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Expected fantasy points: The top fantasy usage through Week 8

Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones (33) reacts after scoring a touchdown in the first quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, and welcome to Week 9 of the Expected Fantasy Points Report. If you’re unfamiliar with expected fantasy points, you can read this in-depth explanation from the offseason. You can also read more about expected touchdowns.

Every week we’ll be using a 10-season sample of play-by-play data to calculate expected fantasy points from a player’s seasonal or weekly usage. We look at each target (by distance from the end zone and depth of target) and each carry (by distance from the end zone and down and distance) and add this up to determine how valuable a player’s role was for fantasy. We can contrast this with fantasy production to measure efficiency.

In layman’s terms, expected fantasy points measures the exact worth of a player’s volume – “how many points a player should have scored” given his workload, based on what the average player would have scored.

Through eight weeks of action, here are the top-25 players in expected fantasy points per game:

[Note: Full-season XFP is now available for download in spreadsheet form. We’ll be releasing it each week in our PFF Elite Facebook Group. This spreadsheet will also include valuable PFF-exclusive metrics like XTD, air yards, end zone targets, and more. If you’re not already an Elite subscriber I highly recommend joining.]

Leonard Fournette, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

(XFP: 19.8, PPR: 18.3, Diff: -1.5)

Among all running backs, Fournette ranks first in snaps, first in carries, fourth in targets, and first in XFP. He also ranks first in touches, third in yards from scrimmage, and 49th in touchdowns. Wait, what? That’s right, Fournette totals 1,054 yards from scrimmage but has found the end zone only once. Fournette has gotten extremely unlucky in the touchdown department, falling a league-high 4.5 touchdowns short of his expectation. And, I say “unlucky” rather than “inefficient,” because touchdown efficiency is more related to luck than skill. If all players were perfectly average in touchdown efficiency, Fournette would rank third among running backs in fantasy points per game (21.7), rather than his current ranking of ninth overall (18.3).

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