Editor’s Note: The guest post below was written by Josh Hornsby. You can follow him on Twitter @FantasyADHD.
Watching the #SFB480 develop has been incredibly enjoyable… As well as mind-boggling, bias-affirming, thought-provoking, and conversation-inducing… simultaneously. Bringing 480 of the sharpest folks in this industry together for a battle royale with a tilting rule-set is just the kind of cattle-prodding we needed this July. Something had to bust us out of the MFL10 doldrums. Thankfully, the venerable Scott Fish is a generous god.
What I’ll present below is an expansion of a Twitter rant from a deep, slumber-less Saturday night. This is data scraped live from the 40 #SFB480 leagues at 12:45 AM on July 12. After the scrape, the full drafts were merged, tidied, grouped, summarized, sliced, diced, and Julienned for a relatively flexible (and incredibly fast) draft analysis tool.
Now, on to the pretty colors…
The Big Picture
RB heavy is an understatement. Clearly, drafters saw ahead of time that WR scoring would be wildly depressed in the Scott Fish Bowl, and drafted accordingly. What we also see here is that drafts aren’t moving along at the quickest pace. Sal Stefanile commented his perspective that participants are soaking up the draft event. I feel that drafters are much more prepared than ever before, and have followed through with very measured selections in the early rounds. Nobody wants to waste high-capital picks. I do expect the pace to pick up a bit through the remainder of the week.
I also find interesting that the positional splits for these four rounds are relatively similar through Day 1.
Confirming What We Already Thought
Let’s start with what we expected to happen.
The Big 6 RBs, with Drafts Picked, ADP, Median, Min, & Max
Above you see a plot and summary data of where the Tier 1 RBs were picked. Right where we expected, based on the 0.25 Points Per Carry (PPC) hype stirred up on podcasts and Twitter just short of Monday’s kickoff. Surprising to me was that nobody took Lamar Miller at 1.01.
What’s a Quarterback Worth?
The “Tier 1” QBs, with Drafts Picked, ADP, Median, Min, Max, & Std Dev
I’d love to know how Kevin Hanson slipped Russell Wilson by at 3.01 in Funny Women – Mila Kunis, being the de facto QB2, and arguably QB1, heading into 2016. Also of interest is that only four QBs broke the first round barrier.
Cam Newton the only #SFB480 QB drafted with a first round ADP (6.8 overall, 3.8 standard deviation). High pick of 1, low pick of 15.
— Salvatore Stefanile (@2QBFFB) July 12, 2016
— Salvatore Stefanile (@2QBFFB) July 12, 2016
With 40 leagues, and everyone vying for their flavor of variability, I expected to see Brees and Roethlisberger both draw a first round nod. Cam Newton surprisingly slipped to 2.03 in two separate drafts (@FootballJedi – QB3, @RyanMc23 – QB2). Peeking at those two, both drafts were extremely RB-heavy up to 2.03 (7RB, 5RB).
And don’t think we don’t notice where Brees slipped into the fourth round (4.06! to @CommishTalkBlog). However, comparing Brees & Roethlisberger to the top four QBs shows that there is a clear striation dividing even this tier.
Riding the Wide Receiver Wave
The “Tier 1” WRs, with Drafts Picked, ADP, Median, Min, Max, & Std Dev
What’s clear from the jump is that drafters took notice of restricted WR scoring versus the other positions. The predominant strategy of #1stRoundRB squeezed many first round mainstays into the second and even third rounds. Julio Jones lasted until 1.11 in two drafts (Shawn Siegele – RotoViz, Alex Kimball – FFCC), proof that an RB-heavy theme with multiple QBs can push even the highest-scoring WRs down the board.
When’s the Right Time for Tight Ends?
Here’s the big picture at TE so far. I’m a bit surprised by the Eifert selection in the fifth round, or maybe I’m surprised that he hasn’t been chosen more. Tomorrow should help fill in that question as drafts populate into the double-digit rounds.
