To improve as a fantasy player, reflective analysis is an important aspect of the game. Hubris does us no good – only objective evaluation. Reviewing results from the previous season can help you learn positional value trends and help you learn about the fantasy landscape heading into 2019.

To decide who provided the most value last season, it’s important to evaluate players in direct comparison with their position – not by comparing their total points.

For example, although Dak Prescott outscored Travis Kelce in pure points, it doesn’t mean that he’s the superior asset. Generally speaking, a quarterback who starts the entire season is going to outscore a tight end – therefore, we need to evaluate how much more (or less) each player scored compared to the average at their position.

Points Above Average

For how many players to average at each position, I use Fantasy Douche’s baselines with Apex’s lineup and scoring settings. Apex utilizes PPR Scoring and weekly lineups of QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, TE, Flex, K, and D. Defense and kickers were excluded from this study as they generally maintain little year-to-year predictability.

Below are the number of players averaged for each position and their averages per game and for the entire season.

Baseline 16 43 60 18
Average Season 307.62 199.36 195.56 163.42
Average Per Game 19.98 14.37 13.61 11.21

Even when comparing players by position, there is still the question of whether to compare them by points per game or for the entire season. The table below is sorted by Points Above Average Per Game (“PAA PG”) to give us the opportunity to fairly rank players who missed time due to injury. I also included a column for Points Above Average for the entire season under “PAA S”.

Another vital part of figuring out who was the most valuable is how expensive each player was in terms of draft capital – in other words, their average draft position (ADP). The cost of a player is a big determinant of how much value they can provide. Players like Patrick Mahomes, who are drafted at an inexpensive cost and produce at a high level, are league winning players.

For this reason, I have included Fantasy Football Calculator ADP from the beginning of September on the table below.

