The first edition of Spotrac's 2014 Team Value Rankings brings with it plenty of overachieving teams at the top - and long-time powerhouses near the bottom. Keep in mind that these rankings aren't "objective" in the sense that most Power Rankings are. Rather we mathematically combine the weekly production ratings for each player provided by Pro Football Focus, combined with a player's 2014 cap figure, to present the "True Value" for that player throughout the season. A team's total value is the sum of all player's value ratings.
We'll break out the best individual performances, the worst individual performances, and the overall team value rankings through the first quarter of the season.
With that, the Baltimore Ravens find themselves atop our first list, combining above average play from below average-paid players to produce a strong value on the field through four weeks. The Lions, Giants, Colts, and Dolphins round out our current Top 5, with 19 of the 32 teams putting forth a positive value rating thus far.
The bottom portion of our rankings contains a few usual suspects (Jacksonville, Oakland, Tampa Bay), but also a few surprises in New Orleans, New England, and Green Bay.
|34.35||Plenty of low-paid starters, at just about average production.|
|2||21.02||Exceptional value from their secondary outweighs the slow starts from Calvin & Suh.|
|3||20.99||Giants have 11 players with a TVS rating of 2+.|
|4||18.70||They'd be higher if Wallace & Hartline weren't vastly overpaid.|
|5||17.96||Top 5 values include 3 offensive linemen, a running back, and the quarterback. Recipe for success.|
|16.82||While noone stands out good or bad, the Falcons have 20 players with a positive TVS rating.|
|7||San Francisco 49ers
|13.84||7 starters boast TVS ratings of 4+, including Boldin & Kaepernick. More carries for Gore and a turnaround from Vernon Davis can improve their overall value.|
|12.12||A bit of a jaded position, as much of the value comes from the punter (8.11). Key players like Garcon, Trent Williams, and Brian Orakpo stand as their worst values.|
|11.84||Strong starts from WR Michael Floyd and fill-in QB Drew Stanton are offsetting poor play from Patrick Peterson.|
|10.08||Incredible values from DeMarco Murray and Rolando McClain are thwarted by awful starts from the Cowboys' CBs.|
|8.65||Blair Walsh is the best value in the kicking game, as is Harrison Smith in the secondary. Better play from the offensive line can increase value.|
|5.35||Mixed bag of value, starting with J.J. Watt (DE), Derek Newton (RT), Ryan Fitzpatrick (QB), and DeAndre Hopkins (WR).|
|4.35||The best team in football hasn't even yet reached it's valued potential, as higher paid defensive players still look to improve.|
|14||St. Louis Rams
|3.19||Production from special teams and extremely low paid starters at the QB and RB positions are leaving the Rams with not much production necessary to be considered "value".|
|2.79||Similar to Houston, a variety of players are contributing early - including Kawaan Short (DT), Kelvin Benjamin (WR), Melvin White (CB), and Luke Kuechly (LB).|
|16||New York Jets
|2.25||Wilkerson remains one of the most underpaid players in the game, while veterans such as Mangold, David Harris, and D'Brickashaw Ferguson need much more production for their pay.|
|1.72||The most notable Bears are at the bottom of the value list to start the season, including Brandon Marshall (-6.57), Jay Cutler (-7.20), and Matt Forte (-8.54).|
|1.50||9 players with a TVS rating of 2+ are held back slightly by slow starts from Demaryius Thomas, DeMarcus Ware, and the offensive line.|
|19||Kansas City Chiefs
|0.90||The Chiefs countered an awful first two weeks with a better week 3, and a huge week 4. Increased production from Jamaal Charles and anything from Dwayne Bowe will keep this team rising.|
|0.20||A rough overall week 3 combined with well-below-average starts from Donte Whitner and Joe Haden combine for a mediocre value rating for the Browns.|
|0.02||Slow starts from high-paid players such as Lynch, Okung, and Harvin are stunting the Seahawks ranking, despite an adequate 2-1 record.|
