2011 Receiver Target Data Analysis

COLLEGE PARK, MD - OCTOBER 15: Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins #6 of the Clemson Tigers catches a touchdown pass in front of defensive back Cameron Chism #22 of the Maryland Terrapins during the first half at Byrd Stadium on October 15, 2011 in College Park, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

We stumbled upon some great information regarding receiver play during the 2011 season and want to dissect some mined information from our good friends over at www.footballstudyhall.com. This past January, these folks compiled receiver target, catch, and yardage information. We pulled the Clemson information together and will analyze these statistics in this article. We already looked at the receiver statistics and formed an opinion of their play back in February. We'll discuss standard stats at some point but today's information is related to the unique information derived from the source above. Directly from the source site, here are some definitions for you:


Targets = receptions plus incompletions targeting a given receiver. (NOTE: there is no target data for passes that were intercepted or for some throwaways. In the end, about 85-90 percent of passes have target data. I thought about adjusting for that in some way, but since it is the same for every team, I did not. Just keep that in mind.)

Catches = receptions.

Yards = receiving yards

Catch Rate = catches / targets

Yards Per Target = yards / targets

Target % = the percentage of a team's passes targeting a given receiver.

Target No. = the rank of a given player in terms of his team's targets.

%SD = the percent of a players targets that came on standard downs. As you'll see, this varies greatly from player to player.

I'll note that the source data had Jonathan Meeks listed with one reception. That item is incorrect but will leave this in the data. Otherwise I believe this information is correct. The nice item shown within this data is what is referred to as the "Target" statistic. This item counts the number of times a player was thrown to/towards. While some of these "Targets" are passes in which the QB was simply throwing the ball away, these numbers also indicate who will be in the spotlight when the ball is in the air.

The overall data from last season are shown at this article's end. There are really no surprises...Sammy was the target receiver nearly ¼ of the time, Nuk over 21% of the time, and Allen over 18% of the passes. If you include Jaron Brown's 9.8% target rate, these four players accounted for ¾ of the team's targets last season. As expected, Ellington led the backs with over 7% of the total targets. Overall catches pretty much fell in like (ranking-wise) with the targets. The exception was Adam Humphries who caught 15 of his 17 targets for an impressive 88.2% of catches to targets.

When we look at the overall catch rate, Adam Humphries led the group and clearly took advantage of the 17 times thrown to. Joe Craig caught three of the four thrown to him. Else, Sammy and Nuk each caught about 2/3 of their looks and Allen nearly 54%. I'll point out that these stats don't show drops so it is impossible to tell from these numbers whether balls not caught were catchable or throw-aways.

Target_percent_all_scenarios_medium

Catch_rate_all_scenarios_medium

Data was also filtered on a situational basis. Below is a presentation of similar data from above filtered for "standard downs." I cannot confirm this, but my interpretation of a "standard down" is first and 10 or fewer yards, second and seven or fewer yards, and third and 4 or fewer yards. If pressed, 4th and three or less would also apply.

What we saw here was Sammy targeted over 26% of the time, Nuk 22%, and Allen 15.7%. Again, Humpries was impressive 12/13 catches under these conditions. Sam Cooper caught the only look he got. Both Sammy and Nuk were in the 66-67% range and Allen caught just over 51% of his looks last season during standard downs. Jaron Brown and Brandon Ford each brought down over 64% of their target attempts. Again, Brown, Hopkins, Watkins, and Allen accounted for roughly 75% of targets in this scenario. Ellington accounted for 6.8%. (hit the jump for more).

Target_percent_standard_scenario_medium

Catch_rate_standard_scenario_medium

The final scenario we'll look at is "passing downs." Again, the big 4 contributed 74.6% of the targets here. The interesting item is that in passing downs, Sammy's looks actually went down to 22.2% and Dwayne Allen's targets went way up to 21.7%, overtaking DeAndre Hopkins as the second favorite receiver. Sammy Watkin's catch rate here improved to over 70%, Nuk had a slight dip to 65%, and Allen's increased to 56.5%.

Target_percent_passing_scenario_medium

Catch_rate_passing_scenario_medium


ALL PASSES

Player

Targets

Catches

Yards

CatchRate

YdsPerTarget

Target %

YdsPerCatch

Target No.

