Target and Snap Analysis Week 2

By Jen Ryan
Jen Ryan We finally have some 2016 data to work with and, like any week in football, a lot went on in Week 1. A total of 14 receivers saw double-digit targets last week, none more than Allen Robinson’s 15. Some came as a surprise, such as Cole Beasley’s and Jason Witten’s combined 26 targets as opposed to Dez Bryant’s five. On the other end of the spectrum there were certainly some disappointments, no more so than Coby Fleener’s four targets against one of the softest matchups he will face this season. Let’s take a look at some of the numbers and see what they may tell us. All of the stats below were compiled using our Snap Counts and Targets & Snap Counts Data tools.

Both Brandin Cooks and Willie Snead saw nine targets last week. Snead caught 100% of his targets while Cooks hauled in six of his. One point separated them in PPR scoring, with Cooks finishing with 33 points to Snead’s 32. Despite the second touchdown from Cooks and him dominating the teams’ snaps (90%) over Snead (75%), Snead was the better receiver on the team. There should be enough to go around this week when the Saints travel to MetLife stadium to face the New York Giants who just gave up a combined 17 receptions to Beasley and Witten.

Before suffering a devastating, season-ending ACL injury Keenan Allen saw seven targets from Philip Rivers. Once he went down, Travis Benjamin (8), Danny Woodhead (7) and Tyrell Williams (5) saw an uptick in targets. Someone will have to step up for the Chargers in Allen’s absence, but this could spell good news for Woodhead owners. The Chargers get the Jaguars next, who are coming off a close loss to the Packers.

Five players played in 100% of their teams’ snaps last week. Odell Beckham Jr., Jason Witten, and Greg Olsen may come as no surprise, but Jesse James and Kenny Stills sure do. Both James and Stills are likely to be sitting on your waiver wire right now.
Despite pushing 40 and coming off of a devastating knee injury, Steve Smith Sr. led Baltimore in targets and was out-snapped only by Dennis Pitta. The oldest members of the Ravens may be the most reliable, and have a decent matchup against the Cleveland Browns this week.

There were five players who saw a minimum of six targets who had a 100% completion rate. Willie Snead, Golden Tate, Julian Edelman were four of them. The fifth? Charcandrick West. Despite his usage and efficiency in the passing game, West’s six targets for 24 yards did not hold a candle to Spencer Ware’s seven receptions for 129 yards on eight targets.

There are two players of note who missed on more than half of their targets. Allen Robinson only brought in six of his league-leading 15 targets and Marvin Jones managed just four of his ten. Robinson faces a Chargers defense that just surrendered 33 points to the Kansas City Chiefs and Jones will have a soft matchup against the Tennessee Titans. It is safe to assume we just saw their floor in terms of efficiency.

The Buffalo Bills 49 total snaps were the fewest of any team in Week 1. Sammy Watkins led the team with six targets, and is questionable for Thursday Night. The Bills face their division and personal rival the New York Jets on a short week. LeSean McCoy will be the only offensive skill player worth considering, and if you have viable options you may want to look elsewhere.
Both Seattle and San Francisco led the league in snaps with 82 plays run. Chip Kelly’s fast-paced offense traveled with him to the West Coast and, despite the abundance of sexy fantasy options, he has already made guys like Vance McDonald and Jeremy Kerley relevant.

Alfred Morris was on the field for 14 of Dallas’ 78 snaps in Week 1. In limited action, he ran for 5 YPC carry whereas his teammate Ezekiel Elliott managed 51 yards on 20 carries for a paltry 2.6 YPC. Morris does have a road revenge game against the Washington Redskins this week.

Doug Baldwin led the Seattle Seahawks with 11 targets and continued his surge from last season in hitting the end zone in Week 1. He is already proving that 2015 was no fluke and should out-perform his fourth round ADP.

Russell Wilson is currently dealing with a sprained ankle, which is more than worth monitoring for Baldwin’s fantasy value, who boasted a season-long 75% completion rate in 2015 and an 82% completion rate in Week 1. He is arguably the most efficient receiver in fantasy football.

Larry Fitzgerald, for now, is the receiver to own in Arizona. He got off to a hot start in 2015 and ultimately cooled down. If that could be the case this year, we will want to overexpose ourselves to Fitzgerald now. In Week 1, he caught eight of his ten targets for 81 yards and two touchdowns. The meat and potatoes of Fitzgerald’s fantasy value are cooked in the red zone, where he scored both of his touchdowns from. The only other Cardinals to receive red zone looks were Michael Floyd and Jermaine Greshham. Arizona squares off against Tampa Bay this week, which should be a high-scoring affair with a 50 point Vegas line.

I could spend all day picking apart the stats using snap and target data. You should be taking advantage of our tools to discover things that stand out for you by using the numbers. They may only tell part of a player’s story but snaps and targets are the base of all fantasy production. Consider usage, opportunity, and efficiency when setting your lineups this week.