most dynamic receiving component within a Tennessee attack that is utilizing the passing game on 56.8% of its offensive plays. He presents a blend of size, speed, and inconsistent yardage totals, with the prospects of high-quality production during favorable matchups. He is currently available in over 80% of all leagues and is a legitimate WR3 option when he faces Oakland’s vulnerable secondary in Week 14.

 

5. Many of you are either preparing feverishly for a must-win matchup that will propel you into the postseason or are examining options for a team that has already secured a playoff position. Due to the critical nature of your decisions at this junction of the season, it will be beneficial to discuss two receivers whose recent surge in usage, production, or pending opportunity has elevated their viability as an option in Week 13 and beyond.  

Russell Gage played on 17.8% of Atlanta’s offensive snaps from Weeks 1-7. That limited him to only eight targets during that sequence (1.1 per game), along with a paltry four receptions, and just 44 yards. But after Mohamed Sanu was jettisoned to New England in late October, Gage procured an expanded role in the slot. The second-year receiver has been involved in 61% of the Falcons’ snaps since Sanu’s departure, which has propelled a sizable rise in production. Gage has accumulated 28 targets (7 per-game) since Week 8, while also collecting 21 receptions, and generating 189 yards. He has also captured a red zone target in each contest since his responsibilities increased. Gage should remain extremely involved in Atlanta’s aerial efforts moving forward Any lingering health isues for Julio Jones and Austin Hooper will raise his importance to the Falcons’ passing attack even further.

When N’Keal Henry’s professional debut finally transpired in Week 11, New England’s first-round pick performed on 43% of the Patriots’ offensive snaps. That percentage rose to 81% in Week 12, which arguably should garner as much attention from potential owners as Harry’s congested catch that resulted in an impressive touchdown reception against the Cowboys. Even though Julian Edelman operates as the team’s clear WR1, Harry operates with an enticing combination of strength, size, hands, and concentration that should help him retain an ongoing role within New England’s passing attack - even as Mohamed Sanu and Phillip Dorsett rejoin the existing weaponry within the Patriots' receiving arsenal. Harry also captured two red zone targets in Week 12, and his usage near the goal line should continue. This will keep him involved within an offense that desperately needs another playmaker at wide receiver. That should compel potential owners to strongly consider him as a roster stash for the fantasy postseason.

Also, Anthony Miller plays on Thanksgiving Day but still deserves a mention. From Weeks 1-10, Miller averaged just 3.3 targets-per-game, which suppressed his production to an infinitesimal level (1.8 receptions/24.2 yards-per-game). But during his last two matchups, the second-year receiver has collected 20 targets, while averaging 6 receptions/65.5 yards-per-game. He also accrued four red zone targets in Week 12 and provides potential owners with a WR3 prospect with upside. He will line up against the Cowboys, Packers, and Chiefs in Weeks 14-16.

More Fantasy Football Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

The King's Keeper Corner: NFL Postseason Impacts on Player Outlooks

With a break in the postseason NFL action, it is time to reflect on what we have seen in the playoffs so far and how certain performances will affect fantasy football outlooks in keeper and dynasty formats. How players respond and what they deliver at the most intense and critical times of the season can... Read More


Introducing Value Over Starter Football Metrics

When it comes to fantasy sports, we're always looking for the highest possible Return On Investment or ROI. This concept is easy to understand: in both Daily Fantasy and re-draft/fantasy leagues, ROI would come down to how many points a player returns relative to his salary, or the price you paid (given his ADP on... Read More


Biggest Breakouts of 2019: Quarterback

2019 was a very interesting season of fantasy football, to say the least. It's safe to say no one was banking on the season that we saw from Lamar Jackson but he wasn't the only one to stand out. At the quarterback position, we saw some really exciting players start to shine and some older... Read More


Goodbye Runners, Hello Pass-Catching RBs: 2019 Season Trends

As the 2019 summer kept going we all had two things in our minds with regard to September's fantasy drafts and both of them were related to running backs: Where in the world are Ezekiel Elliott and Melvin Gordon and when will they be back? It made sense back then (and it still does now,... Read More


Where Does 2019 Rank Historically Among ADP Movers?

I have worked on a season-review series of articles in which I have analyzed the biggest winners and losers in terms of ADP entering draft season compared to the end of the year final results. It was plenty of fun looking back at the gambles most of us took which ultimately paid off, but also... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Tight End

2019 was not the record-breaking season for tight ends 2018 was. San Francisco’s George Kittle (most receiving yards for a TE in a season) and Philadelphia’s Zach Ertz (most receptions for a TE in a season) did not break the records they set last season, although both were fine for fantasy players. Kansas City’s Travis... Read More


Rushing Quarterbacks Are Becoming Necessary

The 2019 fantasy season is over. We are all thinking about what to do come 2020 draft day. So let me ask you something. What if I offer you the chance of drafting a quarterback who is a lock to finish the season with 270 fantasy points? Would you take him and make him your... Read More


Biggest Breakouts Of 2019: Wide Receivers

As we enter the initial phase of offseason activities you have recently completed a painstaking process of creating and managing rosters, with the goal of winning fantasy championships in 2019. Now, many of you have already shifted your focus toward planning your drafts in Best Ball and redraft leagues, while others are contemplating how you... Read More


Tight End ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward their owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Running Back ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, a sure-fire player is expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they end up as a season-long dud, though,... Read More


Biggest Surprises of 2019: Tight End

The 2019 NFL season was anything but predictable. I mean, the Tennessee Titans made the AFC title game! Andrew Luck retired right before the season! [Insert one of many, many other things here, because all lists need three items but I couldn't decide between all the possible third options.] One position where things at the... Read More


Wide Receiver Risers and Fallers: 2019 Season Review

We continue our series covering the biggest risers and fallers of 2019 with the wide receiver position. I'll look at both 2018 and 2019 statistical outcomes from every player, contrast their performances, calculate differences in each category and come up with the most prominent names going forward. This past season, receivers didn't dominate in fantasy,... Read More


Wide Receiver ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


XFL Fantasy Football Rankings (Preseason)

As of this writing, there is exactly one month until XFL regular-season action begins. On February 8, the latest upstart professional league will kickoff (again) with spring football. It goes without saying that we hope it goes better than the first time, back in 2001, and lasts longer than the AAF. Before you settle in... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Quarterback

The 2019 NFL season is over, and it's time to look back on what happened. 2019 was a year where some quarterbacks -- Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen -- leaped up to the top of the fantasy charts, while other guys faded from where they were expected to perform. Today, I want to talk about three... Read More