Fantasy: Say No to Ryan Fitzpatrick
Fantasy: Say No to Ryan Fitzpatrick
Let me start by noting that Ryan Fitzpatrick currently ranks 25th among quarterbacks in my rest-of-season player rankings. Considering how well he’s played the last few weeks, that should raise an eyebrow. Let me explain.
The chart below compares some of Fitpatrick’s advanced stats to his career marks, the NFL average over the last decade, and five of the top fantasy quarterbacks this season. Note where he stands in each category and you can easily see why regression is in his future. In fact, also included here are my projected rates for Fitpatrick going forward in 2010. My projected completion percentage, yards/completion, and yards/attempt are coincidentally (or maybe not) right on target with the league average. All 3 are lower than what he’s put up so far in 2010, but not by much, and are also significantly higher than his career numbers. Consider that his career marks reflect 734 pass attempts, most of which came over the last 2 seasons. His 2010 numbers are based off 128.
|Ryan Fitzpatrick||2005-2009 Career||58%||9.7||5.6||5.0%||2.9%||3.7%|
|Ryan Fitzpatrick||2010 Proj||61%||11.5||7.0||6.3%||3.8%||3.0%|
Next up, take a look at his absurd touchdown rate this season. 8.6% TD/Attempt is an impossible rate to keep up, and that should be obvious when you compare it to the other elite quarterbacks in the league. To give you an idea of how high that is, if the average NFL quarterback throws 33 passes/game (he does), that would work out to 45 touchdowns over 16 games. Tom Brady’s TD/Att in his record-setting 2007 was 8.7% and his Touchdowns/completion mark that season (12.6%) was actually lower than what we’ve seen from Fitzpatrick in 2010. Expect Fitzpatrick’s touchdowns to, at least, be cut in half going forward.
Finally, although Buffalo has passed it more than usual over the last few weeks, they generally lean more on the run if they can. Additionally, consider the total offensive play numbers for Buffalo this season. During weeks 1-5, they recorded 53 twice, 54 twice, and 46 once. In week 7’s overtime thriller vs. Baltimore, they were on the field for 79 offensive plays.
Ryan Fitzpatrick will not continue this torrid pace he is on. Leave him on waivers and, instead, go after a guy like Matthew Stafford or Jon Kitna.
Mike Clay is the Director of Pro Football Focus Fantasy. His accolades include the 2013 Fantasy Sports Trade Association (FSTA) award for most-accurate preseason player rankings and the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) award for the best online article in 2013. Under Mike’s leadership, PFF Fantasy has been nominated for eight industry awards over the past three years, including a 2014 win over the likes of NFL.com and BaseballHQ.com for Best Single-Sport Specialization Fantasy Site. Mike broke the first unrestricted free agent signing of 2013 (Martellus Bennett to the Bears). A stat-head, Mike has created several advanced football statistics, including average depth of target (aDOT) and opportunity-adjusted touchdowns (OTD). His award-winning offensive player projections power several top fantasy league sites, including Yahoo, RT Sports and Reality Sports Online. One of the most well-known fantasy analysts, Mike has a Twitter following of more than 43,500. Mike also contributes to ESPN Insider and ESPN the Magazine, and is a regular guest on ESPN Radio and the network’s Fantasy Focus football podcast. He has also contributed to NBC’s Rotoworld.com, Athlon Sports and at PhiladelphiaEagles.com. Mike was featured as a Virtual Analyst in EA Sports' Madden 25 and Madden 2015 video games. He is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA) and is on the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Board of Directors and Hall of Fame voting committee. He makes regular appearances on NFL-related podcasts and shows, including those on Sirius XM and FNTSY Sports Channel. Mike’s work has been referenced on several outlets across the web, including CSN New England, ESPN, Houston Chronicle, and NJ.com. Originally from Pottsville, PA, Mike now resides in Fleetwood, PA with his wife, daughter, and two dogs. You can follow Mike on Twitter at @MikeClayNFL