Opportunity Analysis Week 3

The Opportunity Analysis – Week 3

In the Week 2 Opportunity Analysis we discussed in detail how we are using historical dropback data to identify outliers early on in 2020.

This week the Opportunity Analysis will evaluate Week 2 outliers and review their upcoming matchups to see if there is players to avoid or target heading into Week 3.

TeamWeek 1
Drop -Backs
Week 2
Drop -Backs
Season AvgOpportunity Analysis
Drop-Back Projection
Week 2
Cincinnati Bengals44685641.126.8
Kansas City Chiefs335443.539.614.4
Miami Dolphins34524339.712.2
Jacksonville Jaguars28503938.511.4
Carolina Panthers39474336.110.9
New York Giants484747.536.410.6
Dallas Cowboys45514841.59.4
Houston Texans40464338.77.3
New England Patriots224734.539.87.1
Denver Broncos344740.5415.9
Las Vegas Raiders30423636.95.0
Philadelphia Eagles50444741.12.8
New Orleans Saints34383636.02
Arizona Cardinals51434741.21.73
Los Angeles Chargers34383636.61.4
Pittsburgh Steelers36423940.71.3
Seattle Seahawks39353735.1-0.1
Buffalo Bills53374537.3-0.3
Atlanta Falcons56424942.9-0.9
Washington Redskins36383738.9-0.9
New York Jets393436.535.6-1.6
Baltimore Ravens30323134.2-2.2
Detroit Lions473842.540.6-2.6
Green Bay Packers443338.537.7-4.7
Tampa Bay Buccaneers41353840.6-5.6
Chicago Bears403336.538.6-5.7
Tennessee Titans45273633.9-6.9
San Francisco 49ers373033.538.3-8.3
Los Angeles Rams34303238.3-8.4
Minnesota Vikings31293038.6-9.6
Cleveland Browns42243336.9-12.9
Indianapolis Colts47273740.7-13.8


Cincinnati Bengals

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 68
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 41.2
    • Week 2 Variance: +26.8
    • Primary Impacted Player – A.J. Green


Last week the Bengals had a whopping 68 dropbacks that led to 61 Joe Burrow attempts. The end result was 316 yards and 3 TDs for the young QB. Clearly those numbers are an outlier which in turn has inflated the stats of every skill position player. This is a huge red flag for A.J. Green, who even with all that volume only secured three receptions for 29 yards on 13 targets.

Early on in 2020 Green is running as the clear #2 behind Tyler Boyd as last week he ran 16 less routes than his teammate. Green’s usage suggests that if he doesn’t get that volume he might struggle for consistent value.

Week 3 Recommendation

Heading into Week 3 the Bengals face an Eagles team that is yet to see over 40 dropbacks in a game. A.J. Green himself will have the toughest assignment as he will square off against CB Darius Slay. Slay held down Terry McLaurin to 5-61 in Week 1 and limited Robert Woods to 2-14 through the air in week 2.

Even though Green wasn’t drafted as a clear starter in fantasy, it is best to look elsewhere in Week 3.


Carolina Panthers

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 47
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 36.1
    • Week 2 Variance: +10.9
    • Primary Impacted Players: D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson


In Week 2 the Panthers benefited from a negative game script versus Tampa Bay. This resulted in a higher than expected pass volume for the Panthers as the 47 dropbacks are 10 higher than the 2020 Opportunity Analysis projections. This allowed both Robby Anderson and D.J. Moore to get plenty of production late in the fourth quarter.

This week the Panthers will face Justin Herbert in his second start so the game flow should be more competitive, bringing down the overall volume for the Panthers pass catchers.

Week 3 Recommendation

This week’s opponent the Los Angeles Chargers have two top cornerbacks in Casey Hayward and Chris Harris Jr. This tough matchup coupled with the potential drop in volume will result in limited production for both Anderson and Moore. In season-long leagues both players will both be on the WR3 radar but fading them in DFS is recommended.


New York Giants

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 47
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 36.4
    • Week 2 Variance: +10.6
    • Primary Impacted Player: Evan Engram


The loss of Saquon Barkley and Sterling Shepard should help mitigate some of the potential decrease in volume. In Week 2 the Giants trailed 17-0 in the fourth quarter, which resulted in 40 attempts for Daniel Jones. Evan Engram did run a route on 41 of 48 dropbacks for Jones. This level of volume should have produced a lot more than a 6-68 line in a plus matchup against a Chicago defense that just allowed a big game to T.J. Hockenson in Week 1.