|22||-6.21||A bit of a jaded ranking, as the Chargers are being degraded heavily for poor special teams play (both of which are high paid players), and a vastly over paid Eric Weddle.|
|-13.84||The Jaguars have a few strong values going to start the year, including WR Allen Hurns. But their core veteran players are clearly overpaid, including LB Paul Posluszny, TE Marcedes Lewis, and RB Toby Gerhart.|
|-14.35||The Bills might be a Top 15 team if not for DE Mario Williams' -15.04 rating. Horrible starts from G Erik Pears, and CB Leodis McKelvin are also holding Buffalo back at this point.|
|25||Green Bay Packers
|-15.66||Randall Cobb is raising his value in a contract year, while much of the linebacking core falls below the value line to date.|
|-15.89||The Titans best values lie in their weapons, including Delanie Walker, Kendall Wright, and Bishop Sankey. But they're all but thwarted by S Michael Griffin's -12.09, and OG Andy Levitre's -10.34|
|-17.19||No secrets here, as the high-paid LeSean McCoy has yet to break out in 2014. WR Riley Cooper isn't yet producing to the value of his new contract. While much of the pass rush and inside linebacking core are considered great values to start the year.|
|-17.57||An aging, high-paid defense weighs down the Steelers value rating - including Ike Taylor (-3.92), Troy Polamalu (-6.18), Lawrence Timmons (-11.62), and Jason Worilds (-11.70).|
|29||New Orleans Saints
|-17.82||The addition of Jairus Byrd was supposed to take the Saints secondary to the next level. But Byrd and counterpart Kenny Vaccarro combine for a -8 TVS rating. Little production from Marques Colston doesn't help either.|
|-22.77||2014 1st round pick Khalil Mack tops the raiders value chart (4.94). But vastly overpaid non-primary positioned players like Marcel Reece (FB, -17.94), and Sebastian Janikowski (K, -6.30) are holding back the Raiders ability to build this team properly.|
|31||New England Patriots
|-25.73||Anyone have Tom Brady (-5.10) as the Patriots 3rd worst value heading into this season? Toss in Darrelle Revis (-4.43) and Rob Gronkowski (-2.75) and the writing is on the wall here.|
|32||Tampa Bay Buccaneers
|-41.97||At 5.39, Lavonte David is primed for the next big contract in Tampa Bay. Dashon Goldson (S, -11.09) may not make it to the 3rd year of his 5 year contract.|
Many teams are represented more than once, coinciding with their place in the team value rankings below. Rolando McClain came out of retirement to join the Cowboys at a veteran's minimum wage, and has been a dominant force when healthy. The Chargers added Brandon Flowers this offseason at a relatively average $3M cap, after the veteran CB was released as a cap casualty from the Chiefs. DeMarco Murray & Justin Houston are both set to be unrestricted free agents after the season.
|Pos.||Player||Team||2014 Cap||True Value|
Plenty of big names fill out the Worst Values through four weeks.
|Pos.||Player||Team||2014 Cap||True Value|
In order to calculate the True Value Statistic, we first collect the weekly Pro Football Focus rating for each starting player in the NFL.
From there we work positionally, finding the Average PFF rating for all players in a particular position for that week. We also collect the Standard Deviation for this data set.
Subsequently, we find the Average, and Standard Deviation of the 2014 Cap Figure for all players in a particular position.
To normalize this data and prep for calculation, we then find the Z-Score of our Statistical Rating, and the Z-Score of our Financial Rating.
These two Z-Scores are then added to produce a player's current TVS.
Ryan Tannehill's Week 1 PFF rating was 3.2
The average PFF rating of all Week 1 QBs is -0.29
The standard deviation of all Week 1 QBs is 2.78
To find the z-score, we calculate (3.2 - (-.29)) / 2.78 = 1.25
Ryan Tannehill's 2014 cap figure is $3,455,046
The average 2014 cap figure of all Week 1 QBs is $9,174,096
The standard deviation of all Week 1 QBs is $7,097,100
To find the z-score, we calculate (9,174,096 - 3,455,046)/7,097,100 = .805
Tannehill's Week 1 TVS = 2.05