Buy Sell Hold - Week 6
by The Football Fix
BUY - WR Keenan Allen, Chargers
Allen ranks as the WR20 in PPR fantasy points/game after getting greatly outproduced by Mike Williams through five weeks, who currently ranks as the overall WR2 in points per game.
Williams is seeing 10.2 targets/game compared to Allen’s 10.6 targets/game. Williams has 10 deep targets compared to Allen’s 7. Williams has 8 Red Zone targets compared to Allen’s 10. Williams has commanded a 36.1% Air Yards Share in this offense while Allen has commanded a 31.6% Share.
So as you can see, the usage here is similar both in terms of the raw number of targets as well as the quality of each target. The real difference between the two so far is that Williams has scored five more TDs than Allen. The one thing we know about touchdowns is that they’re unpredictable and generally due to simple variance. If you disregard that big TD discrepancy, then Williams and Allen would rank much closer.
Williams is a dangerous end zone weapon, but Allen is seeing enough targets himself to expect more touchdowns from him in the near future. This Chargers offense is prolific enough to support two top wideouts and you’d expect defenses to now zone in on Williams a bit more since he’s emerged as such a threat.
As long as Allen can become more efficient with his targets, which he has been throughout his career, then he should be able to put up weekly WR1 numbers again soon.
HOLD - RB Myles Gaskin, Dolphins
Gaskin is a very weird case. In Week 4, he played just 23% of Miami’s snaps, carrying the ball twice for 3 yards while seeing no targets. In Week 5, Gaskin managed a whopping 31.9 PPR fantasy points as he caught all of his 10 targets for 74 receiving yards and 2 receiving TDs.
Gaskin is still averaging just about 6.8 carries/game, which isn’t great. However, we know that targets are more valuable than carries so when you factor in that he’s seeing 5.2 targets/game, Gaskin’s 12.2 Weighted Opportunities/Game is the 25th highest amongst running backs. So he isn’t getting quite enough usage for you to trust him as a surefire RB2.
However, we might be able to better predict Gaskin’s game-by-game usage using simple Game Script Theory. Last week against the Bucs, the Dolphins were chasing the game and hence passing more. They had less than a 90% Win Probability for about three-quarters of the matchup. In Gaskin’s complete dud against the Colts, Miami was favored to win for almost half of the game before having to play some catch-up in the 2nd half.
All that to say, when we think the Dolphins will be chasing a game and playing from behind, then you can start Gaskin. Or if the implied points total from Vegas is high, you can feel better about starting him. But if we’re projecting a slower-paced game that the Dolphins will have more control of, Gaskin is better off on your bench. That’s at least what the current season trends have told us. So hold Gaskin and start him selectively after doing that weekly analysis for yourself.
SELL - WR Ja’Marr Chase, Bengals
Chase currently ranks as the WR8 in both weekly and overall fantasy scoring through 5 weeks, which is awesome. We all know that he’s a stud prospect with a ton of talent and the potential to develop into one of the best receivers in football. We also know that he has an awesome connection with Joe Burrow that’s been carried over from their days at LSU, which has been on full display now in the pros so far this season.
With all that being said, Chase’s touchdown efficiency has been a little bit too good to be sustainable. Chase currently has a 21.7% TD Rate, which is the highest amongst all qualified receivers this season. That’s a big reason why his +38.0 Expected Fantasy Points Differential also leads all receivers by a relatively wide margin.
Chase is seeing some very high-value targets and is a big-play producer by nature. His 51.3% Air Yards Share is also the highest amongst all wideouts, so he’s seeing good usage. But with Tee Higgins back in the lineup, Chase’s usage can only really go down from here. So if he’s unable to keep up this super high level of touchdown efficiency and deep-ball catch rate, which is the most likely scenario, then he’ll start producing more like a WR2 in fantasy rather than a WR1.