Picture yourself in a bizarro-world casino where the gin and tonics aren’t watered down and the roulette table has more black spaces than red. After counting a few times you’re certain there are more black spaces on the wheel. You notice other gamblers are getting normal payouts for bets on black, one-to-one. The odds of winning are greater but the risk is the same as betting red. So I ask you, hypothetical gambler: why would you ever bet on red?
Exactly, I didn’t think you would.
The NFFC is the home of the inaugural RazzBowl! If you’re looking for a place to play high stakes fantasy football, look no further than the NFFC. Along with their innovative formats, the NFFC is the longest running high-stakes fantasy sports contest in the industry. It has awarded more than $53 million in prizes and will award $4 million+ more this year! Join the fun today. 

Finding the Best Odds

During draft season we are all placing bets on players we think will give us a positive return on our investment. We place large bets (or high draft picks) on established superstars and expect large returns. Conversely, we place smaller bets on players later in drafts and expect lower odds of a meaningful return. But what if there was one simple stat to reveal which bets had better odds?
For wide receivers, targets are an important way to determine what type of volume to expect and as we all know volume is a good way to project fantasy points. But at what point do targets set players apart? Just this week, Mike Tagliere tweeted out a target threshold to look for when sifting through mid-round WRs:
This was taken from the last 5 years of data using half-PPR scoring. After reading this, I used the Razzball projection machine to find WRs in line for >110 targets that were falling outside the top 24 WRs per ESPN ADP.
ESPN WR ADP Player Razzball proj targets

     Odds to finish WR20        or better

25 Calvin Ridley 97.7 <56.5
26 Sammy Watkins 90.9 <56.5
27 Tyler Boyd 111.1 68.2
28 D. J. Moore 84.5 <56.5
29 Allen Robinson 104.9 56.5
30 Mike Williams 93.3 <56.5
31 Robby Anderson 106 56.5
32 Will Fuller 106.7 56.5
33 Sterling Shepard 100.5 56.5
34 Marvin Jones 94.9 <56.5
35 Dede Westbrook 100.2 56.5
36 Christian Kirk 114.2 68.2  
37 Dante Pettis 85.1 <56.5
38 Larry Fitzgerald 107.3 56.5
39 Corey Davis 113.5 68.2  
40 Golden Tate 76.8 <56.5

The Locks

Bet with confidence 

Tyler Boyd – Already a sharp pick, Boyd’s ADP has not risen enough after news of A. J. Green’s ankle injury. Snagging him any time after the WR24 is off the board is a good decision. 

Christian Kirk – I have already stressed my undying love for the Arizona offense, Kingsbury and Kirk here, but this underscores what a screaming value he is. 

Corey Davis – Honestly, I have not been drafting Davis to this point. His incredibly inefficient 2018 and run-heavy offense has thrown a wet blanket over him and that is reflected in an ADP of WR39. However, I am starting to reconsider my distaste for Davis. He’ll probably see >110 targets once again, and maybe if his QB can actually feel his fingers the outcome of those targets will be more rewarding. 

The Longshots

Later round WRs with a path to >100 targets

Curtis Samuel (WR ADP 46; Razzball proj 98.3 targets) – Here we go, another Samuel blurb for your content hungry eyes. One of the buzziest players right now is Samuel who has caught multiple highlight reel catches since teams reported to camp. The reason he pops onto this list, however, is that Devin Funchess left 79 targets to be redistributed in 2019. Taking Samuel’s 65 targets from last year and giving him half of those vacated 79 yields 105 targets. Add in the summer drumbeat that Samuel is the best route runner on the team and there’s even more room for growth.   
Michael Gallup (WR ADP 47; Razzball proj 79.7 targets) – There is probably some more meat on the bone than what Gallup showed in his rookie campaign. Once the Cowboys acquired Amari Cooper the offense looked drastically different. Pre-Cooper Dak Prescott was on pace for only 470 attempts but in the post-Cooper era, Dak threw at a 16-game pace of 569 att. Despite a new WR1 in town, Gallup saw increased targets post-Cooper with a 16 game pace of 82. Giving the departed Allen Hurns’ targets to Gallup makes it a 96 target pace. That doesn’t quite get to the 100 target threshold but it’s awfully close. 
Donte Moncrief (WR ADP 48; Razzball proj 79.5 targets) – Over the past 5 seasons, the second option in the Steelers passing game has seen 105, 92, 94, 106,  and 166 targets. This was all while target monster Antonio Brown dominated the market share in Pittsburgh. Specifically, AB was targeted on 42% (49/116) of Big Ben’s deep balls in 2018. Moncrief steps in to presumably fill this void after seeing 39% (30/76) of his team’s deep targets in 2018.  If history is any indication, there is room for at least 100 targets as Roethlisberger’s second option and if Moncrief earns his trust and outplays James Washington and rookie Diontae Johnson, that title could be his. In related news, the aforementioned Washington and Johnson can also be filed under very deep upside selections.
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  1. TualatinTwoStep says:

    What’s up man?

    Very interesting article. Not sure I can ever trust Corey Davis again, but I am on the Kirk train with you!

    Trade question, I am in a very deep 12 team devy/dynasty league (ppr and IDP), and I think I am in a position to compete this year.

    TE has been a weak point for me for years, and I’ve been offered Zach Ertz for Royce Freeman, Sammy Watkins and Jordan Hicks. The Razzball trade analyzer says I’d be getting robbed, but other trade analyzers I have checked out favor the Ertz side. I currently have Herndon, Jordan Reed, and Ian Thomas at TE. My roster would look like this if I did the deal:

    QB: Brady, Rivers, Mariota
    RB: Aaron Jones, Michel, Carson, Ekeler, Mattison
    WR: Davante, Mike Evans, JuJu, AJ Green, Maurice Harris, Kumerow
    TE: Ertz, Herndon, Reed, Thomas

    And I’d still have Darius Leonard, Tremaine Edmunds, Kiko Alonso, Khalil Mack, Hassan Reddick, and a couple other promising youngsters at LB.


  2. al_FF_red

    What a BOOF says:

    Haha Im with you on Davis but the #data says bet on the targets…

    I am no expert in IDP but essentially if Hicks is expendable I think Ertz for Freeman and Watkins is a fine deal for you.

    I think Ertz will see some regression this year but he is still a top 5 TE no question. Herndon is suspended for 30% of the fantasy season and Reed is a total unknown due to injury.

    If I was in your shoes I think I do that deal to acquire Ertz

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