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ZWK's Dynasty Rankings (WR updated April 2021)


ZWK

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1 hour ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I guess that depends on your definition of "gets the job done".  He's been a top 6 TE once, which means every other year he's likely ceding points to the league average.  What is a consistent low end TE1 worth?  Jason Witten still gives that every year and he's worth virtually nothing.

Good post. Goes directly to Z's philosophy. I think Rudolph is worth more than te14 as a consistent top 12 guy but that's largely because I play mostly in larger leagues where consistency means more than in 12 teams or smaller (also with 7 RB/wr/te starting, enhanced scoring for te, and you can flex a te). 

My plan has generally been to get the consistent, non sexy guys. Maybe they remind me of myself....

But with Z's priorities to potential studs, Rudy just isn't worth that much.

 

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Kyle Rudolph now has 76 career VBD, which puts him 1 fpt ahead of Gary Barnidge. In other words, one big season in 2015 was worth as much as Rudolph's 7-year career. That's why I keep taking guys like Gerald Everett over Kyle Rudolph.

Different league formats can definitely change things around - I have picked one format to make rankings for, and I specify that format at the top of each post. In a ppr league where there are 16 TEs starting each week that increase to a 36 fpt edge over Barnidge (136 to 98), and guys who consistently finish around TE8 have more value.

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1 hour ago, ZWK said:

Kyle Rudolph now has 76 career VBD, which puts him 1 fpt ahead of Gary Barnidge. In other words, one big season in 2015 was worth as much as Rudolph's 7-year career. That's why I keep taking guys like Gerald Everett over Kyle Rudolph.

TE stats for a Cousins offense

2017 1000/5

2016 1300/6

2015 1100/12

Why don't we treat Cousins like the plus to position players that he is?

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39 minutes ago, thriftyrocker said:

TE stats for a Cousins offense

2017 1000/5

2016 1300/6

2015 1100/12

Why don't we treat Cousins like the plus to position players that he is?

Cousins is a plus. I've moved Rudolph up a couple spots, and a tier, compared to where I had him before the season. If I though that he would definitely be an 11 VBD per season guy going forward then I'd rank him lower.

Also, the average team got 840/6.3 per year from all its TEs, so Washington's 1122/8.7 is good but not otherworldly. And Jordan Reed is a pretty good TE when he's on the field, which he was for 2/3 of their games. And the Gruden/McVay offense seems pretty TE friendly. So that probably wasn't all about Cousins.

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On 3/23/2018 at 4:39 AM, Snorkelson said:

Don’t sleep on Luke Wilson. He’s not exciting but if he wins the starting job in det he could something, at least worth listing. He grew up a Detroit fan so maybe I’m just a little rah rah for him right now. Can’t imagine with Detroit’s protection issues that they leave a te off the field much. Perhaps worth looking at as a backup with some volume upside. 

You're right that Luke Willson should be in there somewhere, but I'd stick him on tier 7 with the other "well, I guess he could wind up being the starter for an NFL team this year" guys.

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Moving right along to my (now PPR) WR rankings. Assuming PPR, start 3 WR, about 250 position players rostered. Age as of 9/1/18. Prev from 11/19/17.

