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June 23, 2008

Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings

Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings

NAME (Team) Bye Week
1. Randy Moss (NE) Bye Week 4 After a monster ’07 season, Moss returns as this year’s pick as “the fantasy WR”. While he will be hard pressed to repeat his lofty numbers of a season ago, Moss should remain head and shoulders above the rest.

2. Terrell Owens (DAL) Bye Week 10 Expect another huge fantasy campaign for this top flight wide out. T.O. will remain the top target in a high-powered Dallas attack that enabled him to accumulate over 1,300 yards and 15 TD’s last season.

3. Reggie Wayne (IND) Bye Week 4 Despite the return of Marvin Harrison, Wayne should remain Peyton Manning’s go to guy in ’08. This deep threat is as consistent as they come, and a top flight fantasy WR.

4. Braylon Edwards (CLE) Bye Week 5 He is coming off of a breakout season in which he totaled 1,106 receiving yards. His 16 receiving TD’s ranked him second in the NFL behind only Randy Moss in ’07. Edwards has great chemistry with signal caller Derek Anderson, and he is expected to be among the best fantasy WR’s in ’08.

5. Andre Johnson (HOU) Bye Week 8 In spite of missing 7 games last season, this stud wide out still managed to accumulate an impressive 60 receptions for 851 yards and 8 TD’s. If Johnson can stay off of the sidelines for the entire 2008 season, he could easily become the most productive WR in all of fantasy football.

6. Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) Bye Week 7 He led the NFC last season in both receptions (100) and yardage (1,409), and was ranked 5th in the conference with 10 TD’s. He is one of the most talented receivers in the game, but Fitzgerald will need unproven QB Matt Leinart to step up in order to maintain his elite fantasy status.

7. Marques Colston (NO) Bye Week 9 After a slow start, Colston broke out of his sophomore slump to become one of 2007’s top fantasy WR’s. There are few QB-WR combinations in the NFL as combustible as Brees and Colston, expect another monster effort.

8. T.J. Houshmandzadeh (CIN) Bye Week 8 His 112 receptions tied him for 1st in the NFL last season. He also added an impressive 1,143 receiving yards and 12 TD’s. Houshmandzadeh has improved on his previous stat lines each and every season. He should be particularly useful in reception heavy fantasy leagues.

9. Torry Holt (STL) Bye Week 5 He may be the most consistent fantasy WR in the NFL with 8 consecutive seasons of at least 80 receptions and 1,000 yards receiving. Holt saw his TD total drop slightly last season, but the offense was plagued with injuries and in shambles. The offense looks to be back on track for ’08, so barring injury; we expect Holt to exceed his output from last season.

10. Plaxico Burress (NYG) Bye Week 4 He tallied over 1,000 yards receiving and 12 TD’s last season, not bad for a guy who played the entire season on a bad ankle. Burress should be back at full strength in ’08 and has the potential to put up monster fantasy numbers.

11. Steve Smith (CAR) Bye Week 9 87 receptions for over 1,000 yards and 7 TD’s would be considered a solid season’s work for most WR’s, but for Steve Smith those figures were considered a huge disappointment to fantasy owners in 2007. The good news is that he will have Jake Delhomme back at QB in ’08. If they can reconnect with the chemistry of season’s past, Smith will regain his status as a top flight fantasy WR. We like his chances. *SUSPENDED 2 GAMES

12. Brandon Marshall (DEN) Bye Week 8 He was one of fantasy football’s bigger surprises in ’07 after this one time sleeper broke loose with 102 receptions for 1,325 yards and 7 TD’s. Marshall will return as the Broncos go to WR, but with a 3 game suspension, his chances to repeat last season’s totals are slim. UPDATE: Good news for those of you who already drafted him presumably at a bargain, Marshall has had his suspension reduced from 3 games to just 1. He has looked exceptional this pre season, and should pick right up where he left off last year. *SUSPENDED 1 GAME

13. Wes Welker (NE) Bye Week 4 He is coming off of a breakout season in which he tied for an NFL best 112 receptions. Welker is not typically a big play guy, but he is targeted early and often as Tom Brady’s safety net. A role that should continue to produce lofty stat lines for fantasy owners, especially in reception heavy leagues.

