Fantasy Football: WR Tiers

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WR tiers

Rankings are updated daily.

The rankings I wrote are meant to be a supplemental tool for your draft. They rank the players based on how I think they will perform and how I would have them ranked if I ran a league website.  While the top 10 is how I would draft the players, the further down you go, the more different than your stock rankings it will be. For some positions, especially TE and QB, my tiers look nothing like stock rankings. If you choose to use my rankings, know your website’s rankings and where players are generally being drafted on that website. If a player in my tiers is ranked substantially lower than your stock rankings, it means these are players I would avoid. If a player is ranked substantially higher, these are players I am targeting. If you don’t use adjunct rankings (sources outside of where your league is set up) properly, it will cause you to misfire during your draft and take players higher than they could be taken, missing on value. It requires a good deal of mock drafting and knowledge of your websites rankings to properly utilize supplemental sources properly.
Remember, let the draft fall to you, some players you will have to reach for and others you won’t. After round 9-10 I draft for upside/talent and my rankings, especially lower tiers, reflect that. For tight ends, I just flat out ranked them as I saw fit, since you should be at about round 5 TE6. I generally try to wait till later rounds for them, remember that when you wonder why I love Kyle Rudolph and have him ranked in the top 10. I’ll discuss him in my sleepers.  My sleepers are highlighted in bold.

1. Calvin Johnson
2. Julio Jones
3. A.J. Green
4. Larry Fitzgerald
5. Roddy White

6. Wes Welker
7. Brandon Marshall
8. Andre Johnson
9. Greg Jennings
10. Steve Smith (Car)
11. Hakeem Nicks
12. Demaryius Thomas
13. Dez Bryant
14. Brandon Lloyd
15. Antonio Brown

16. Percy Harvin
17. Jeremy Maclin
18. Mike Wallace
19. Jordy Nelson
20. Eric Decker
21. Desean Jackson
22. Vincent Jackson
23. Marques Colston
24. Dwayne Bowe
25. Miles Austin
26. Stevie Johnson

27. Malcolm Floyd
28. Reggie Wayne
29. Titus Young
30. Victor Cruz
31. Pierre Garcon
32. Torrey Smith
33. Michael Crabtree
34. Denarius Moore
35. Darrius Heyward-Bey
36. Mike Williams (Tampa Bay)
37. Robert Meachem

38. Alshon Jeffrey (R)
39. Brandon LaFell
40. Leonard Hankerson
41. Kendall Wright (R)
42. Randy Moss
43. Mario Manningham
44. Terrell Owens
45. Anquan Boldin
46. Greg Little
47. Steve Smith (Stl)
48. Justin Blackmon (R)

49. Nate Washington
50. Jerome Simpson
51. Jon Baldwin
52. Emmanuel Sanders
53. Danny Amendola
54. Rueben Randle (R)
55. Santana Moss
56. Laurent Robinson
57. Lance Moore

58. Randall Cobb
59. Keyshawn Martin (Super Sleeper) (R)
60. Brian Quick (R)
61. Santonio Holmes
62. Steve Breaston
63. Doug Baldwin
64. Mike Thomas
65. Devery Henderson
66. Sidney Rice
67. Michael Floyd
68. Mohammad Sanu (R)
69. Josh Gordon (Super Sleeper) (R)

70. David Nelson
71. Eddie Royal
72. Mohammad Massoqui
73. Jason Avant
74. LeStar Jean
75. Jacoby Ford
76. Deion Branch
77. Mike Thomas
78. Austin Collie
79. Early Doucet
80. Braylon Edwards
81. Juron Criner
82. Jerricho Cotchery
83. T.Y. Hilton (R)
84. Kevin Walter
85. Devier Posey (R)

Julio Jones and AJ Green:

Most of the rankings you see might not include either of these guys in their top 10.  There are a number of reasons I have them ranked 2 and 3.  I don’t think you can say that many of the guys below them match their talent and work ethic. Neither has an injury history or off the field issues.  In addition, both have shown themselves to be able to handle double coverage.  Both also have stable quarterback situations and you can count on both of averaging 10 targets a game.  In addition, both are the most dangerous weapons on their team. They can play possession receiver, they stretch the field, and they are both huge red-zone targets with good hands.  Lastly, both of them look to be nearly uncoverable.

AJ Green for one spent the offseason working with Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, in addition to this he added 10 lbs on his frame.  If you watched the game the other night Green showed a marked improvement in his route running and awareness on the field, the two knocks on him the season before.  Andy Dalton also showed that he is willing to throw the ball up and let AJ go get it.  If you have any doubts about him go watch a highlight reel.  He owns two of the better CB’s in the league twice, Joe Haden and Ike Taylor.  He has the size and speed (blazing fast speed) to burn through cushions when defenders play him deep and he wins a jump ball in the end zone with 3 Steelers in his face.  In addition he is very good at handling press and bracket coverage, these are the coverages that seperate the men from the boys.  During preseason week 1 he absolutely burns Revis for a sure touchdown, but he dropped the ball.  His hands were always one of his strengths so I wasn’t worried about it.  If you watched the Bengals play the Falcons he showed his improved route running with a nasty double move for the 50 yard touchdown.

Julio Jones is just a monster, he has the size and speed to go with an insane vertical and great hands.  With Roddy White mentoring him he will become a dominant force in this league and Matt Ryan has shown he trusts him.  The Falcons have commited to a high octane offense I feel both Julio Jones and Roddy White are high quality studs, both should get double digit targets every week.  Julio Jones is the superior talent so I have him ranked higher.  I am going to chalk his injuries last year to conditioning, a ton of guys had hamstring issues last year.  I don’t recall Julio Jones being injury prone during his years at Arkansas.

The only reason both of them are above Larry Fitzgerald is because his QB situation is awful.  Unless Kolb gets hurt, they have to let him play since they gave him money.  I suspect he will at least get 8 games this season before they pull the plug.  If you own Fitzgerald you have to hope that John Skelton takes over sooner rather than later.  I also think the cardinals let their underrated defense do all the work and focus on ball control.  You also have to worry about the 80 targets Fitz got last season, he did a ton of damage on broken plays.  If you look back at his last few years without Kurt Warner, he averaged 1100 a season until last season.  While thats WR1 numbers, its not Diamond quality.  Lastly, his numbers look good on paper, but he failed to score more than 10 points 8/16 weeks (standard scoring), with only two of them totalling over 70 yards.  While he should be good for 1100 yards and 8 or so touchdowns, you can’t count on 100+ receptions and weekly stud numbers from Fitz until his quarterback situation improves

1. Nate Washington

2. Justin Blackmon

3. Jerome Simpson

4. Jon Baldwin (good defense and plans 500+ carries)

5. Emmanuel Sanders (Might Move up)

6. Santana Moss

7. Lance Moore

8. Greg Little

9. Rueben Randle

10. Randall Cobb

About the Author

James Rustler is a 10 year fantasy football veteran. You can follow me on twitter @JamesRustler1.