Rotoworld, Please Apologize to Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins

On Dec. 22 RotoWorld calls DeAndre Hopkins an "indisputable disappointment"
On Dec. 22 RotoWorld calls DeAndre Hopkins an “indisputable disappointment”

For more than a year now I have been one of DeAndre Hopkins’ biggest supporters.  In DeAndre the Giant I made the case that Hopkins was an SEC giant slayer.  In DeAndre Hopkins and 2012’s Clutch Receiver I detailed his propensity to come through in tough spots.  All things considered, I had no choice but to rank him #1 in The 2013 RotoViz Composite Rookie WR Rankings.

Fast forward through his 2013 rookie season and we see that he played, and started, in all 16 games for the hapless Texans, hauling in 52 balls for 802 yards and two touchdowns.  I think that’s a pretty impressive line for a rookie on such a bad team, but some people– I’m looking at you, Rotoworld– were less impressed.  RotoWorld said on December 22nd that “‘Nuk’ has been an indisputable disappointment as a rookie.”

Um, okay?  Here’s why RotoWorld is WAAAY off base with their comment:

The first thing to realize about DeAndre Hopkins is that he played his rookie season at age 21, which is a rare feat.  If you compare his 2013 performance to every other 21 year old receiver in NFL history (using Pro Football Reference’s season finder), you can see that he ranks 9th all-time in receiving yards per game.  Not too shabby.

Rotoworld Texans Deandre Hopkins 2013 rookie clemson

While the 9th all-time ranking is impressive, I’m actually more amazed by the raw numbers.  On a yardage basis, Hopkins recorded the 4th highest total in NFL history.  The reason for his jump from 9th (avg) to 4th (raw) is because he played in all 16 games.  Typically I’d go for the high efficiency player, but I credit Hopkins for “surviving” a 16 game schedule as a 21 year old; something about that defies probability.  (Again with the Pro Football Reference’s season finder)

Rotoworld Texans DeAndre Hopkins 2013 Clemson Rookie

Perhaps RotoWorld was looking at this matter from a fantasy angle; was Hopkins a disappointment in that capacity?  I don’t know.  Do you consider the 12th best 21 year old fantasy season EVER to be a disappointment?  Note that everyone above him has at least 4 TDs.  If Nuk hit that mark he would have jumped up to #8.  (via the Pro Football Reference’s season finder)

Rotoworld Texans Deandre Hopkins fantasy football 2013 clemson rookie

I’m not really sure what more you could ask of him.  No, he wasn’t Keenan Allen, but he was pretty damn good, all things considered.  Things should get way better in year 2 with a new QB and new head coach.  If people in your league are down on DeAndre Hopkins this offseason, or next fall during your draft, get him on your team.  He’s gotten better every year since 2010 and there’s no reason to think his ascent will slow in 2014.

Jon Moore is  a contributor to RotoViz.com. You can continue this conversation with him on Twitter or Google+.

1st Round Wide Receivers and Productivity Scores

A reader recently commented on my Cordarrelle Patterson article saying that “I don’t think the statistics-based story (against him) is going to play out well.”  This reader then brought up some excellent points about notable JUCO transfers and how they did in their first year and how they went on to become NFL stars.  Really, it was good stuff.

But the question isn’t about their first year after JUCO; the question is about their LAST year before the NFL.  So, for fun, I compiled the Productivity Scores of every first round wide receiver since 2005.  I’m not saying productivity score is the be-all-end-all of predictors.  It is, however, one part of the prediction.  As you’ll see below, it certainly seems to be at least a prerequisite for entering the round one conversation.