Tr    Rk    Player    Team    Age    Prev
1    1    Odell Beckham Jr.    NYG    25.8    (1)
1    2    Mike Evans    TB    25.0    (2)
1    3    DeAndre Hopkins    HOU    26.2    (3)
2    4    Michael Thomas    NO    25.5    (4)
2    5    Antonio Brown    PIT    30.1    (5)
3    6    Davante Adams    GB    25.7    (16)
3    7    Brandin Cooks    NE    24.9    (10)
3    8    Keenan Allen    LAC    26.3    (17)
3    9    Amari Cooper    OAK    24.2    (12)
3    10    Allen Robinson    CHI    25.0    (9)
3    11    Tyreek Hill    KC    24.5    (11)
3    12    Julio Jones    ATL    29.6    (6)
3    13    A.J. Green    CIN    30.1    (7)
3    14    T.Y. Hilton    IND    28.8    (8)
4    15    Adam Thielen    MIN    28.0    (14)
4    16    Sammy Watkins    KC    25.2    (13)
4    17    Stefon Diggs    MIN    24.8    (18)
5    18    Corey Davis    TEN    23.6    (15)
5    19    JuJu Smith-Schuster    PIT    21.8    (22)
5    20    Jarvis Landry    CLE    25.8    (30)
5    21    Doug Baldwin    SEA    29.9    (19)
5    22    Alshon Jeffery    PHI    28.5    (21)
5    23    Josh Gordon    CLE    27.4    (29)
6    24    Corey Coleman    CLE    24.2    (20)
6    25    DeVante Parker    MIA    25.6    (24)
6    26    Mike Williams    LAC    23.9    (25)
6    27    Demaryius Thomas    DEN    30.7    (27)
6    28    Golden Tate    DET    30.1    (32)
6    29    Dez Bryant    DAL    29.8    (23)
6    30    Will Fuller    HOU    24.4    (28)
6    31    Cooper Kupp    RAM    25.2    (59)
6    32    John Ross    CIN    22.8    (26)
6    33    Josh Doctson    WAS    25.7    (31)
7    34    Marvin Jones    DET    28.5    (35)
7    35    Robert Woods    RAM    26.4    (36)
7    36    Kelvin Benjamin    BUF    27.6    (38)
7    37    Devin Funchess    CAR    24.3    (40)
7    38    Sterling Shepard    NYG    25.6    (39)
7    39    Kenny Golladay    DET    24.8    (41)
7    40    Robby Anderson    NYJ    25.3    (44)
7    41    Marqise Lee    JAX    26.8    (51)
7    42    Michael Crabtree    BAL    31.0    (33)
7    43    Emmanuel Sanders    DEN    31.4    (34)
7    44    Randall Cobb    GB    28.0    (42)
7    45    Martavis Bryant    PIT    26.7    (53)
8    46    Chris Hogan    NE    29.9    (43)
8    47    Taywan Taylor    TEN    23.5    (47)
8    48    Cameron Meredith    CHI    25.9    (48)
8    49    Chris Godwin    TB    22.5    (60)
8    50    Donte Moncrief    JAX    25.1    (45)
8    51    Julian Edelman    NE    32.3    (65)
8    52    Nelson Agholor    PHI    25.3    (71)
8    53    John Brown    BAL    28.4    (46)
8    54    Larry Fitzgerald    ARI    35.0    (54)
8    55    Jamison Crowder    WAS    25.2    (72)
8    56    Zay Jones    BUF    23.4    (50)
8    57    Pierre Garcon    SF    32.1    (64)
8    58    Willie Snead    NO    25.9    (49)
8    59    Curtis Samuel    CAR    22.1    (52)
8    60    Tyler Lockett    SEA    25.9    (56)
8    61    Paul Richardson    WAS    26.4    (55)
8    62    Keelan Cole    JAX    25.4    unr
8    63    Carlos Henderson    DEN    23.7    (57)
8    64    Marquise Goodwin    SF    27.8    (87)
9    65    Kevin White    CHI    26.2    (58)
9    66    Jordy Nelson    OAK    33.3    (37)
9    67    Terrelle Pryor    NYJ    29.2    (69)
9    68    Jeremy Maclin        30.3    (61)
9    69    Kenny Stills    MIA    26.4    (62)
9    70    DeSean Jackson    TB    31.7    (63)
9    71    Rishard Matthews    TEN    28.9    (66)
9    72    Tyrell Williams    LAC    26.6    (67)
9    73    Laquon Treadwell    MIN    23.2    (68)
9    74    Dede Westbrook    JAX    24.8    (70)
9    75    Allen Hurns    DAL    26.8    (73)
9    76    Jordan Matthews        26.1    (74)
9    77    Ted Ginn    NO    33.4    (75)
9    78    Chad Williams    ARI    23.9    (76)
9    79    Mohamed Sanu    ATL    29.0    (77)
10    80    Quincy Enunwa    NYJ    26.3    (82)
10    81    Torrey Smith    CAR    29.6    (90)
10    82    ArDarius Stewart    NYJ    24.7    (78)
10    83    Eric Decker    TEN    31.5    (80)
10    84    Taylor Gabriel    CHI    27.6    (120)
10    85    Albert Wilson    MIA    26.1    (129)
10    86    Mike Wallace    PHI    32.1    (81)
10    87    Malcolm Mitchell    NE    26.1    (83)
10    88    Josh Malone    CIN    22.4    (91)
10    89    Trent Taylor    SF    24.3    (107)
10    90    Ryan Grant    IND    27.7    unr
10    91    Leonte Carroo    MIA    24.6    (92)
10    92    Danny Amendola    MIA    32.8    (84)
10    93    Dontrelle Inman        29.6    (85)
10    94    Phillip Dorsett    NE    25.7    (86)
10    95    Bruce Ellington    HOU    27.0    (88)
10    96    Brandon Marshall    NYG    34.4    (89)
10    97    Chris Conley    KC    25.9    (93)
10    98    Breshad Perriman    BAL    25.0    (94)
10    99    Mack Hollins    PHI    25.0    (95)
10    100    Josh Reynolds    RAM    23.5    (104)
10    101    Chester Rogers    IND    24.6    (79)
10    102    Ricardo Louis    CLE    24.4    (96)
10    103    J.J. Nelson    ARI    26.4    (98)
10    104    Jermaine Kearse        28.6    (97)
10    105    Kendall Wright        28.8    (99)
11    106    Geronimo Allison    GB    24.6    (101)
11    107    Amara Darboh    SEA    24.6    (102)
11    108    Travis Benjamin    LAC    28.7    (103)
11    109    Chad Hansen    NYJ    23.6    (105)
11    110    Jehu Chesson    KC    24.7    (106)
11    111    Tyler Boyd    CIN    24.8    (108)
11    112    Devin Smith    NYJ    26.5    (111)
11    113    Jaron Brown    SEA    28.6    (118)
11    114    Chris Moore    BAL    25.2    (112)
11    115    Cordarrelle Patterson    NE    27.5    (110)
11    116    Brice Butler        28.6    (119)
11    117    Ryan Switzer    DAL    23.8    (109)

The switch to PPR is good news for guys like Keenan Allen, Jarvis Landry, Julian Edelman, and Jamison Crowder.

It feels like there is a significant dropoff at WR23, and another around tier 9.

Tier 1 feels like a pretty close trio, and tier 3 also feels pretty tightly packed. Davante Adams gets a big boost from re-signing with Rodgers's squad.

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19 minutes ago, ZWK said:

 

4    15    Adam Thielen    MIN    28.0    (14)
4    16    Sammy Watkins    KC    25.2    (13)
4    17    Stefon Diggs    MIN    24.8    (18)
5    18    Corey Davis    TEN    23.6    (15)
5    19    JuJu Smith-Schuster    PIT    21.8    (22)
5    20    Jarvis Landry    CLE    25.8    (30)
5    21    Doug Baldwin    SEA    29.9    (19)
5    22    Alshon Jeffery    PHI    28.5    (21)
5    23    Josh Gordon    CLE    27.4    (29)
 

Again, :thanks:

Really appreciate the listing, the thought process and the conversation it prompts.

Can you explain a little bit why there's a break between 4 and 5? Obviously we all value players differently but I'd take Davis and juju ahead of tier 4 and don't see a clear break among these 9.

Do you expect Watkins to outproduce Davis and juju enough this year to offset the difference in age?

I partly ask because I'd love to trade Watkins for Davis, the team I'm in discussions with is prioritizing 18 over the future, whereas I'm building, but I haven't made the offer because I had thought it was objectively not equal and the Davis owner is brand new to the hobby. But your list is telling me to not worry about taking advantage of the rookie.  

 

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Watkins and Davis are very close in age - just 1.5 years apart, and both pretty young. Similar draft pedigree but I liked Watkins more coming into the league. Watkins has had his injuries and his ups and downs but so far Corey's only NFL season is significantly worse than any of Sammy's NFL seasons. Davis has taken a step along the Coleman/Parker/Doctson trajectory of a rookie who I like who doesn't get it done, though he's only 1 year in so he hasn't slid that far down my rankings yet. Watkins's free agent market is a sign that NFL decision-makers still believe in his talent, even though 2015 was the last/only time he produced like a star (I was really high on Watkins right after his 2015 season, as previous pages in this thread will show you).

JJSS also has more uncertainty - optimism about him is based on just a handful of games, and his PFF grade was not as good as his production. Baldwin & Jeffery are older, and their production feels more fragile to me than Thielen's (Jeffery's last big year was also 2015). Gordon has the suspension risk. I expect a drop in targets for Landry, although it's possible that I'm still underrating him a bit given full PPR.

