With Fantasy Football drafts rapidly approaching, it’s the time of year where we start breaking down who is worth high picks at their respective positions. While some leagues will wait out the preseason to see who winds up on the injured reserve list, others will jump the gun and get it rolling right away.
Below, we will take a look at the Top 10 options from The Hometown Fan’s perspective for wide receivers that you should look at taking high.
ANTONIO BROWN – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 246.2
Brown, by most accounts is considered to be the best wide receiver in all of football. It doesn’t hurt that he has one of the best, if not the best, quarterback in franchise history throwing him the rock. Barring major injury and assuming he plays all 16 games in 2016, Brown is a no-brainer as the #1 overall fantasy receiver in your draft.
2015 STATS: 136 receptions | 1,834 yards | 13.5 average | 10 touchdowns
ODELL BECKHAM – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 223.3
Beckham has a chance to surpass Brown as the #1 overall option but the reason he falls a bit behind is due to the fact that he has competition within his own roster for targets. The Giants are set to get Victor Cruz back and also draft Sterling Sheppard out of Oklahoma; both of which may cut in to Beckham’s production. That being said, it could also open up the possibility for him to catch more ‘homerun’ touchdown type passes.
2015 STATS: 96 receptions | 1,450 yards | 15.1 average | 13 touchdowns
ALLEN ROBINSON – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 224.0
Some will select Julio Jones as the third best option in fantasy but will regret it as the season goes on when see the numbers that Allen Robinson puts up in Jacksonville once again. He was the Jaguars most consistent option in 2015 and will be able to head in to the 2016 season with momentum from the success he had last year. The numbers were impressive and could be even more so in the upcoming year.
2015 STATS: 80 receptions | 1,400 yards | 17.5 average | 14 touchdowns
DEANDRE HOPKINS – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 220.1
Hopkins will finally have a decent quarterback and every week starter to get him the ball. With that, should come even more production. And that’s not all … he has potentially another threat on the other side with the drafting of wide receiver Will Fuller out of Notre Dame. Like anyone else on this list, should Hopkins stay healthy all season long, look for huge production. He will be well worth a high pick if you should miss out on the guys listed above.
2015 STATS: 111 receptions | 1,521 yards | 13.7 average | 10 touchdowns
JULIO JONES – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 233.1
Some folks may overdraft Jones here but if you look at his touchdown production last year it was a little underwhelming in comparison to the other top flight receivers. Jones will obviously still get plenty of looks and opportunity but his production will weigh heavy on the opponents that he is facing. Matt Ryan is his quarterback and there are games where Matt Ryan disappears which will in turn possibly cut in to Jones’ scoring production.
2015 STATS: 136 receptions | 1,871 yards | 13.8 average | 8 touchdowns
BRANDON MARSHALL – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 232.2
I was tempted to list Marshall above Jones but we have no idea if Ryan Fitzpatrick will be back in New York as the Jets starting quarterback. If it winds up being Geno Smith behind center, or even Christian Hackenberg, Marshall will slide all the way down to the bottom of this list. His catching radius is phenomenal and can make any quarterback look better than they are but he will definitely take a hit if the quarterback is not Ryan Fitzpatrick.
2015 STATS: 109 receptions | 1,502 yards | 13.8 average | 14 touchdowns
DOUG BALDWIN – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 190.9
Baldwin is without question Russell Wilson’s favorite go-to target. He was tied for the most touchdown receptions in the NFL in 2015. However, the caveat here with Baldwin is that Wilson will be playing behind a completely overhauled offensive line. All five starters from their first Super Bowl are gone; some of which were pro bowl caliber. This could effect the amount of time Wilson has to get the ball downfield. While Wilson is great at creating and extending plays, Carroll and company will need to find a way to cover up this potential weakness in their offense. That being said, count on Baldwin to find his way in to the endzone still regardless if yardage and receptions stay the same or decrease.
2015 STATS: 78 receptions | 1,069 yards | 13.7 average | 14 touchdowns
A.J. GREEN – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 187.7
I’m not a hundred percent certain what Green’s production will do in 2016. It could easily be argued either way in going up or down. One thing we can almost say for sure is that he will be relied on more. Whether that comes to fruition or not is yet to be seen. Green was a very instrumental part of the Bengals success last season. Some will overdraft him though. Scoring wise, he will still be Top 10 though… I can honestly say that with confidence. If you decide to go running back first, and Green is sitting there for you in the second round, don’t think about it, just grab him.
2015 STATS: 86 receptions | 1,297 yards | 15.1 average | 10 touchdowns
BRANDIN COOKS – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 169.6
Drew Brees developed a ton of chemistry with Cooks in 2015 and I fully anticipate that to grow in to something special this season. He will without question be the number one targeted wide receiver heading in to the season. His production last year was well enough to warrant this spot on the list over some of the other possibilities. The only thing that is a semi-concern here for Cooks is consistency. A lot hinges on the Saints ability to keep Brees clean for long enough to get the ball downfield for the homerun type passes.
2015 STATS: 84 receptions | 1,138 yards | 13.5 average | 9 touchdowns
AMARI COOPER – 2015 FANTASY POINTS 140.7
Derek Carr and Amari Cooper are gonna be household names not only for NFL standards but in the Fantasy Football circles as well. Cooper struggled to be consistent in his first season but as the year went on, he gained more and more chemistry with his quarterback. Fast forward to year two and you can almost guarantee fireworks. While Cooper was not very close to being better than guys like Demaryious Thomas among others, I am going out on a limb here based on what I perceived toward the end of the season in 2015. Cooper could be well worth a high picks and be a guy we talk about as a fantasy football stud for the next decade.
2015 STATS: 78 receptions | 1,070 yards | 14.9 average | 6 touchdowns