Adrian Peterson, Saints & Bucs fit

I am running a little bit short on players to do fit analysis for since I covered 4 wide receivers in 1 YouTube Video and got the Raiders covered last Friday. Anyway, today I will be looking at Adrian Peterson and how he could fit with 2 of the teams that has been discussed as potential landing spots for him, Tampa Bay and New Orleans. The categories I will be looking at are: YPC per zone, Percentage of Run Plays per Zone, YPR per Area and Percentage of Pass Plays per Area and the numbers are from the last 3 years. The analysis will end with projections based on how well Peterson fits with what the teams do and how many fantasy points we can expect depending on different workloads. Since there is so much to go over I will keep the text a little bit shorter for each segment. Let’s dig in!

This first segment is an explanation how I divide the field into 7 zones and 3 areas so if you are familiar with this you can skip ahead!

First, I have 7 zones that a back can potentially run through, outside the Left TE (LE), outside the Left Tackle (LT), Outside the Left Guard (LG) Between a Guard and the Center (M) and the same for the right side.

RB zones

Secondly, I have 3 areas where you can pass a ball to a running back in. Usually I have 6 areas but seeing as Lacy never has gotten a pass deep only have 3 over the last three years I did not feel it was necessary to showcase them here. The areas are, Short Left, Short Middle and Short Right. From the line of scrimmage down 15 yards and the hash-marks as dividers.


Adrian Peterson & Saints fit

Saints Percentage of Run Plays
The distribution of the runs does not really match up at all when it comes to the Saints. Only one Really Good Fit and while the Zone Peterson is used to seeing most of his runs in is one of the least prioritized by the Saints.

Saints YPC

Peterson would be an upgrade at YPC compared to what the Saints have seen over the last 3 years. This does not really come as a surprise considering who we are talking about here. A good thing with the Center Downgrade is that the Saints don’t typically run that many plays over the middle so it might not impact Peterson too much.

Saints Percentage of Pass Plays

The Saints passing game when targeting Running Backs fits well with Peterson. Both prefer Left, Right and Middle in that order with roughly the same amount of targets as the other one.

Saints YPR

This is where it gets interesting. Peterson is a downgrade in the passing game to the side while he is a massive upgrade in the Middle. The Saints don’t usually pass that much short over the Middle to Running Backs but significantly more than what Peterson is used to. This might actually have an impact on Brees as well!

Adrian Peterson & Buccaneers fit

Buccs Percentage of Run Plays

This is pretty incredible! Peterson and the Bucs have a Good or Really good fit in all Zones! Having a Good Fit in the most focused zone is a good start but then seeing that all other zones also fits well is fantastic. Just by these numbers I believe that the Bucs gained a huge advantage over the Saints.

Buccs YPC

If you watched the previously mentioned Raiders YouTube Video you might recall that Peterson is extremely efficient running to the right zones. This can be seen once again as AP is an upgrade to anything the Bucs have seen over the last three years in those zones.

Bucs Percentage of Pass Plays

The passing has two zones that does not fit at all while the Short Right fits Really Good. This is not that bad until you look below and see that the Peterson’s least productive area is the Short Right. I think Peterson’s receiving production will suffer due to this and seeing as he is not the best to begin with it might be terrible.

Bucs YPR


I have put together two tables below that will outline the production Peterson could have had for the different teams. Before digging into them I want to address the third row in each table. It is the rushing attempts and, targets and RZ carries of Ingram and Doug Martin over 16 games. I used this as a measuring tool to predict a how Peterson potentially could have produced for the different teams last year.

New Orleans Production Projection

If Peterson would have been the number one back in New Orleans last year and given all of Ingram’s carries and targets he would have ended up as RB 12. This is of course if we assume that he continues to produce in the same way that he has done for the last three years and can stay healthy.

Tampa Bay Production Projection

After seeing this table it is clear to me that I would prefer to draft Adrian Peterson if he went to Tampa Bay and became their number one back! His previous production fits better with the Bucs and he has the chance to produce better fantasy numbers there. Since these numbers assume he can stay healthy I think they are a little bit to optimistic but I think somewhere around RB 20-25 would be a good guess if he goes to Tampa.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have enjoyed it! If you want to discuss the numbers further or have any other players or teams you would like me to do something similar with, hit me up on twitter @qalled

Like and Re-tweet, everything is appreciated!imageedit_1_9253545623

The spreadsheets are dark and full of terror // CSD

photo credit: Kyle Engman Adrian Peterson via photopin (license)

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