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2 hours ago, -OZ- said:

Again, :thanks:

Really appreciate the listing, the thought process and the conversation it prompts.

Can you explain a little bit why there's a break between 4 and 5? Obviously we all value players differently but I'd take Davis and juju ahead of tier 4 and don't see a clear break among these 9.

Do you expect Watkins to outproduce Davis and juju enough this year to offset the difference in age?

I partly ask because I'd love to trade Watkins for Davis, the team I'm in discussions with is prioritizing 18 over the future, whereas I'm building, but I haven't made the offer because I had thought it was objectively not equal and the Davis owner is brand new to the hobby. But your list is telling me to not worry about taking advantage of the rookie.  

 

I’m in the camp that Watkins is grossly overrated.  As with you, I much prefer Davis and his uncertainty/upside after year 1 to Watkins in KC.  Doesn’t hurt to offer Watkins for Davis, but I think most Davis owners would be looking for a pretty nice sweetener (early 2nd?) to make that swap.

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14 minutes ago, Slapdash said:

Age related downgrade for Julio and AJ?  Why not Brown too?

Maybe Brown should be at the top of tier 3 instead of the bottom of tier 2? Tier 3 is packed tightly enough so that a modest age-related downgrade moved them several spots. But the gap between Michael Thomas & Davante Adams is big enough so that it doesn't move Brown any spots. Plus, the switch to PPR helped Brown and partially counters the age-related drop.

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5 hours ago, ZWK said:

Watkins and Davis are very close in age - just 1.5 years apart, and both pretty young. Similar draft pedigree but I liked Watkins more coming into the league. Watkins has had his injuries and his ups and downs but so far Corey's only NFL season is significantly worse than any of Sammy's NFL seasons. Davis has taken a step along the Coleman/Parker/Doctson trajectory of a rookie who I like who doesn't get it done, though he's only 1 year in so he hasn't slid that far down my rankings yet. Watkins's free agent market is a sign that NFL decision-makers still believe in his talent, even though 2015 was the last/only time he produced like a star (I was really high on Watkins right after his 2015 season, as previous pages in this thread will show you).

With all due respect, you have been consistently higher on Watkins throughout his career than his production warranted.

In comparing Watkins to Davis, you cite Watkins' free agent market as a plus for him. Well, what do you think Davis would sign for if he was a free agent this offseason? Less than Watkins? I strongly doubt it. This seems like apples and oranges, and thus a red herring in this comparison.

Two cents.

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40 minutes ago, Just Win Baby said:

With all due respect, you have been consistently higher on Watkins throughout his career than his production warranted.

Yep, except for a couple months in 2015 when he was producing at an elite level. But I'm not going to start intentionally underrating him now just to balance it out, I'm still trying to take my best guess at what he'll do over the rest of his career.

Watkins's contract gives us a pretty good read on what NFL teams think of him now; see Adam Harstad's table comparing WR contracts over the past several years. And that seems especially relevant for a guy like Watkins where there's lots of uncertainty, an injury history, and his recent production doesn't match his reputation or his peak production. We can be pretty confident that the Chiefs took a close look at his foot and his tape from 2017, and considered making an offer to Allen Robinson instead, before offering him $16M/yr with $30M guaranteed.

Obviously the contract is only part of the story - I have Watkins ranked behind Adams & Robinson even though they just got smaller contracts.

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17 minutes ago, ZWK said:

Yep, except for a couple months in 2015 when he was producing at an elite level. But I'm not going to start intentionally underrating him now just to balance it out, I'm still trying to take my best guess at what he'll do over the rest of his career.

Watkins's contract gives us a pretty good read on what NFL teams think of him now; see Adam Harstad's table comparing WR contracts over the past several years. And that seems especially relevant for a guy like Watkins where there's lots of uncertainty, an injury history, and his recent production doesn't match his reputation or his peak production. We can be pretty confident that the Chiefs took a close look at his foot and his tape from 2017, and considered making an offer to Allen Robinson instead, before offering him $16M/yr with $30M guaranteed.

Obviously the contract is only part of the story - I have Watkins ranked behind Adams & Robinson even though they just got smaller contracts.

I am torn on Watkins, but I can't tell if that link is supposed to be a positive for Watkins or a negative.  There are a lot of busts on that list, particularly ones right there in the range of Watkins' contract.

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2 hours ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I am torn on Watkins, but I can't tell if that link is supposed to be a positive for Watkins or a negative.  There are a lot of busts on that list, particularly ones right there in the range of Watkins' contract.

It's good news - it shows that teams think that he's up there, compared to other FA WRs over the years. You're right that it's also a reminder of how much uncertainty there is in this game - history leaves behind a pile of corpses busts. We can see that in Harstad's list of big WR contracts, or a list of top 10 NFL draft picks, or dynasty rankings from a few years ago.

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I meant to say something about this year's rookie WR class (which I've been discussing more in my other thread).

If I had to draft today I think I'd first take a rookie WR in tier 6 (Courtland Sutton & DJ Moore). Several more would be in tiers 7-8. Once things clear up more with the draft maybe someone will rise into tier 5.

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I'm not sure how much of the Watkins-Davis disagreement is about Watkins and how much is about Davis. After looking over some numbers, I think I'm actually overrating Davis and the other recent first round rookie disappointments. So if there wasn't disagreement about Corey Davis before, there probably will be after this post.

NFL first round WRs are pretty valuable, on average. But a pretty substantial chunk of that value comes from the guys like Odell Beckham and Randy Moss who burst onto the scene as rookies. Another substantial fraction of that value comes from the guys like Dez Bryant and Michael Irvin who at least look like they belong as rookies, even if they don't put up huge numbers. Less than 30% of that value has come from guys like Corey Davis and Roddy White who were not even borderline fantasy-startable as rookies, even though more than half of all first round WRs fall into that group.

Let's break this down into numbers, using the 1988-2008 draft classes (so that we basically have career totals from almost everyone in the sample). I calculated VBD for each WR, ppr format, based on ppg, using a low baseline of WR48 so that the borderline startable WRs would show up as "above baseline" (but only giving partial value for points in the WR24-WR48 range).

There were 76 first round WRs in the 1988-2008 draft classes, and they averaged 269 career VBD (11 VBD as rookies, 258 career VBD for year 2 onward).

