Tight End Yards/Route Run (Y/RR) Analysis (2022 Fantasy Football)

Dallas Goedert broke out last year, leading tight ends with at least 30 targets with 2.33 Yards Per Route Run (Y/RR), according to Pro Football Focus (PFF).

This is the last installment of the advanced statistics leaderboard series. The tight ends are the final position group to be scrutinized through the lens of the Pro Football Focus’s (PFF) excellent efficiency metric, Yards Per Route Run (Y/RR). Spoiler alert, many of the game’s best players at the position are on the leaderboard. However, a few breakout candidates are also mixed in.

Yards Per Route Run (Pro Football Focus)

Yards Per Route Run (Y/RR) is precisely what it claims. It’s a measure for receiving yards per route a player runs, tracked by PFF. It’s a superior metric to Yards per Target, which TJ Hernandez of 4For4 Football shows correlates miserably from year to year. Additionally, a high Y/RR can indicate a player could break out with increased opportunities. Conversely, a low Y/RR shows a player was inefficient and could see a nosedive in production with reduced routes.

Leaders

Dallas Goedert broke out last year, leading tight ends with at least 30 targets with 2.33 Yards Per Route Run (Y/RR), according to Pro Football Focus (PFF). Additionally, in 11 games after the Eagles traded Zach Ertz, Goedert’s efficiency ballooned to 2.61 Y/RR. Moreover, Goedert commanded a target on 24.0% of his routes without Ertz.

There’s a concern about only one football to go around to Goedert, DeVonta Smith and AJ Brown, but Goedert’s an ascending talent with an elite production profile. As a result, he’s an excellent target at his TE8 and 79.5 average draft position (ADP) in point-per-reception (PPR) formats. Goedert belongs in the same tier as Dalton Schultz (TE6 and 65.8 ADP) and TJ Hockenson (TE7 and 66.3 ADP). Yet, Philadelphia’s talented tight end is much more attractive even ahead of his ADP than Schultz and Hockenson at their respective selections.

World-class tight ends George Kittle and Mark Andrews are next on the table. According to Sports Info Solutions (SIS), Andrews also led tight ends in Target Share last year. However, as I said in the TE Target Share Analysis piece, Andrews’ cost is a little rich at 21.8. Obviously, there’s a ton to like, and he’s a defensible pick at his ADP who becomes a good pick even a half-round later.

However, part of the reason I’m unwilling to pay the draft capital needed to secure him is Kittle’s ADP of 42.7 as the TE4. Last year, Kittle’s 14.8 points per game in PPR formats during the fantasy season was the third-highest mark at the position. Andrews was the highest-scoring tight end at 17.8 PPR points per game in 2021. However, in 2020, Kittle’s 15.9 PPR points per game were 3.3 points higher than Andrews’ mark of 12.6. Andrews is rightly drafted ahead of Kittle, but the gap is too large between the similarly talented players.

Kyle Pitts was ignored by design in the Target Share Analysis piece, despite ranking second to Andrews with a 19.9% ​​Target Share. I was sandbagging. Pitts was one of four tight ends with more than 2.00 Y/RR at 2.02 Y/RR. That’s remarkable from a rookie. Additionally, according to StatHead, Pitts’ 60.4 receiving yards per game were the third-most ever by a rookie tight end who played at least eight games. The ultra-athletic Pitts was also tied for the ninth-highest yards per reception (15.1) out of 81 rookie tight ends with at least 30 receptions, and his 68 receptions were the third most.

Pitts genuinely had a historically good rookie season. Further, he thrived despite his usage. Atlanta was devoid of pass-catching options, and head coach Arthur Smith essentially used Pitts as a jumbo receiver. According to PFF, out of 550 passing snaps, Pitts was aligned in the slot 241 times, wide 188 times and inline only 120 times.

At worst, Pitts showed he could succeed when used as a receiver. However, since the Falcons used the eighth pick to make Drake London the first wide receiver selected in this year’s NFL Draft, they could conceivably move Pitts inline more often to create mismatches against linebackers and safeties. Will they? That remains to be seen but makes logical sense. At ADP, I’d rather have Pitts at 35.5 than Andrews at 21.8.

Finally, Albert Okwuegbunam is a high-upside tight end for gamers who miss out on the studs. Albert O is a freak athlete competing for playing time with rookie third-round pick Greg Dulcich. There’s a risk they cannibalize each other’s playing time as pass-catching tight ends, but that’s more than baked into Okwuegbunam’s TE19 and 179.0 ADP.

After Goedert, my preference is to wait and double-dip at the position with players such as Cole Kmet (TE13 and 140.3 ADP) and Okwuegbunam. Tying up two roster spots on tight ends isn’t ideal. Nevertheless, gamers can dump one for the hot waiver wire add after a week or two of the season. For instance, if Okwuegbunam and Dulcich are splitting time, gamers can cut Okwuegbunam and move on.

Beyond our fantasy football content, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you prepare for your draft this season. From our free mock Draft Simulator – which allows you to mock draft against realistic opponents – to ours Draft Assistant – that optimizes your picks with expert advice – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football draft season.

Laggers

The Jaguars overspent on underachieving Evan Engram. However, that doesn’t mean you must invest in the inefficient former first-round pick. Not only did Engram stink in Y/RR, but he was also 40th in PFF’s receiving grade out of 44 tight ends targeted at least 30 times in 2022. The five-year pro has had a career mark of 1.36 Y/RR. Engram’s career mark would have ranked 19th among tight ends with at least 30 targets in 2022, one spot behind outgoing Jacksonville tight end James O’Shaughnessy. Thus, Engram is only a streamer at best in season-long leagues and an occasional correlation-driven stacking option with Trevor Lawrence in best-ball formats.

CTAs


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If you want to dive deeper into fantasy footballbe sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup, based on accurate consensus projections – to ours Waiver Wire Assistant – that allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.

Josh Shepardson is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Josh, check out his archive and follow him @BChad50.

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