Wide Receivers and Weighted Team Pass Attempts

April 10, 2014 Receiving

In his seven-year career, Calvin Johnson has already recorded 9,328 receiving yards. And for those curious about these sorts of things, he’s the career leader in receiving yards per game at 88.0, too. But Johnson has also benefited greatly from playing on teams that have thrown a weighted average of 635 pass attempts per season. […]

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Was Calvin Johnson’s 329-yard Game The Best Ever By a WR?

October 29, 2013 Receiving

On Sunday, Calvin Johnson picked up 329 receiving yards against the Cowboys, the second most receiving yards in a single game after Flipper Anderson’s 336 yards in 1989 against the Saints. But when I think of the greatest games by a receiver of all time, my mind instantly goes to a performance by Kansas City’s […]

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True Receiving Yards (v2.0) Extended Back to 1950

September 19, 2013 Checkdowns

About a month ago, Chase & I developed a stat called True Receiving Yards, which seeks to put all modern & historical receiving seasons on equal footing by adjusting for the league’s passing YPG environment & schedule length, plus the amount the player’s team passed (it’s easier to produce raw receiving stats on a team […]

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WOWY: Which Receivers Elevate Their Quarterbacks the Most?

September 5, 2013 G.O.A.T.

In 1998, 21-year-old Randy Moss made a stunning NFL debut, racking up 17 touchdowns and 1,260 True Receiving Yards, the 2nd-best total in football that season. The Vikings’ primary quarterback that year, Randall Cunningham, was a former Pro Bowler and MVP, but all that seemed like a lifetime ago before the ’98 season. He’d been […]

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True Receiving Yards, Version 2.0 – Career Rankings

August 19, 2013 Receiving

On Thursday, Neil and I introduced you to the concept of True Receiving Yards. That’s required background reading, but in a nutshell, True Receiving Yards is designed to place all receivers since 1970 into the same environment. It starts with receiving yards, but gives a bonus for receptions and touchdowns, adjusts for how frequently a […]

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How Many Extra Receiving Yards Should Come on Extra Passes?

August 18, 2013 Thought Experiments

On Thursday, Neil and I introduced you to the concept of True Receiving Yards. True Receiving Yards is designed to place every receiver into the same environment. TRY starts with receiving yards, but gives a bonus for receptions and touchdowns, adjusts for how frequently a player’s team passes, adjusts for the league passing environment, and […]

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True Receiving Yards, Part I

August 15, 2013 Statgeekery

As you guys know, Neil Paine is the man. Here’s the latest reason: he came up with a metric called True Receiving Yards, the latest in a long line of thoughts in our Wide Receiver Project. So, what are True Receiving Yards? We start with Adjusted Catch Yards, defined as 5 * Receptions + Receiving […]

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Single-season Leaders in Receiving Yards per Team Pass Attempt

August 11, 2013 Receiving

When I wrote my ode to Steve Smith earlier this week, I discovered an incredible stat. In 2008, Smith played in 14 games and gained 1,421 receiving yards. But the more incredible part is that the Panthers passed only 352 times in 2008, meaning Smith averaged an absurd 4.04 yards per team pass attempt. At […]

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Another way to examine the best wide receiver seasons ever

June 28, 2013 Receiving

We don’t rank quarterbacks by passing yards because “passing yards” is largely a function of pass attempts. The same is true for receiving yards, as the number of times a team passes the ball has a big impact on a receiver’s yardage total. I’ve spent some time this year looking at ways to rank wide […]

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Ranking wide receivers by percentage of team yards

May 25, 2013 Receiving

Seven years ago, Doug wrote this post analyzing wide receivers by team receiving yards. That post was overdue for an update for three reasons: (1) it was written seven years ago; (2) Doug only went back to 1978, while we now can go back to 1932; and (3) I think using Adjusted Catch Yards (which […]

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Career Receiving Numbers Translated to the 2012 Passing Environment

March 6, 2013 Receiving

I’ve written several posts about how to grade wide receivers and did a three-part series on one ranking system two weeks ago. Grading wide receivers requires one to adjust for era, but there are many different ways to do that. Calvin Johnson caught 122 passes last year for 1,964 yards and five touchdowns. In 1973, […]

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The Greatest Wide Receivers Ever Version 2.0: Part III – Career Rankings

February 20, 2013 G.O.A.T.

On Monday, I explained my methodology for ranking every wide receiver in football history, and yesterday, I presented a list of the best single seasons of all time. Today the career list of the top 150 wide receivers. As usual, I implemented a 100/95/90 formula, giving a player credit for 100% of his production in […]

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The Greatest Wide Receivers Ever Version 2.0: Part II – Single season leaders

February 19, 2013 G.O.A.T.

Yesterday, I explained my methodology for ranking every wide receiver in football history. Today I’m going to present a list of single-season leaders, which presents some problems. I think the method I described yesterday does a good job adjusting for era, as receivers are only given credit for their yards above the baseline, which is […]

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The Greatest Wide Receivers Ever Version 2.0: Part I – Methodology

February 18, 2013 G.O.A.T.

Regular readers know that one of my projects this off-season is to come up with a better way to grade wide receivers. I first attempted to rank every wide receiver four years ago. That study, which I will reproduce this week, has some positives and negatives. My goal is to eventually come up with four […]

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