Looking at what they did their rookie season: 13 WRs were solid starters or better (20+ VBD), 23 WRs were borderline starters (>0 VBD, <20 VBD), and 40 WRs weren't useful as rookies (no VBD, even compared to a WR48 ppg baseline).

The 13 WRs with strong rookie seasons averaged 568 VBD for their career, including 515 VBD for season 2 onward, which is 1.91x the value of the average rookie first rounder.

The 23 WRs with borderline startable rookie seasons averaged 324 VBD for their career, including 316 VBD for season 2 onward, which is 1.17x the value of the average rookie first rounder.

The 40 WRs with no rookie value averaged 141 VBD for their career, which is 0.52x the value of the average rookie first rounder. In other words, they lost 48% of their value after their rookie season, if you just compare drawing a player from the pool of "rookie first rounders" with drawing a player from the pool of "second year first rounders who weren't fantasy-relevant as rookies".

Corey Davis, Mike Williams, and John Ross all fall into this last category. So did all of the receivers from the 2016 and 2015 draft classes except Amari Cooper, though some of them became fantasy relevant in their second or third season.

The earlier in the draft, the larger a fraction of his value a player loses. The pool of top 15 picks lost 56% of their value after a useless rookie season, picks 16-30 lost 39% of their value, second rounders lost 18% of their value, and third rounders lost 3% of their value (though these estimates have some uncertainty because of small sample size). Earlier picks still have a better track record than later picks, after limiting your sample to the ones who were useless as rookies, but the gap shrinks.

These numbers all apply to the group as a whole, or to the averages, and there can be plenty of reasons for seeing things a bit differently for an individual player. But they seem pretty good for pointing to the rough side of the effect, and they seem like a good starting point for evaluating individual players.

And with Corey Davis - he had a clear path to playing time, he was seen as a good route runner and not a project who needed tons of work, he had a competent QB, and he was still only able to put up 34/375/0 in 11 games (or 43/473/2 in 13 games, including playoffs) with poor efficiency numbers and advanced stats. So it seems like he should get docked a fair amount compared to where he was rated as an incoming rookie. That doesn't mean that he should plummet down the rankings, but it does give a pretty strong case for keeping him out of the first 4 tiers (and probably also not putting him at the top of tier 5, which is where I had him yesterday).

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That was a great post, I always appreciate your effort in here. 

If you've got a minute, could you explain the Kupp/Woods ranking and how it has changed since November? I'm guessing it has to do with how you feel targets get redistributed and how they will perform now that Watkins is gone. I can't help but notice that Kupp's splits with and without Woods differ drastically.  

catches/targets/yards (approx)

With Woods:  4/6/50

Without Woods:  6/8/100  

I think both players suffer without Watkins stretching the field (will Tavon fill that role?) but ultimately it will hurt Kupp more as things won't be so open in the middle of the field while Woods will still mostly do his thing on the sidelines.  

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I thought that Kupp and Woods' 2017 seasons were fairly similar, with an edge towards Woods. But Kupp did that as a rookie, and Woods as a 5th year player, so I like Kupp's upside more going forward.

The change since my November rankings is that Kupp has now played 6 more games (including playoffs), and he had 60+ yards in 5 of them. Kupp's production was higher over the second half of the season than over the first half, and his snap count was too; if you leave out the 3 games that Woods missed then the increase in production is smaller but the increase in snaps stays the same. So his end-of-season numbers look better than his numbers did as of Nov 19, and for a rookie the upward trend is a good sign.

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10 hours ago, ZWK said:

I thought that Kupp and Woods' 2017 seasons were fairly similar, with an edge towards Woods. But Kupp did that as a rookie, and Woods as a 5th year player, so I like Kupp's upside more going forward.

I'm not a huge fan of either, but it should be pointed out that they are only 1.2 years apart in age.

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12 hours ago, ZWK said:

I thought that Kupp and Woods' 2017 seasons were fairly similar, with an edge towards Woods. But Kupp did that as a rookie, and Woods as a 5th year player, so I like Kupp's upside more going forward.

The change since my November rankings is that Kupp has now played 6 more games (including playoffs), and he had 60+ yards in 5 of them. Kupp's production was higher over the second half of the season than over the first half, and his snap count was too; if you leave out the 3 games that Woods missed then the increase in production is smaller but the increase in snaps stays the same. So his end-of-season numbers look better than his numbers did as of Nov 19, and for a rookie the upward trend is a good sign.

I feel like Shepard is better than Kupp but doesn't get much love by anyone. 

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RB rankings now also switching over to PPR. Assuming PPR, start 2 RB, about 250 position players rostered. Age as of 9/1/18. Prev from 11/22/17.

