With Week 1 of the preseason already in the books, we are one step closer to watching games that actually count. Depth charts are still changing and position battles are ongoing, but it is still great to have football back.
Before every Fantasy football season, there are overvalued and undervalued players, and 2016 is no different. They key is to understand the qualitative side of things, while also having a firm understanding of the quantitative numbers.
Earlier, we took a look at three pairs of mispriced quarterbacks based on their projections and ADPs. Today, we perform wide receiver ADP analysis as we continue our tour of all the skill positions.
The process is the same as it has always been, we compare a pair of players’ ADP and Fantasy point projection to determine a market mispricing. In order to minimize biases and to get an industry feel, we rely on the great FantasyPros site, which compiles consensus data, for both ADP information and projections.
As a final reminder, all of our Fantasy points are based on standard scoring.
Wide Receiver ADP Analysis: Mispriced Pairs
The AFC West Wrestle
Amari Cooper, Oakland Raiders
Jeremy Maclin, Kansas City Chiefs
Cooper had a very productive rookie campaign, leading the Raiders in receiving yards and finishing as the 24th ranked WR according to Yahoo. His 2016 prospects should be even better as he gains experience and puts a rumored foot injury behind him. There is little doubt that Cooper is a top tier dynasty asset going forward; however, I think his 2016 ADP is being slightly inflated for that reason.
Maclin is coming off his second straight 85-plus catch, 1,000-plus yard season. When you compare last year’s Fantasy stats on Yahoo, despite playing one fewer game, Maclin actually outscored Cooper by almost 20 points. With the return of a healthy Jamaal Charles, Maclin could very well improve on his 2015 numbers as opposing defenses are not able to key in on him as much.
Even though the consensus projections only gives a slight (five point) advantage to Cooper, he is being drafted 25 spots ahead of Maclin. I believe that it is a toss up on who wins this Fantasy battle this year, and I am more than happy to wait over two rounds and pick up the cheap Chief.
The Rook versus The Vet
Kevin White, Chicago Bears
Torrey Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Expectations by the general public are sky high for Kevin White, despite having yet to play a down in the NFL. As with any rookie, the range of results is going to be wide as the uncertainty level is high. At his current exaggerated ADP, White is going ahead of more proven commodities such as Marvin Jones, Michael Crabtree, and Stefon Diggs.
Smith’s 2015 season can’t be considered anything but a disappointment, as he posted career lows in both receptions and receiving yards. Now, with a Chip Kelly-led offense and with the 49ers likely having to air it out often as they play from behind, Smith looks primed for a bounce back campaign. The consensus projections seem to agree, as Smith’s forecasted yardage total would be the second best of his career.
For some reason, White is going over 30 picks prior to Smith, yet Smith holds the projection advantage. Rookies constantly capture the hearts of Fantasy owners everywhere, as they have yet to show any of their flaws. Use the hype machine to your advantage and patiently reap the rewards by snagging Smith multiple rounds after White.
The Breakout Star versus The Fading Star
Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks
Vincent Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Lockett showed flashes of brilliance in his rookie season; however, the majority of it came on special teams and the return game. There has been plenty of talk about an increased role in 2016, and Lockett’s ADP has more than reflected all of it. The future is bright, but Lockett is going to have to have quite the season in 2016 just so his Fantasy owners can break even.
Prior to last year, Jackson had complied four straight seasons with at least 60 catches and 1,000 yards, all while not missing one game. However, he battled injuries in 2015 and missed six games. While the 33-year-old’s age is a concern, his production from as recently as 2014 suggests he still has something left in the tank. When you look at 2015 Fantasy points on a per game basis, Jackson actually beat out Lockett, 7.43 versus 7.15.
Jackson and Lockett have essentially identical Fantasy point projections for 2016, but they have an ADP gap of nearly 50 spots. Jackson’s No. 2 role with the Bucs is set in stone, while Lockett is vying for that title with Jermaine Kearse out in Seattle. In a dynasty league, this tussle would be no contest, but for redraft leagues, pass on Lockett and draft Jackson and spend your profits elsewhere.
Sometimes it really is as easy as buying low and selling high. Many Fantasy players out there are easily swayed by trends and hype, don’t be like them. Make sure that when you are looking at wide receiver ADP analysis, or any position for that matter, you consider all of the available data. For now, enjoy the preseason games and stay tuned to SCFE, as our next installment of the Mispriced Pairs series will cover running backs.
Here are a few links that you should have bookmarked:
Data courtesy of Yahoo Fantasy Football and www.fantasypros.com
- 2018 Fantasy Baseball ADP Analysis: Mispriced Pairs; Pitcher Edition - March 13, 2018
- 2018 Fantasy Baseball ADP Analysis: 5 Mispriced Pairs; Infielder Edition - March 5, 2018
- The Fantasy Lookout: A Look Towards 2018; Sleeper And Bust Edition - September 20, 2017