Targets Per Route Run Report: Week 12 (Fantasy Football)

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Note: Targets per Route Run (TPRR) is an efficiency metric (expressed as a percentage) used to highlight the correlation between performance and opportunity. With TPRR, we can look deeper than raw target totals to find players poised for breakouts or breakdowns. To learn more about TPRR and why it’s a useful tool, check out Kyle Borgognoni’s primer and my 2022 season preview

Week 11 Recap

Here’s a look at Week 11’s top 15 in Targets Per Route Run (minimum 15 routes run):

*Route and Target data via PFF.com
**Wk 11 Monday Night Football data not available at time of writing

Five Takeaways

  • It’s a rookie party! Week 11 saw four first-year players jostling for the top five spots in TPRR. Chris Olave has been there before, but it was a coming-out party for Treylon Burks, and Skyy Moore made the most of his opportunity after Kadarius Toney went down with a hamstring injury. Speaking of injury, I’m gutted for Wan’Dale Robinson, who is out for the season after suffering a torn ACL. Both Burks and Moore are in excellent situations on their teams to build on Week 11. You know that “rookie bump” we talk about? We might be seeing the early stages of it in TPRR.
  • Speaking of rookies, I’m not here to throw water on the Christian Watson fire, believe me. I think he’s emerging as a go-to red zone option for Aaron Rodgers. However, the return of Randall Cobb (21% TPRR) could cut into Watson’s opportunities more than I’d like, and Allen Lazard (28% TPRR) is still vying to be the WR1 in Green Bay. Watson ran ten more routes in Week 11 but saw two fewer targets and a 19% TPRR, so his floor isn’t as safe as the last two weeks would suggest.
  • Both Keenan Allen and Josh Palmer were heavily targeted by Justin Herbert. If Mike Williams and Gerald Everett remain sidelined, both Allen and Palmer could be in line for some monster weeks down the stretch.
  • Taylor Heinicke is set to remain the starter in Washington, so I’m targeting Terry McLaurin everywhere I can before the trade deadline. Week 11 was a down week in the final stat line, but McLaurin has commanded a 25% TPRR since Heinicke took over for Carson Wentz.
  • Wide receivers are almost impossible to trust in Baltimore. Even with Mark Andrews commanding an absurd 28% TPRR,  Demarcus Robinson could be a huge late-season contributor as Lamar Jackson‘s WR1. The Ravens’ schedule for Weeks 14-17: Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Atlanta, Pittsburgh. Yes, please.

The Season So Far

To eliminate irrelevant data, I’ve raised the season minimum to 37 targets. The right-hand column shows the change in rankings from the previous week.  Here are the season leaders in TPRR among qualified receivers through Week 11:

*Route and Target data via PFF.com
**Wk 11 Monday Night Football data not available at time of writing

Positives

  • Correlation update: the relationship between fantasy rankings and TPRR remains strong, with a 62% correlation through Week 11. When you look at fantasy points per game (to take out the impact of uneven bye weeks and injuries), the correlation is even stronger at 71.6%.
  • Before his foot injury in Week 6, Marquise Brown was leading the league in routes run. In fact, he has the most routes run per game as he nears his return from injured reserve. I was a little concerned about the competition for targets with DeAndre Hopkins, but there should be enough targets for both in Arizona, regardless of who is under center. With Zach Ertz done for the year and Rondale Moore dealing with a groin injury, Hollywood’s speed could be (should be?) utilized by lining him up in different areas of the field.
  • He was on bye this week, but consider this your friendly reminder to secure Chris Godwin‘s services if you can.

Negatives

  • Tyler Higbee might be the only player worth starting from the Rams. Allen Robinson (14% TPRR) scored in Week 11 but has not seen his target rate increase to a respectable level, even with Cooper Kupp out for the foreseeable future. He cannot be trusted, especially if Matthew Stafford misses more time with another concussion.
  • Speaking of bad offenses, Diontae Johnson (20% TPRR) and George Pickens (14% TPRR) are hard to trust. Pickens has touchdown upside, but his floor is dangerously low without a score. Johnson is still searching for his first touchdown of the season.

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