6 teams unlikely to repeat their high fantasy production in 2016
As football fans—heck, as humans—we tend to want our pleasant surprises to become real and sustainable. Your running back, who has a history of disappointing production, runs for 1,400 yards? Let’s just pencil him in for at least that total next year. The tight end, who typically put up mediocre marks in the past, finally breaks through? Well, geez, now he’s a perennial Pro-Bowler.
Hope springs eternal. Fans love to assume that things that went right will stay right, while things that went wrong will fix themselves. It’s how we talk ourselves into training-camp hope every season.
The problem with that line of thinking is that extremes regress. Sure, someone, or some team, can make incremental improvements from year to year, but for the big jumps, the safest bet is a return to form. That running back will go back to a poor yards-per-carry average, and that tight end won’t find the end zone as often.
I want to apply that to fantasy. And instead of looking at individual players—where regression candidates are often easy to predict and identify—let’s look at teams, starting with ones that made a big jump in fantasy production in 2015.
Later in the 2016 season, we’ll check back on these teams to see how their production fared. (We’re looking at strictly offensive fantasy production, so no kickers or defenses.)
Three teams saw their fantasy production in 2015 go up by 30 percent or more over 2014, with another three teams going up by 20–30 percent. They were: the Arizona Cardinals (39.6 percent), Jacksonville Jaguars (37.3), Oakland Raiders (31.9), New York Jets (29.8), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (20.8) and Carolina Panthers (20.7).