14. Anquan Boldin (ARI) Bye Week 7 He is one of the better pass catchers in the NFL and managed a solid ‘07 season in spite of hip and toe injuries that limited his true potential. Boldin is seeking a new contract in ’08, so he should be at his best, that is if he doesn’t sit out too long. It is also essential that he develops good chemistry with the unproven Matt Leinart in order to produce the fantasy stats he is capable of.

15. Santonio Holmes (PIT) Bye Week 6 He has all the tools to become fantasy football’s next great WR. Holmes will likely replace the aging Hines Ward this season as the go to guy in the Steelers passing game. He should improve greatly on an already promising ’07 campaign.

16. Roy Williams (DET) Bye Week 4 He failed to meet the expectations of fantasy owners in’07 after what can best be described as mediocre production, which was followed by a season ending knee injury in week 12. Williams should be at 100% in ’08, and he is far too talented to underachieve in consecutive years. Our only concern is that the Lions new offense will focus less on the passing game than in year’s past.

17. Greg Jennings (GB) Bye Week 8 This breakout star has a nose for the end zone as he managed to find pay dirt 12 times in only 13 games last season. While he will be hard pressed to match that figure without Brett Favre under center, Jennings should remain the Packers top target in the red zone. He should also improve on his reception and yardage totals in ’08.

18. Roddy White (ATL) Bye Week 7 After little to no success in his first two seasons in the NFL, this surprise sleeper has made the rare leap from unknown to priority for fantasy owners. He is a big play receiver that can stretch the field which contributed to 5 games of over 100 yards receiving last season. White has established himself as a solid fantasy wide out capable of bigger and better things in ’08.

S 19. Calvin Johnson (DET) Bye Week 4 One of the most promising WR’s the NFL has seen in years, Johnson had a mildly disappointing rookie season due to a back injury that hampered him throughout ’07. He should be at full strength this season, and the sky is the limit as far as his fantasy potential. UPDATE: Calvin Johnson has looked like the elite WR everyone anticipated so far in preseason camp. He still has much to prove when the regular season rolls around, but his fantasy stock is on the up and up.

20. Chad Johnson (CIN) Bye Week 8 While Ocho Cinco provided fantasy owners with a few huge games in ’07 in route to solid totals, he was severely lacking in consistency from week to week. After a drama filled off season and plenty of criticism, Johnson will be back in ’08 with a chip on his shoulder ready to prove his critics wrong. UPDATE:There is alot being made of Johnson's recent shoulder injury. Many believe that the Bengals recent resigning of troubled WR Chris Henry is an indication that Johnson's injury is more serious than the team is letting on. This is mostly rumor, so we don't buy into it completely, but to be on the safe side, you should lower him on your draft board. Better safe than sorry. UPDATE 2: Ocho Cinco, as he is officially known now, has a torn labrum in his shoulder. While this is the kind of injury that typically requires surgery, Johnson maintains that he will play this season and be ready for week 1. Kellen Winslow played through a similar injury last season, so Johnson will probably be fine, but there is some risk involved.

21. Marvin Harrison (IND) Bye Week 4 While we would love to tell you that the Harrison of old will be back on the field in ’08 with a high degree of certainty, we can not. After all, he is 36 years old and coming off of a fairly significant knee injury, but we have seen lesser players bounce back from worse, and if anyone can do it, it is Harrison . We think he still has plenty left in the tank, but there is a high risk-high reward factor to consider.

22. Laveranues Coles (NYJ) Bye Week 5 An ankle injury and inconsistent QB play prevented this home run threat from being at his best a season ago. Despite little improvement with the QB situation, Coles should return healthy in’08, and produce on the high level fantasy owners are accustomed to.