Tr    Rk    Player    Team    Age    Prev
1    1    LeVeon Bell    PIT    26.5    (1)
1    2    Todd Gurley    RAM    24.1    (4)
2    3    David Johnson    ARI    26.7    (2)
2    4    Ezekiel Elliott    DAL    23.1    (3)
2    5    Leonard Fournette    JAX    23.6    (5)
2    6    Alvin Kamara    NO    23.1    (6)
3    7    Kareem Hunt    KC    23.1    (7)
3    8    Christian McCaffrey    CAR    22.2    (9)
3    9    Devonta Freeman    ATL    26.5    (8)
3    10    Melvin Gordon    LAC    25.4    (10)
3    11    Dalvin Cook    MIN    23.1    (11)
3    12    Joe Mixon    CIN    22.1    (14)
4    13    Mark Ingram    NO    28.7    (12)
4    14    Jordan Howard    CHI    23.8    (13)
4    15    Jerick McKinnon    SF    26.3    (45)
4    16    Derrick Henry    TEN    24.1    (16)
5    17    Jay Ajayi    PHI    25.2    (17)
5    18    LeSean McCoy    BUF    30.1    (20)
5    19    Carlos Hyde    CLE    27.5    (15)
6    20    Lamar Miller    HOU    27.4    (18)
6    21    C.J. Anderson    DEN    27.6    (21)
6    22    Tevin Coleman    ATL    25.4    (23)
6    23    Alex Collins    BAL    24.0    (24)
6    24    Kenyan Drake    MIA    24.6    (32)
6    25    Isaiah Crowell    NYJ    25.6    (28)
6    26    Dion Lewis    TEN    27.9    (38)
6    27    Duke Johnson    CLE    24.9    (33)
6    28    Chris Carson    SEA    24.0    (25)
7    29    Aaron Jones    GB    23.7    (22)
7    30    Marlon Mack    IND    22.7    (26)
7    31    D'Onta Foreman    HOU    22.4    (27)
7    32    Chris Thompson    WAS    27.9    (34)
7    33    Rex Burkhead    NE    28.2    (29)
7    34    Jamaal Williams    GB    23.4    (58)
7    35    Tarik Cohen    CHI    23.1    (36)
8    36    James White    NE    26.6    (51)
8    37    Ameer Abdullah    DET    25.2    (19)
8    38    Ty Montgomery    GB    25.6    (30)
8    39    Theo Riddick    DET    27.3    (49)
8    40    Samaje Perine    WAS    23.0    (31)
8    41    C.J. Prosise    SEA    24.3    (37)
8    42    Marshawn Lynch    OAK    32.4    (41)
8    43    Corey Clement    PHI    23.8    unr
8    44    Devontae Booker    DEN    26.3    (65)
8    45    James Conner    PIT    23.3    (48)
8    46    Spencer Ware    KC    26.8    (44)
8    47    Jeremy Hill    NE    25.9    (59)
8    48    Peyton Barber    TB    24.5    unr
8    49    Giovani Bernard    CIN    26.8    (55)
9    50    Mike Gillislee    NE    27.8    (50)
9    51    J.D. McKissic    SEA    25.0    (67)
9    52    DeMarco Murray        30.5    (39)
9    53    Orleans Darkwa        26.5    (35)
9    54    Austin Ekeler    LAC    23.3    (46)
9    55    Wayne Gallman    NYG    23.9    (62)
9    56    Matt Breida    SF    23.5    (54)
9    57    Rob Kelley    WAS    25.9    (43)
9    58    Bilal Powell    NYJ    29.8    (42)
9    59    Latavius Murray    MIN    27.5    (47)
9    60    Doug Martin    OAK    29.6    (40)
9    61    Frank Gore    MIA    35.3    (61)
9    62    Kenneth Dixon    BAL    24.6    (63)
9    63    Jonathan Stewart    NYG    31.4    (68)
9    64    Elijah McGuire    NYJ    24.3    (66)
9    65    LeGarrette Blount    DET    31.7    (83)
9    66    T.J. Yeldon    JAX    24.9    (77)
9    67    Adrian Peterson        33.4    (53)
10    68    Chris Ivory    BUF    30.4    (71)
10    69    Jalen Richard    OAK    24.9    (72)
10    70    Wendell Smallwood    PHI    24.6    (74)
10    71    Javorius Allen    BAL    27.0    (75)
10    72    Terrance West    BAL    27.6    (76)
10    73    Thomas Rawls        25.1    (52)
10    74    Darren Sproles        35.2    (89)
10    75    DeAndre Washington    OAK    25.5    (79)
10    76    Eddie Lacy        28.2    (60)
10    77    DeAngelo Henderson    DEN    25.8    (73)
10    78    Alfred Morris        29.7    (70)
10    79    Malcolm Brown    RAM    25.3    (86)
10    80    Paul Perkins    NYG    23.8    (80)
10    81    Jamaal Charles        31.7    (56)
10    82    Rod Smith    DAL    26.6    unr
10    83    Donnel Pumphrey    PHI    23.7    (95)
10    84    Mike Davis    SEA    25.5    unr
10    85    Joe Williams    SF    25.0    (98)
10    86    Robert Turbin    IND    28.7    (94)
10    87    Jacquizz Rodgers    TB    28.6    (90)
10    88    Benny Cunningham    CHI    28.2    (84)


Not pictured: Damien Williams, Byron Marshall, Andre Ellington, Charles Sims, Charcandrick West, Devante Mays, Shane Vereen, Dwayne Washington, Lance Dunbar, Jonathan Williams, Brian Hill, Zach Zenner, T.J. Logan, Matt Jones, Karlos Williams, Christine Michael, Alfred Blue

There is a pretty substantial dropoff from RB12 (tier 3) to RB17 (tier 5). Mixon (RB12) at least as a strong shot to be a talented, 3-down, long-term starter for the Bengals. Then at RB13 Ingram is just a year and a half younger than McCoy and is going into the last year of his contract, and the Saints running game is likely to regress from last year's huge numbers. Howard is an awful receiver. SF wants McKinnon to be their do-it-all RB but it's not clear if he's up to it; he ceded a large role to Latavius Murray last year. Henry is now joined by Lewis in a committee backfield. Then the next tier has Ajayi & Hyde who also don't offer much in the passing game and are potentially mired in committees, and McCoy who turns 30 in July. Then tier 6 has a bunch of guys who might lose their starting job, and a couple who don't even have a starting job to lose.

There are plenty of receiving backs who have a good shot to offer at least borderline RB2 production in PPR, but none of them besides McCaffrey seem to have that good a chance at top 15 production. Cleveland and Chicago have wide receivers now, for instance, and Chris Thompson's big plays last year seemed kind of flukish. So I have most receiving backs in the tier 6-8 range, though they are generally ranked higher now than they were in my 0.5 PPR rankings from November.

I have written some things about the rookies in my other thread. If I was drafting today I'd put Barkley early in tier 2, the next RBs in tier 4, and some more in tiers 5-6.

A bunch of teams have uncertainty in their backfield. It would not be shocking if the leading rusher wasn't currently on the roster for TB, IND, DET, NYG, WAS, SEA, GB, HOU, BAL, DEN, or CAR. My opinion is that CJ Anderson, Alex Collins, and Chris Carson are fine as starters, and GB & HOU could also be fine with the guys they already have (I'd lean towards Aaron Jones & Lamar Miller but let other guys compete for it), but obviously I'm not the one running the show.

I could also easily see a RB getting added in the first 3 rounds (or through trade/FA) in OAK, NYJ, PHI, MIA, PIT, BUF, and LAC. Which makes 18 teams that could see some changes this offseason.

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On 3/24/2018 at 8:14 PM, ZWK said:

Maybe Brown should be at the top of tier 3 instead of the bottom of tier 2? Tier 3 is packed tightly enough so that a modest age-related downgrade moved them several spots. But the gap between Michael Thomas & Davante Adams is big enough so that it doesn't move Brown any spots. Plus, the switch to PPR helped Brown and partially counters the age-related drop.

Playing a hunch here since the data is so sparse, but, even given the gap in situations, I believe Demaryius Thomas is likely to have more PPR VBD left than Antonio Brown.

