Pro Football Focus has released another in their series of signature stats this week called yards per route run. It is exactly what it sounds like it is. A receiver runs x amount of routes in a year, he gains y amount of yards, you divide the yards by the routes and you get yards per route run.
Today, we'll look at their work on tight ends, where I think this stat is particularly interesting. Unlike WRs, TEs have important jobs other than running routes and catching passes. So yards/route seems to me to be an interesting measure of how involved a TE is in the passing game, how often he's getting open, is he actually making the catch, does his QB trust him and of course is he getting YAC. That said, and this is really the case with most football stats, it's also depends your QB as well.
The study spans three years and the guys are the top are pretty much who you would expect. Graham, Gronkowski, Gates, Davis, Witten etc. While Brent Celek isn't at the top of the measure, he's still top ten. At 1.80 yards per route, he's 9th in the NFL over the last 3 seasons. He's gained the 6th most yards among TEs over the last seasons and ran the 9th most routes.
Oh and remember when we used to debate whether Brent Celek was a better player than Chris Cooley... yeah that debate is obviously over. However, we can probably start a new one about him and Fred Davis. Davis is 12th in the league at 1.76 yards per route.