- Wide receiver rankings are tough, as we often misread matchups and trends, leading us astray. I tend to keep the rankings relatively consistent, as a big play here or there usually allows the best players to rise to the top in short order. So let’s have some fun with these notes, and let’s start with red zone work.
- Who leads all wide receivers in red zone targets per FantsyData? Keenan Allen with nine of course. Allen has only scored one touchdown on the year but ranks second in the league with 33 targets and should find himself in the end zone more often going forward. And second among all receivers in red zone targets? Allen’s teammate, Mike Williams with eight. Not only is Williams getting red zone looks, but he’s also tied for first across the NFL in wide receiver end zone targets with four. Maybe those four touchdowns through three games aren’t so fluky after all.
- Our target share leaders are an eclectic mix of talented wideouts. Brandin Cooks leads the way with a massive 37.6% target share, though his quarterback play is putting his fantasy managers’ resolve to the test. But in a matchup where the Texans will have to pass early and often against the Bills, he should be in your lineup until he gives you a reason to bench him. Second in target share is Davante Adams, duh. Next up is Deebo Samuel with a 36% target share, who has seized on the opportunity presented by Brandon Aiyuk‘s early-season struggles. All three receivers are in my top 18, or the strong start category. Play them with confidence.
- Cooper Kupp deserves a section of his own, and his play through three weeks gets him on the cover of The List. Kupp leads all receivers in PPR points per game, averaging 30.4. Second place (Mike Williams) is nearly five points per game behind Kupp, while third place (Tyler Lockett) is nearly nine points per game behind. Kupp is second among all wideouts in targets with 33, first in receptions with 25, first in yards with 367, and first in touchdowns with five. Additionally, he ranks third in red zone targets, fourth in target share, and has zero drops on the season. I don’t think this is a fluke, everyone.
- Ok, let’s go big-play hunting. Our 2021 leader in Air Yards through three weeks is Courtland Sutton with 313, edging Lockett by 35 yards. This may come as a surprise with Teddy Bridgewater leading the offense, but this is an extremely encouraging stat for Sutton, and with K.J. Hamler out for the year and Jerry Jeudy on IR with a high ankle sprain, Sutton has a chance at a comeback player of the year type season. Rounding out the top five of the Air Yards leaders; Stefon Diggs (he’s going to be just fine), Chase Claypool (can we get him a new QB?), and Marquez Valdes-Scantling.
- Finally, if you ever needed proof that drops were not a stat to worry about at the receiver position (*cough* Ja’Marr Chase), here are your drop leaders at the receiver position: Justin Jefferson, A.J. Brown, Chris Godwin, Keenan Allen, and CeeDee Lamb. Quick, throw those stats to the managers in your league and buy-low!
Green=Strong Starter, Yellow=Solid Starter, Red=Look for Better Options
Week 4 WR Rankings