The #FantasyFootball Twitter Hype Machine, Hard at Work
Here are some mild to meteorical rising stars in QB ADP recently. Of note is Jameis Winston pushing hard into the third round. I’ve heard the argument that his rushing numbers bolster this push, but I don’t believe he’ll use his feet much in 2016 and moving forward. The book on him out of FSU was that he was a classic pocket passer with some escapability, and willing to take a beating to make the throw. “Tampa Ben,” if you will. The other bump in ADP is likely due to INTs not counting against QBs – in some cases providing upwards of a 50-fantasy point boost to season-long scoring. I expect Winston’s point output to remain relatively flat in 2016 (per SFB scoring), as increased TD production will be offset by reduced rushing (scramble) attempts.
Likewise, after kisses from TJ Hernandez, Marcus Mariota (third) and Tyrod Taylor (fourth) surged in ADP during Day 1. Will it continue?
Lastly, I included Kirk Cousins because his appearance in the fifth round is a head-scratcher. I see the logic behind arguments about WAS being a throw-first offense, with reasonable receiving talent, but I can’t get around how frequently he throws bad passes. I dug deeper, and suddenly was only about 80 percent disgusted with the pick.
|1.11||11||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Rodgers, Aaron GBP QB|
|2.02||14||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Roethlisberger, Ben PIT QB|
|3.11||35||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Forte, Matt NYJ RB|
|4.02||38||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Cooks, Brandin NOS WR|
|5.11||59||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Cousins, Kirk WAS QB|
|6.02||62||Dynasty Football Factory – Matt Bain||Matthews, Jordan PHI WR|
|1.07||7||Dynasty1Podcast – Karl Safchick||Peterson, Adrian MIN RB|
|2.06||18||Dynasty1Podcast – Karl Safchick||Bryant, Dez DAL WR|
|3.07||31||Dynasty1Podcast – Karl Safchick||Roethlisberger, Ben PIT QB|
|4.06||42||Dynasty1Podcast – Karl Safchick||Reed, Jordan WAS TE|
|5.07||55||Dynasty1Podcast – Karl Safchick||Cousins, Kirk WAS QB|
|1.12||12||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||Hopkins, DeAndre HOU WR|
|2.01||13||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||Miller, Lamar HOU RB|
|3.12||36||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||McCoy, LeSean BUF RB|
|4.01||37||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||Roethlisberger, Ben PIT QB|
|5.12||60||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||Olsen, Greg CAR TE|
|6.01||61||Gridiron Experts – Zach Greubel||Cousins, Kirk WAS QB|
Seeing teams start filling their superflex spot in the second round is a bit of an eye-opener. It’s certainly counter-culture, but might be the ticket to winning it all. Surprising is that all three teams also drafted Ben Roethlisberger.
You’d think Matt Ryan would see more of that Kirk Cousins bump throwing it to these two cats. Just imagine what Devonta Freeman and Julio Jones could really do without that Boston Boat Anchor they’re dragging around?
Wherefore art thou, Brock Osweiler?
Anomalies, Outliers, or Jesus Take the Wheel
Now, onto the wilder side of things…
Bold move, Cotton.
This is either a mad scientist at work, or a mis-click on the ADP auto-sort. At least it’s not CJ Uzomah. This drafter should be able to recover just fine.
I have the need… the need for Fleen.
Coby Fleener became the darling of at least one drafter upon signing in New Orleans. The giant “11” represented by this bar plot may well be the number of TDs he scores this season… in which case, taking Fleener at 4.10 is a steal.
The next set of plots can be summed up with, “Do we really know what we’re doing?”
That will wrap up my Day 1 #SFB480 observations. I hope you’ve enjoyed it, even though we had a relatively small sample to analyze. With most drafts moving into double-digit rounds on Day 2, we should see some real trends develop. In the meantime, I’ll continue to monitor the drafts through my Live #SFB480 ADP script. I expect we will quickly see how teams are developing their rosters (2/3/4 QB, ZeroWR, etc.) throughout the draft.
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