Dynasty Football: Successful College Metrics - 2020 Rookie Draft Class
In this bonus installment, part of the ‘Dynasty Football: Successful College Metrics’ series, I’ll be looking at various metrics from Player Profiler, to understand which athletic and production metrics matter the most for future fantasy production - in relation to the 2020 Rookie Draft Class.
I’ll be outlying which college prospects have the best chance of dynasty success based on their college profile & which college prospects will have to overcome the ‘outlier’ label, in order to make an impact in fantasy leagues.
I’ve already established the most common / successful metrics for each position, through the four-part series I wrote earlier this offseason:
When analysing the data, it’s important to note that I have used 50% and above as a ‘successful’ result for each metric & overall result (metrics hit). Where the data for a metric is unavailable, I have extrapolated the results from the remaining data to determine the overall result. Where less than 50% of the metrics are unavailable, I have considered these prospects as ‘N/A’ - where we require additional information to determine the overall result. Also, when analysing the data, I have arranged the most successful metrics in order of importance, from left-to-right.
In terms of the QBs hitting the successful 50% metric score, Tua Tagovailoa is the standout player from the data - hitting on 3/3 metrics available, giving him a perfect score of 100%. Herbert & Hurts are in the next tier of scores, both excelling in early college breakout & 40 time. The next tier includes consensus 1.01 Joe Burrow & the raw but talented Jordan Love - whilst not scoring at an elite level in the model, both are safely above the 50% threshold for success. Gordon only has one metric score, hence not considered for the model. From the current data on the top 20 dynasty QBs (see QB article above), 90% of these players scored above 50% on the metric score.
Of the players below the threshold, the most notable are Jake Fromm and Jacob Eason. Whilst Fromm had the college production, he lacks the athleticism & probable draft capital to be a dynasty success in fantasy football. We can see from the data that it’s highly likely Jacob Eason is a complete bust, hitting on 0/5 metrics. Whilst there are outliers in every model / data set, any player under the 50% threshold who becomes a success in the NFL would be considered an outlier. From the current data on the top 20 dynasty QBs, only 10% of these players scored below 50% on the metrics hit score - Matt Ryan & Kirk Cousins.
In terms of the RBs hitting the successful 50% metric score, the obvious standout performer from the data is Jonathan Taylor, who smashed the combine with his outstanding athletic testing - on his way to hitting on 5/5 metrics. Small-school prospect Darrynton Evans also shined & hits on 5/5 metrics, with J.K Dobbins hitting on 3/3 metrics, as he didn't take part in the 40 yard dash. In the next tier of players, the most high-profile names are Akers & Swift, both considered top 4 rookie picks at their position. Also in this tier are two players who are considered solid not spectacular in Vaughn & Kelley. An intriguing prospect from within this group is Antonio Gibson, who is considered an RB/WR hybrid. Completing this tier is two smaller-school prospects who have performed well in this model - Bellamy & Dallas. In the final tier, slightly above the 50% threshold, the most well known prospect is Zack Moss, who has seen his stock plummet on the back of poor athletic testing in the combine. On the flip side, we have A.J Dillon, who aced the combine and is drawing comparisons to Derrick Henry. Eno Benjamin was bigger than at the Senior Bowl, but still managed to hit a respectable 40 time to keep him above the threshold. To complete this tier we have Warren, Hasty & McFarland. From the current data on the top 40 dynasty RBs (see RB article above), 90% of these players scored above 50% on the metric score.
Of the players below the threshold, the most notable is former LSU standout Clyde Edwards-Helaire. He was very close to achieving 3/5 metrics, just missing out on the 40 time, however if he is to become a success in dynasty football he will be considered an outlier, based on this data. Looking at the other players in this tier, the most intriguing is Rico Dowdle, who just misses out on hitting a couple of metrics and looks the most well rounded from within the tier. Out of the remaining prospects, the two players that have had the most offseason buzz are Perine & Ahmed, who both fail to impress in these metrics. These prospects near the bottom of the results are likely the 3rd string and practice squad type players, who will struggle to make an impact in the NFL. From the current data on the top 40 dynasty RBs, only 10% of these players scored below 50% on the metrics hit score - Josh Jacobs, Devonta Freeman, Damien Williams and Alexander Mattison.
