With rookie drafts upon us, fantasy and dynasty owners are looking for any edge they can get come draft time. Redraft players are trying to find those mid to late round gems that will put their team over the top and win them a championship. Dynasty owners are trying to decide which players to take in rookie drafts that will lead to long term success.
Last year I presented my process of using combine stats to help decipher which players are more and less risky; which players have a better chance at success.
Here is a recap of the formulas used in my model: Weight Adjusted Speed Score, Agility Score, Twitch, and 3-cone drill.
Now, let’s dive into this year’s crop of rookies to see which players you should be targeting in this year’s draft.
This group is all the players with a Weight Adjusted Speed Score that is less than 100. These players are far less likely to have a top 20 season, let alone multiple top 20 seasons. They are seeing a success rate of 14.6% with only 7.3% of players in this category seeing multiple top 20 seasons. Here are the players in the 2018 class that fall into this group:
The most notable player in this group is Ronald Jones, who is being drafted in the top 10 in many rookie drafts. Be wary come draft time as he falls into the group with less than a 15% success rate.
This group is made up of players that were able to score a Speed Score >100 but their agility isn’t as high. We will group these guys based on having an Agility score higher than 11.50. These players are seeing a success rate of 16.7% with 13.3% having multiple top 20 seasons. Here are the players from 2018 that fall into the moderate risk group:
Only a few players fall into this category, but Hines is a player that has generated some hype and many think could take over the Colts backfield.
Low Risk 2:
This group is where we start seeing the less risky players. These players also scored over 100 on the Speed Score but their agility scores are less than or equal to 11.50. They also have a 3-cone greater than 6.85. We are seeing a success rate of 26.9% with 23.1% achieving multiple top 20 seasons. Here are the players from the 2018 class that are considered Low Risk 2:
This group will make fantasy owners much happier as they are more notable players. Chubb, Freeman, and Johnson are all going in the 1st round, a few even in the top 5. Seeing them as low risk should make owners jump for joy!
Low Risk 1:
This group is the last of them and has the highest probability of success. This group combines the Speed Score>100 and Agility Score<11.50, but also adds in players with a Twitch score<1.25 AND a 3-cone<6.85. This group has a success rate of 52.4% and 33.3% seeing multiple top 20 seasons.
Unfortunately, no player in 2018 landed on this list. But there were a few players that may have been included but their data was incomplete due to them not participating in all combine drills, though all achieved a Weight Adjusted Speed Score over 100.
Here is the list of incomplete players:
Here are more notable players. Without a doubt, in my opinion, Barkley would have landed on the Low Risk 1 list had he participated in the 3-cone drill. Other than him, we see other high 1st round picks on the list. Guice, Penny, and Michel are all players that have been seen drafted top 5 in rookie drafts.
As I said in my original article last year, this isn’t a draftable and non draftable list. This is simply to help owners figure out the riskier players and help formulate their rankings. Tape watching and opportunity should still be factored into your decisions, but hopefully this can assist you when trying to decide on which RB to choose!