Do Stats Lie - aDoT vs. AY/A
Week to week production in fantasy football is a tough thing to predict. Some managers prefer to go after high risk, high reward guys in hopes those types of players will carry their team to fantasy dominance. Having a team that is full of volatile players can lead to great weeks followed by embarrassing duds. Other managers will decide to go after more reliable options to limit their ups and downs from week to week. They will field a mediocre team that will score middle of the pack but they are essentially submitting to the will of their opponents on a weekly basis.
My suggestion is to typically follow the yards. Yards are a much more consistent statistic than touchdowns. Guys who pile up yards are more likely to pile up touchdowns though that’s not the way it always works. There are tight ends who tend to pick up more targets in the red zone, resulting in low yards but abnormally high touchdown rates.
The problem with following the yards is that it can tend to lead to players who maybe aren’t those type of red zone receivers, leaving a lot of fantasy points to be desired. It’s important to be able to bridge that gap between mundane yards and big play ability. While touchdowns are very volatile from year to year and game to game, we can still take a look at the in-between of yards and touchdowns: big plays.
The breadcrumbs that lead us to the gingerbread house of big plays are average yards per attempt (AY/A) and average depth of target (aDoT). In contrast and unison, we can use these two statistics to also help predict potential swells in points. While a lot of my articles have been reviews of performances that help predict future performance, this one is more of a how-to of using these two statistics to identify big play-types of players who are also effective on a game-to-game basis. These are essentially the best types of players in fantasy football because they offer low risk and high reward.