23. Jerricho Cotchery (NYJ) Bye Week 5 He had 82 receptions for 1,130 yards last season, but his TD total dropped from 6 to 2. Cotchery has top flight potential, but he must get into the end zone more often to reach it. The addition of Brett Favre at QB could make all the difference.

24. Dwayne Bowe (KC) Bye Week 6 He was one of the few bright spots in the Chiefs offense last season. Bowe must improve on his consistency, but he has the tools to improve on a very impressive rookie season.

25. Hines Ward (PIT) Bye Week 6 Ward will probably be replaced by Santonio Holmes as the go to guy, but he still has plenty to offer. While he isn’t getting any younger, expect him to continue to produce the solid and consistent numbers that have made him a fantasy football favorite for years.

26. Donald Driver (GB) Bye Week 8 Despite a decrease in fantasy production in ’07, especially in the TD category, Driver remains one of fantasy football’s better prospects at WR. Even without Brett Favre at the helm, we expect him to improve on last year’s totals.

27. Lee Evans (BUF) Bye Week 6 After a breakout season in 2006, many fantasy owners were left disappointed with Evan’s mediocre output in ’07. He is an extremely talented WR, and with a better QB situation heading into 2008, we like his chances to rebound nicely.

28. Joey Galloway (TB) Bye Week 10 While he remains a solid fantasy WR, Galloway has seen a slight decrease in his production over the last 3 seasons. He is not getting any younger, but he is still capable of a monster game any given week.

29. Chris Chambers (SD) Bye Week 9 Once considered one of fantasy football’s better options at the WR position; Chambers has seen his stock plummet over the last two seasons. While he did show moderate improvement last year over a dismal ’06 season, it wasn’t enough to warrant much excitement. Chambers should once again show improvement, but he is not the fantasy stud he once was.

30. Nate Burleson (SEA) Bye Week 4 He was not spectacular in ’07, but he did have a knack for finding the end zone, matching a career best 9 TD’s. Burleson probably won’t match that again this season, but he should have ample opportunity in Seattle’s pass happy offense. UPDATE:With the recent injury to Bobby Engram, Burleson will likely become the go to guy in the Seattle passing game, at least until Engram and Deion Branch return, but that probably won't be until mid season.

31. Santana Moss (WAS) Bye Week 10 After consecutive seasons with nagging injuries and mediocre QB play, Moss has been unable to meet the expectations of fantasy owners. 2008 looks to be a promising season for him to rebound, but don’t expect monster stats every week.

32. Derrick Mason (BAL) Bye Week 10 He became a mere afterthought in the minds of fantasy owners following a sub par 2006 season. Surprisingly, he managed to crawl out of the “where are they now file”, and propel himself back into the spotlight in 2007. Mason’s 103 receptions ranked him 3rd in the NFL. While we doubt he can duplicate last season’s resurgence with Kyle Boller under Center, Mason should maintain respectable fantasy value, especially in reception heavy leagues.

S 33. Donte’ Stallworth (CLE) Bye Week 5 After promising seasons in New Orleans and Philadelphia, many fantasy owners had high expectations for Stallworth in New England, but for whatever reason, it wasn’t meant to be. He now finds himself in an equally promising position in Cleveland, and after last season’s let down, Stallworth could be a steal in later draft rounds, but there are no guarantees.

34. Bernard Berrian (MIN) Bye Week 8 He has posted decent fantasy numbers over the last two seasons with the Bears in spite of poor QB play, and the occasional bout with butter fingers. Now that Berrian is in Minnesota’s run first offense with even worse QB play, he will be extremely fortunate just to match his past success.

35. Patrick Crayton (DAL) Bye Week 10 He has the ability to explode for huge stats any given week, but as the third option in the Cowboys passing game, Crayton lacks the consistent number of looks and touches it takes to transcend into a top fantasy wide out.

36. Isaac Bruce (SF) Bye Week 9 This aging wide out still has a little left in the tank, especially in the revamped passing attack that awaits him in San Francisco with Mike Martz running the show.

