Early Look at Offenses on the Rise in 2023 for Best Ball

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There are so many best ball strategies to consider to gain an edge. One truly simple strategy that I think is not discussed enough is prioritizing stacking top offenses. Seems simple right? We want as many players from teams that score the most points and gain the most yards.

A lot of successful best ball teams last year stacked the Chiefs, Eagles, Vikings, Dolphins, Lions, Cowboys, etc. Basically, most top 2022 best ball teams got some access to multiple top-12 offenses last season. We discussed in our recent Sibling Showdown Best Ball Strategy show about targeting top offenses.

So let’s look at 2022 results for the top offenses in the league. We used ProFootball Reference for all this key data.

Data to look at from the 2022 season for top offenses (per ProFootballReference):

-TDs

-Points

-Yards

Top scoring offenses in 2022:

Data from https://www.pro-football-reference.com/years/2022/

 

 

 

 

Top offenses in yards gained in 2022:

Data from https://www.pro-football-reference.com/years/2022/

 

 

 

As you can see, a lot of the same teams as I mentioned in the intro are on both lists, and these were teams you wanted to have access to in your 2022 best ball lineups.

 

Of course, I’ll be targeting the top offenses from last year that everyone is targeting, like the Chiefs, Eagles, Jaguars, Lions, Bills, etc. But how do we find the offenses on the rise like the Jaguars and Lions last year? We mentioned this in the show, but we have to look for more data points. Like Red Zone opportunities/Red Zone conversion rate.

 

Top Red Zone Attempts in 2022:

Data from https://www.pro-football-reference.com/years/2022/.

 

 

Top Red Zone Conversions in 2022:

Data from https://www.pro-football-reference.com/years/2022/

As you can see, there are a lot of top offenses that are on both lists again. This makes sense, because that means they gave themselves an opportunity to score and converted at a high rate. But to find an offense that could be on the rise, look at teams that had high red zone attempts but a lower conversion rate. If they can improve their red zone conversion rate this year, they could become a top offense this season.

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Besides looking at Redzone attempts and conversions, we should look at changes to the offense to find last year’s Lions and Jaguars. There are several offseason moves that can catapult offenses to be much more successful.

Here are factors we identified as a signal to be an offense on the rise for the upcoming season:

-Changes in coaching staff or play callers

-NFL Draft or Free Agency additions

-Growth in the offense

-Bounce back from injuries

-Redzone attempts (lower conversion rate – if improved could make them a top offense)

-Strength of schedule (based on opponent’s 2022 win % per CBS Sports)

 

Considering all these factors, here are five teams I’m targeting that I think the offense could outperform last season’s results this season and catapult themselves to be a top-10 offense in 2023.

 

Offenses on the Rise to Target:

-Los Angeles Chargers:

-Changes in coaching staff or play callers – Kellen Moore came over from the Cowboys and is now the Chargers’ OC. As you can see from the data, the Cowboys were a top offense in 2022 even with QB Dak Prescott missing time. I think this is a huge upgrade for QB Justin Herbert and this offense.

-NFL Draft or Free Agency additions – The addition of another big-bodied, fast receiver in the NFL Draft in Quentin Johnston, which really bolsters the receiving core.

-Bounce back from injuries – Both of the Chargers’ top receivers (Keenan Allen and Mike Williams) missed time and the LT Rashawn Slater was a very impactful injury. Those injuries turned the LA into a dink-and-dunk offense.

-Redzone attempts vs. conversion rate – Austin Ekeler was the only Chargers’ piece you needed in 2022. The Chargers were a top-10 offense in 2022 in terms of yards gained. But were outside the top 10 in scoring due to their weaker red zone conversion rate. As you can see by the charts above, the Bolts ranked 5th in red zone attempts in 2022. If they can improve their RZ conversion rate, the scoring should really rise, which of course helps fantasy points.

 

-Denver Broncos:

-Changes in coaching staff or play callers – This one is easy. This is simply addition minus subtraction getting rid of Nathaniel Hackett who was miserable as the Broncos’ head coach. And then the addition of Sean Payton as the new head coach. He is an innovator on offense, and I really believe he can turn this offense around quickly.

-Bounce back from injuries – The Broncos had several impactful injuries, including their top receivers, RB Javonte Williams, TE Greg Dulchich and QB Russell Wilson missed a couple of games as well.

 

-New York Jets:

-NFL Draft or Free Agency additions – This one is also very easy…Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers is reunited with Nathaniel Hackett as his offensive coordinator. Hackett may have failed as a head coach. But he was the OC in Green Bay during Rodgers’ insanely efficient seasons, winning back-to-back MVPs in 2020 and 2021.

 

-Cleveland Browns:

-Redzone attempts vs. conversion rate – The Browns were a top-12 in red zone attempts in 2022. Just like the Chargers, if they can improve their RZ conversion rate, the scoring should really rise.

-Growth in the offense – After missing the 2021 season and most of 2022, Deshaun Watson now has a full offseason to get on the same page and improve in this offense. They have plenty of talent, but he has to play better for it to be realized.

 

-Atlanta Falcons:

-Redzone attempts vs. conversion rate – I was surprised to see the Falcons ranked 14th in red zone attempts and 15th in RZ conversion % in 2022. While there’s room to grow, that’s impressive for a young team.

-NFL Draft or Free Agency additions – RB Bijan Robinson! This explosive back could be one of the top RBs this season and is being drafted in best ball drafts as such.

-Strength of schedule (based on opponent’s 2022 win % per CBS Sports) – Per CBS and based on 2022 win %, the Falcons have the easiest schedule in the NFL in 2023.

 

 

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