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6 minutes ago, Dinsy Ejotuz said:

Playing a hunch here since the data is so sparse, but, even given the gap in situations, I believe Demaryius Thomas is likely to have more PPR VBD left than Antonio Brown.

!

Bold call. What's it based on? The WRs who kept producing well into their 30s don't seem obviously more DT-like than AB-like; they include guys like Tim Brown, Isaac Bruce, and Derrick Mason.

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1 minute ago, ZWK said:

!

Bold call. What's it based on? The WRs who kept producing well into their 30s don't seem obviously more DT-like than AB-like; they include guys like Tim Brown, Isaac Bruce, and Derrick Mason.

"Likely" is too strong there.  And I could be wrong.  It's basically a hunch that Chad Johnson is what Brown's aging curve will look like.  

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18 hours ago, ZWK said:

I could also easily see a RB getting added in the first 3 rounds (or through trade/FA) in OAK, NYJ, PHI, MIA, PIT, BUF, and LAC. Which makes 18 teams that could see some changes this offseason.

Just a heads up regarding Philly. Their only pick in the 1st 3 rounds is their first rounder. They don't have a 2nd or 3rd.

Now I have seen a few mocks with them grabbing Guice in the 1st, but even with less true needs than most teams given the modern value of RBs and the fact that they already have pretty decent RBs on the team, how likely is it that they use the only pick they have in the first 2 days of the draft on a RB? 

Edited by FreeBaGeL
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1 hour ago, FreeBaGeL said:

Just a heads up regarding Philly. Their only pick in the 1st 3 rounds is their first rounder. They don't have a 2nd or 3rd.

Now I have seen a few mocks with them grabbing Guice in the 1st, but even with less true needs than most teams given the modern value of RBs and the fact that they already have pretty decent RBs on the team, how likely is it that they use the only pick they have in the first 2 days of the draft on a RB? 

True.  It seems more likely that they trade down and add picks.

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On 3/25/2018 at 10:41 PM, ZWK said:

I thought that Kupp and Woods' 2017 seasons were fairly similar, with an edge towards Woods. But Kupp did that as a rookie, and Woods as a 5th year player, so I like Kupp's upside more going forward.

The change since my November rankings is that Kupp has now played 6 more games (including playoffs), and he had 60+ yards in 5 of them. Kupp's production was higher over the second half of the season than over the first half, and his snap count was too; if you leave out the 3 games that Woods missed then the increase in production is smaller but the increase in snaps stays the same. So his end-of-season numbers look better than his numbers did as of Nov 19, and for a rookie the upward trend is a good sign.

My take on this situation is that there is great variability with how Woods may respond to being lined up against #1 corners.  From Kupp's perspective, I found it promising that he was able to generate WR1 numbers in the small sample of games in which Woods was out and Kupp was the focal point.  Don't mean to suggest that Kupp is going to be a WR1, but a limited sample suggests his ceiling may be higher than what it seemed to be in the early parts of 2017.

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On 3/26/2018 at 6:32 PM, ZWK said:

Cleveland and Chicago have wide receivers now, for instance,

Duke is a good RB, and shouldn't be pigeonholed. Interested what happens after Cleveland drafts Barkley at 4. Do they sell Duke for a pick (they have too many picks already). Do they try to get help on D. He's a FA next year and they have Hyde, so they should get what they can get for him if he is not needed this year. 

Cohen is interesting too given he is the best joker player on the team and the KC offense should use that a lot. Cohen is not a full time player but I could see him getting enough usage to be a RB3. Howard's terrible hands could also help him, if that leads to fit issues with Nagy. I assume this ranking is light

Lamar Miller needs to transition to being a 3rd down RB if he's going to come close to that ranking. Good chance he is cut in June and tries to latch onto a team as a 3rd down RB. Sell him for Duke or Cohen if you can. He is good enough in that role to sustain his career, but it will likely make his fantasy upside less than the younger players, unless he ends up somewhere great.

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On 3/24/2018 at 4:09 PM, ZWK said:

5    22    Alshon Jeffery    PHI    28.5    (21)
7    34    Marvin Jones    DET    28.5    (35)

What's the difference between these two guys? Past two years:
Alshon: 214 targets - 109/1610/11
Marvin: 210 targets - 110/2031/13

I would take Marvin over Alshon at this point in their careers.

18 hours ago, FreeBaGeL said:

Just a heads up regarding Philly. Their only pick in the 1st 3 rounds is their first rounder. They don't have a 2nd or 3rd.

Now I have seen a few mocks with them grabbing Guice in the 1st, but even with less true needs than most teams given the modern value of RBs and the fact that they already have pretty decent RBs on the team, how likely is it that they use the only pick they have in the first 2 days of the draft on a RB? 

Similarly, the Jets only have picks 3 and 72, so I think Crowell should be a relatively safe play this year.

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30 minutes ago, FF Ninja said:

What's the difference between these two guys? Past two years:
Alshon: 214 targets - 109/1610/11
Marvin: 210 targets - 110/2031/13

To be fair, Alshon missed 4 games in 2016, and that year his primary QB was Matt Barkley.  This past year was his first in Philly - and he wasn't used much the last few weeks as Philly wasn't playing for much.  That said, Jones may be a bit low on this list. 

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Just now, matttyl said:

To be fair, Alshon missed 4 games in 2016, and that year his primary QB was Matt Barkley.  This past year was his first in Philly - and he wasn't used much the last few weeks as Philly wasn't playing for much.  That said, Jones may be a bit low on this list. 

True, however, the number of games doesn't really change the productivity per target. Marvin missed one game and was hampered by a quad injury for half of the 2016 season so I figured playing injured was similar to getting Barkley targets. If we compare their 2017 seasons it's not very close - Marvin looks even better.

The problem I see with Alshon is that his situation isn't going to improve. I know Wentz could still get better, but last year was kind of freakish for Philly - they threw for 38 TDs, leading the league... while Detroit threw for 29 (fairly average for Stafford). So I think Marvin has a better chance of repeating his 9 TDs than Alshon does. Detroit lost Ebron (not a huge loss) while Philly upgraded from Torrey to Wallace (not a huge upgrade). So both situations are relatively static. I just think Philly regresses in passing TDs. Also, I know Alshon was healthy last season, but I always feel like he's going to tweak a hamstring or calf at any moment.