37. Reggie Brown (PHI) Bye Week 7 While he still has the potential to be a great fantasy receiver, Brown has shown little growth over his three year career in the NFL. UPDATE:Brown has been plagued by injuries throughout camp. He should be fine by week 1, but we hope this is not an indication of things to come. UPDATE 2:The recent injury to Kevin Curtis should improve Brown's chances of receiving the majority of looks from Donovan McNabb. Although Brown is nursing some injuries of his own, he should be ready to play in week 1.

38. Ted Ginn (MIA) Bye Week 4 He has the skills to do some real damage, the only question is; does he have a QB that can get him the ball? UPDATE: With Chad Pennington now in place as the Dolphins starting QB, Ginn now has a chance to reach his potential. He still has a ways to go, but we look for him to progress nicely in his second season.

39. Ronald Curry (OAK) - Bye Week 5 He is a fairly consistent possession WR that will garner fantasy owners a few points every week, but if you are expecting flashy numbers on a regular basis, Curry probably isn’t your guy. UPDATE:With Javon Walker struggling to return to form, Curry looks to become the go to pass catcher in the Raiders offense. While Curry's fantasy value should increase, he should remain a reserve on fantasy rosters.

40. Drew Bennett (STL) Bye Week 5 With Isaac Bruce off to San Fran, a healthier Bennett will finally get his chance to prove valuable on fantasy rosters once again.
UPDATE: Bennett has been solid in camp so far, and should be solid in the Rams pass happy offense. UPDATE 2: Bennett is once again struggling to stay healthy. He should be ready to play in week 1, and we like his potential opposite Torry Holt, but this does not bode well.

41. Jerry Porter (JAX) Bye Week 7 Now that he has escaped a negative environment in Oakland that almost destroyed his career, there is hope that this one time star receiver can return to glory with a fresh start in Jacksonville. He should be the go to guy for the Jags in the passing game, but their run first mentality may limit his opportunities. There are also reliability issues coming off of a hamstring injury in training camp. UPDATE: Porter continues to struggle with a hamstring injury, and it appears unlikely that he will play in week 1. It is possible that Porter could miss several weeks.

42. Jabar Gaffney (NE) Bye Week 4 He came on strong late last season, and with Donte Stallworth off to Cleveland, Gaffney could be a nice surprise.

43. Anthony Gonzalez (IND) Bye Week 4 Even if Marvin Harrison is back at full strength, Gonzalez should have ample chance to produce decent fantasy numbers. He is best suited as a slot receiver anyway.

44. Muhsin Muhammad (CAR) Bye Week 9 After three somewhat disappointing seasons in Chicago, Muhammad returns to Carolina where he put up stud fantasy numbers in 2004. Unfortunately, his best years behind him. UPDATE:With D.J. Hackett having injury issues and Dwayne Jarrett continuing to struggle, Muhammad looks like he could be a real contributor in the Panthers passing game. If he can rekindle the magic he had with QB Jake Delhomme before he left for Chicago, Muhammad could become a mainstay in starting fantasy line ups this season.

45. Javon Walker (OAK) Bye Week 5 After missing the majority of two out of the last three seasons with knee problems, he should be considered a high risk-high reward prospect for ’08. Walker is an elite caliber receiver, but his durability is an issue, and having a first year starter at QB in JaMarcus Russell doesn’t help. UPDATE: Walker has been struggling in camp and pre season to this point. Until he proves otherwise, draft and/or use him strictly as a reserve. UPDATE 2:Walker was much improved in the Raiders third pre season game. This bodes well, but he still has a ways to go before proving he is worthy of cracking starting fantasy line ups.

46. Vincent Jackson (SD) Bye Week 9 He has all the attributes to be a stud fantasy WR, but we are still waiting?

S 47. Bryant Johnson (SF) Bye Week 9 After playing 3rd fiddle behind Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin in Arizona, this promising young WR will finally have a chance to shine in San Francisco’s new look offense. UPDATE:Nagging injuries have slowed his progress so far in the pre season, but we still like his potential for the long haul. UPDATE 2: Johnson returned to practice, and reportedly took reps with the first team offense. This is a very good sign that Johnson is in line for a starting job, if not week 1, in the near future.

