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Surprising Stats: Week 9

  • By Brandon Lee
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I'm pretty sure I can't surprise you after we all saw the glory of Nick Mullens and his three touchdowns in primetime. But hey, what a fun reminder of why we love the game...

Luckily for all of us, there's a lot of football left to get played in Week 9. Here are some stats you should keep in mind.

Chicago Bears at Buffalo Bills

Allen Robinson missed Week 8 with a groin injury. However, he played on at least 73 percent of the Bears offensive snaps in every other game this year. On the season, he has 25 catches for 285 yards and two touchdowns. Tarik Cohen, Taylor Gabriel, and Trey Burton have more receiving yards than Robinson. Starting in Week 4, Mitchell Trubisky averaged 20.8 completions, 305.8 passing yards, and 3.3 touchdowns per game.

Nick Mullens threw three touchdowns in his NFL debut as a San Francisco 49er on Thursday Night Football. The Buffalo Bills quarterbacks have combined for three touchdowns all season heading into Week 9.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers

O.J. Howard played on 70 percent of the team's offensive snaps in Weeks 1 through 3 with Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. From Weeks 5 through 8 with Jameis Winston under center, he played in 60 percent of the team's snaps. Howard's most productive fantasy game was with Fitzpatrick at quarterback in Week 2 when he caught three of his four targets for 96 yards and a touchdown. Reminder: Howard's Week 4 goose egg was due to a knee injury that he sustained in the second quarter of the game.

D.J. Moore played on 71 percent of the Panthers offensive snaps in Week 8 while Torrey Smith sat out due to a knee injury. Prior to Week 8, the rookie first-round pick hadn't played on more than 49 percent of the snaps. With the additional playing time, Moore caught five passes for 90 yards and carried the ball twice for 39 yards. That one game accounted for 35.2 percent of his total yardage on the season. Torrey Smith is out again for Week 9.

Kansas City Chiefs at Cleveland Browns

The last time Patrick Mahomes faced Baker Mayfield it was October 22, 2016. In that game, the two combined for 1,279 passing yards, the most ever in a college football game. Mahomes set the FBS record with 734 passing yards and 819 total yards of offense.

However, Mayfield threw seven touchdowns and his team won 66-59. On that day, Mayfield was a Sooner and Mahomes was at Texas Tech.

New York Jets at Miami Dolphins

Elijah McGuire hasn't played a down of football this year. He's been on IR since having foot surgery in early August. He returned to practice last week and is expected to be activated in Week 9 at Miami. In Week 2, Bilal Powell (neck, injured reserve) caught five passes for 74 yards and a touchdown against the Dolphins. Isaiah Crowell has 10 receptions for 82 yards in eight games this year.

Ryan Tannehill sprained his AC joint and has already missed three consecutive games due to the shoulder injury. Since Week 5, Kenyan Drake has the sixth most receptions among running backs (17) and has the sixth most fantasy points in PPR formats.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens

James Conner is on pace for 1,369 rushing yards, 738 receiving yards, and 20.6 total touchdowns. Le'Veon Bell has never rushed for over 1,361 yards in a season. 2014 is the only year Bell posted more than 655 receiving yards. And, Bell has never scored more than 11 touchdowns in a single season. Meanwhile, Conner has nine touchdowns in seven games.

Rookie tight end Hayden Hurst scored his first NFL touchdown in Week 8 after battling back from a foot injury. He was the Ravens' No. 1 pick the 2018 NFL draft. In that same game, fellow rookie tight end, Mark Andrews, saw five targets and caught four of them for 31 yards. The Pittsburgh Steelers allow the second most fantasy points to opposing tight ends in PPR formats.

Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings

Jim Bob Cooter became the offensive coordinator midway through the 2015 season. That year, they passed on 65.6 percent of the team's offensive snaps, the most in the league. In 2016, they passed on 64.6 percent of their snaps, the third most. In 2017, 62.9 percent, the second most. This year they are passing on 62.7 percent of their snaps, which is 13th in the league. Over the last three weeks, the Lions only passed on 55.6 percent of their offensive snaps, the 11th fewest. And, this week they traded away their most targeted player, Golden Tate.

