Hello Fantasy Faithfuls, to change this up a little bit and not only focus on the free agents I thought I would put in a little Head-2-Head article in the middle of everything. Today I will be looking at the 2 top Wide Receivers from last year in DeAndre Hopkins and Antonio Brown.
I will be presenting their receiving trends, usability, scoring patters and compare them to one another. This weekend there will also be a new YouTube Video where I will be analyzing Jerick McKinnon in relation to the 49ers so keep an eye out on Sunday. Let's dig in!
I was expecting a little bit more targets in the deeper zones but as you can see that was my bias from before doing the numbers. However, what we can see is a Receiver that sees most of his targets to the left side of the field but a pretty big margin.
His catch rate is actually nothing to write home about. He is above the 60% in the shorter zones which is my bottom bar for a top Receiver, anything below that and the warning bells go off. His deeper zones are decent but again nothing spectacular.
Here we go though, his yards per catch is where the fantasy points are being made. Hopkins does not need to catch the ball everytime cause when he does it goes BOOM. Averaging over 10 yards per catch in the short zones is in one word, amazing. With the amount of passes going to him in those zones expecting him to again put up big numbers in 2018. His deeper zones are fantastic too of course with the middle of being the bright star, however, the lack of targets there makes the zone less important.
Brown spreads his shorter targets a lot more than Hopkins and has no clear preference of where he gets targeted, he is a master of the entire field. The most interesting targeting pattern is the deep middle with 8% of all targets, that is Tight End numbers and is incredible for a Wide Receiver.
He is a much more reliable pass catcher than Hopkins. Brown has no weak zone when it comes to catching. Even if the deep middle only has a 41% it is way above Hopkins worst of 30%. Catching the ball this well over the entire field combined with seeing targets everywhere is too me one of the reasons Brown is so difficult to defend against, you just never know where he will burn you next.
I never thought I would say this but it is in comparison to Hopkins so it is fine, but, Brown's weakness is his lack of yards per catch. When comparing these two players it is clear that Brown is the better catcher while Hopkins is the player that gets more out of his catches. Brown still produces amazing deep numbers but the lack of yards from zones that combine for a total of 53% of his targets is why Hopkins became WR:1.
DeAndre Hopkins Antonio Brown
Their usability in 2017 was extremely close. Hopkins had 10 WR1 weeks while Brown had 9. The difference is that when Hopkins had a WR3 week Brown had a WR4 week instead. The shear stability of these 2 players is almost difficult to understand. The closest Receiver behind them in usability was Davante Adams with 6 WR1 weeks. That is how big the gap is between the WR1-2 and the rest of the pack.
Their scoring patters are not that similar. Both score more points when playing at home compared to away, but as I have previously written about, this is the norm for Receivers.
Brown scores more points against teams with a below 500 record while both are dead even when playing teams with an above 500 record. It is very interesting to note that both score more points against the good teams, way to step up their game.
The NFC/AFC disparity for Hopkins is alarming. Since he plays in the AFC I would have liked to see his scoring be reversed. Brown has the perfect setup, scoring more against the conference he plays most games in. Since a team usually don't play a team from another conference too many times I prefer the right distribution.
Like and Re-tweet, everything is appreciated!
The spreadsheets are dark and full of terror // CSD