Sammy Watkins

124

84

1225

67.70%

9.9

24.80%

14.6

1

DeAndre Hopkins

107

71

961

66.40%

9

21.40%

13.5

2

Dwayne Allen

91

49

592

53.80%

6.5

18.20%

12.1

3

Jaron Brown

49

31

406

63.30%

8.3

9.80%

13.1

4

Andre Ellington

37

22

109

59.50%

2.9

7.40%

5

5

Brandon Ford

21

14

166

66.70%

7.9

4.20%

11.9

6

Martavis Bryant

17

9

221

52.90%

13

3.40%

24.6

7

Adam Humphries

17

15

130

88.20%

7.6

3.40%

8.7

8

Charone Peake

10

4

71

40.00%

7.1

2.00%

17.8

9

Mike Bellamy

6

2

4

33.30%

0.7

1.20%

2

10

D.J. Howard

5

2

2

40.00%

0.4

1.00%

1

11

Joe Craig

4

3

18

75.00%

4.5

0.80%

6

12

Roderick McDowell

3

1

-1

33.30%

-0.3

0.60%

-1

13

Marquan Jones

3

1

6

33.30%

2

0.60%

6

14

Sam Cooper

3

1

18

33.30%

6

0.60%

18

15

Jonathan Meeks

1

1

17

100.00%

17

0.20%

17

16

Bryce McNeal

1

1

8

100.00%

8

0.20%

8

17

Brandon Thomas

1

1

-1

100.00%

-1

0.20%

-1

18


STANDARD DOWNS

Player

Targets

Catches

Yards

CatchRate

YdsPerTarget

Target %

YdsPerCatch

Sammy Watkins

77

51

674

66.20%

8.8

26.80%

13.2

DeAndre Hopkins

63

42

540

66.70%

8.6

22.00%

12.9

Dwayne Allen

45

23

257

51.10%

5.7

15.70%

11.2

Jaron Brown

28

18

237

64.30%

8.5

9.80%

13.2

Andre Ellington

19

10

68

52.60%

3.6

6.60%

6.8

Brandon Ford

12

8

62

66.70%

5.2

4.20%

7.8

Martavis Bryant

10

6

137

60.00%

13.7

3.50%

22.8

Adam Humphries

13

12

108

92.30%

8.3

4.50%

9

Charone Peake

5

1

13

20.00%

2.6

1.70%

13

Mike Bellamy

2

1

4

50.00%

2

0.70%

4

D.J. Howard

2

0

0

0.00%

0

0.70%

0

Joe Craig

3

2

21

66.70%

7

1.00%

10.5

Roderick McDowell

2

0

0

0.00%

0

0.70%

0

Marquan Jones

2

0

0

0.00%

0

0.70%

0

Sam Cooper

1

1

18

100.00%

18

0.30%

18

Jonathan Meeks

1

1

17

100.00%

17

0.30%

17

Bryce McNeal

1

1

8

100.00%

8

0.30%

8

Brandon Thomas

1

1

-1

100.00%

-1

0.30%

-1


PASSING DOWNS

Player

Targets

Catches

Yards

CatchRate

YdsPerTarget

Target %

Target %

YdsPerCatch

Sammy Watkins

47

33

551

70.20%

11.7

22.20%

22.20%

16.7

DeAndre Hopkins

44

29

421

65.90%

9.6

20.80%

20.80%

14.5

Dwayne Allen

46

26

335

56.50%

7.3

21.70%

21.70%

12.9

Jaron Brown

21

13

169

61.90%

8

9.90%

9.90%

13

Andre Ellington

18

12

41

66.70%

2.3

8.50%

8.50%

3.4

Brandon Ford

9

6

104

66.70%

11.6

4.20%

74.60%

17.3

Martavis Bryant

7

3

84

42.90%

12

3.30%


28

Adam Humphries

4

3

22

75.00%

5.5

1.90%


7.3

Charone Peake

5

3

58

60.00%

11.6

2.40%


19.3

Mike Bellamy

4

1

0

25.00%

0

1.90%


0

D.J. Howard

3

2

2

66.70%

0.7

1.40%


1

Joe Craig

1

1

-3

100.00%

-3

0.50%


-3

Roderick McDowell

1

1

-1

100.00%

-1

0.50%


-1

Marquan Jones

1

1

6

100.00%

6

0.50%


6

Sam Cooper

1

0

0

0.00%

0

0.50%


0

Jonathan Meeks

0

0

0

0.00%

0

0.00%


0

Bryce McNeal

0

0

0

0.00%

0

0.00%


0

Brandon Thomas

0

0

0

0.00%

0

0.00%


0

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