But given that they are the same age and Marvin outproduced him on fewer targets last season, I see them in at least the same tier, if not with Marvin a tier above.

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1 hour ago, TheBottomLine said:

I don't like Breida at 56.  I'd have him more in the 40-45 range, certainly not behind some of those guys listed in front of him like Gillislee, Gallman, Darkwa.  

I agree.  Breida probably isn't big enough to handle the workload and he could easily lose all value if the 49ers add someone else.   And Joe Williams could still emerge.  But it's also possible that McKinnon gets hurt or just doesn't play well in that system, and that would leave breida in a great position.  He's not the highest ranked backup rb on my board but he's higher than the guys you mentioned. 

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23 minutes ago, FF Ninja said:

True, however, the number of games doesn't really change the productivity per target. Marvin missed one game and was hampered by a quad injury for half of the 2016 season so I figured playing injured was similar to getting Barkley targets. If we compare their 2017 seasons it's not very close - Marvin looks even better.

The problem I see with Alshon is that his situation isn't going to improve. I know Wentz could still get better, but last year was kind of freakish for Philly - they threw for 38 TDs, leading the league... while Detroit threw for 29 (fairly average for Stafford). So I think Marvin has a better chance of repeating his 9 TDs than Alshon does. Detroit lost Ebron (not a huge loss) while Philly upgraded from Torrey to Wallace (not a huge upgrade). So both situations are relatively static. I just think Philly regresses in passing TDs. Also, I know Alshon was healthy last season, but I always feel like he's going to tweak a hamstring or calf at any moment.

But given that they are the same age and Marvin outproduced him on fewer targets last season, I see them in at least the same tier, if not with Marvin a tier above.

Good stuff. Much of this seems like consensus perception but Z does better than that.

But, alshon just had the 2nd worst year of his career, yardage wise, Marvin has the best of his career. Wentz > Stafford, but overall you're right. They probably should be in the same tier. But value wise, they aren't perceived to be equal.

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1 hour ago, -OZ- said:

Good stuff. Much of this seems like consensus perception but Z does better than that.

But, alshon just had the 2nd worst year of his career, yardage wise, Marvin has the best of his career. Wentz > Stafford, but overall you're right. They probably should be in the same tier. But value wise, they aren't perceived to be equal.

I think Jeffery continues to be incredibly overrated. If the Eagles ever found another wr1 I could see him going in the tank. Injuries with him are a big concern. Plus he was the wr1 in a great offence last year and was basically awful. Great player to sell in theory but i cant find anyone to buy at the price hes ranked at.

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46 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

Good stuff. Much of this seems like consensus perception but Z does better than that.

But, alshon just had the 2nd worst year of his career, yardage wise, Marvin has the best of his career. Wentz > Stafford, but overall you're right. They probably should be in the same tier. But value wise, they aren't perceived to be equal.

I'm not saying it's right or wrong, but Wentz > Stafford isn't a sure thing. Last year everything clicked for Philly. PFF rated them the #1 OL in the league while Detroit really struggled after losing LT Decker in training camp. Scheme, surrounding talent, and OL can greatly impact QB play. So while I'd definitely take Wentz over Stafford based solely on age difference (5 years), I'm not confident he's actually the better QB for the next 3-4 years. Stafford's age 23 season was actually better than Wentz's age 25 season. Just some food for thought. Really not trying to say Stafford > Wentz, just that we don't actually know.

As for Marvin having the best year of his career, I think that should be expected. He was a 5th round pick competing for snaps (and Dalton targets) with AJ Green (1st round pick) and Sanu (3rd round pick in the same class as Marvin). He then played through a quad injury in his first year in Detroit. So I don't view 2017 as some sort of outlier - if anything I expect more than 107 targets in 2018. He seems to be a legitimate talent:
http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000920662/article/tyreek-hill-marvin-jones-among-best-deepthreat-wrs-of-2017
http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000915001/article/stefon-diggs-marvin-jones-among-top-10-tightwindow-receivers

You are definitely correct that Alshon has more perceived/trade value, but when I think of rankings I think of which guy is going to be better for the remainder of their careers, not who has more trade value. Not that I think that's what ZWK doing here. Just clarifying.

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A big negative for Breida is that he has not been a good receiver. Last year he caught 21 passes and dropped 5, for a JHoward-like 19% drop rate. He also averaged only 5.0 YPT. In college he had 156 receiving yards, total, over 3 seasons (with 542 total rushing attempts). Is this the guy who's going to take over the Tevin Coleman role, or who will step up as a do-it-all back if McKinnon falters?

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Jeffery's 2013 and 2015 seasons were way better than anything that Marvin Jones has done. Jeffery's career high season is 89 yards per game, Jones's is 69 yards per game (which basically matches Jeffery's career average). It seems fairly likely that Jeffery has lost a step or something (e.g. he hasn't appeared in the weekly 20 fastest speeds in 2016-17 while Marvin Jones has) and won't return to his 2013-15 peak, but I still think that Jeffery's chances of returning to that peak are better than Jones's chances of reaching it for the first time.

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10 hours ago, FF Ninja said:

True, however, the number of games doesn't really change the productivity per target. Marvin missed one game and was hampered by a quad injury for half of the 2016 season so I figured playing injured was similar to getting Barkley targets. If we compare their 2017 seasons it's not very close - Marvin looks even better.

The problem I see with Alshon is that his situation isn't going to improve. I know Wentz could still get better, but last year was kind of freakish for Philly - they threw for 38 TDs, leading the league... while Detroit threw for 29 (fairly average for Stafford). So I think Marvin has a better chance of repeating his 9 TDs than Alshon does. Detroit lost Ebron (not a huge loss) while Philly upgraded from Torrey to Wallace (not a huge upgrade). So both situations are relatively static. I just think Philly regresses in passing TDs. Also, I know Alshon was healthy last season, but I always feel like he's going to tweak a hamstring or calf at any moment.

But given that they are the same age and Marvin outproduced him on fewer targets last season, I see them in at least the same tier, if not with Marvin a tier above.

I’m not sure it’s correct to say alshon was healthy last season.  He was at the sixers game Monday night, shoulder in a sling.  Apparently he had rotator cuff surgery, tore it in training camp.

He wasn’t as advertised on contested catches last year, but if he gets (and stays) healthy, 9+ tds in that offense is a virtual lock.

