Week 3 Rankings (2015): Top 50 Wide Receivers

by Will Overton

After many of the leagues stars seemed to be hiding in Week 1, they came out to play in Week 2. This just furthers the sentiment that you play your stars, regardless. That said there are also a handful of highly drafted players who haven’t come through yet and are a bit more difficult to rank. Let’s look and see where everyone shakes out on my list for this week:

1)      Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh Steelers @ St. Louis
2)      Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos @ Detroit
3)      Odell Beckham Jr. – New York Giants vs. Washington
4)      Julio Jones – Atlanta Falcons @ Dallas
5)      Randall Cobb – Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City
6)      Calvin Johnson – Detroit Lions vs. Denver
7)      A.J. Green – Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore
8)      Julian Edelman – New England Patriots vs. Jacksonville
9)      DeAndre Hopkins – Houston Texans vs. Tampa Bay
10)   Emmanuel Sanders – Denver Broncos @ Detroit
11)   Jarvis Landry – Miami Dolphins vs. Buffalo
12)   TY Hilton – Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee
13)   Keenan Allen – San Diego Chargers @ Minnesota
14)   Brandon Marshall – New York Jets vs. Philadelphia
15)   Mike Evans – Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Houston
16)   Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona Cardinals vs. San Francisco
17)   Amari Cooper – Oakland Raiders @ Cleveland
18)   Jordan Matthews – Philadelphia Eagles @ NY Jets|
19)   Alshon Jeffery – Chicago Bears @ Seattle
20)   Steve Smith Sr. – Baltimore Ravens vs. Cincinnati
21)   Torrey Smith – San Francisco 49ers @ Arizona
22)   Roddy White – Atlanta Falcons @ Dallas
23)   Vincent Jackson – Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Houston
24)   Brandin Cooks – New Orleans Saints @ Carolina
25)   Allen Robinson – Jacksonville Jaguars @ New England
26)   Kendall Wright – Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis
27)   Mike Wallace – Minnesota Vikings vs. San Diego
28)   Jeremy Maclin – Kansas City Chiefs @ Green Bay
29)   Davante Adams – Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City
30)   Golden Tate – Detroit Lions vs. Denver
31)   Sammy Watkins – Buffalo Bills @ Miami
32)   Michael Crabtree – Oakland Raiders @ Cleveland
33)   Anquan Boldin – San Francisco 49ers @ Arizona
34)   James Jones – Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City
35)   Terrance Williams – Dallas Cowboys vs. Atlanta
36)   Doug Baldwin – Seattle Seahawks vs.  Chicago
37)   Pierre Garcon – Washington Redskins @ NY Giants
38)   John Brown – Arizona Cardinals vs. San Francisco
39)   Andre Johnson – Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee
40)   Marques Colston – New Orleans Saints @ Carolina
41)   Percy Harvin – Buffalo Bills @ Miami
42)   Stevie Johnson – San Diego Chargers @ Minnesota
43)   Eric Decker – New York Jets vs. Philadelphia
44)   Rishard Matthews – Miami Dolphins vs. Buffalo\
45)   Aaron Dobson – New England Patriots vs. Jacksonville
46)   Nate Washington – Houston Texans vs. Tampa Bay
47)   Brandon Coleman – New Orleans Saints @ Carolina
48)   Donte Moncrief – Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee
49)   Travis Benjamin – Cleveland Browns vs. Oakland
50)   Charles Johnson – Minnesota Vikings vs. San Diego

Thoughts:

