Goal-Line Guide Week 17
For the fantasy football championships, Goal-Line Guide Week 17 can be a useful tool to help predict touchdowns.
The Goal-Line Guide series takes a look at touchdown production from inside the 5-yard line. With an equal emphasis placed on both offensive and defensive efficiency, the goal of the guide is meant to determine which teams are most likely to score touchdowns on a weekly basis, and also how they will score. As you will notice in the table below, I divide my Goal-Line Grades into separate Rushing and Passing scores.
The method for which I use to create these Goal-line Grades is as follows. First, I look at each offenses’ touchdown production inside their opponent’s 5-yard line. An important facet is the fact that I split these numbers into rushing and passing touchdowns.
Next, I look at each team’s defenses. Specifically, how often those units allow touchdowns inside their own 5-yard line. Again, this is divided into rushing and passing plays. Then I pair the matchups, with each team’s offense alongside their opponent’s defense for that week.
After that, I add in each offense’s implied total set by the oddsmakers. The logic there is the teams with the highest projected point totals are most likely to be in the red zone more often, and naturally more likely to score more touchdowns.
Finally, next to each team’s grades, I created a column indicating the disparity between each offense’s running and passing scores. I also showcase which phase has the better chance of producing touchdowns. All of those steps combined create the Goal-Line Grades that you are about see.
Goal-Line Guide Week 17
|Team||Rushing GLG||Passing GLG||Difference|
|Arizona Cardinals||70||46.5||Run + 23.5|
|Atlanta Falcons||68||72||Pass + 4|
|Baltimore Ravens||56.75||58.75||Pass + 2|
|Buffalo Bills||67||67.5||Pass + 0.5|
|Carolina Panthers||60.75||50.75||Run + 10|
|Chicago Bears||67.75||59.25||Run + 8.5|
|Cincinnati Bengals||59||59.5||Pass + 0.5|
|Cleveland Browns||57.5||45.5||Run + 12|
|Dallas Cowboys||71||77.5||Pass + 6.5|
|Denver Broncos||64||47||Run + 17|
|Detroit Lions||69.75||91.25||Pass + 21.5|
|Green Bay Packers||66||64||Run + 2|
|Houston Texans||65.25||56.25||Run + 9|
|Indianapolis Colts||66.25||46.75||Run + 19.5|
|Jacksonville Jaguars||61.5||61||Run + 0.5|
|Kansas City Chiefs||75||75.5||Pass + 0.5|
|Las Vegas Raiders||56.75||54.25||Run + 2.5|
|Los Angeles Chargers||60||55.5||Run + 4.5|
|Los Angeles Rams||72||42.5||Run + 29.5|
|Miami Dolphins||59.5||64.5||Pass + 5.5|
|Minnesota Vikings||65||68.5||Pass + 3.5|
|New England Patriots||60||61||Pass + 1|
|New Orleans Saints||58.5||64||Pass + 5.5|
|New York Giants||70.25||60.75||Run + 9.5|
|New York Jets||54||58.5||Pass + 4.5|
|Philadelphia Eagles||84.5||47.5||Run + 37|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||71.25||43.75||Run + 27.5|
|San Francisco 49ers||75.75||61.75||Run + 14|
|Seattle Seahawks||64||63.5||Run + 0.5|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||73||84.75||Pass + 11.75|
|Tennessee Titans||67.5||70||Pass + 2.5|
|Washington Commanders||60.5||49||Run + 11.5|
The Biggest Differences
Rushing Goal-Line Grade: 84.5
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Passing Goal-Line Grade: 47.5
Between their Rushing and Passing Goal-Line Grades, the Eagles have a +37 differential favoring the ground game. That is the largest disparity for one team since Week 11. This has as much to do with Philadelphia’s offense as it does the matchup against the Saints. The Eagles have produced touchdowns on 50% of their carries inside opponents’ 5-yard-line, but only a 18% passing touchdown efficiency from that same area. Meanwhile, New Orleans has allowed a league-high 69% touchdown rate on carries near the goal-line. Yet opponent’s passing touchdown rate drop to 27% on throws inside the Saints 5-yard line. With a Rushing Goal-Line Grade of 84.5, the Eagles ground attack is the only one in week 17 with a score above 76.
