Fantasy Football Week 9 Tiers

Week 9 byes: Atlanta, Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit, Green Bay, Tennessee


Charts are on the menu on the right.
Week 9 - QB | WR | RB | TE | Flex | K | DST

In this fantasy football model, I take aggregated expert ranking data from and pass it into a statistical clustering algorithm called a Gaussian mixture model.  The algorithm finds players who are ranked similarly and discovers natural tiers within the data. The results is a series of simple charts that can help you decide your fantasy football line up each week. Match ups, injuries, strength of offense and defense are all accounted for. For more intuition behind the model, you can read this introduction.


(1) NYTimes link: [Week 9 in-depth commentary]
(2) Favor higher tier players. 
(3) When choosing between players of the same tier, flip a coin or go with your gut. If experts are 50/50, there's no telling.

Rest of Season:

I'm also happy to announce the return of ROS tiers. View them here:
ROS: QB - RB - WR - TE - K - DST

Select Week 8 Questions and Answers

Why are experts high Mike Wallace this week?
A lot of players are going to seem high this week because of the sheer number of high quality players on bye, especially at wide receiver. Wallace has been in the Benjamin/Sanders/Steve Smith range for a while now. The entire Miami offense oddly didn't get much going last week against the Jags thanks to their defense and Bortles throwing TWO pick 6's, but Tannehill and Wallace have been connecting on pretty much every other week. They'll shuffle around each week based on matchups, but Steve Smith, Wallace and Benjamin should always be around the same range -- call it the WR1's of slightly above average teams range.

How does Vincent Jackson continue to be ranked so high?
I'm calling last week a low outlier for TB. The Vikings came out with tons of QB pressure, tallying 5 sacks and only allowed 28 passing attempts for Glennon, which is very low for a quarter back (even Mettenberger threw 41 last week). Targets are one of the best indications of fantasy points, and Jackson is 15th in targets on the year (65). Keep in mind Glennon only came in starting week 3. Tampa Bay's bad defense also helps VJax. We're down 8 top wide receivers because of bye weeks. Looking at the other guys in this range we have Garcon, Fitzgerald, Keenan Allen... none whom have been consistent. Only one of Desean and Garcon seems to go off each week -- we'll see if RG3 can throw enough for both them and Jordan Reed. Fitzgerald only has 2 good games on the year. We all know how Keenan has been; San Diego has Gates/Royal/Floyd to spread to. The floor is pretty low with everyone outside the top 13 this week, even Terrence Williams, who has 2 catches or less in 5 of 8 games this year (not to mention Romo being questionable). This should be a low scoring week at WR across the board.

You seem to think highly of Michael Floyd moving forward.. But why?
Floyd is still the best fantasy receiver in Arizona is most experts eyes. I attribute Floyd's slump entirely to Palmer being out, and Palmer has been getting better each week in terms of both health and fantasy purposes. It looks to be evening out a little between Fitzgerald and John Brown, but you shouldn't go running for the hills when someone puts up a 0. It's part of the variance in fantasy football, especially at the WR position. Even Calvin Johnson put up 4 games of 50 yards or less last season. Floyd has the talent and will be playing on nearly every snap, the second of which is more important and can't be said about John Brown. That said, Arizona does has a rough schedule coming up, so I understand a little concern. But I like Floyd ROS in the same range of (if not a little higher than) Keenan Allen, Golden Tate, Desean Jackson, Roddy White, and Rueben Randle. I would put Floyd below Vincent Jackson, Steve Smith, and Andre Johnson though.

Any thoughts on Denard Robinson and Sanu? Can we trust Denard to keep performing?
Denard looks like he's secured the starting role in Jacksonville. Neither Storm Johnson or Toby Gerhart have been threatening. I'm not very high on Sanu with AJ Green returning. Sanu is an obvious sell high candidate in my book. We just haven't seen him produce when AJ Green is on the field. Sure, Sanu has improved from last year, but in 2013 when Green was around, Sanu posted just 455 yards and 2 TDs in 16 games. I have much less faith in Sanu than Denard for the rest of the season.


(1) Why are the flex charts inconsistent with the RB and WR charts?
This happens because flex is an after thought for many experts.  Less experts submit rankings to Fantasypros, and they're not graded on them. Flex tiers are always one of the more debatable charts.

(2) How accurate are these tiers?
Here is a link to last year's accuracy.

(3) When do you update the charts?
Every day. Check the last updated timestamp.