48. James Hardy (BUF) Bye Week 6 Of the entire rookie class of WR’s, Hardy has the best opportunity to shine.

S 49. Eddie Royal (DEN) Bye Week 8 He has had an extremely strong camp and at this point appears to be the favorite to win the starting job opposite Brandon Marshall. Royal will have stiff competition in veteran Darrell Jackson, but he could be worth a look. UPDATE:Royal has locked down a starting job over Darrell Jackson. He continues to impress, and while still unproven,Royal has real sleeper value. He will have ample opportunity to prove his worth while Brandon Marshall is suspended for the first three games of the season.

50. Sidney Rice (MIN) Bye Week 8 His potential is through the roof, but a run first offense and a sub par QB in Minnesota limit his fantasy value.

S 51. DeSean Jackson (PHI) Bye Week 7 He has had an extremely impressive camp and could even challenge for a starting job by week 1. Jackson has alot of upside, but remember, he is still a rookie. UPDATE:With Kevin Curtis now out of the Eagles line up for an unknown amount of time, Jackson should play a much bigger role in the offense. It would not be a big surprise if he became Donovan McNabb's favorite target this season.

52. Justin Gage (TEN) Bye Week 6 The Titans do not have a potent passing attack, but Gage, along with TE Alge Crumpler, should get the majority of looks in this offense. He was Vince Young’s favorite target a year ago, for what that’s worth.

53. Courtney Taylor (SEA) Bye Week 4 With key injuries to Bobby Engram and Deion Branch, Taylor will step into a starting role in the pass heavy Seahawks offense. He could be a real sleeper, but it may be short lived as both Engram and Branch are expected to return sometime midseason or earlier.

54. D.J. Hackett (CAR) Bye Week 9 The injury bug prevented him from living up to his full potential in Seattle. He should be a solid second option for Jake Delhomme in the Panthers passing game to take the heat off of Steve Smith. UPDATE:It appears the injury bug has followed Hackett to Carolina. If he can get healthy and stay healthy, Hackett could be a solid fantasy contributor, but at this point, that seems to be a big if.

55. Reggie Williams (JAX) Bye Week 7 He may have only had 38 receptions last season, but 10 of them went for TD’s. Williams has lost some value during camp with injuries that may carry over into the season. UPDATE: Barring any future issues with his injury, Williams is on schedule to be ready to play in week 1. However, he will probably be brought along slowly and may not be much of a contributor early in the season.

56. Kevin Walter (HOU) Bye Week 8 He showed a lot of promise when Andre Johnson was sidelined with injury, but opportunities may be scarce with Johnson on the field full time.

S 57. Robert Meachem (NO) Bye Week 9 Meachem has all the tools and a perfect situation in New Orleans to become a top flight fantasy receiver, but he has yet to play a single down. UPDATE:Meachem will likely start the season behind Devery Henderson on the Saints depth chart. This does not bode well for him, but we still believe that Meachem will play a role in the Saints offense at some point this season, and has the potential to be a solid fantasy WR for the long haul.

S 58. Devin Hester (CHI) Bye Week 8 We already know he is a beast as a return specialist, but can he take it to the next level as a WR? If he can, Hester will be a steal in late draft rounds, especially in leagues that account for return yards and TD’s.

S 59. Josh Morgan (SF) Bye Week 9 For the time being, Morgan is listed as a starter on the 49ers depth chart and playing extremely well in the pre season. He will likely become the 4th WR for the Niners when Bryant Johnson and Arnaz Battle return, but Morgan is definately someone to keep your eye on as the season progresses. UPDATE:Morgan, although still a rookie, has a real shot at cracking the starting line up for the 49ers even after Johnson and Battle return. He has alot to prove, but he has had an amazing pre season, and could be a real sleeper.

