#1 By: RotoViz, April 18th, 2018 10:00
Originally published at: http://rotoviz.com/2018/04/rethinking-nfl-age-curves-for-wrs-the-wrong-read-no-33/
Welcome to the 33rd installment of the “The Wrong Read.” This article series started as one that reflected on recent podcast episodes and extended the ideas discussed there to logical conclusions with broader applications. Since then it’s become a space for me to write about whatever I want, with irregular
#2 By: jesseross99, April 19th, 2018 00:13
#3 By: jesseross99, May 23rd, 2018 20:09
This series is so super interesting. As I do a startup, it really starts to crystallize - like, what should we be doing about guys like Adam Thielen (age 27), TY Hilton (28) and Doug Baldwin (29) if one of the key takeaways of your research is that we should probably be selling players earlier than we think? Do we take Will Fuller and DJ Moore instead? Or Alex Collins or Kenyan Drake types? I use those examples because they were all on the board when I just took TY at pick 44 of a startup, a decision I felt pretty good about until I remembered this article haha
#4 By: Blair Andrews, May 24th, 2018 20:59
Good question. Hilton and Baldwin are pretty clear sells for me in dynasty. Later breakouts like Thielen also tend to have repeat performances less often, and I also expect Diggs to become the true No. 1 there soon—like this season. I think all three will be fine this year and I’m not too worried in redraft, but I’m not looking to acquire any in dynasty unless they’re great values. Hilton at 44 maybe isn’t that bad, but of course it really depends on who you might have missed out on. I would definitely prefer Fuller and probably even Moore over all those guys in dynasty.
I traded Hilton and Derrick Henry this offseason for what amounted to Moore, Evan Engram, and Nyheim Hines, so that might give you some idea of what I’m thinking in terms of value.
I’d probably prefer Hilton or Baldwin or Thielen to Collins or Drake. I don’t think either RB has as secure a situation as their ADP might suggest, especially Collins. This one’s close enough that I might change my mind tomorrow though.
#5 By: jesseross99, May 28th, 2018 17:11
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
#6 By: jesseross99, May 29th, 2018 14:13
I guess what I struggle with is, how to reconcile this with our knowledge that the same receivers continue to finish top24 nearly every year. So take a guy like Adam Thielen - now that he has finished top24 twice in a row, and is only 27, isn't another two-to-four years of top24 production pretty bankable at this point? As your article notes, top WRs tend to not fit the production bell "curve" anyways and tend to sustain their top production for several years.
#7 By: jesseross99, May 29th, 2018 14:20
I wonder - and I know this is blasphemous talk in these parts - whether some sort of qualitative analysis of player skill (like PFF grade or DVOA) is useful in breaking these kinds of deadlocks. I.e., to separate the Kamar Aiken/Braylon Edwards' of the world from the Baldwin/Thielen's of the world. For example, applying your analysis to Aiken and Baldwin in the 2015 off-season would have made both a sell; but only one had an elite PFF grade, and that's the one who in retrospect was not a sell.
IDK!! This all makes my head spin (in a good way).
#8 By: Blair Andrews, May 29th, 2018 16:50
Good points. To be clear, if I'm making a predicton about 2018, I think Thielen will be fine. I think Baldwin and Hilton will be fine too. In dynasty though you have to pay almost full price to acquire them, which means that at their respective costs, the downside risks outweigh the potential upside. They're not old enough yet to really get a huge veteran discount. So that basically I means that I'm trying to sell now while I can still get something for them. (If you held onto Dez or Jordy, for instance, you know just what I'm talking about.)
I'm not sure if the PFF grade would have added much to the comparison between Baldwin and Aiken. Baldwin was a lot more efficient on less opportunity, which is basically what the PFF grade was picking up on. Is Baldwin more talented than Aiken? Almost certainly. But that shows up in the box score.
Baldwin did regress in 2016 on a per target basis, but he got the extra opportunity to make up for it (which we should have seen coming). We should have also seen Aiken's target regression coming, since his 2015 explosion was mostly the result of injuries to Steve Smith and Dennis Pitta. It's easy to tell that story in retrospect though. You can point to the PFF grade now, but I don't think you're likely to do well by chasing PFF grades, at least at the expense of other more reliable metrics.