Dynasty

The RotoViz Scouting Index – RB and WR – Version 6

Here’s the first post-NFL combine version of the RotoViz Scouting Index for running backs and wide receivers, which aggregates NFL draft prospect rankings from across the web. Check the first iteration for a full explanation.

By way of reminder, these aren’t RotoViz rankings. These are rankings from analysts or sites that use more traditional methods of prospect evaluation. We’re just aggregating those rankings and putting a score to them, so we can get a sense of how both real teams and fellow fantasy football GMs might value these players.

Running Back

RBAVE RKSCORENRSI RKRSI CHG
Leonard Fournette1.4159710
Dalvin Cook1.6158720
Christian McCaffrey3.3146730
Alvin Kamara5.3132744
Joe Mixon7.012075-1
D'Onta Foreman7.411776-1
Wayne Gallman8.0113772
Samaje Perine8.411078-2
Kareem Hunt9.6102792
Marlon Mack11.0927104
Jeremy McNichols13.376711-1
Brian Hill11.2755124
Jamaal Williams13.4757130
Corey Clement14.069614-2
James Conner14.7667152
Donnel Pumphrey14.965716-1
Elijah McGuire16.7527172
Matthew Dayes15.3454180
Joe Williams18.8406197
Elijah Hood18.2385201
Tarean Folston19.8325211
De’Veon Smith20.530622-2
Aaron Jones20.0274232
Justin Davis19.824424#N/A
Devine Redding21.818425-2
Jahad Thomas22.317426-2
Dare Ogunbowale23.510427#N/A

The top of the board remains unchanged, but we do see some movement lower down. Joe Williams jumped seven spots, and Alvin Kamara, Marlon Mack, and Brian Hill each jumped four.

Samaje Perine dropped a modest two spots, but interestingly, Dalvin Cook didn’t drop at all, despite what many said was a brutal combine performance.

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Looking at the combine drills that really matter for RBs, out of that group only Joe Williams1 makes it into the far right, most successful cohort.

combine_rbTree

Williams lands in the 78 percent success node (odds of a top-12 PPR RB season within his first three years in the NFL). Cook lands two nodes to the left, with a respectable 21 percent chance of success. Everybody else lands in the far left node, where the odds of success are…yeesh.

We’ve still got pro days to go, and we’re not looking at production in this example, but stay cautious.

Here’s a look at the top five RB prospects over all six iterations of the RSI.

rb

 

By standardizing the RSI scores, we can get a good comparison over time. Leonard Fournette and Dalvin Cook have been locked in at the top. Christian McCaffrey has been the clear third, but Kamara and Joe Mixon have closed the gap considerably.

Wide Receiver

WRAVE RKSCORENRSI RKRSI CHG
Mike Williams1.4198710
Corey Davis1.7196720
John Ross3.1186730
Cooper Kupp7.0159741
JuJu Smith-Schuster8.015275-1
Zay Jones9.4142762
Isaiah Ford10.113777-1
Chris Godwin12.01247813
Dede Westbrook12.012479-2
Taywan Taylor13.01177109
ArDarius Stewart12.71166110
Curtis Samuel8.4115512#N/A
Malachi Dupre13.0114613-3
Amara Darboh14.5105614-5
K.D. Cannon13.61035153
Carlos Henderson12.8101616-4
Chad Hansen15.4100717-2
Josh Reynolds18.1817182
Stacy Coley18.280519-3
Jehu Chesson18.8796202
Artavis Scott18.678521-8
Noah Brown19.474522-8
Ryan Switzer20.3667230
Travis Rudolph19.862424-7
Josh Malone20.853425#N/A
Fred Ross23.3526262
Kenny Golladay22.8485273
Travin Dural24.648528-4
Ricky Seals-Jones25.3364290
Amba Etta-Tawo27.633530-3
Trent Taylor28.328431-6
Damoreea Stringfellow28.628532-6
Gabe Marks28.827533-2
Speedy Noil31.814434#N/A
Corey Smith33.05435#N/A

Here we see a lot of movement. Chris Godwin jumped 13 spots. Taywan Taylor jumped nine. Eight different receivers fell four or more spots. All this movement is fascinating because we know that athleticism matters less at wide receiver and much more at RB. But the combine2 seems to have triggered a lot of movement at WR but hardly any at RB. Go figure.

Godwin’s big jump may be for the wrong reason, but he is an undervalued prospect. He lands in the 50 percent success node in Kevin Cole’s research (linked above). He also has a solid Phenom Index score that’s very close to that of John Ross and Corey Coleman.

Here’s how the top five WR prospects have fared in the RSI over time.

wr

Cooper Kupp isn’t in the Box Score Scout, but here’s how the other four compare.

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JuJu Smith-Schuster is miles ahead of Ross and Mike Williams in career market share. I’m also intrigued by Smith-Schuster’s fall relative to Kupp. The 20-year-old registered a Freak Score of 58 compared to the 23-year-old sliding in at 43. Athletically, Kupp doesn’t comp to any players of note.

But Smith-Schuster does.

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Again, athleticism can be overrated for WRs, but our new information is all about athleticism. So it seems odd that Kupp rose in the RSI while Smith-Schuster fell. I’m not committing to a final ranking yet, but if I had to right now, I’d be tempted to put Smith-Schuster second behind Corey Davis.

  1. And Marlon Mack, if we credit his 4.5 40-yard time as being under 4.5.  (back)
  2. So far at least. We’ll see if the sites that make up the RSI have just been slow to account for the combine in our next iteration.  (back)
By Charles Kleinheksel | @ | Archive

Comments   Add comment

  1. I'm still skeptical of the idea that athleticism is largely insignificant for WRs. None of the analyses I've seen ever really get over the hump that WR isn't really a single position in the way most other positions are.* In fact, the Harvard analysis offered that as a possible explanation for why athletic measures don't show up as predictive and Kevin's initial regression tree analysis that only included combine measures was so complex and split so much that it could also be used to support that conclusion. So I think it's entirely possible that the NFL Combine helps teams determine if the player is actually fit for the role they see them playing.

    *Do Jarvis Landry, Brandin Cooks, and Calvin Johnson really play the same position? Put another way, is Jordan Matthews' position closest to Jordan Reed's, DeSean Jackson's, or Pierre Garcon's? I'd argue it's closest to the one guy he doesn't actually share a position with.

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