Fantasy Football NerdStats Explained

NerdBall Efficiency and Consistency Coefficient (NECC) Rankings

Fantasy football consistency is an elusive beast. Being able to field a team that is competitive on a weekly basis is the dream and means when the top tier players you drafted don’t go off on a weekly basis, you still have a chance. To be able to show those players who are super consistent on a weekly basis, but who also are really efficient in terms of their return for each touch of the ball they have, I have built the NerdBall Efficiency and Consistency Coefficient, or NECC for short.

The consistency part takes each player’s fantasy points per game and divides it by the standard deviation of their fantasy scores to give us the coefficient of variation. This is a good start and really shows which players give you that solid floor.

To enhance this number, and to give the efficiency element, I took the coefficient of variation and divided it by the player’s fantasy points per touch. This I’ve found makes the metric more balanced and gives some pop to the guys who may not be the highest scorers overall but have the potential to be so given increased opportunity.

This tool is meant to help you identify which players will help your fantasy team on a consistent basis when determining trades or waiver wire additions.

The data that built the metric is based on .5PPR scoring.

PER Ratings

PER Rating operates similarly to PER36 metric in basketball. It’s a way of leveling every player’s workload so you can easily compare fantasy production.

In basketball, every player is equalized by minutes played (36). In football, that’s harder to do across different positions. The bases of PER Rating changes with each position but serves the same purpose. Each position is equalized based on rough per game production of a starter at the position. For quarterbacks, they are equalized per 30 attempts (fantasy stats are calculated without rushing production); Running backs, per 15 touches; Wide receivers, per 7 targets (fantasy stats are calculated without rushing production): Tight ends, per 6 targets (fantasy stats are calculated without rushing production).

This rating allows you to see which players could be real fantasy contributors if they saw a starting workload (through injury or playing into more playing time). It can also show you players who’s fantasy value is inflated simply because they are receiving a heavy workload.

NFL Team NerdBall Efficiency (NEFF) Ratings

Earlier in the off-season I introduced my NerdBall Efficiency Ranking or NEFF Rating, a set of rankings that give an analytical take of a multitude of facets of NFL play, with an aim to identify the best and worst performing teams throughout the NFL season. A breakdown of  how the rankings are put together and some historical context can be found here.

NFL Team NEFF Ratings: Pass Defense & Run Defense

Alongside my full NEFF rankings (detailed explanation here), I have developed a pair of defense specific ratings and rankings, splitting out the pass defense and run defense metrics to break down the relative strengths of each team’s defense and how it can be useful for identifying edges in fantasy leagues and DFS.

Unlike DNEFF (Defensive NEFF rating), which generally produces a negative grade as it is the counterpoint to ONEFF (Offensive NEFF rating), the pass and run defense ratings are more of a measure of a team’s efficiency in relation to each other and so each team is ranked between 0% and 100%.

Alongside the ratings, I document the amount of fantasy points each defense allows to receiving or rushing so we are able to compare ‘real’ football performance to fantasy scoring, as the two can sometimes be vastly different and its important to understand why to get the edge.

Strength of Schedule Calculation

I developed my NEFF efficiency ratings to identify the best teams in the NFL based on an expansive list of statistical measures. Now, I’ve taken my NEFF ratings for pass and run defenses and created a strength of schedule for fantasy football. The goal is to show what teams have waiting ahead of them to help you best evaluate your fantasy roster and gives you the ability to see who might be in for a rough couple of weeks production-wise.

Quarterback Passing Index Rankings (QPI)

My Quarterback Passing Index (Intro to QPI) is a statistical measure of performance that allows us to rate and compare quarterback play based on a series metrics. I have graded every quarterback performance all the way back to 1970, and will update the tables weekly to show who the best and worst quarterbacks each week and for the season as a whole.

If you want to learn more about how the rankings are built, plus some historical context, you can find that here.

Quarterback WAR & Fantasy Football Points Above Replacement (FPAR) Rankings

Though a WAR (Wins Above Replacement) rating is traditionally a baseball metric of an individual player’s value versus a replacement, I have recreated it for football purposes as an additional measure of the game’s most important position. By manipulating my QPI data (Quarterback Passing Index), I have been able to create both a WAR and also WAA (Wins Above Average) rating to show how the players stack up against each other and how many additional wins they have been worth (or not).

Using a similar formula I have also been able to translate the data into a version for fantasy football that I’ve called FPAR (Fantasy Points Above Replacement), showing how many additional points each quarterback has scored vs a replacement player and the league average (FPAA).