Analytics & Advanced Metrics

Meet the Metric – Opportunity Share

by RotoUnderworld, May 17, 2021

Last season, both Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette saw roughly the same amount of snaps in the Buccaneers offense. However, Jones was the preferred fantasy option, averaging over two points more per game. His production was largely driven by seeing more than 15-percent more opportunities than Fournette. This Opportunity Share was the reason to be “on him” in 2020.

What many seem to be overlooking about Joe Mixon is his opportunity monopoly on an ascending Bengals offense. Last season, he saw an 81.5-percent (No. 2 among qualified running backs) Opportunity Share during his six active games. Additionally, when he last played a full season in 2019, he saw a 77.1-percent (No. 6) Opportunity Share.


Meet the Metric – Production Premium

by RotoUnderworld, May 10, 2021

Production Premium is particularly helpful when assessing players after they change teams in free agency or are traded. Two players, both making their way to new teams in 2021, featured among the top seven last season while on their old teams. Nelson Agholor posted a +26.3 (No. 6 among qualified wide receivers) Production Premium, while Corey Davis delivered a +24.3 (No. 7) mark.

At the other end of the scale, the Arizona Cardinals may have bid against themselves in signing former star A.J. Green. His 2020 campaign showed a player a long way past his best. He was neither productive, nor efficient, and finished with a -37.0 (No. 89) Production Premium.


Meet the Metric – Explaining Run Blocking Efficiency

by RotoUnderworld, May 3, 2021

J.K. Dobbins’ high marks in Run Blocking Efficiency and Yards Created Per Touch tell us he took advantage of running lanes and created yards on his own. He and Gus Edwards will likely share touches in 2021, and hopefully, Dobbins earns more opportunities in the receiving game to add to his fantasy production. The Ravens running backs, particularly Dobbins, seem like a rare case where a player creates yards while also benefitting from their offensive line. 

In PPR leagues, Myles Gaskins’ receiving production boosted him to RB1 status, helping him average 16.4 (No. 10 among qualified running backs) Fantasy Points per Game. But unless there’s a major improvement in performance across their offensive line, he and the other Miami running backs may need to create yards on their own to remain productive. 


Meet the Metric – Hog Rate

by RotoUnderworld, April 26, 2021

In 2020, Mark Andrews was in on 67.1-percent of the team’s offensive snaps. This was No. 26 among qualified tight ends in terms of Snap Share. His teammate Nick Boyle recorded a 66.7-percent share of the offensive playing time. But Boyle saw just 17 (No. 59) targets in his ten games. Andrews drew 89 (No. 9) targets. This worked out to a target per snap, or Hog Rate, of 4.7-percent for Boyle and 15.4 percent (No. 9) for Andrews.

Jordan Reed, whenever he took to the field, was a focal point of the 49ers offense. He only logged a 36.9-percent (No. 74) Snap Share. But he posted a position-leading 19.7 percent-Hog Rate. As a result, he was able to average 0.44 (No. 8) Fantasy Points per Route Run. He benefitted from Kittle’s missing time, of course. But his Hog Rate told fantasy managers that he could be plugged in as a potential streamer thanks to his usage.


The Last Word on Pro Day vs. Combine 40-Yard Dash Times

by RotoUnderworld, April 25, 2021

There was no organized 2021 NFL Scouting Combine; rather, each college put on their individual pro day workouts, with the vertical jump, broad jump, 3-cone drill, and of course, the 40-yard Dash. In this piece, we’ll outline why we are adjusting the results of these 2021 pro day 40-times up by 0.05 seconds.

If widespread intuition is correct, and pro day 40-times are generally faster, then as an NFL player data authority, it is our duty to adjust pro day results to be on par with NFL Combine results, offering the sports public a true apples to apples comparison of every player at every position.  


Meet the Metric – Target Separation

by RotoUnderworld, April 19, 2021

Coming into the league, Davante Adams ran a 4.56 (45th-percentile among qualified wide receivers) 40-yard Dash, hardly setting the world on fire. He used his route running to become an elite receiver, as evidenced by his 2.13 (No. 9) Target Separation score. His ability to put space in between himself and a defender, as well as having a supremely accurate QB, is what makes him a good receiver.

