The Underrated Fantasy Impact of Kenny Britt to the Browns

The Underrated Fantasy Impact of Kenny Britt to the Browns

By Chris Raybon (Senior Daily Fantasy Expert), last updated May 24, 2017

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Chris Raybon is the Senior Daily Fantasy Editor at 4for4 Fantasy Football.

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisRaybon.

A WR going from the Rams to the Browns is probably one of the most unsexy transactions in pro sports. But for a WR who signed the fifth-largest free agent contract (4 years, $32 million1) among WRs and finished 26th and 28th in standard and PPR points, respectively, at his position last season, Britt’s signing has garnered almost no attention in fantasy football circles.

But it should have.

 

Britt Has Been Better than Terrelle Pryor

While Britt signed with the Browns for what was reportedly the same yearly average they offered Terrelle Pryor (roughly $8 million), Britt, who is only nine months older than Pryor, has been much more efficient over his three-year Rams career than Pryor was in his one-year stint as a full-time WR with the Browns:

Kenny Britt Career w/ Rams

Season

Tar

Rec

Yds

Yds/Tar

TD

TD %

STD FP/Tar

PPR FP/Tar

2016

111

68

1002

9.03

5

4.50%

1.15

1.77

2015

72

36

681

9.46

3

4.17%

1.20

1.70

2014

84

48

748

8.90

3

3.57%

1.12

1.69

3-Year Total with Rams

267

152

2431

9.10

11

4.12%

1.16

1.72

Terrelle Pryor as WR w/ Browns

             Season             

Tar

Rec

Yds

Yds/Tar

TD

TD %

STD FP/Tar

PPR FP/Tar

2016

141 77

1007

7.14

4

2.84%

0.95

1.50

Britt averaged nearly two full yards per target more than Pryor, which naturally translated into roughly 0.20 more fantasy points per target. And according to PlayerProfiler.com's metrics, despite both receivers averaging a similar amount of air yards per reception (Pryor 10.6, Britt 10.2), Britt bested Pryor by 2 whole yards in yards after catch per reception, 4.46-2.45.

More impressively, Britt accomplished these feats with largely inferior QB play to what Pryor had in 2016:

Team QB Play, Terrelle Pryor (2016) vs. Kenny Britt (2014-16)
Team & Season

Comp %

Att/G

Y/A

Y/G

TD%

Rating

Browns 2016

59.6

35.4

6.5

230.8

2.6%

77.4

Rams 2016

58.2

33.5

6.2

207.1

2.6%

69.5

Rams 2015

57.7

29.6

6.2

183.2

2.3%

74.1

Rams 2014

63.5

32.2

7.2

230.9

3.9%

84.9

After performing at around league average in 2014, Rams’ QB play over the last two seasons has been dismal, yet Britt actually increased his efficiency.

Perhaps more importantly, Britt has shown he can be an efficient producer regardless of quality of QB play -- his range of outcomes in terms of yards per target (8.90-9.46), standard points per target (1.12-1.20), and PPR points per target (1.69-1.77) were remarkably consistent over his three-year career with the Rams.

Britt’s ability to be a consistent producer amidst poor QB play is obviously paramount in Cleveland. While Cody Kessler’s numbers -- 65.6% completion rate, 7.1 yards/attempt, 3.1% TD rate, 92.3 passer rating -- were actually better than the Browns’ numbers overall last season, and his rating was over 7 points higher than the Rams’ team high over Britt’s career, it can’t be assumed Kessler will make all, or even any, of the Browns’ 2017 starts. However, it’s unlikely Britt’s QB play will be any worse than in 2016, his most productive season to date -- only the 2016 Jets have posted a lower QB rating as a team over the last three years than the 2016 Rams.

 

More than Enough Targets Should be Available

So we know what to reasonably expect from Britt even if he continues to suffer through bottom-barrel QB play, which means his fantasy value comes down to opportunity.

Pryor’s role translated into 141 targets last season, or 8.81 per game. However, a more realistic projection may be to look at Pryor’s role when first-round pick Corey Coleman -- the presumed starter opposite Britt -- played. Pryor managed 8.2 targets per game with Coleman active, which would translate to 131 targets over a 16-game season.

Kenny Britt 2017 Projection Using 2014-16 Efficiency Rates

Proj Tar

STD FP/Tar

STD FP Proj

Would-be 2016 Finish

PPR FP/Tar

PPR FP Proj

Would-be 2016 Finish

141

1.16

163.6

WR10

1.72

242.5

WR12

131

1.16

152.0

WR11

1.72

225.3

WR16

Assuming Britt inherits Pryor’s role and performs as he has in the past, and assuming the Browns have similar passing volume to last season, Britt has low-end WR1 upside. This would return massive value on his current ADP of WR46 in FantasyFootballCalculator.com standard leagues and WR53 in MyFantasyLeague.com best-ball leagues. Even if we factor in the possibility of a drop in efficiency Britt's targets rise beyond last season's career-high of 111, it remains clear he has substantial upside relative to his ADP.

Of course, Coleman is a first-round pick in his second year, which is generally when WRs make a leap (fantasy drafters think as much, as Coleman is going 7 picks before Britt in standard and 20 picks before him in MFL). The Browns could also add another pass-catching weapon -- TE O.J Howard, perhaps -- in the early rounds of the draft. So how many targets would Britt need to merely meet value at his ADP?

Targets Necessary for Kenny Britt to Meet Value at Current ADP

Scoring

Current ADP

2014-16 AV FP

Britt 3-Year FP/Tar

Targets Needed

Targets Needed/G

STD

WR46

100.5

1.16

86.6

5.4

PPR

WR53

141.1

1.72

82.0

5.1

Britt wouldn't need much more than five targets per game to meet value at his current ADP. It’s reasonable to assume that regardless of what’s going on around him, a team that invests $8 million a year and $17 million guaranteed into a free-agent WR intends to get him over five targets per game.

Britt's target outlook is also bolstered by the fact that he's shown the ability to stay on the field. Since a torn ACL in 2011, Britt has missed only seven games in five seasons, including just one missed game over the last three seasons.

In fact, when you combine Britt's superior per-target and after-catch efficiency to Pryor's last season with Britt's durability over the last half-decade, you start to see why an analytics-driven Browns front office was comfortable pivoting to Britt rather than increasing its offer to Pryor.

 

Britt is Undervalued

No matter what you think about how good Corey Coleman can become, or how bad you think the Browns QB situation is, Kenny Britt is undervalued -- perhaps massively so.

In a best-case scenario, Britt could emerge as a top-15 WR. Even with a conservative projection, Britt still projects to meet expectation at his current ADP. As long as Britt’s ADP remains in the same range it is now, Britt may end up being the most unsexy WR value pick of 2017.

 

Editor's Note: 4for4's popular DFS Subscription will be making major upgrades for 2017! Subscribe now and get an an early-bird discount!


Footnotes

1. The Browns have an out after two years, $17 million.


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Filed Under: Preseason, 2017

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