Week 8 Fantasy Football Market Share Report: Will Fuller Trends Up
Receiving Market Shares
1. Will Fuller Is Both Due For Regression and Trending Up
We gotta talk about Will Fuller, y'all. Dude looks like a cyborg right now.
You've probably seen the ridiculous numbers Fuller has put up this year, scoring 7 touchdowns on just 22 targets. You don't gotta be a statistical savant to know that isn't sustainable.
Will Fuller has scored on 29.2% of his looks (car+targ). That's highest in the NFL (min. 20 looks). Next closest rates: 19%, 15% 14.3% 13.9%
— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) October 30, 2017
Clearly, the touchdowns are going to come crashing back to earth eventually. But it may not matter that much.
In that game, Fuller had a season-high eight targets, giving him 27.6% of the team's targets for the week. That's the mark of a high-level receiver for fantasy.
On top of that, five of Fuller's targets were at least 16 yards downfield, giving him 31.0% of the team's deep targets since he debuted in Week 4. Any time you give someone with his speed that many chances deep down the field, touchdowns are going to be possible, and we've seen that flesh itself out with Fuller in these past few games.
Although Fuller didn't have the raw target numbers prior to Week 8, he did have the snaps. He has played at least 79.8% of the team's snaps in every game he has played, including an 88.7% snap rate on Sunday. That -- when combined with his deep targets -- means these touchdowns aren't just appearing out of nowhere.
Fuller's going to regress. You can't score on 30% of your opportunities in the NFL. But that doesn't mean he's not simultaneously an asset we want in fantasy.
This viability is being taken into account with his salary at $7,800 on FanDuel for Week 9. Based on his raw target totals, that's clearly too high. Big weeks like last week are still going to happen when you get as many high-leverage targets as Fuller does, though, so we can't simply ignore him.
For this week specifically, it's likely wise to pump the brakes. The Texans may not need to throw much to best the Colts, and point chasing will lead many to put him in their lineups. But that doesn't mean we should keep him off our radar beyond that. The touchdown regression will come, and it may allow the ownership on him to relax for a bit. As long as his snaps and deep targets remain high, that will be the point where we'll want to buy and get him in our lineups.
2. JuJu Smith-Schuster Becomes Trustworthy
All year, we've been waiting for a third fantasy-relevant player to pop up in the Pittsburgh Steelers' offense. Having Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown is great, but in the past, they've been able to support a third asset at times. But Martavis Bryant and Jesse James just weren't getting the job done.
Hello to you, JuJu Smith-Schuster.
💨💨 on em one time! Learned from the 🐐 @AB84 on this one 😂😂 pic.twitter.com/qptgPwixjN
— JuJu Smith-Schuster (@TeamJuJu) October 30, 2017
That was part of a 10-target, 193-yard day for the rookie while Bryant watched from the sidelines. That's making the most of an opportunity.
The 10 targets were tremendous for Smith-Schuster, tying him with Brown for the team lead. But he also had five targets at least 16 yards downfield after entering the game with four such targets on the entire season. You can certainly do some damage with that given the attention that Brown and Bell will draw.
With Smith-Schuster seemingly being the team's definitive second option going forward, we have to figure out how to handle him for DFS following their Week 9 bye.
First of all, he's clearly an asset we can use at times. If Brown is facing a tough corner -- like he was on Sunday with Darius Slay -- Smith-Schuster's going to be a viable option. That seems fairly obvious.
But at the same time, we also must keep in mind that there is an inherent opportunity cap on this team. Brown commands 34.6% of the team's overall targets, 50.0% of the deep looks, and 31.3% of the red-zone chances. That's before you account for the passing-down work that Bell gets, too. It means we'll have to be careful in monitoring Smith-Schuster's price and ownership to ensure we're not overstating his role.
The Steelers will be at home -- the situation in which we're more inclined to target their passing offense -- for four of their first six games after the Week 9 bye. With that being the case, we'll have to keep tabs on Smith-Schuster in the coming weeks, but for right now, he looks like a pretty decent alternative to the usage hogs in the offense.
3. Jack Doyle Is a High-Volume Tight End in a Bad Offense
Tight ends are like running backs: we want to always tie them to high-scoring offenses. That means our discussion of Jack Doyle is going to be similar to the one about Marlon Mack before, though with the caveat that the usage is already there for Doyle.
Doyle beasted out with 14 targets Sunday, twice as many as any other player in the offense. If you exclude the game he missed due to injury, that puts his target market share for the season up to 25.2%, which is just massive for a tight end.
Not all of these are bunny targets, either. He had two deep targets in both Week 6 and Week 8, and he has four red-zone targets in his past five games. The offense may not be great, but Doyle's usage certainly is.
With how touchdown-dependent tight ends tend to be, it's hard to ever get too jazzed about one attached to an offense this mediocre. But there are other guys in this same situation, and we should view Doyle in a similar light to them.
Specifically, we're talking about Evan Engram and Austin Seferian-Jenkins. Neither guy is on a great team, but they get enough volume to mitigate those concerns a bit. Doyle would likely rank between those two (behind Engram and in front of Seferian-Jenkins) based on their usages, but he's priced a bit below that tier. For FanDuel's Thursday to Monday slate, Doyle is $5,700 while Engram is $6,300 and Seferian-Jenkins is $6,000. This means we can still buy Doyle despite Sunday's big game until his price better reflects his current role.