Metrics that Matter: Odell Beckham Jr. underproduced in Week 16
If you’re unfamiliar with Actual Opportunity, I highly recommend reading the introduction here. Essentially, with Actual Opportunity we’re building out a player’s expected fantasy points based on the opportunity they saw in any given week or over the course of a season. Each week during the regular season I’ll look at players by their Actual Opportunity numbers in an attempt to identify players who may be undervalued or overvalued relative to their expectation and their DFS salary.
Continuing our countdown of the top-five Actual Opportunity weeks of the 2016 season, today our focus is on the player-week ranking No. 4 – Odell Beckham Jr., in his Week 16 campaign against the Philadelphia Eagles. That week, he totaled 35.8 Actual Opportunity points, but relatively disappointed with only 26.0 PPR fantasy points. Let’s take a look at what went (somewhat) wrong with his 20 targets.
Beckham saw 20 targets (the most for any player last season), catching 11 for 150 yards and no touchdowns. The lack of touchdowns was what was most frustrating this week, considering he saw four end-zone targets and failed to convert any of them into a score. He also caught just one of his five deep targets (balls travelling 20 or more yards through the air). His total of 150 receiving yards looks impressive when checking the box score the next day, but in light of 20 targets and an average depth of target of 12.0 yards that led to balls traveling 240 yards on those 20 targets, he probably should have come away with more.
Last season, Philadelphia allowed the second-most fantasy points per game to outside wide receivers (27.6), so it is a bit surprising Beckham couldn’t do more here given the opportunity. Still, the entire passing game struggled in that week. Eli Manning recorded his lowest passer rating of the season (61.3) in the game. Unfortunately, inefficiency was a theme for Manning in 2016. In 2015, he led the NFL in passer rating on balls thrown 20-plus yards through the air (114.3). In 2016, he ranked third-worst (60.8.) Among 36 qualifying passers, Manning ranked ahead of only Brock Osweiler in PFF’s passing grade. However, Beckham isn’t the one to blame here. Despite being the focal point of the opposing defense each week, Manning averaged a 105.3 passer rating when targeting Beckham, but only 83.8 when targeting all other receivers. With the acquisition of Brandon Marshall in free agency and a capable receiving tight end in first round draft pick Evan Engram, Manning and Beckham should expect to see a boost in efficiency. A rising tide lifts all boats, or so they say.
See if you can guess the top wide receiver week (No. 2 overall) and the top running back week (No. 1 overall). First person to get the answer correctly (player and week) in the article’s comments or by mentioning me on Twitter will get a shout-out in one of the next articles.