What we get is a Philadelphia offense that could rely heavily on their running backs, especially if Gardner Minshew gets his second start in a row at quarterback. The difficulty with the Eagles is that they give goal-line rushing attempts to all of their main ball carriers. Any or all of Kenneth Gainwell, Miles Sanders or Boston Scott could score a rushing touchdown. Even Minshew found the end zone last week on a carry inside the 5-yard line. Of the running backs however, Sanders is the only one I would feel confident in starting during the fantasy football championships.
Los Angeles Rams
Rushing Goal-Line Grade: 72
Passing Goal-Line Grade: 42.5
For Week 17, the Rams have the lowest overall Goal-line Grade with a score of 42.5 for their arial attack. The lack of receiving threats, and a solid offensive line has lead to a low-output Rams passing game. They have only produced touchdown on 31% of their passing attempts. Compare that to a 67% success rate on goal-line rushes, and the recipe is there for the Rams to succeed on the ground.
Entering the fantasy football championships, Cam Akers is the only Rams I player I trust to be in starting lineups. After an mostly disappointing season, Akers has been resurgent of late as he has taken full control of the Rams backfield. Against the Chargers secondary, I do not want to play any Rams involved in the passing game for this Week 17 matchup.
Rushing Goal-Line Grade: 71.25
Passing Goal-Line Grade: 43.75
With a Rushing Goal-Line Grade of 43.75, the Steelers have the 2nd worst score of the week, only slightly ahead of the Rams. And like the Rams, it should be advantageous for Pittsburgh to run the football near the goal line. Certainly, that has been the case for most of the season as the Steelers have a 63% touchdown rate on rushing attempts inside the 5-yard line. On the other end of the spectrum, Pittsburgh has produced passing touchdowns on only 29% of throws near the opponent’s goal-line.
Similarly to the aforementioned Rams, running back is the way I want to go in Week 17 with Najee Harris. The less-than-potent Pittsburgh passing attack has prevented massive fantasy production for the team’s receivers. Without access to a high ceiling, I would prefer to look elsewhere at the wide receiver position. Pat Freiermuth at tight end is probably to only exposure I want to this passing game.
Rushing Goal-Line Grade: 70
Passing Goal-Line Grade: 46.5
The Cardinals +23.5 Goal-Line Grade differential favoring the run game has as much to do with Arizona itself as it does the matchup against the Falcons. For the Cardinals, they have scored touchdowns on 47% of their rushing attempts inside opponents’ 5-yard line, but only 25% of passing plays from that area. Looking at Atlanta’s allowed touchdown rate near the goal line, it is 56% on the ground, but only 31% through the air.
The main takeaway is that James Conner should be a strong start in Week 17. However, with the low Passing Goal-Line Grade, and the quarterback uncertainty, it may be difficult to play any Arizona pass-catchers. I would still be willing to start DeAndre Hopkins, however, Hollywood may be difficult to trust. Since returning from injury, Marquise Brown has not yet hit double-digit fantasy points. Without much of a ceiling, I would attempt to look for other options than Brown in the fantasy football championships.
Rushing Goal-Line Grade: 69.75
Passing Goal-Line Grade: 91.25
In Week 17, the four biggest differences in Goal-Line Grades belong to teams that favor the ground game. Among teams with a better passing score, the Lions lead the way with a +21.5 disparity. In fact, Detroit has the highest overall Goal-Line Grade with 91.25 for their arial attack. That is actually the best Goal-Line Grade since Week 11. Arguably the main reason for this is actually the matchup. The Bears defense has surrendered touchdowns on 70% of passing attempts inside their own 5-yard line. That is the highest rate in the league.
For fantasy football purposes, Amon-Ra St. Brown is most likely locked into starting lineups every week. This is no different as St. Brown has legitimate top 10 upside at the wide receiver position. One could say the same thing about Jared Goff at quarterback, especially when playing in Detroit. Goff’s home and road splits are quite extreme. Since they are hosting the Bears, I expect another great performance out of the Lions quarterback.
Thank you for reading Goal-Line Guide Week 17. Be sure to check out all of the great NFL content available on Full Press Coverage.
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