1Todd GurleyRB1.5372.126.58172.7412.21
2Saquon BarkleyRB6.5385.824.11186.449.74
3Christian McCaffreyRB12.7385.524.09186.149.72
4Alvin KamaraRB6.1354.223.61154.849.24
5Melvin GordonRB9.1275.522.9676.148.59
6Davante AdamsWR18.2329.621.97134.048.36
7Antonio BrownWR4.7323.721.58128.147.97
8Ezekiel ElliottRB5.3329.121.94129.747.57
9Tyreek HillWR23.733420.88138.447.27
10DeAndre HopkinsWR8.8333.520.84137.947.23
11Travis KelceTE28.5294.618.41131.187.20
12James ConnerRB157.128021.5480.647.17
13Julio JonesWR14.2325.920.37130.346.76
14Kareem HuntRB11.4230.220.9330.846.56
15Zach ErtzTE39.1280.317.52116.886.31
16Michael ThomasWR16315.519.72119.946.11
17Patrick MahomesQB175417.126.07109.486.09
18Adam ThielenWR33.5307.319.21111.745.60
19Odell Beckham JrWR11.2230.319.234.745.59
20George KittleTE133258.716.1795.284.96
21JuJu Smith-SchusterWR41.2296.918.56101.344.95
22Mike EvansWR25.5284.417.7888.844.17
23Stefon DiggsWR26266.317.7570.744.14
24Julian EdelmanWR65.5207.417.2911.843.68
25T.Y. HiltonWR27.423917.0743.443.46
26Cooper KuppWR77.8135.116.89-60.463.28
27Joe MixonRB23.3243.417.3944.043.02
28Robert WoodsWR103.7265.616.670.042.99
29A.J. GreenWR21.3149.416.6-46.162.99
30James WhiteRB99.5276.617.2977.242.92
31Emmanuel SandersWR57.6198.216.522.642.91
32Eric EbronTE156222.213.8958.782.68
33Keenan AllenWR17.2260.116.2664.542.65
34Matt RyanQB108.135522.1347.382.21
35Tyler BoydWR175221.115.7925.542.18
36Brandin CooksWR52.5243.215.247.641.59
37Ben RoethlisbergerQB114.5341.921.3134.281.39
38David JohnsonRB2.8246.615.4147.241.04
39Jared CookTE175193.612.130.180.89
40O.J. HowardTE151.3120.512.05-42.920.84
41Amari CooperWR31.4215.514.3719.940.76
42Deshaun WatsonQB46.5331.720.7324.080.75
43Leonard FournetteRB9.4120.415.05-78.960.68
44Alshon JefferyWR82.8185.314.25-10.260.64
45Andrew LuckQB87.6327.920.4320.280.52
46Phillip LindsayRB175222.814.8523.440.48
47Marlon MackRB94.3178.114.84-21.260.47
48Drew BreesQB66.930520.27-2.620.35
49Tyler LockettWR131.1222.413.926.840.29
50Evan EngramTE70.5126.311.48-37.120.27
51Tarik CohenRB85.2233.914.6234.540.25
52Cam NewtonQB71282.620.19-25.020.21
53Kenny GolladayWR131.9207.113.8111.540.20
54Chris CarsonRB66.7201.414.392.040.02
55Jarvis LandryWR39.4217.113.5721.54-0.04
56Aaron JonesRB97.7171.414.28-27.96-0.09
57Kerryon JohnsonRB62.5139.413.94-59.96-0.43
58Aaron RodgersQB31.4312.619.544.98-0.44
59Dalvin CookRB15.615213.82-47.36-0.55
60Jared GoffQB123.9310.319.392.68-0.58
61Calvin RidleyWR119.3206.812.9311.24-0.68
62Marvin JonesWR62.3115.812.87-79.76-0.74
63DeSean JacksonWR175151.312.61-44.26-1.00
64Austin HooperTE152.916310.19-0.42-1.02
65Rob GronkowskiTE21131.210.09-32.22-1.12
66Mitchell TrubiskyQB17526318.79-44.62-1.19
67Russell WilsonQB61299.418.65-8.22-1.27
68Kenyan DrakeRB32.8206.212.896.84-1.48
69Kyle RudolphTE76.1151.49.46-12.02-1.75
70Derrick HenryRB42.1201.412.592.04-1.78
71Adam HumphriesWR175188.711.79-6.86-1.82
72Allen RobinsonWR55.2153.311.79-42.26-1.82
73Jordan ReedTE88.3119.89.22-43.62-1.99
74Larry FitzgeraldWR34.9185.711.61-9.86-2.00
75T.J. YeldonRB175173.112.36-26.26-2.01
76Trey BurtonTE64.6147.19.19-16.32-2.02
77Chris GodwinWR138.4185.211.58-10.36-2.03
78Lamar MillerRB38172.612.33-26.76-2.04
79Josh GordonWR44.1138.711.56-56.86-2.05
80Sammy WatkinsWR93.8115.111.51-80.46-2.10
81Dak PrescottQB158.6285.917.87-21.72-2.11
82Corey DavisWR61.1183.611.48-11.96-2.13
83Philip RiversQB107.328517.81-22.62-2.17
84Sterling ShepardWR106.1182.511.41-13.06-2.20
85Nick ChubbRB126.4194.512.16-4.86-2.21
86Mohamed SanuWR175182.411.4-13.16-2.21
87David NjokuTE98.4143.98.99-19.52-2.22
88Tevin ColemanRB76.5193.612.1-5.76-2.27
89Kirk CousinsQB81.7283.117.63-24.52-2.28
90Austin EkelerRB160.8168.812.06-30.56-2.31
91Greg OlsenTE57.580.18.9-83.32-2.31
92Vance McDonaldTE1751338.87-30.42-2.34
93Mike WilliamsWR102.7180.211.26-15.36-2.35
94Dede WestbrookWR152.7179.511.22-16.06-2.39
95Tom BradyQB50.3281.317.52-26.32-2.40
96Robby AndersonWR84.8156.411.17-39.16-2.44
97Mark IngramRB45.9142.511.88-56.86-2.49
98Adrian PetersonRB81.118911.81-10.36-2.56
99Doug BaldwinWR37.6141.810.91-53.76-2.70
100Matt BreidaRB125.6162.511.61-36.86-2.76
101Baker MayfieldQB175240.117.15-67.52-2.83
102Jimmy GrahamTE49.3130.68.16-32.82-3.05
103Curtis SamuelWR175136.810.52-58.76-3.09
104Jordan HowardRB2018011.25-19.36-3.12
105Jordy NelsonWR98.2156.710.45-38.86-3.16
106Demaryius ThomasWR47156.710.45-38.86-3.16
107Golden TateWR46.7187.110.39-8.46-3.22
108Nelson AgholorWR92.8165.410.34-30.16-3.27
109Zay JonesWR175165.210.33-30.36-3.28
110Christian KirkWR175123.510.29-72.06-3.32
111Isaiah CrowellRB89.6140.710.82-58.66-3.55
112Sony MichelRB83.5139.110.7-60.26-3.67
113D.J. MooreWR129.81579.81-38.56-3.80
114Taylor GabrielWR175151.99.49-43.66-4.12
115Chris HerndonTE175113.27.08-50.22-4.13
116Cole BeasleyWR175150.29.39-45.36-4.22
117Nyheim HinesRB175160.910.06-38.46-4.31
118Dion LewisRB55.5160.710.04-38.66-4.33
119Mark AndrewsTE175107.26.7-56.22-4.51
120Rashard HigginsWR175118.29.09-77.36-4.52
121Jalen RichardRB175156.69.79-42.76-4.58
122John BrownWR123.4143.98.99-51.66-4.62
123Kenny StillsWR108.1134.48.96-61.16-4.65
124C.J. UzomahTE175104.96.56-58.52-4.65
125Devin FunchessWR87.4122.98.78-72.66-4.83
126Peyton BarberRB69150.39.39-49.06-4.98
127Eli ManningQB157.224015-67.62-4.98
128Tyrell WilliamsWR175137.88.61-57.76-5.00
129Courtland SuttonWR163.1136.38.52-59.26-5.09
130Danny AmendolaWR157.6127.48.49-68.16-5.12
131Willie SneadWR175134.48.4-61.16-5.21
132Mike DavisRB175136.89.12-62.56-5.25
133LeSean McCoyRB29.9127.29.09-72.16-5.28
134Michael CrabtreeWR70.4132.78.29-62.86-5.32
135Antonio CallawayWR175132.38.27-63.26-5.34
136Cameron BrateTE17592.95.81-70.52-5.40
137Donte MoncriefWR175130.88.18-64.76-5.43
138Dallas GoedertTE17590.45.65-73.02-5.56
139Anthony MillerWR141.5120.28.01-75.36-5.60
140Ben WatsonTE175875.44-76.42-5.77
141Gerald EverettTE17586.65.41-76.82-5.80
142Jesse JamesTE17584.35.27-79.12-5.94
143Theo RiddickRB159.6116.58.32-82.86-6.05
144Duke JohnsonRB93.51328.25-67.36-6.12
145Latavius MurrayRB123.1131.98.24-67.46-6.13
146Ian ThomasTE17581.35.08-82.12-6.13
147Chester RogersWR175117.17.32-78.46-6.29
148Kendrick BourneWR175114.77.17-80.86-6.44
149Doug MartinRB158.6119.97.49-79.46-6.88
150Wendell SmallwoodRB175117.47.34-81.96-7.03