  • I think it’s pretty clear that the Patriots know where their strength lies and they don’t plan on trying to force a running game into place. Tom Brady is going to throw, and throw often, and the majority of those throws are going to Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman. So far Edelman has had 11 catches for 97 yards in each of the first two weeks, the only difference being he caught two TD in Week 2. Edelman is not the primary red zone target for this team, but just the quantity of opportunities alone should lead to him finding the end zone often enough and catch enough passes to be a Top 10 receiver most weeks.
  • The season debut of Mike Evans did not go as planned when he was targeted three times and didn’t catch a pass. Evans has been dealing with a hamstring injury that kept him out of the preseason and Week 1, so he likely just needs time to develop a rhythm with the rookie QB. He is a big receiver with terrific play making abilities and I am just chalking this game up to a learning experience for he and Winston. A full week of practices will help and if Winston wants to succeed he’ll start finding Evans.
  • Derek Carr’s presence on the field in Week 2 sure did make a big difference in the Oakland Raiders offense, specifically their passing attack. Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree both topped 100 yards receiving and each caught a TD. We got to see the big play potential of Cooper that was missing in Week 1 when Carr wasn’t available. Cooper is a must start this week, as you can see in my rankings, and I also think Crabtree is a decent WR3 or flex play in most leagues.
  • It has been a tale of two weeks for Allen Robinson. In Week 1 Robinson caught only one ball for 27 yards. Then in Week 2 he caught six passes for 155 yards and two TD. He was targeted 12 times and you’d like to see him pull in more than half his targets, but Blake Bortles is still a work in progress. Robinson was dealing with a knee injury in Week 1, which also may have slowed him down. I’m a little bit cautious about him this week because Bill Bellicheck has a knack for taking a team’s best weapon out of play, but he’s still a WR2/WR3 and his season long upside is high.
  • I am not exactly excited about the injury to Tony Romo and the fact that Brandon Weeden will be starting on Sunday. At the same time the Cowboys have Jason Witten and Terrance Williams to throw too and that’s about it. Weeden did connect with Williams for a 42 yard TD last Sunday and I believe he’ll be looking his way a fair amount of the time in Week 3. The Falcons defense is improved, but they are still susceptible to a passing attack and Williams should have a decent game even with Weeden throwing the balls.
  • As you can see from the fact that he’s ranked 50th overall this week, Charles Johnson just barely hung on to his spot on the list after hovering around the 30th spot the first two weeks. He has been targeted just three times in each of the first two weeks and has a combined five catches for 37 yards. He is staying on the list because of the relationship we saw bloom last year with Teddy Bridgewater and the hope that it’s still there somewhere. At the same time, though, the Vikings are going to run and run often this year and Mike Wallace looks like option one through the air. I wouldn’t want to start Johnson this week unless I absolutely had to.

Make sure to check out all of our 2015 rankings:

Week 3 Rankings (2015): Top 40 Running Backs
Week 3 Rankings (2015): Top 25 Quarterbacks

29 comments

  1. Kevin says:

    I currently have DeAndre Hopkins and Anquan Boldin at wide receiver (also have Desean Jackson, but with the injury and all…). I’m needing to add someone, and I’m not sure if Travis Benjamin or Martavis Bryant would be a better pickup. I know Bryant is out until week 5, but I wasn’t sure if he was worth holding out for or not. Any advice would be appreciated.

  2. Beans says:

    I did not draft a backup qb so with romo out I have to stream now. my options this week are flacco, Taylor Fitzpatrick bridgewater bortles. To make things worse I had romo in 2 leagues. Please pick your top 2. I’m thinking teddy and tyrod.

  3. L says:

    Which receiver would you rather have rostered for their “rest of season” (ROS) value in a 0.5PPR league?

    T.Smith – I dropped him after week 1 because I wanted to avoid his boom/bust tendency, but perhaps I was to hasty in doing so as the 49ners week 1 performance looks like it could have just been an outlier performance.

    M.Crabtree – I’ve like his target load thus far and project the Raiders to be passing a lot, but I think he’ll also suffer from boom/bust tendencies.

    N.Agholor – currently rostered on my team, but given the Eagles offensive issues in general; plus, Chip Kelly’s tendency to bring rookies along slowly, I’m not sure he’ll have the upside I thought he would in this PPR league.

    V.Cruz – the recovery from his particular injuries have me staying away from him until he can prove he’s back to being consistent and valuable, but that’ll also likely mean I miss out on him; is that what you’d do?

    D.Funchess – his slow progression toward developing and finding playing time has me staying away, but he’s in a position where he could perhaps have a high ceiling.

    Marvin Jones – I think he may develop some weekly consistency that makes him somewhat valuable, but I think I’ll stay away for the time being.

    B.Quick – I like his upside, but when will he be recovered enough to be a weekly factor? Again, someone I think best to stay away from until he shows something first.

    B.Perriman – To me he’s another potential high upside guy who has to prove that he’s deserving of a roster spot, but I also have concerns about missing out on adding someone who has a pretty clear path regarding opportunity once healthy.

