When various national previews started counting Ohio State’s receivers group as one of the best in the country, I was a little skeptical at first. Sure, the group has a lot of solid contributors and returns everyone, but were we overvaluing returning production at the expense of elite talent?
But after looking at the group’s marginal efficiency and marginal explosiveness ratings from Bill C’s preview, I could better understand the hype for the group, especially with Dwayne Haskins taking over at quarterback.
However, what we were really still missing was the national context. Despite seeing how the receivers compare with one another, we didn’t have a sense for how they compared to receivers across the country.
Thanks to Bill’s recently published receivers data, we can do that now. So here are a ton of charts about the 2017 receivers. In the charts below, the national average is based on all receivers only (no tight ends or running backs) who had 30+ targets last season. All six of Ohio State’s top receiving targets had at least 30 targets last season, so it made a convenient cutoff so that the averages wouldn’t be influenced by outliers.
All of Ohio State’s top receivers, and Marcus Baugh, had a success rate higher than the national average of 47.4%. Parris Campbell and Austin Mack, who project as the top targets in 2018, had the best success rates last season amongst the group.
This also brings up why Terry McLaurin didn’t play a more prominent role last season, despite being third among receivers in success rate.
Catch rate vs. yards per catch
This chart helps get at which receivers were the most sure-handed vs. which ones had the biggest gains when they did catch the ball. It’s also a non-opponent-adjusted way of looking at efficiency vs. explosiveness.
The results aren’t too surprising. The two slot receivers, Parris Campbell and K.J. Hill, who often catch passes closer to the line of scrimmage, had the highest catch rates. Campbell had a signficantly higher average yards per catch, though.
And unsurprisingly, Johnnie Dixon outpaced the rest of the receivers in yards per catch, averaging 23.4. Dixon was also more boom-or-bust than most of the rest of the room, catching just 52.9% of his passes, which was under the national average of 60.6%.
The only other receiver with a lower catch rate than Dixon was Binjimen Victor, who caught 51.1% of his passes, but also averaged 15.2 yards per catch, which was within the range of the other receivers on the roster.
This chart also doesn’t make Austin Mack— who arguably shows the most promise in terms of being an NFL receiver— look much different than the national average in either catch rate or average yards per catch.
Distribution of targets
This chart captures why the receivers appear more or less interchangeable at first glance — the passing targets were distributed fairly evenly among the top seven targets, with no one getting more than 22% or less than 10% of targets, including Baugh.
We should expect this to change with Haskins coming in, especially if he develops a rapport with certain receivers, or if Brian Hartline changes the rotation in and out of games.
Marginal efficiency and marginal explosiveness
I also looked at marginal efficiency and marginal explosiveness in my last article on the receivers, but this time I included the national averages for comparable receiving targets.div contentScore="15"">>
Source : https://www.landgrantholyland.com/2018/8/15/17687832/ohio-state-has-one-of-the-top-receiver-groups-in-the-country3182