Connect with us

Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football: Daryl Richardson Receives the FPPRR Treatment

St. Louis Rams running back Daryl Richardson
St. Louis Rams running back Daryl Richardson

Aug 8, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; St. Louis Rams running back Daryl Richardson (26) runs the ball in the second quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The news that was not really news at all was made official on Monday. Daryl Richardson will be the Rams starting running back for week one.

This wasn’t much of a surprise to anyone since we knew fellow Rams runner Isaiah Pead will be out for the season opener while serving a one game suspension for substance abuse.

There’s a little more proof that the job is his to lose long term however, and as Davis Mattek of Rotoviz points out, it’s time to buy on Richardson.

As you already know, I am a point per reception (PPR) league degenerate. So my immediate thought of Richardson playing an extended role in 2013 is what kind of receiving output is to be expected from him.

Richardson was the 252nd selection in the 2012 NFL draft, an entire 79 picks later than 2012 fantasy breakout star Alfred Morris. In his senior season at Abilene Christian University, he displayed his versatility as a pass catcher, snagging 40 receptions for 371 yards and two scores.

That was his primary role in St. Louis last season as well. The Rams called a pass play on 61 percent of the snaps Richardson was on the field, as opposed to 58 percent than when Steven Jackson played.

Read more about FPPRR projections and how it can help your fantasy football team…

Jamaal Charles in Charge: FPPRR Projections
Matt Forte: The Trestman FPPRR Effect
Projecting Reggie Bush Using the Fantasy Points Per Route Metric

The fantasy points per route run (FPPRR) metric is created with Pro Football Focus’s route running data from 2008-2012.

PLAYER

ROUTES

TARGETS

RT/TGT

REC

RT/REC

YDS

REC PTS

FPPRR

RICHARDSON

148

31

4.8

24

6.2

163

40.3

0.27

JACKSON

323

49

6.6

38

8.5

321

70.1

0.22

Even though Richardson was slightly below league average (.29 FPPRR), he was far more effective than Jackson in his limited action. This is just another red flag to add to the declining receiving ability of Jackson.

Richardson outperformed him by nearly 25 percent per route, and if he had seen the same amount of snaps as Jackson, he could have been worth 17 more receiving points. 17 points may seem trivial, but those points would’ve made Jackson PPR RB12 as opposed to RB16 in 2012.

Usage held Richardson back last season. With volume, that average score is completely acceptable, and if he can approach the role that Jackson had in 2012, there’s a real solid PPR back in the works for this season.

PLAYER

PASS SNAPS

PASS PLAY %

ROUTES

ROUTE %

RICHARDSON

191

32.2

148

77.5

JACKSON

423

71.5

323

76.4

Richardson was in route at nearly the exact same percentage of his pass plays as Jackson was, so there’s something stable going forward with how the backs are used in Brian Schottenheimer’s offense. Richardson’s average FPPRR was also pretty in line with backs that have been attached to Schottenheimer.

PLAYER

YEAR

REC PTS

ROUTES

FPPRR

LaDainian Tomlinson

2011

98.9

239

0.41

LaDainian Tomlinson

2010

88.8

320

0.28

Shonn Greene

2011

51.1

184

0.28

Shonn Greene

2010

28

109

0.26

Thomas Jones

2008

68.7

183

0.38

Thomas Jones

2009

15.8

184

0.09

Leon Washington

2008

94.5

241

0.39

Leon Washington

2009

28.1

102

0.28

Yes, your eyes do not deceive you, that is the one and only Thomas Jones posting a strong score in 2008 (amazingly, he nearly equaled Jackson’s 2012 scoring output receiving on 140 less routes).

But backs like Washington and Greene were consistently right around our target baseline (just as Richardson was) when they received snaps similar snaps like Richardson did in 2012.

We already know Richardson is a better pass catching back than Greene and performed greater than how Jackson has been over the past few seasons. If he’s a receiver closer to what Tomlinson and Washington are, there’s no reason he can’t be a top 24 performer given equal opportunity.

In just 14 snaps this preseason, Richardson already has three grabs on for targets four 44 yards. Thirty-six of those yards have been after the catch, displaying his speed and what was missing from the Rams backfield the past few seasons.

Let’s explore the range of outcomes of what we can anticipate from Richardson in 2013 catching the ball out of the backfield.  Teams under Schottenheimer have averaged 577 passing plays per year over the past three seasons. We’ll round that down to 575 for our initial projection.

The threat of the Rams possibly going to a running back by committee still very much exists.  That threat will likely keep Richardson’s ADP in an affordable area, so we will factor in how much time Richardson will see on the field into the equation.

It’s not outrageous to think he can sustain his 4.8 routes per target, as that number was only the 18th highest of all backs in 2012. The additions of Tavon Austin and Jared Cook will likely prevent that number from getting much better, however.

PASS SNAP %

ROUTES

TGT

REC

YDS

REC PTS

40

177

35

27

200

47

50

222

44

34

252

59.2

60

266

53

41

303

71.3

70

310

62

48

355

83.5

If all goes off without a hitch, he can definitely compete for a RB2 finish.

Richardson is a talented player in the pass game that will post solid but not spectacular numbers out of the backfield if given the opportunity. That output is contingent on his workload though, and that should be considered if you’re planning to reach for him before the fifth or sixth round area.

*Stats for this article were provided by Pro-Football-Reference, ProFootballFocus, and NFL.Com

Click to comment

More in Fantasy Football