Will Fuller looks to become the WR1 in Miami, where he will link up with Tua Tagovailoa and his 7.9 (No. 2) Accuracy Rating. His 1.77 (No. 35) Target Separation will be improved upon in a better offense for his skill set. It should be exciting to see how he does in his new home. 


Meet the Metric – Pace of Play

by RotoUnderworld, April 12, 2021

The Cowboys led the NFL with 42.7 Team Pass Plays Per Game and a 2.51 Pace of Play. Before Dak Prescott’s injury, he ranked highly in a number of efficiency metrics with a +18.8 (No. 4 among qualified quarterbacks) Production Premium and 8.0 (No. 6) Adjusted Yards Per Attempt. A -4.77 (No. 27) Game Script mark indicated they often played from behind with their poor defense, which will lead to high passing opportunities once again in 2021 if that unit continues to struggle. 

We have Josh Allen out here exploding in 2020 in all the metrics even though Buffalo ranked lowly with a 2.14 (No. 28) Pace of Play. Buffalo averaged 38.9 (No. 13) Team Pass Plays Per Game, and Allen finished with 4,546 (No. 5) Passing Yards and 37 (No. 5) Passing Touchdowns. With the leap in fantasy production and efficiency paired with his rushing production, expect Allen to dominate again in 2021.


Meet the Metric – Accuracy Rating

by RotoUnderworld, April 5, 2021

Quarterbacks with high Accuracy Ratings are a godsend to pass-catchers; these players will see a high dose of targets that they can actually do something with. A case in point is reigning league MVP Aaron Rodgers, who finished the 2020 campaign with a 7.9 (No. 3 among qualified quarterbacks) Accuracy Rating and led the league in delivering an 81.0-percent Catchable Pass Rate.

We should have high hopes for Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in 2021. He posted a 7.9 Accuracy Rating a year ago, the same as Aaron Rodgers and Teddy Bridgewater. He also delivered a Catchable Pass Rate of 80.3-percent in 2020. Only Rodgers and Drew Brees were better. Yet he managed a dismal 13.8 (No. 28) Fantasy Points per Game. Can we attach some blame to the players around him? With a -7.17 (No. 26) Supporting Cast Efficiency rating, you bet we can.


Efficiency Outliers 2020 – Four High and Low Efficiency Tight Ends

by RotoUnderworld, April 1, 2021

We can’t discuss efficiency outliers at tight end without talking about Robert Tonyan, otherwise known as Big Bob Tonyan: the Touchdown Scoring Machine. His 2020 screamed efficiency with unsustainable production. If other fantasy managers value him highly, trade him away after his uber-efficient and productive 2020 season.

After a putrid 2020 season, what do we do with veteran Zach Ertz? He battled an ankle injury and lacked production even with a healthy Target Share. Since his stock has plummeted, he’s more of a buy-low than a sell, but don’t acquire him with the expectation of a top-5 season. If he lands in a tight-end friendly offense, he could still produce like a top-10 tight end given the landscape.


Efficiency Outliers 2020 – Four High and Low Efficiency Running Backs

by RotoUnderworld, March 30, 2021

Chase Edmonds is the quintessential satellite back that earned a ton of targets and receiving production, yet barely earned many opportunities. He finished with a 37.6-percent (No. 48 among qualified running backs) Opportunity Share, 68 (No. 6) Targets, and 165.0 (No. 25) Weighted Opportunities. A reminder that Weighted Opportunities increases the value of targets, which suits a player like Edmonds.

Even though he finished with 12 (No. 4) Total Touchdowns and 15.4 (No. 12) Fantasy Points per Game, Josh Jacobs relied on opportunities in 2020. He lacked efficiency with a -13.6 (No. 61) Production Premium and averaged 4.3 (No. 53) Yards Per Touch, but had a 27.5-percent (No. 12) Juke Rate. High volume and more opportunities can lead to more Evaded Tackles and Yards Created while helping bolster the Juke Rate.