Use this stat to properly value tight ends ahead of your fantasy draft

The distance at which a player is targeted is fairly predictive. Tyler Loechner identifies the outliers and decides what it means.

| 10 months ago
(AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

(AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

Use this stat to properly value tight ends ahead of your fantasy draft

Earlier this summer, we conducted a study to determine the effect of a wide receiver’s average depth of target on his catch rate. The study helped us identify which receivers surpassed (or failed to meet) catch rate expectations, and how many more (or less) fantasy points they scored as a result.

Identifying a player’s expected catch rate based on their aDOT is a simple task, thanks to the fact that the correlation between aDOT and catch rate is 0.975, meaning a quarterback’s completion percentage can be almost entirely explained by how far the ball was thrown down the field.

So we took each player’s aDOT, lined it up next to their actual catch rate, and measured the difference. (We equalized each player’s actual catch rate based on quarterbacks as well, so it doesn’t matter if these players had Aaron Rodgers or 2015 Peyton Manning throwing them passes.)

We first applied the study to wide receivers, and now it’s time to take the same methodology and apply it to tight ends.

Below are six tight ends whose catch rates either exceeded or failed to meet expectations last season, and what it might mean for them in 2016. It’s important to note that all of the numbers for tight ends were smaller than those for wideouts. The top tight end scored an additional 11.8 fantasy points over the entire season, while the top receiver scored an extra 41.6 fantasy points. That’s a big difference.

Gary Barnidge, Cleveland Browns

Player Tm aDOT Expected C% QB-Adjusted C% C% +/- Points +/-
Gary Barnidge CLV 10.2 66.4% 71.7% 7.5% 11.8

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Tyler Loechner is a lead writer at PFF Fantasy. He has played fantasy football since 1999 and has been a part of the PFF Fantasy staff since 2010. Tyler was also previously a fantasy football featured columnist at Bleacher Report.

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