As we gear up to the start of the NFL season, Football Absurdity is going to bring you a comprehensive breakdown of every notable player that will be available in fantasy football drafts. We only look at the past three seasons for a player. Last season, we saw the Ryan Tannehill Redemption Arc come to its logical conclusion: Derrick Henry running the football 30+ times per game. Now we get a whole season of Ryan Tannehill in Tennessee. Should we print the shirts that say “Ryan Tannehill is a Top Ten Quarterback?” Or will the Titans die on this Tanne-Hill? What could we expect from Ryan Tannehill in 2020 fantasy football?
Ryan Tannehill ADP and AAV:
Draft Price: QB19, 135 overall
Average Auction Value: $2
Ryan Tannehill Statistics:
Tannehill missed 2017 recovering from an ACL injury that occurred in the preseason
(aDOT+ is the QB’s average depth of target compared to league average)
Ryan Tannehill Overview:
If I could pick one word to describe Ryan Tannehill’s 2019 campaign, it would be “unsustainable.” There isn’t much about what he did that can roll forward to sustainable production in 2019. His career yards per attempt through 2018, for example, sat at 7 yards per attempt, flat. Last season, it was 9.6. Since 2000, only three QBs have had yards per attempt over 9.5 in the last twenty seasons: 2000 Kurt Warner and 2018 Ryan Fitzpatrick. Warner is in the Hall of Fame with a 7.9 yards per attempt over his career, and Fitzmagic sits below Tanny at 6.9 yards per attempt in his career. 2001 Kurt Warner dropped down over a yard per attempt, and 2019 Ryan Fitzpatrick dropped 2.6 yards per attempt. The 9.6 yards per attempt is just… unsustainable from Ryan Tannehill.
There’s also Tannehill’s obscene touchdown production. No, he never pulled A Disgusting Act, but you can’t reasonably expect his touchdown rate to continue its historic, unprecedented pace. Last year, 7.7% of Ryan Tannehill’s passed turned into touchdowns. That’s about one out of every thirteen passes; his career average prior to last season was 4.2% or just over one touchdown per 20 passes. To put it a different way: Ryan Tannehill threw about ten “extra” touchdowns last season compared to his career rate. To put it a different way: the active leaders in touchdown rate are Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes, and neither is at 7.7%. Russell Wilson and Aaron Rodgers have the best TD rate of guys who have been around awhile, and theirs is just 6%.
Since 2000, quarterbacks had a 7%+ passing TD rate twenty times. Their average TD rate the following season was 5.2%. Aaron Rodgers was the only player to repeat the feat. It’s purely unsustainable.
Ryan Tannehill Draft Strategy:
Luckily, all those bad vibes from Tannehill’s unsustainable production are built into his draft price. He’s going for $2 in an auction and as QB19 off the board in redraft leagues. At those prices, even a regressed Ryan Tannehill is worth a shot just to see how long this unsustainable production goes. If you get him as your second (or third) quarterback in 2QB leagues, that’s a perfect spot for him. In 1QB leagues, he isn’t at a premium, so he’s well worth using one of your last picks on him if you want to ride the Tannecoaster one more time. Personally, however, I’m going Drew Lock (QB21) or Joe Burrow (QB22) if I’m taking a late-round flier at quarterback.
Best Case Scenario:
Ryan Tannehill’s unsustainable production is just his new normal, and by new normal, I mean “A.J. Brown does all the hard work, and he’s amazing, and Ryan Tannehill goes along for the ride.”
Worst Case Scenario:
Ryan Tannehill has five seasons of at least 13 starts and in all those seasons he has at least 12 interceptions. That works as a good start in the picks department. I guess worst-case scenario is “remembering that he is Ryan Tannehill.”
[Header Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8c/Ryan_Tannehill_2019_10-13.jpg under CC-SA 4.0]
[Statistics are sourced from pro-football-reference.com and airyards.com]