Week 3 Recommendation

In Week 3 the Giants face the 49ers, who are very banged up on the defensive side of the ball. However, one area they are not ailing is safety and linebacker as key starters Jimmie Ward, Fred Warner, and Kwon Alexander are still healthy.

The 49ers continue to be one of the tougher defenses against the tight end; Chris Herndon only had one reception for five yards in Week 2. This production came while wide receivers Chris Hogan and Braxton Berrios had solid days. Engram is still a low-end TE1 this week, but players I would start over him in Week 3 include Jordan Reed and Logan Thomas.


Indianapolis Colts

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 27
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 40.8
    • Week 2 Variance: -13.8
    • Primary Impacted Player: T.Y. Hilton


With a big lead against the Vikings in Week 2, we saw the Colts take the air out of the ball as they only dropped back to pass 27 times, resulting in just 25 attempts. These 27 dropbacks were 20 less than Week 1 and 13.8 fewer than our projections. Because of this low volume we saw a major impact to most skill position players as outside of Mo-Alie Cox.

This was amplified for T.Y. Hilton as his 3-28 receiving line was one of the biggest disappointments of the week. However, it is important to note Hilton dropped a 45-yard TD that would have completely changed his outlook in the Opportunity Analysis heading into Week 3.

Week 3 Recommendation

This week the Colts take on a depleted Jets secondary at home. So far this season the Jets have been exposed when facing notable wide receivers. In Week 1 both Stefon Diggs and John Brown had solid fantasy days and Kendrick Bourne even reeled in 4-67 in Week 2.

If you need a sweetener, Hilton’s grandmother told him after his Week 2 performance that she does not recognize him on TV because of his play. Now as someone who personally loves his grandmother, I have a feeling this will be a spark he needs to get going, Opportunity Analysis be damned.


Cleveland Browns

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 24
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 37
    • Week 2 Variance: -13
    • Primary Impacted Player: Jarvis Landry


Jarvis Landry has gotten off to a slow start after having offseason hip surgery. The slow start should not come as a surprise, but coupled with the Browns low pass volume it has led to back-to-back uninspiring games for Landry. That should change in Week 3 as they square off against a Washington team that is much tougher versus the run than the pass.

This has resulted in the Washington Football seeing the 6th most dropbacks per game so far in 2020. This volume will be a welcome sign for Landry, who has been productive on his targets.

Week 3 Recommendation

Start Jarvis Landry! The Washington Football team has allowed back-to-back games of five receptions to Greg Ward and Larry Fitzgerald in the slot, which leads me to believe Landry can do the same and more. Landry is still a featured player for this team as he has only run two less routes than Odell Beckham Jr.

Oddly, Landry has yet to see a target in the red zone. I expect that to change as he led the team in red zone targets just a year ago.


Minnesota Vikings

    • Week 2 Dropbacks: 29
    • 2020 Projected Dropbacks: 38.6
    • Week 2 Variance: -9.6
    • Primary Impacted Player: Adam Thielen


The Colts defense was solid last week as it held the Vikings to just 11 points in Week 2. Even with the Vikings trailing big, Kirk Cousins only attempted 26 passes. It seems that the Vikings have yet to find their identity after trading Diggs this offseason. Veteran play caller Gary Kubiak should get things back on track this week as the Vikings will be back home against the Titans.

The Titans defense has been vulnerable with their best cornerback Adoree’ Jackson out. Gardner Minshew was able to throw for 339 yards and 3 TDs in their Week 2 comeback loss. This increase in volume should bode well for Adam Thielen, as Jags wide receiver D.J. Chark was able to get over 80 yards last week.

Week 3 Recommendation

With the Titans defense seeing 42 dropbacks per game through two weeks, we should expect the Vikings to throw more this week. The Vikings defense has been a pass funnel defense, which should help keep Derrick Henry somewhat in check allowing for decent game flow in the contest.

Overall we are not sitting Thielen in season-long leagues, but do not be afraid to get him in a DFS lineup or two as no cornerback for the Titans can slow him down in Week 3.