24/7 Fantasy Football Consistency Report
By: Phillip Caldwell
If you are new to fantasy football or just been a more casual player in years past, this consistency report might be a little overwhelming looking at it the first time. This article is a quick breakdown of what the tables show, and how I came up with the “Consistency Score” and rank. As you familiarize yourself with these tables and this metric, it will become a necessary tool while you are prepping for your draft.
The Tables Themselves
Each week of the season I tracked who finished in the top 32 for quarterbacks (from here on out I will use the abbreviation QB) and tight ends (TE) and who finished in the top 50 for Running backs (RB) and wide receivers (WR). For ease, I color coded the weekly positional rankings.
The Consistency Score Metric
The Consistency Score is based on where players finished each week. If a player finished in the top group for their position, they received 3 points. If they finished in the second tier, only 1 point. If they finished outside of those top two tiers, they received -2 points. Their score is totaled for the season and then divided by how many games they played to get the Consistency Score.
Simply put, the closer to 3, the more consistent they were a top performer. A player whose consistency score is 1, is a consistently mediocre player.
Also, it is important to know, the consistency score is calculated using only games played. Bye weeks, inactive and injury games missed are not part of the calculation. An example of this is Aaron Rodgers. His consistency score, is based on only weeks 1 through 5 and week 15 due to his injury and bye week this season.
Running Backs: Std
Running Backs: PPR
Devonta Freeman – If you were a Freeman owner for the 2017 season you weren’t exactly feeling great about it. Weeks 8 through 13, Freeman finished either outside the top 24 of all running backs, or he missed due to injuries. Which, in some cases (like mine), could have killed your playoff chances. But when you look at his season as a whole, when Freeman was on the field, he was one of the more consistent running backs to own finishing with the 6th best consistency score among running backs, buoyed by having only one single bust in all of his games played. Injuries plague the best players in the NFL from time to time, and it is important to remember that and not hold that against some of the best players in Fantasy.
Chris Thompson – Time to put to bed the idea that Thompson is only a pass catching back. If he is healthy, and on the field, he needs to be starting in your fantasy lineups. Even in standard scoring, Thompson had the 11th best Consistency Score among running backs having only two busts in his 10 games played. Not only did Thompson finish with the 6th most receiving yards among running backs, despite missing the final six games of the season. But he also finished the year with 4.6 yards-per-carry. When he touched the ball, Thompson made the most of his opportunities.
Christian McCaffrey – Despite finishing at the end of the season as the 15th best running back in fantasy, he scored 28th in consistency score. His 3 weekly finishes as a top 10 player, inflated his end of season numbers helping to mask his eight weeks which he was a bust. McCaffrey was sadly inefficient with a 3.7 yards-per-carry and even worse, only 5.5 yards-per-touch (19th out of all RBs with +10-percent Opportunity Share for 2017). For comparison, the aforementioned Chris Thompson finished with 7.8 yards-per-touch, second-best among qualifying running backs. With Jonathan Stewart not coming back to Carolina in 2018, McCaffrey should see an uptick in snap share. But if he can’t improve his efficiency, he will continue to be a frustrating fantasy asset to own.
The Tennessee Titans Running Backs – DeMarco Murray finished the season and the 23rd running back in fantasy, and his cohort Derrick Henry finished as the 25th. They both tied for the 40th spot in consistency ranking sporting an abysmal -0.4 consistency score. Each running back put up three weeks with top 10 finishes, but each player also had nine weeks where they were busts. Ultimately the two players, for fantasy purposes, found themselves equally held back, by each other and an overall struggling offense. As long as the two players are sharing that backfield, I don’t want any part of it.
WIDE RECEIVERS: STD
WIDE RECEIVERS: PPR
Mike Evans – It was, by all means, a down year for Evans, epitomized by his finish as the 20th receiver in fantasy for 2017 after finishing 2016 as the No. 1 overall receiver in standard leagues. But 2017 seemed to be a down year for receivers across the board with only two players sporting a consistency score above 1.0, Evans was one of the more consistent players to own. His 0.79 consistency score is the fifth best among receivers for 2017 and he only had 5 bust weeks. In redraft leagues, if you start running back heavy, Evans depressed value could land you a top receiver for 2018.
Michael Crabtree – Another victim of an offense taking a step back, Crabtree showed he is still a safe, secure, option for fantasy value. Finishing 2017 with the 28th most fantasy points among receivers, he finished with the eighth best consistency score among receivers. He only had three weeks where he finished in the top 10. But Crabtree also only had 4 weeks where he was a bust. If you believe John Gruden can turn around that offense for 2018, look for Crabtree to have value far beyond what his ADP will be.
Demaryius Thomas – I honestly have no idea how Thomas finished with the 23rd most fantasy points among receivers. His -.53 consistency score made him the 40th ranked receiver. With nine bust weeks and only two weeks in the top 16 of receivers, Thomas is a prime example of why Denver is a principal player in the Kirk Cousins sweepstakes. It is important to see what Denver can do to improve quarterback play. But if they don’t make drastic improvements, beware of “name value” when it comes to Thomas.
Doug Baldwin – Baldwin was supposed to be a safe, consistent, No. 1 receiver and he finished just outside of the top 12, finishing as the 13th receiver in fantasy. But with quarterback Russell Wilson perpetually forgetting that the football season starts before November, Baldwin got off to a brutally slow start as well with four out of his seven busts coming in the first five games of the season. That paired with an incredibly inconsistent team offense, Baldwin’s 0.13 consistency score has him tied for the 21st ranked in consistency.
TIGHT ENDS: STD
TIGHT ENDS: PPR
Eric Ebron – I know, I can hardly believe it myself. First off, Ebron finished as the 13th best tight end in standard scoring leagues? Really? But even more surprising is that Ebron finished as the eighth most consistent tight end with a consistency score of 0.8, six weeks in the top 12 and only five busts. I still don’t think we have seen Ebron evolve into an elite option at tight end, but he has absolutely shown that he is improving and one of the more safe floor plays (or streamers).
Charles Clay – Clay didn’t start the season injured, nor did he end the season injured, which means we run the risk of forgetting that he missed three games, smack dab in the middle of the season, come draft day. But that is exactly the reason he finished the year as the 19th tight end in overall fantasy points. Looking at his consistency score though and you can see that he was a top option while on the field. With four weeks as a top 12 player and just four weeks as a bust, his 0.73 was good for the 12th most consistent tight end.
Cameron Brate – I was Brate truther going into 2017 and his finish as the 8th tight end in terms of overall fantasy points for the year makes me glad I spent last summer talking him up. However, looking at his consistency chart for 2017 I can’t double down for next season. Despite having six weeks as a top 12 player, Brate’s seven weeks as a bust hurt his consistency score dropping it to 0.27 making him the 17th ranked tight end in terms of consistency.
Greg Olsen – The injury derailed most of Olsen’s season, and I am not holding that against his end of season totals. However, even when he was on the field, he wasn’t nearly as big of a piece of that Carolina offense as he has been in the past. Scoring a consistency score of a flat 0.0 he is tied for the 21st ranked tight end in terms of consistency. At age 33, a bounce back isn’t completely out of the picture, but it is possible we have seen the best of Olsen’s career already.