As statistical analysis and newly-created metrics become more of the norm in sports, the fantasy football community is caught between a rock and a hard place. On one hand, understanding things like Average Depth of Target (aDOT) and Pass Blocking Efficiency Ratings can be extremely helpful when analyzing a wide receiver’s usage or the strength of a team’s offensive line, but with so much player and coach movement each season, year-to-year data can only take you so far. There are also a number of these Next Gen stats that have very limited usefulness when it comes to player evaluation in the preseason. Something like Aggressiveness (AGG%) is pointless to look at if a quarterback has changed teams or is working under a new coach or coordinator and its level of accuracy two games into the regular season is limited, at best.
Football is a game of match-ups – offensive schemes versus defensive schemes – and it’s up to us to teach you when and where accumulated statistics are actually relevant; how they should be used in your analysis. It doesn’t matter how fast a guy is during OTAs. Show me how fast he is in full pads while breaking tackles. That’s what matters.
I am certainly not trying to dismiss the fantasy community’s desire to quantify certain things as there are a number of stats to explore as the season moves forward. We just want you to prioritize their use better. Otherwise, why is there a Stats Central page? Below is a list of articles which will help you understand football metrics better and how to employ them in your own analysis of your team.