In terms of the WRs hitting the successful 50% metric score, the GOATs of the model were Denzel Mims & Jalen Reagor, achieving 5/5 successful metrics hit from the model. Also in the elite tier based on correlating their success from just three out of the five metrics was highly touted CeeDee Lamb, post-combine riser Justin Jefferson, the polarising Laviska Shenault & under the radar Marquez Callaway. The second tier of prospects in the model is made up of lesser profiled prospects, with the highlight of this group being Michael Pittman - who helped his stock immensely with a great combine. The next two tiers of prospects are the players who just finish above the threshold for dynasty success. The notable names from this tier are the super-smooth potential top 10 pick Jerry Jeudy, offensive weapon Lynn Bowden, the injured but talented Bryan Edwards, speedster K.J Hamler, former Clemson stud Tee Higgins & the ultra productive Tyler Johnson. It must be stated that from the model, the majority of WR prospects finish above the threshold from the available data. It is important to note that at this stage of the offseason we have a large amount of missing data - due to a combination of injury & prospects opting to complete athletic testing at their college pro days. The number of ‘successful’ prospects will drop significantly when we confirm all data. From the current data on the top 40 dynasty WRs (see WR article above), 90% of these players scored above 50% on the metric score.
Of the players below the threshold, the most notable is Alabama‘s lightning quick WR Henry Ruggs. He is only measured on 3 of the metrics available, struggling with a below average college dominator rating - predictable with the wealth of talent in his offense. Also, failing to register a breakout age has put him in the ‘outlier’ section of the model. Out of the remaining prospects achieving less than 50% on the metrics hit score - the main two are Ohio State’s K.J Hill & the productive ‘small-school’ prospect Omar Bayless. The other prospects below 50% consists of lesser known names in the 2020 draft class. From the current data on the top 40 dynasty WRs, only 10% of these players scored below 50% on the metrics hit score - Calvin Ridley, T.Y Hilton Tyler Boyd & Jarvis Landry. It can be seen from these ‘outliers’ that there is hope for some players below the threshold, as these four prospects have gone on to have solid NFL careers.
In terms of the TEs hitting the successful 50% metric score, we can see that all of the high-profile TE prospects are safely above the threshold. In the top tier, achieving 100% hit score on the four metrics are Devin Asiasi, Harrison Bryant & Brycen Hopkins. The next tier is the largest & includes some of the best known prospects from the 2020 draft class. Hunter Bryant is seen as an Evan Engram type player, Kmet is often seen near the top of TE draft boards & Trautman is from small-school Dayton, who shined at the Senior Bowl. The most intriguing prospect from the group is Albert Okwuegbunam - who tested as a 99th percentile prospect on both of the two most important metrics for TE success - 40 Yard Time & Speed Score. I also like former LSU alumni Stephen Sullivan, who shows out well in the model, despite splitting time with fellow 2020 TE prospect Thaddeus Moss. From the current data on the top 20 dynasty TEs (see TE article above), 100% of these players scored above 50% on the metric score.
Of the players below the threshold, the most notable is the aforementioned Moss, son of former NFL all-time great Randy Moss - who was last seen on a football field catching 2 TDs in the National Championship vs Clemson. Whilst he is considered an outlier from the current data, he could end up above the threshold based on athletic testing (currently recovering from a broken foot). In terms of the remaining prospects, there are none of significant note in terms of future NFL ability. From the current data on the top 20 dynasty TEs, 0% of these players scored below 50% on the metrics hit score. Basically, if you’re below 50% on the metrics hit score from this model, you’re not going to have a successful fantasy career in the NFL.
In relation to the above information, what does it all mean? How can we use this information to gain the advantage over our competitors?
First of all, it highlights players within the model that are likely to be successful in dynasty fantasy football, whilst also providing us with players less likely to be a success in fantasy. We can be extremely confident at what the data tells us, with regards to minimum thresholds - with at least a 90% hit rate on achieving more than 50% of the metrics at each position. The data should be used in conjunction with other factors such as film analysis, draft capital, landing spot & opportunity - to form your dynasty rookie rankings ahead of rookie drafts. Personally, my rankings model is heavily weighted by metrics - hence a lot of players near the top of these models are the ones I’m most comfortable with.
Like any data analysis, there will be outliers & no model is ever 100% accurate. The most obvious players that could be outliers from the data above is Clyde Edwards-Helaire & Henry Ruggs (pictured above) - both have provided excellent game tape & played on elite offenses in college, LSU & Alabama respectively. There will be dynasty players that draft these players before me, as I’ll likely be playing the odds linked to the model - that these are outliers, although their final ranking will be influenced by the other factors mentioned above.
Thank you for reading this article & the other articles within the series - I’ve had a lot of fun diving into the metrics, understanding which ones are most important & applying these metrics to the 2020 draft class. All the best with your evaluation for 2020 - I hope this series has given you something to consider...