On the season, Laquon Treadwell has more targets (37) than Calvin Ridley (35) and Tyler Lockett (33). Treadwell scored 52.6 fantasy points in PPR formats in eight games with that volume. Ridley and Lockett have only played in seven games, and both scored 103.5 fantasy points.

Atlanta Falcons at Washington Redskins

Only once all season has Austin Hooper seen less than four targets in a game. He has the sixth most receptions among tight ends. He is the eighth highest scoring tight end in PPR formats, the fifth highest scoring in the last four weeks, despite having a bye week in Week 8.

Alex Smith has been on the field for 100 percent of the team's snaps. Josh Doctson has been on the field the second most, at 87 percent of the snaps (although he missed Week 5). And then it's Paul Richardson, who's been on the field for 76 percent of the team's snaps (although he missed Week 7). Not once has Smith been a top-10 fantasy quarterback this year. Not once has Doctson or Richardson been a top-25 fantasy wide receiver. And yet this team is 5-2, leading the NFC East, and tied for the fifth best record in the NFL.

Houston Texans at Denver Broncos

Two NFL players have over 400 catches and 40 receiving touchdowns since 2014: Antonio Brown and DeAndre Hopkins. The Texans' newest acquisition, Demaryius Thomas, has 389 catches and 27 receiving touchdowns over that same period.

Case Keenum appeared in 10 games for the Texans from 2012 to 2014. In those games, he threw for 2,195 yards, scored 11 touchdowns, and tossed eight interceptions. He heads into this game averaging 263.8 yards per game, with 10 passing touchdowns to 10 interceptions. He's thrown at least one interception in every game this year.

Los Angeles Chargers at Seattle Seahawks

Tyrell Williams has played in 332 of the team's 427 offensive snaps (78 percent). Mike Williams has been on the field for 65 percent of the team's snaps. Over the last three games, Tyrell Williams scored more fantasy points in PPR formats than both Melvin Gordon and Philip Rivers.

The Seattle Seahawks decided to part ways with Brandon Marshall this week. Meanwhile, David Moore played in 71 percent of the team's snaps in Week 8 coming out of their Week 7 bye. Moore scored four touchdowns in the Seahawks' last three games. Moore is a seventh-round pick from the 2017 draft. He had zero receptions in one game played last year.

Los Angeles Rams at New Orleans Saints

Robert Woods, Brandin Cooks, and Cooper Kupp (even after missing two games due to injury) are all top-25 PPR fantasy wide receivers. If you disregard Week 6 when Kupp suffered his injury, he scored double-digit PPR fantasy points in every game this year. Woods only missed that mark in Week 1. Cooks missed it in Weeks 5 and 6.

Michael Thomas averages 8.3 catches for 95.6 yards per game this season. He's scored four touchdowns this year, all but one at home. Since 2016, only two wide receivers have over 250 catches and over 3,000 receiving yards: Antonio Brown and Michael Thomas.

Green Bay Packers at New England Patriots

Week 8 was the first time all year that Aaron Jones was on the field for more snaps than Jamaal Williams. Jones carried the ball 12 times for 86 yards and a touchdown. The New England Patriots have only allowed one 100-plus yard rusher all season (Kerryon Johnson in Week 3) and only three total rushing touchdowns. QB Mitchell Trubisky scored one of them.

Julian Edelman has at least seven catches, 100-plus receiving yards, and/or a touchdown in each of the four games played this year. He is the 11th highest scoring wide receiver in PPR formats from Weeks 5 through 8. He has eight more targets than Josh Gordon over the last four games and has scored 19.7 more fantasy points than Gordon in this span.

Tennessee Titans at Dallas Cowboys

Corey Davis' 56 targets are tied for the 23rd most among wide receivers. Of all wide receivers with at least 50 targets on the season, Davis has the absolute fewest PPR fantasy points.

Cole Beasley caught 33 passes for 350 yards and two touchdowns so far this season. With the Raiders, Amari Cooper only caught 22 passes for 280 yards and one touchdown. Cooper has the same number of scores and only 90 more yards than rookie Michael Gallup, despite Gallup surpassing a single catch in only two games in his entire career.