Rich Hribar

Postseason Rankings

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Super Bowl Player Rankings

Thursday, February 1, 2018


Pass Catchers


1. Rob Gronkowski

2. Zach Ertz

3. Brandin Cooks

4. Alshon Jeffery

5. Danny Amendola

6. Chris Hogan

7. Nelson Agholor

8. Torrey Smith

9. Trey Burton

10. Phillip Dorsett

 

We’re merging all the pass catchers into one category here because both tight ends are the best passing game options for each respective team. Gronk still needs to officially clear concussion protocol, but he is expected to be good to go for Sunday. Prior to being forced from the game against Jacksonville, Gronk caught 34-of-48 targets for 545 yards and four touchdowns in his past five games outside of Week 17. Middle of the pack versus tight ends on the season, the Eagles have been roughed up against the best of the position from fantasy they’ve faced, allowing five or more catches to Jordan Reed and Evan Engram twice each as well as Travis Kelce while allowing touchdowns to Kyle Rudolph, Hunter Henry and Jimmy Graham outside of those players.

 

PHI Pass Catchers with Foles

 

PlayerTgtRecYdsTD
Zach Ertz 39 29 291 1
Nelson Agholor 29 18 237 1
Alshon Jeffery 26 15 213 3
Torrey Smith 24 11 130 1
Jay Ajayi 14 11 133 1
Corey Clement 10 8 46 0
Trey Burton 7 4 43 1
Mack Hollins 5 2 17 0
Brent Celek 4 2 18 0
LeGarrette Blount 2 2 7 0

 

Only four tight ends reached 50-yards against the Patriots all season long with a game-high of 68 yards, but Ertz has been the most reliable target for the Eagles regardless of quarterback this season. The Patriots will undoubtedly make him a focus of their defensive game plan, but the Eagles will also make him a large part of their offensive game plan and is the Philadelphia receiver we can count on for reliable volume. 

 

Outside of Ertz, the Eagles’ target dispersal among their wide receivers has been flat with Foles under center. Alshon Jeffery will lock up Stephon Gilmore for the majority of Sunday, but Jeffery is no stranger to high-end corner play this season. Jeffery has already squared off against Janoris Jenkins, Patrick Peterson, Aqib Talib, Josh Norman and Xavier Rhodes this season among others. Those tough draws contributed to the fact that Jeffery hasn’t had a 100-yard receiving game on the season -and he has reached 70-yards receiving just four times - but he is still the Philadelphia wideout with the highest scoring potential. Jeffery leads the team in touchdowns receiving (11) while leading the team in targets (nine) and receptions (seven) from inside of the 10-yard line on the year.

 

After being targeted 16 times in Foles’ first two games under center, Agholor has managed to catch just 9-of-10 targets for 94 yards over his past three games combined while failing to reach 60-yards receiving in a game since Week 14. He has the best individual draw of the Philadelphia wideouts inside against Eric Rowe, who allowed a reception once every 12.3 snaps in coverage in the slot this season per Pro Football Focus, which was the eighth-highest rate for all players to play at least 100 snaps in the slot this season.

 

Torrey Smith’s 69 yards in the NFC Championship game were nice, but 41 came on a flea flicker and he managed just 61 yards total in Foles’ starts prior. The Patriots ranked fourth in the league in allowing a 32.9 percent catch rate on throws 15-yards or further downfield on the season.

 

We mentioned the playoff lore of James White earlier and Danny Amendola is right there with him. After last year’s Super Bowl performance, Amendola has been the best pass catcher for New England this postseason, notching 11-112-0 on 13 targets versus the Titans in the Divisional Round and then turning in a 7-84-2 line on nine targets versus the Jaguars to send the Patriots to the Super Bowl. Amendola will match up with Patrick Robinson inside, who had a strong individual campaign, as the Eagles allowed just four touchdowns from the slot this season.

 

Brandin Cooks is in an interesting spot because of how he was used by New England and how that plays into this matchup. No player relied on the deep ball more than Cooks this season as 69.8 percent of his receiving yardage came on receptions that were 15 yards or further downfield. The Eagles have allowed just three touchdown passes on throw 15-yards or further downfield all season long, including the postseason, which is tied for the fewest in the league.

 

Hogan now has 29 yards receiving on four catches over his three games since his Week 8 shoulder injury. Despite those lowly counting stats, Hogan is still getting a lot of playing time, participating on 90 percent, 83 percent and 91 percent of the New England snaps in those games. Hogan will get Jalen Mills, who has been the most vulnerable of the Philadelphia defensive backs. Mills has allowed nine touchdowns in his coverage this season, the most on the team, but has come on strong of late, allowing just three receptions in his coverage over his past three games played.

 

 

Kickers

1. Stephen Gostkowski

2. Jake Elliott

 

Both kickers are strong options here with Gostkowski getting the edge as being attached to the higher team total. Gostkowski has multiple field goals in 13 games this season, which is third in the league while Elliott had 11 such games in one fewer week played.

 

DST

1. New England

2. Philadelphia

 

The Eagles have been outstanding on defense over the past four weeks, allowing opponents to score on just six of their past 44 possessions over the past four weeks and on just 3-of-18 drives in the postseason. The Eagles force more turnovers than the Patriots, but the Patriots are a team that doesn’t turn the ball over and they allow fewer sacks. For as much of an edge the Philadelphia defensive front is considered, the Patriots generate more counting sacks at a higher rate, which gives them a fantasy edge here as the favored defense.

 



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Rich Hribar is a husband, father, sports meteorologist and a slave to statistics. A lifelong sports fan and fantasy gamer. You can find him on Twitter @LordReebs.
Email :Rich Hribar



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