Fantasy Football Toolbox: Depth Charts and Schedules

It’s the 2018 NFL Season, and @MSilbanalytics is back! Full rankings should be expected over the next few days – 1 week, but I’ll start off by sharing some of the data I’ve collected to build a Fantasy Football Toolbox.

Depth Charts: The big advancement in my 2018 projection models is including team depth charts to add an element of passes/rushes/targets. The struggle here is that it’s incredibly difficult to track down historical depth charts. As an assumption, the lead rusher (by carries) for a team each week will be determined to be the #1 RB, the lead receiver (by targets) for a team each week will be #1 WR or #1 TE, and so on.

Schedules: On top of depth charts, this year I’ll be implementing schedule impact on individual games and individual positions. Luckily, schedules are easier to come across, but I only went back to 2016 to stay consistent with the depth chart data that we have.

See the google sheet below (hopefully embedding works – LINK)

Technical Tools: For those interested, I used python to extract this data. You wold 100% hate your life if you tried to get this information manually. More detail:

  • Jupyter Notebooks: Python IDE (user interface)
  • URLlib + BeautifulSoup (html extraction)
  • Pandas (I like dataframes better than tables)
  • NumPy (to do math)
  • RE (to work with text)
  • OrderedDict (unordered would be nonsense)
  • csv (to make csv files).

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