The top five players in Points Above Average Per Game were running backs. It’s likely those five and Ezekiel Elliott will be the first players off the board in 2019 fantasy drafts.

Todd Gurley dominated while on the field, outscoring the running back average by 12.21 points per game. Unfortunately for his owners, he missed the fantasy football championship in Week 16.

Saquon Barkley and Christian McCaffrey were unreal, barely leaving the field and providing a consistent weekly advantage. Alvin Kamara began the season on fire but slowed after the return of Mark Ingram. Kamara could again see workhorse usage if Ingram finds a new home in free agency.

Davante Adams was one of 2018’s most consistent players – catching a touchdown or topping 100 receiving yards in 14 of 15 games. Heading into 2019, Adams is locked in as Aaron Rodgers’ top target and could be the first wide receiver off the board.

Tyreek Hill outperformed expectations and finished as the top fantasy wide receiver in scoring for the entire season. He’ll be a more expensive commodity entering 2019 as Patrick Mahomes’ top weapon.

Travis Kelce provided huge value for his owners. With the tight end positional average at 11.21 fantasy points per week, Kelce was scoring 18.41 fantasy points per game. His owners had a huge weekly advantage. According to this study, Kelce was the 8th most valuable player in fantasy football for the entire season.

It’s only fair to mention Zach Ertz and George Kittle, who also provided their owners with a weekly advantage at one of fantasy football’s shallowest positions. Outside of those Kelce, Ertz, Kittle, and Eric Ebron, the tight end position was largely an unpredictable gamble at best and a wasteland at worst.

Even with Mahomes producing the best quarterback season in NFL history, he finished as just the 17th most valuable player per game. Even though he looks like one of the best ever, it’s likely he’ll at least partially regress to the mean next season (see Watson, Deshaun).

Don’t fall asleep on Cooper Kupp or Will Fuller, they may come with favorable discounts in 2019. Obviously, both had season-ending injuries but Kupp was 14th and Fuller 21st out of wide receivers per game.

Other great values include James Conner, Robert Woods, James White, Eric Ebron, Matt Ryan, Tyler Lockett, and Kenny Golladay.