 

 

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I seem to be higher than most on Chris Carson (RB28). Last year it looked like he had the talent to be a starting RB in the NFL - not a great starting RB, and most likely not even an above average one, but one of the 32. He won the starting job to open the season and did pretty well with it for 4 games, especially compared to what Seattle RBs did for the rest of the season. Small sample size, and he might not come back 100% from his injury, but everyone has some question marks by this part of the rankings.

Generally it makes sense for an NFL to look to upgrade on that sort of player rather than just going out there with an average-or-below starter, but Seattle has a lot of places where they could use an upgrade and limited ammo. Half their offensive starters look to be below average, and Seattle only has 1 pick in the first 3 rounds (pick 18). So maybe they just bring in some late-round competition at RB, or maybe they go into the season with their current adequate backfield of Carson-MDavis-Prosise-McKissic. So by RB28, Carson looks like a pretty solid option to me.

I also seem to be higher than most on Peyton Barber (RB48), for similarish reasons. I think that he's a backup-caliber RB, but he is currently on top of the depth chart and Tampa also doesn't have a lot of ammo. The Bucs have 2 picks in the first 3 rounds, but their first rounder #7 is probably too late for Barkley and much too early for any other RB. Pick 38 could be a prime spot to take a RB, but I doubt they're completely locked in to one position so it'll depend how the draft plays out.

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My QB rankings are technically now also PPR, which is a tiny boost for QBs with good hands like Nick Foles.

Assuming 12 QB starters and about 250 position players rostered. Age as of 9/1/18. Prev from 12/2/17.

Tr    Rk    Player    Team    Age    Prev
1    1    Russell Wilson    SEA    29.8    (2)
1    2    Carson Wentz    PHI    25.7    (1)
1    3    Aaron Rodgers    GB    34.7    (3)
1    4    Andrew Luck    IND    29.0    (4)
1    5    Deshaun Watson    HOU    23.0    (5)
2    6    Jimmy Garoppolo    SF    26.8    (19)
2    7    Marcus Mariota    TEN    24.8    (6)
2    8    Jameis Winston    TB    24.7    (7)
3    9    Cam Newton    CAR    29.3    (9)
3    10    Jared Goff    RAM    23.9    (11)
3    11    Dak Prescott    DAL    25.1    (8)
3    12    Derek Carr    OAK    27.4    (10)
3    13    Tom Brady    NE    41.1    (12)
3    14    Matt Ryan    ATL    33.3    (13)
3    15    Kirk Cousins    MIN    30.0    (17)
3    16    Patrick Mahomes    KC    23.0    (15)
3    17    Mitchell Trubisky    CHI    24.0    (14)
3    18    Drew Brees    NO    39.6    (16)
3    19    Matthew Stafford    DET    30.6    (18)
4    20    Tyrod Taylor    CLE    29.1    (20)
4    21    Ben Roethlisberger    PIT    36.5    (23)
4    22    Case Keenum    DEN    30.5    (24)
4    23    Philip Rivers    LAC    36.7    (25)
4    24    Andy Dalton    CIN    30.8    (22)
4    25    Teddy Bridgewater    NYJ    25.8    (21)
5    26    Alex Smith    WAS    34.3    (26)
5    27    Nick Foles    PHI    29.6    unr
5    28    Ryan Tannehill    MIA    30.1    (27)
5    29    Sam Bradford    ARI    30.8    (28)
5    30    A.J. McCarron    BUF    28.0    (30)
5    31    Blake Bortles    JAX    26.7    (36)
5    32    Johnny Manziel        25.7    (58)
6    33    Davis Webb    NYG    23.6    (34)
6    34    DeShone Kizer    GB    22.7    (31)
6    35    Jacoby Brissett    IND    25.7    (29)
6    36    Colin Kaepernick        30.8    (41)
6    37    Eli Manning    NYG    37.7    (40)
6    38    Paxton Lynch    DEN    24.6    (32)
6    39    Josh McCown    NYJ    39.2    (37)
6    40    Chad Kelly    DEN    24.4    (42)
6    41    Landry Jones    PIT    29.4    (44)
7    42    Trevor Siemian    MIN    26.7    (35)
7    43    C.J. Beathard    SF    24.8    (33)
7    44    Blaine Gabbert    TEN    28.9    (38)
7    45    Mike Glennon    ARI    28.7    (46)
7    46    Brian Hoyer    NE    32.9    (47)
7    47    Tom Savage    NO    28.4    (49)
7    48    Robert Griffin III        28.5    (51)
7    49    Ryan Fitzpatrick    TB    35.8    (50)
7    50    Joe Flacco    BAL    33.6    (53)
7    51    Brett Hundley    GB    25.2    (45)
7    52    Cody Kessler    JAX    25.3    (52)
7    53    Brock Osweiler    MIA    27.8    (54)
7    54    Geno Smith    NYG    27.9    (43)
7    55    Chase Daniel    CHI    31.9    (59)
7    56    Matt Moore        34.1    (57)
7    57    Bryce Petty    NYJ    27.3    (48)
7    58    Christian Hackenberg    NYJ    23.5    (56)

The biggest risers since early December are Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Foles, and Johnny Manziel. Foles and Manziel are down in the borderline-rosterable part of the rankings, for the type of league that I'm assuming, and are there thanks to their possible upside if they manage to land a starting job over the next year or two. Garoppolo shoots up the rankings because he looked like a Pro Bowler over his 5 starts last year, and while there is lots of uncertainty given the small sample size that uncertainty cuts both ways - we're still waiting for the next QB to play at the Brady/Brees/Rodgers level, which is where a surprisingly high proportion of QB VBD comes from, and I think he has a better shot than most QBs of reaching that level.

There was a fair amount of discussion in December, e.g. here and here.

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11 hours ago, oldmanhawkins said:

I’m not sure it’s correct to say alshon was healthy last season.  He was at the sixers game Monday night, shoulder in a sling.  Apparently he had rotator cuff surgery, tore it in training camp.

He wasn’t as advertised on contested catches last year, but if he gets (and stays) healthy, 9+ tds in that offense is a virtual lock.

First of all, that's not true. 9+ TDs is a lock for no one, especially someone expected to get 130 targets or less.

Second, the dude is always hurt. So we can either say this minor injury didn't hold him back this year or we can say there will be some other injury holding him back next year. The result is the same for rankings purposes. 

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  • ZWK changed the title to ZWK's Dynasty Rankings (WR updated April 2021)

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