2015 Top Positional Target Report NFC WEST and 2016 PREDICTIONS
Figure 1. Summary of 2015 League Team Targets vs Usage By Positions (Color Coded League Rankings)
Legend for the Color Coding in Figures 2 to 5
- Green is the Positions Number 1,
- Orange is the Position’s Number 2,
- Yellow is the Position’s number 3 and
- Blue is the Position’s fourth or greater targeted player.
ARZ 2015 Target Analysis
Arizona comes in below average at RB, lowest at TE and highest at WR targets. The Cardinals spread defenses out and throw to their WR’s. We might see a slight increase in RB targets with the emergence of David Johnson, but I’m not expecting a move in the other 2 positions. 2016 (RB +) (WR 0) and (TE 0)
Figure 2 ARZ 2015 WEEK by WEEK TOP Target Records by Position.
David Johnson tore it up at the end of last season and solidified his place as the #1 running back in Arizona. He’s the lead back and is anyone’s targets are going up, it’s going to be him.
Tight end… what tight end?
I’m predicting a huge year for Michael Floyd this season. He’s fighting for a contract and his 89 targets last year should increase to triple digits.
LA 2015 Target Analysis
The Rams were below average for RB’s, highest for TE’s and below average for WR’s last year. Now with their #1 target at TE gone (Cooks) the Rams are in serious trouble. The only thing they have going for them is a great running game and solid defense. Don’t look for your fantasy stars on this team other than Todd Gurley. 2016 (RB +) (WR+) and (TE-)
Figure 2 LA 2015 WEEK by WEEK TOP Target Records by Position.
Gurley will likely be the Rams 3 every down back this year, increasing his targets in the process.
No Cook means no target. Minus!
Tavon Austin just signed an extention and good thing otherwise the Rams wouldn’t have anyone to throw the ball to. Even with that, the QB situation isn’t great in LA so you can’t expect much here. Plus WR targets simply because Cook is in GB.
SF 2015 Target Analysis
San Francisco ranks in highest at RB, above average at TE and lowest at WR. Chip Kelly is the new head coach and you can bet the 49ers will continue to target their RB’s. The WR’s are already ranked the lowest so not much room to go down, but I don’t see them increasing either. We’ll get an uptick in TE targets because Chip loves 2 TE sets. 2016 (RB +) (WR 0) and (TE +)
Figure 2 SF 2015 WEEK by WEEK TOP Target Records by Position.
Wow! Talk about spreading the ball around! 7 HB’s with double digit targets is pretty astounding. Carlos Hyde should take over as the clear cut back in SF this year.
At TE I’m looking for Vance McDonald to increase his targets and possibly have a break-out year under Kelly.
#1 Target Boldin is gone and some experts like Smith to have a good season. I’m not one of them. Smith’s targets should improve, but I don’t see him doing anything with them. Look for more mediocre WR play from the 9ers this year.
SEA 2015 Target Analysis
Seattle ranks below average at RB, highest at TE and below average at WR. With the emergence of Russell Wilson as a true passer, I think he will be afforded more opportunities to sling the rock this year and that means +’s for WR and TE. 2016 (RB 0) (WR+) and (TE+)
Figure 2 SEA 2015 WEEK by WEEK TOP Target Records by Position.
Rawls will be the lead dog this year with Lynch out.
Jimmy Graham is a top notch talent if he can stay healthy. He will definitely lead the TE’s in targets again this year.
Here’s where I see a big improvement for the Seahawks this year. Baldwin, Lockett and Kearse are solid. I especially like Tyler Lockett and wouldn’t be surprised to see him at 100+ targets along with Doug Baldwin.