The 20 Best Offensive Players From Week 17
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 value 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.
Here are Week 17's results:
- The Dallas Cowboys flooded the top five this week, even (or because they were) without Ezekiel Elliott. Tight end Blake Jarwin's big game (7 catches, 119 yards, 3 touchdowns on 8 targets) went a long way toward a 36-35 win over the New York Giants. Jarwin's production added up to 15.93 Reception NEP. Cole Beasley did his part, as well, hauling in all 6 targets for 94 yards and a touchdown (13.60 Reception NEP). Dak Prescott threw 4 touchdowns on 44 attempts (27 completions for 387 yards), ultimately generating 22.38 Passing NEP. Via our projections, the Cowboys have a 1.5% chance to win the Super Bowl, the lowest odds of any playoff team.
- George Kittle's 149 yards got him to 1,377 on the season, a season-high for a tight end. Travis Kelce ended up with 1,336 yards on 14 extra targets (150 to 136). Via FantasyADHD.com, Kittle, a run-after-catch stud, also had 403 fewer air yards than did Kelce and actually ranked fourth among tight ends in air yards.
- Julio Jones collected 138 receiving yards and a touchdown on 13 targets to give him a 105-yard lead over DeAndre Hopkins among the overall leaderboard (1,677 to 1,572). Jones added 13.47 Reception NEP to the Atlanta Falcons' offense in a game that meant nothing for their playoff hopes.