The 20 Best Offensive Players From Week 6

Golden Tate had a breakout game for a Lions team without a reliable run game. Was he the top player from Week 6?

Week 6 games aren't over yet, so maybe the title of this article is a little misleading. It should read something like The 20 Best Offensive Players From the Thursday and Sunday Games in Week 6.

That just doesn't flow all that well.

As you know, we like math here at numberFire. Our algorithms help tell a better story about sports -- they're able to dig through the nonsense, helping us look at things that matter on the court, field or rink.

With football, we love our Net Expected Points (NEP) metric, which measures the number of points a player adds (or loses) to his team versus what he's expected to add. Rather than counting statistics like yards, touchdowns and receptions, NEP looks at down-and-distance situations and field position and relates these instances to history. When a player outperforms what's happened in the past, he sees a positive expected points value on the play. When he doesn't, his expected points gained on the play is negative. All of these little instances add up, then, to be a player's Net Expected Points total.

You can read more about NEP in our glossary.

Using a formula that compares individual single-game performance to history, the numberFire Live platform takes this Net Expected Points formula and assigns a rating to a player's performance. Each week, that's what we'll show here -- the 20 best ratings from the Thursday and Sunday games.

Here are Week 6's results:

Jay AjayiRB100
Golden TateWR99
Drew BreesQB98
Kenny BrittWR98
Rob GronkowskiTE98
Kendall WrightWR98
LeSean McCoyRB98
Odell BeckhamWR97
Case KeenumQB97
Matthew StaffordQB96
Brandin CooksWR94
Lamar MillerRB94
Tom BradyQB93
Marcus MariotaQB93
Spencer WareRB93
Matt JonesRB93
Julio JonesWR90
Terrelle PryorWR90
Cody KesslerQB89
Le'Veon BellRB85

- Jay Ajayi was the top player of the week on the strength of 204 yards and 2 touchdowns on 25 carries. His Rushing NEP of 12.02 was one of just two scores greater than 6.56 in Week 6 so far. Only LeSean McCoy's 10.26 can say the same, which helped land him seventh on this list.

- Week 6 was a big week for quarterback-receiver tandems, as six different combinations finished inside the top 20.

- Golden Tate took advantage in a Detroit Lions offense that was nearly devoid of running backs, as only Justin Forsett and Zach Zenner were active on Sunday. He racked up 165 yards on 8 catches (10 targets) for 1 touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams. His performance helped Matthew Stafford (23 of 31 for 270 yards and 4 touchdowns) make the top 10.

- In the same game, Kenny Britt recorded 7 catches on 8 targets for 136 yards and 2 touchdowns. His quarterback, Case Keenum, finished with a top-10 week, as well. Keenum went 27 for 32 for 321 yards with 3 touchdowns and an interception. He also ran for a touchdown.

- The Drew Brees and Brandin Cooks connection came through again at home, something we can always rely on. Brees completed 34 of 49 passes for 465 yards and 4 touchdowns (with 1 interception). Cooks was responsible for 173 of those yards, as he caught 7 of his 9 targets, including an 87-yard score.

- Marcus Mariota (17 of 24 for 284 yards, 3 touchdowns, 1 interception and 64 rushing yards) and Kendall Wright (8 catches, 9 targets, 133 yards, and 1 touchdown), Tom Brady (29 of 35 for 376 yards and 3 touchdowns) and Rob Gronkowski (7 catches on 9 targets for 162 yards and a touchdown), and Cody Kessler (26 of 41 for 336 yards and 2 scores) and Terrelle Pryor (9 catches on 13 targets for 75 yards and 2 touchdowns) round out the list of duos to make the cut.