60. Chris Henry (CIN) Bye Week 8 He will be suspended for the first four weeks of the season, but Henry should be a major player in the Bengals passing attack upon his return, that is, if he can manage to stay out of jail in the mean time. *Suspended first 4 games

61. Mark Clayton (BAL) Bye Week 10 Clayton has a lot to prove after a disappointing 2007.

62. Bobby Engram (SEA) Bye Week 4 After 11 mediocre season’s in the NFL, Engram came out of nowhere with what was far and away his best season ever. We doubt that he can repeat the lofty stats that propelled him into the fantasy spotlight in ‘07, but he should remain a top target in the Seahawks passing attack which gives him a chance. UPDATE: After suffering a fairly severe shoulder injury, Engram will probably not be available until mid season. Do not draft him, but keep an eye on his progress as he could be a valuable pick up for the stretch run.

63. Amani Toomer (NYG) Bye Week 4 His best days are behind him, but there is still some value here.

64. David Patten (NO) Bye Week 9 Patten had his moments last season, but competition at the WR position for the Saints will be fierce behind Marques Colston.

S 65. Derek Hagan (MIA) Bye Week 4 He was just starting to heat up at the end of ’07. Hagan could easily become the go to guy in Miami’s passing game this season.

66. Antwaan Randle El (WAS) Bye Week 10 After a decent start in ’07, this speedster faded down the stretch with nagging injuries. He could have an impact in ’08 if he stays healthy.

67. Hank Baskett (PHI) Bye Week 7 Due to the injury Kevin Curtis, Baskett will now start opposite Reggie Brown for the Eagles. He has never been much of a fantasy prospect, but this may be his opportunity to step up.

68. Donnie Avery (STL) Bye Week 5 If he can win the #3 WR spot for the Rams, this rookie could be a nice fantasy surprise.

69. Arnaz Battle (SF) Bye Week 9 If he can keep his starting job, Battle could prove quite productive in the new Mike Martz offense. UPDATE: Battle should see significant playing time this season, but does not appear to be in line for a starting spot.

70. Rashied Davis (CHI) Bye Week 8 It is anyone's guess as to who Kyle Orton's go to receiver will be when the regular season kicks off, but based on the solid raport he had with Davis in the pre season, Davis seems like the most likely candidate.

71. Brandon Lloyd (CHI) Bye Week 8 He may finally get his chance to start. Lloyd is listed at the top of the Bears depth chart, and could be a nice surprise this season.

72. Shaun McDonald (DET) Bye Week 4 With the Detroit offense focusing more on the run in ’08, McDonald will likely see his touches drop significantly as the #3 option, but he is still capable.

73. Brandon Stokley (DEN) Bye Week 8 He is a solid slot receiver, but he doesn’t get much opportunity to put up big fantasy numbers.

74. Troy Williamson (JAX) Bye Week 7 Williamson could be a solid contributor in the Jacksonville passing game this season. He will have to compete for playing time, but he has been impressive this pre season.

75. James Jones (GB) Bye Week 8 He showed glimpses of brilliance last year, but as the Packers’ 4th option in the passing game, touches will be hard to come by.

76. Devery Henderson (NO) Bye Week 9 For the time being, Henderson has been named the starting WR opposite Marques Colston. Henderson is a home run threat, but he drops way too many passes and can be very inconsistent. We still believe Meacham and Patton are the better fantasy options from the Saints offense.

77. Steve Smith (NYG) Bye Week 4 He stepped up during the Giants playoff run to the Super Bowl title. If he can carry that momentum into ’08, Smith could be worth a look.

78. Josh Reed (BUF) Bye Week 6 Reed is now listed as a starter on the Bills depth chart. This may be short lived, but Reed does have some fantasy potential as a possesion type receiver.

79. Limas Sweed (PIT) Bye Week 6 This rookie has all the physical attributes of an elite fantasy WR, but with a packed WR corps already in place for the Steelers, Sweed will be hard pressed to gain the attention of Ben Roethlisberger.

80. Jordan Kent (SEA) Bye Week 4 After a strong pre season, Kent could be in for significant playing time in the pass happy Seahawks offense.

S = Fantasy Football Sleepers

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