Coaching Time: Best And Worst Play-Callers For Each Skill-Position

Eli Grabanski looks at offensive-minded head coaches and offensive coordinators that could have a significant impact on fantasy value.

Best Coaches for Running Backs (Pass Game)


Rank RB Room Targets RB Room Receiving Yards RB Room Receiving TDs % of Pass Attempts to RB
1 Scott Turner – WAS OC Scott Turner – WAS OC Eric Bieniemy – KC OC Shane Steichen – LAC OC
2 Shane Steichen – LAC OC Shane Steichen – LAC OC Anthony Lynn – LAC HC Scott Turner – WSH OC
3 Pete Carmichael – NOR OC Pete Carmichael – NOR OC Shane Steichen – LAC OC Pete Carmichael – NOR OC
4 Sean Payton – NOR HC Anthony Lynn – LAC HC Matt LaFleur – GB HC

Matt Nagy – CHI HC

Kliff Kingsbury – AZ HC

Anthony Lynn – LAC HC
5 Doug Marrone – JAX HC Sean Payton – NOR HC  (See Above) Sean Payton – NOR HC


Highest RB Room Targets



Highest RB Room Receiving Yards



Highest RB Room Receiving Touchdowns



Highest % of Targets to RB




  • Man his small sample size of four games is making Washington offensive coordinator Scott Turner look like the best or worst coach in the league in a lot of these categories. Here he ranks in the top five of targets, receiving yards, and percentage of passing attempts to running backs. Take it with a huge grain of salt, these numbers are because of Christian McCaffrey, not Scott Turner.
  • You’ve gotta love how often the Chargers (Anthony Lynn & Shane Steichen) and Saints (Sean Payton & Pete Carmichael) coaches show up on these ranks. You should feel very confident in investing in both of these teams running backs in PPR formats.
  • Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone rounds out the top five in targets to running backs…interestingly enough he worked with Sean Payton in the past.
  • Chris Thompson could get a lot of opportunities if Marrone puts his stamp on the offense.
  • Packers head coach Matt LaFleur, Bears head coach Matt Nagy, and Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury all tied for fourth-best in running back receiving touchdowns per game.
  • Matt Nagy has tended to split the passing and running work between his running backs, giving most of the passing work to Tarik Cohen.
  • So Matt LaFleur and Kliff Kingsbury rank highly in both the RB rushing touchdowns and RB receiving touchdowns per game lists. This can be taken as either a positive or negative depending on the narrative you want to push.
    • Positive: Means that Kenyan Drake and Aaron Jones fantasy owners could score more touchdowns and have more touchdown opportunities than other running backs around their ADPs
    • Negative: If Kenyan Drake and Aaron Jones don’t see these high touchdowns per game ratios, it may be difficult for them to live up to their high ADPs.


Worst Coaches for Running Backs (Pass Game)


Rank RB Room Targets RB Room Receiving Yards RB Room Receiving TDs % of Pass Attempts to RB
1 Greg Roman – BAL OC Greg Roman – BAL OC Scott Turner – WAS OC Greg Roman – BAL OC
2 Arthur Smith – TEN OC Arthur Smith – TEN OC Kevin Stefanski – CLE HC Arthur Smith – TEN OC
3 Gary Kubiak – MIN OC Gary Kubiak – MIN OC Kevin O’Connell – LAC OC Bill O’Brien – HOU HC
4 Tim Kelly – HOU OC Brian Daboll – BUF OC

Tim Kelly – HOU OC

Jon Gruden – LV HC Brian Callahan – CIN OC
5 Bill O’Brien – HOU HC (See Above) Greg Olson – LV OC Gary Kubiak – MIN OC


Lowest RB Room Targets



Lowest RB Room Receiving Yards



Lowest RB Room Receiving Touchdowns



Lowest % of Targets to RB





  • Very interesting to see a few of these names appear on the fewest number of targets list
  • Many of these coaches utilize their running backs pretty heavily on the ground, so the side effect of that is that they opt not to use their running backs through the air as much.
  • Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman’s lack of usage of running backs in the passing game was very disappointing…makes me more hesitant to invest in J.K. Dobbins or Mark Ingram in PPR formats this year.
  • Also very interesting to see both Texans head coach Bill O’Brien and their offensive coordinator Tim Kelly appear on the least targets list…David Johnson‘s main value comes from his receiving ability and considering he already has to split time with Duke Johnson in this realm, fantasy players may face frustration week-to-week if there isn’t significant changes in the offense.
  • New Vikings offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak appears in the bottom five of RB room targets, RB room receiving yards, and % of pass attempts to RB…so while Dalvin Cook‘s rushing output will remain similar to when Kevin Stefanski was the offensive coordinator, he’s going to receive slightly less receiving work this year.
  • Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith had his offense rank in the bottom two of RB room targets, RB room receiving yards, and % of pass attempts to RB. Based on the success of the offensive system that ran through Derrick Henry, it’s unlikely that this changes much in 2020, and the Titans running backs lose some value in PPR leagues.
  • Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll ranking in the bottom five of RB room receiving yards may limit Devin Singletary and Zack Moss from reaching their true ceilings.
  • The Las Vegas Raiders have both head coach Jon Gruden and offensive coordinator Greg Olson in the bottom 5 of receiving touchdowns…Josh Jacobs will just have to settle for getting his touchdowns on the ground.
  • Don’t be too worried about Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski being so low in the receiving touchdowns category…he’s still above average overall at getting his RBs scoring opportunities (1.105 touchdowns per game), he just prefers to get his running backs touchdowns on the ground rather than through the air.

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