Wide Receiver Rankings

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When you’re looking for a top wideout, chances are you’re hoping for someone who can churn out some serious fantasy points. Likely, the first thing you do is head over to the wide receiver rankings to see who is the best available. 

The Fantasy Footballers can help you make sure that the information you’re working with is as accurate as a projection can get. They take every factor into consideration to give you the best bet when it comes to the most precise wide receiver rankings. 

Sustained Greatness 

While other positions in the realm of fantasy may be a revolving door of names, players at the wideout position have the ability to remain prevalent in fantasy circles. The elites in this position can sit atop the wide receiver rankings for a prolonged period. 

As the NFL rules continue to change, allowing wide receivers to extend their run of dominance, their fantasy relevance lengthens as well. Wideouts such as Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, DeAndre Hopkins, and Odell Beckham are players that have produced at a high level for years on end. These types of players will see little movement within the Fantasy Footballers’ wide receiver rankings on a weekly basis. As these wideouts have shown the ability to be great fantasy options over long periods of time. 

A Marriage Between Scheme & Skill Set 

When a wideout’s skill set matches up perfectly with their offense’s scheme, it is truly a sight to behold. When it doesn’t, it can doom your fantasy roster. When the Fantasy Footballers set their weekly WR rankings they take into consideration how a player is used within their offensive playbook. Is a player a featured target? Do the QB and WR have a rapport capable of finding success? Do they fit within what the team asks for from the receiver position? 

For instance, a wideout can be a complete burner, 4.2 speed and all. Yet it doesn’t matter how wide open he maybe if the QB can’t get the WR the ball. Whether due to limited arm strength, offensive line issues, or other factors, that receiver becomes utterly useless for their team and your fantasy lineup the quarterback can’t connect. 

A prime example of this would be former Ravens WR John Brown. In 2018, Brown’s lone season with the Ravens, he burst onto the scene as his speed lined up perfectly with Joe Flacco’s cannon arm. Throughout the first month of the season, Brown would eclipse 85 yards receiving in all but one game and score three touchdowns. 

However, Brown’s fantasy value would drastically change for the worse once Flacco was benched in favor of Lamar Jackson. From Week 11 on, Brown would compile a whopping eight receptions over the final seven games of 2018, averaging less than 17 ypg. Jackson’s inability to get Brown the ball combined with the Raven’s shift in game plan to a run-first team, turned Brown from a fantasy darling to fantasy irrelevance overnight. 

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John Brown would jump ship following the conclusion of the 2018 season, signing with a team to better fit his abilities. Baltimore would then use a 2019 first-round selection on a talented wide receiver prospect, Hollywood Brown. Oddly enough, the “new” Brown’s attributes align nearly exactly with those of the “old” Brown’s. Unfortunately, Baltimore’s scheme and past transgressions will weigh heavily on Hollywood’s fantasy WR ranking until he shows he can break out of the limitations that Baltimore has bestowed upon their wide receiver position. 

Target Machine 

In the world of fantasy football, opportunity reigns supreme. Players who are featured within their offense will catapult themselves to the top of The Footballer’s wide receiver rankings. 

If you’ve partaken in a fantasy league or two in the past, chances are you’ve seen Antonio Brown’s name atop a few WR rankings between now and then. We all know AB is nearly second to none in terms of talent as a pass-catcher.  Yet, a huge reason for Brown’s placing amongst fantasy royalty is the opportunity. From 2013-2018, Brown did not go a single season without ranking within the top five in the NFL in total targets on a yearly basis. 

Upside & Continued Growth 

Upside can be based on a number of different elements. You can find upside anywhere from age to pure athletic ability, to implementing new schemes, or an influx of new talent placed around a player. 

However, the upside can also only take a player so far in the NFL as well as in wide receiver rankings. If rankings were based purely off of athletic ability and “what a player could be” Sammy Watkins would rank within the top players at his position year in and year out. Ultimately a wideout must build off of his upside and skill set and begin to show growth over an extended period of time. 