See by year, or by everyone sorted (below)

2012:

Justin Blackmon– 75

Michael Floyd– 78

Kendall Wright– 71

AJ Jenkins–110

2011:

AJ Green– 85

Julio Jones– 64

Jonathan Baldwin– 63

2010:

Demaryius Thomas– 145

Dez Bryant– 123  (2008 season)

2009:

Darius Heyward-Bey– 72

Michael Crabtree– 62

Jeremy Maclin– 60

Percy Harvin– 49

Hakeem Nicks– 107

Kenny Britt–71

2008:

None..Donnie Avery top WR at pick 33, score– 69)

2007:

Calvin Johnson– 111

Tedd Ginn JR– 58

Dwayne Bowe– 70

Robert Meachem– 86

Craig “Buster” Davis– 39

Anthony Gonzalez– 53

2006:

Santonio Holmes– 97

2005:

Braylon Edwards– 108

Troy Williamson– 92

Mike Williams– 76 (2003 season)

Matt Jones– played QB in college

Mark Clayton (okla)–49

Roddy White– 101

SORTED  

22/28 Round 1 wide receivers had a productivity score over 60.  While there is no guarantee of success, it does certainly seem to be a starting point for the conversation.  If you want to make the Percy Harvin argument, that’s fine, but read below to see why even that doesn’t help Patterson’s case.

Demaryius Thomas– 145

Dez Bryant– 123  (2008 season)

Calvin Johnson– 111

AJ Jenkins–110

Braylon Edwards– 108

Hakeem Nicks– 107

Roddy White– 101

Santonio Holmes– 97

Troy Williamson– 92

Robert Meachem– 86

AJ Green– 85

Michael Floyd– 78

Mike Williams– 76 (2003 season)

Justin Blackmon– 75

Darius Heyward-Bey– 72

Kendall Wright– 71

Kenny Britt–71

Dwayne Bowe– 70

Julio Jones– 64

Jonathan Baldwin– 63

Michael Crabtree– 62

Jeremy Maclin– 60

———-

Tedd Ginn JR– 58

Anthony Gonzalez– 53  (ACL)

Percy Harvin– 49

Mark Clayton (Okla)–49

Craig “Buster” Davis– 39

Cordarrelle Patterson?– 35

Matt Jones– played QB in college

Footnote:  Patterson vs Harvin

  • Patterson, 12 games, 2012— 25 rushes, 308 yards, 3 TD—46 receptions, 778 yards, 5TD
  • Harvin, 12 games, 2008—70 rushes, 668 yards, 10 TD—40 receptions, 644 yards, 7TD

JaMarcus Russell resurrected

In case you missed it, JaMarcus Russell is trying to make a return to the NFL.  And, if, as the saying goes ‘you’re the average of your three best friends,’ then JaMarcus should be on the rise with the quality team that he’s established.  Let’s take him into The Lab to see how he compares with one of the best young quarterbacks in the NFL.

Continue reading “JaMarcus Russell resurrected”

NFL Playoff QB Grades & Predictions

The NFL Playoffs start today.  I thought it would be interesting to run all the QBs through my system and see how they stacked up.  With the NFL being a quarterback league, it seems only fitting that the team with the sharpest signal caller will dramatically increase their likelihood of hoisting the Lombardi trophy.

NFC

  1. Russell Wilson, Seahawks– 108.4
  2. Matt Ryan, Falcons– 105.6
  3. Aaron Rodgers, Packers– 105.4
  4. Colin Kaepernick, 49ers– 103.7  (sample size disclaimer)
  5. RG3, Redskins– 96.8
  6. Christian Ponder, Vikings– 79.3

NFC playoffs 2013

AFC

  1. Tom Brady, Patriots– 99.7
  2. Peyton Manning, Broncos– 95.8
  3. Joe Flacco, Ravens– 91.5
  4. Andy Dalton, Bengals– 83.6
  5. Matt Schaub, Texans– 80.2
  6. Andrew Luck, Colts– 78.8

AFC playoffs 2013

Note that this picks weren’t entirely made on QB play, but rather by looking at the matchups through a couple different methods that I find to be worthwhile.

Patriots v. Packers in the playoffs.  I’ll take the Packers.

Enjoy!