Monday - Mar 8, 2021

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FANTASY FORECAST: Targeted Opportunities

I’m sure all you have already read this season’s Curse of 325, which has gained a bit of a reputation for being a leading indicator of running back busts. The other day I was thinking if I could think of a similar leading indicator for wide receivers … and it occurred to me that while I’ve read the seemingly useless “Third Year Wide Receiver” columns, I really hadn’t seen anything that accurately predicted which receivers were primed for a down season.

The Theory (aka “Educated Guesswork”)

Last season, I presented my analysis of wide receivers I felt would under-perform in 2018. I looked at wide receivers (since 2007) who had amassed at least 170 targets in a season and had a reception percentage of at least 55 percent — then I examined how they fared the following season. The results were good, if not outstanding: two of the three players dipped (Keenan Allen, Larry Fitzgerald) while the third (Antonio Brown) increased slightly:

The summary:

Still a pretty good leading indicator! Roughly 84 percent of wide receivers who logged 170-plus targets and a 55 percent or better reception rate the previous year ended up posting an average 23 percent decline the following season.

About John Georgopoulos

John T. Georgopoulos is a 24-year veteran of fantasy sports journalism. John’s Fantasy Forecast series has won the prestigious Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) award for Best Series, and he’s been nominated as an FSWA Award finalist on nine occasions. You can also listen to and watch all his various shows at The Riot.