  4. Kevin – Bryant will have the greater value for the entire season. Benjamin is going to be boom or bust and could have weeks with no value.

    Beans – I’d go Bridgewater / Taylor / Bortles in that order

    L – I’m highest on Quick, but the problem is when the Rams are not only going to dress him, but take the shackles off and truly let him shine

  5. janali says:

    Hi. I have Emannuel Sanders, Davante Adams, Donte Moncrief, and mMichael Crabtree. Which two wide receivers would you start this week? Thank you =)

    • L says:

      Sanders is a lock and I’d say you should lean toward Moncrief because of Adams’ ankle; though, with Hilton being a little healthier and Moncrief still splitting the WR2/3 duties with Johnson it’s not completely clear what his role will be week 3. Personally, I’m not sure I’d fully trust putting Crabtree into my lineup yet, but he’s certainly worthy of the conversation in this case given Adams & Moncrief scenarios this week. It’ll be interesting to see what the Profess has to say, but I think he’ll say the same.

  6. Hunter says:

    I have must start Julian edleman but for No 2 spot I’m not sure between Steve smith Allen Robinson or golden Tate. I’m also not sure if any of them would perform better than Alfred Morris in a flex spot. What’s you opinion?

  7. Romo says:

    Hello. Might be a no brainer but Stevie johnson or j matthews? Matthews might be shadowed by revis. I have j landry, a cooper, and Fitzgerald as my flex

  8. Jim Smith says:

    I went zero RB draft strategy. I ended up with Antonio Brown, AJ Green and Brandon Cooks. Cooks is killing me. I picked up Matt Jones off the waiver wire. Do I start Jones over Cooks as my Flex?

  9. janali – Assuming Adams is ok it’s Adams/Sanders. Otherwise it’s Moncrief/Sanders

    Hunter – Allen Robinson is def. the best option there for a WR2. It all depends on the Redskins’ plan is, bt for now I’d skip with Morris

    Romo – I know there’s the Revis risk, bt I’d still go Matthews

    Jim Smith – I want to say go with Jones, bt it’s not a guarantee that he gets a significant role. Still, he may be the best gamble

  10. Champagne says:

    Hey professor!

    For this week, I have Edelman, J. Landry and Allen Robinson as Flex
    L. Bell, Forsett as RB while Stark on the bench

    Who should I play as flex this week? If lacy is out? What would be the best combo? Should I bench Landry?

    Thanks!

  11. ddschmidt says:

    Have a flex spot question in PPR. F. Gore, S. Smith Sr., or P. Garcon?

    Thanks

  12. Matthew Summerlin says:

    Hey Prof,
    I have D Thomas at WR. Who you like For my #2? Jordan Matthews( Been reading that Skriles has been defending Slot) or Jarvis Landry? Half Pt. PPR

    Thanks!!

  13. I’d say Landry is the “safe” play, given Matthews matchup and the struggles of Philadelphia overall. Matthews does have the overall higher upside, but for this week the safe option is probably way to go.

  14. westiemag says:

    If Davonte Adams is out how much does that increase J Jones stock. I have M Evans but after last week I am nervous and looking for a way to hold off on him

  15. Chris w says:

    Rotoprofressor

    I need to start 2 receivers
    I have
    James jones
    Terrance williams and
    Stevie johnson who do I start

  16. wrestlemag – It would increase his stock, but I’m not sure I’d use Jones over Evans anyways. The latter was on a bit of a “pitch count” in Week 2, but he’s been dubbed healthy and should be full go this week.

    Chris W – Williams is the lock for me. I’d probably lean Jones for the second spot, but it is close.

  17. Moscowitz says:

    Look, Bellichek, cautious here and there but Robinson at 25 is just plain senseless. He should be around 15. I tell you why:

    -Pats CBs are just completely inferior to him in terms of ..well…everything. Size, speed, ability…He simply is more physical and faster than those guys.

    – Jags will have to throw the ball for a big chunk of this game as they will be put into the come form behind situation pretty early.

    – His QB has shown that he loves throwing the ball to him and he will have to do it often again if they want to have any chance of keeping pace with the patriots.

  18. Rob says:

    T.J. Yeldon or Allen Robinson for flex this week against the Pats?

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