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Chris Godwin has been pegged a fantasy darling for the 2019 Fantasy Season. Some of that can be attributed to the hiring of a pass-happy, offensive-minded head coach in Bruce Arians. Yet that is not the main reason why Godwin has earned such high praise. Godwin has shown continued improvement as a route runner, and ability to separate from his defender since entering the league in 2017. 

In return for this growth, he has earned the trust of the quarterback tossing him the rock, regardless of who that quarterback may be. Godwin’s QB-friendly style and attention to detail have allowed his statistical output to continuously grow throughout his career. In return, Godwin’s wide receiver ranking in fantasy has also seen an uptick. 

PPR vs. Standard Scoring 

Julian Edelman may not blow past many defensive backs on a go-route. However, in PPR-scoring formats, he surpasses a plethora of players in positional rankings, many of whom possess more of your typical WR1 traits. Specific skill sets and the way a player is used within an offense simply suits certain scoring settings better than others. Wideouts like Edelman and other slot mavens like Jarvis Landry will see their rankings rise exponentially in PPR formats compared to standard scoring leagues. While wideouts like DeSean Jackson and other one-trick pony speedsters may be more viable to insert in a non-PPR format, as they can accumulate yardage in chunks. 

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The Fantasy Footballers will separate wide receiver rankings based off of the scoring format that best suits your league’s scoring settings. This helps you make the best decisions to formulate a winning team on a weekly basis. 

Red Zone Threat 

Mike Williams of the Los Angeles Chargers has flashed ability since entering the league in 2017 but has not proven to be a complete and reliable player at this level. So how in the world did he rank within the top 20 at his position in standard scoring format for the 2018 season? 

Williams’ reception total may have been putrid compared to other fantasy stalwarts, ranking  84th in the in terms of receptions league-wide, but he proved to be a major threat inside the 20-yard line. His 10 receiving touchdowns in 2018 were good enough to rank him within the top five in the NFL for receiving touchdowns by a wide receiver, a preseason prediction by Andy. 

While Williams’ stats were limited across the board in every other category, his nose for the end zone helped him finish as a viable WR2-WR3 in most standard leagues. No matter what scoring format your league abides by, chances are a wide receiver will always be granted six-points per receiving touchdown. This means a pass catcher will be rewarded in fantasy wide receiver rankings if they are capable of crossing the goal line on a regular basis. 

Matchups 

Don’t be afraid to play the matchups, because the Footballers certainly aren’t afraid to use it as a criterion in their rankings. Certain players work their way up the ladder, asserting themselves as matchup proof. You live and die with them in your lineup because you’ll never forgive yourself if they go off while sitting on your bench. 

For the rest of the wideouts, matchups are a major determining factor in a WR’s ranking for a given week. The Fantasy Footballers break down every integral aspect of an opponent. They assess how a defense defends specific wideouts, outside vs. inside receivers, how they defend in the red zone, amongst a plethora of other things. All this research helps the Footballers best determine who will produce at a high level come game day. 

The Best Ability is Availability

Wideouts tend to get pegged as soft. They are seen as players who line up outside the hash marks and dive to the ground before making contact with a defender. This is certainly not true for every WR, but it is a stigma that has legs to stand on. Still, an argument could be made that we’d rather our fantasy receiver give up his body a yard short to prolong his ability to stack up points for my fantasy team.

Keenan Allen has always been uber-talented, but he dealt with years of injuries to begin his career, damaging his rankings amongst viable fantasy options at his position. Allen has been able to bounce back and reassert himself amongst his peers, remaining injury-free for the majority of the time since his injury-riddled seasons. Yet for his first few seasons back from injury, Allen was looked at as a fine piece of china in fantasy rankings, nice to look at, but unable to hold up throughout the season.

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Odell Beckham Jr. is another player who has been bitten by the injury bug throughout his career. While Beckham’s talent may be superior to anyone at his position, if he can’t showcase that ability on a weekly basis, his value to your fantasy team suffers. 

A wide receiver’s fantasy rankings will be greatly affected if a player is dealing with a lingering injury. If there are any questions regarding the availability for a wideout come game time, or how they will perform if they do ultimately suit up, you can expect their rankings to suffer. 

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