Fantasy Football Stat of the Day: The 2020 leaders in yards per drive


(Leading up to the 2021 NFL season, FTN’s Tyler Loechner will dive into the fantasy football numbers to bring you his Fantasy Stat of the Day, five days a week.)

Tuesday, we took a look at which teams had the most drives during the 2020 season. The gist is that more drives means more chances to score fantasy points. Of course, not all drives are equal, and not every team is as successful as turning those opportunities into actual points.

Today’s Stat of the Day will attempt to add some more context to our drive-based stats. We’re going to look at the teams that gained the most yards per drive. These are the teams that actually made the most of their opportunities.

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The Chiefs lapped the field in yards per drive, but the Raiders and Panthers are the surprises in the top 10

Here are the top 10 teams from last season ranked by their average yards per drive: 

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Team Yards Per Drive
Kansas City Chiefs 37.5
Green Bay Packers 36.4
Tennessee Titans 36.1
Houston Texans 34.8
Indianapolis Colts 34.2
Cleveland Browns 34.2
Buffalo Bills 34.1
Las Vegas Raiders 34.1
Los Angeles Chargers 33.8
Carolina Panthers 33.2

A few thoughts:

  • The Texans have a chance to go from top-five to bottom-fiveThe Texans ranked fourth in the league last year with 34.8 yards per drive, smack in the middle of a bunch of playoff teams. Yet they went 4-12 last season and have lost their most explosive player (Will Fuller) and possibly their quarterback (Deshaun Watson’s fate is TBD). They won’t sniff 34.8 yards per drive in 2021 if Watson misses time, and they aren’t likely to reach that number even if he plays the full season because Fuller was their biggest threat.
  • The Raiders are a surprise team in the top 10. The Raiders ranked in the top 10 in total points last season, so perhaps it’s no surprise to see them in the top 10 in this stat as well, but their offense packs more of a punch than most people think. With Henry Ruggs entering year two and the addition of a playmaker in Kenyan Drake, the Raiders are an under-the-radar team for an offensive leap in 2021. The question is whether Derek Carr is capable of leading them for that jump.
  • The Panthers were an efficient offense, and now they get the best offensive player in football back. The 5-11 Panthers ranked 24th in points scored last season but 10th in yards per drive — a big disconnect. The team was capable of moving the ball down the field, and in 2021 they should upgrade in two spots: At QB (with Sam Darnold) and among their skill players (a healthy Christian McCaffrey). The Panthers offense is one you want to invest in for fantasy this year — and heavily.

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