Week 17 Rankings (2016): Top 50 Wide Receivers

by Will Overton

If you’re paying attention and playing this week then you are clearly playing for something big. Week 17 can be a tricky one to navigate because you never know what a team’s mindset is going into the week and who will play, and who will play part of the game and sit the rest, etc. That said, we’re still here for you and we’re still giving you our best effort as we rank the top receivers played for the week:

  1. Jordy Nelson – Green Bay Packers @ Detroit
  2. Julio Jones – Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans
  3. T.Y. Hilton – Indianapolis Colts vs. Jacksonville
  4. Mike Evans – Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Carolina
  5. Brandin Cooks – New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta
  6. Doug Baldwin – Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco
  7. Julian Edelman – New England Patriots @ Miami
  8. Golden Tate – Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay
  9. Odell Beckham Jr – New York Giants @ Washington
  10. DaVante Adams – Green Bay Packers @ Detroit
  11. Michael Thomas – New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta
  12. DeAndre Hopkins – Houston Texans @ Tennessee
  13. Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos vs. Oakland
  14. Ty Montgomery – Green Bay Packers @ Detroit
  15. Emmanuel Sanders – Denver Broncos vs. Oakland
  16. Tyreek Hill – Kansas City Chiefs @ San Diego
  17. Allen Robinson – Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis
  18. Dez Bryant – Dallas Cowboys @ Philadelphia
  19. Tyrell Williams – San Diego Chargers vs. Kansas City
  20. Sammy Watkins – Buffalo Bills @ NY Jets
  21. Michael Crabtree – Oakland Raiders @ Denver
  22. Cameron Meredith – Chicago Bears @ Minnesota
  23. Desean Jackson – Washington Redskins vs. NY Giants
  24. Amari Cooper – Oakland Raiders @ Denver
  25. Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona Cardinals @ Los Angeles
  26. Jarvis Landry – Miami Dolphins vs. New England
  27. Alshon Jeffery – Chicago Bears @ Minnesota
  28. Steve Smith – Baltimore Ravens @ Cincinnati
  29. Adam Thielen – Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago
  30. Brandon LaFell – Cincinnati Bengals vs. Baltimore
  31. Taylor Gabriel – Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans
  32. Stefon Diggs – Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago
  33. Willie Snead – New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta
  34. Dontrelle Inman – San Diego Chargers vs. Kansas City
  35. Malcolm Mitchell – New England Patriots @ Miami
  36. Rishard Matthews – Tennessee Titans vs. Houston
  37. Kelvin Benjamin – Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay
  38. Jamison Crowder – Washington Redskins vs. NY Giants
  39. Donte Moncrief – Indianapolis Colts vs. Jacksonville
  40. J.J. Nelson – Arizona Cardinals @ Los Angeles
  41. Marvin Jones – Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay
  42. Eli Rogers – Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cleveland
  43. Marquise Lee – Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis
  44. Kenny Britt – Los Angeles Rams vs. Arizona
  45. Jordan Matthews – Philadelphia Eagles vs. Dallas
  46. DaVante Parker – Miami Dolphins vs. New England
  47. Ted Ginn – Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay
  48. Pierre Garcon – Washington Redskins vs. NY Giants
  49. Sterling Shepherd – New York Giants @ Washington
  50. Robby Anderson – New York Jets vs. Buffalo


  • Going forward for 2017 and beyond I like Michael Thomas more than Brandin Cooks and I think he’s the better, more complete receiver. That said, right now for week 17 I’ll take Cooks if I am choosing between the two. Cooks has 24 catches in the last four weeks with more than 60 yards in all four games. I’d be more than happy to have either Cooks or Thomas this week and they are both must starts, but for something like DFS, Cooks is where I lean.
  • Something to watch for this week is whether or not the Detroit Lions start to get some of their defensive players healthy, especially Darius Slay. We saw the Cowboys absolutely pick the Lions defense apart this last week on the ground and through the air. Even if Slay is back and playing I think Jordy Nelson, DaVante Adams and Ty Montgomery are must plays, but without him and certain others the Packers offensive trio are elite plays.
  • This theme of wide receivers making their hay running the ball is really taking off. Tyreek Hill finds himself in my top 20 for this week despite not catching any passes the last two weeks. Hill has rushed for 163 yards the last two weeks with a rushing TD in each of the last two games. The Chiefs clearly want to get the ball in Hill’s hands and he’s a threat to go the distance on any touch. It’s problematic that he’s still had the ball just seven times in the last two games, but against a Chargers defense with first place in the division on the line, the Chiefs will do everything they can to use Hill.
  • I think we may need to stop looking at Cameron Meredith as just a flash in the pan, this guy has legitimate talent. Meredith has 378 yards receiving the last four games and a pair of TD catches. It took injuries to wide receiver and the quarterback alike to get Meredith to this point, but I think he has shown talent that lasts. A while back I would’ve bumped Meredith down due to this matchup with the Vikings, but I don’t think as highly of the Vikings vaunted defense any longer, especially not their secondary.
  • On the other side of the ball in the Vikings and Bears game is Adam Thielen who I now think has the most value in the Vikings receiver corp. Stefon Diggs is the more talented and better long term option, but Thielen is hot right now and seems to be fitting better with what the Vikings want to do on offense. Thielen has 36 catches in his last five games played and he also has 507 yards in total. If you play in a PPR league you can bump Thielen even further up this list, possibly into the top 20 range. I think the Vikings and Bears game is going to be high scoring and there are a few solid fantasy options.
  • Another guy who is too far down on these lists is Brandon LaFell. A.J. Green is officially not coming back and that means LaFell will continue to be the Bengals number one wideout. LaFell has 90 yards or more in three of his last four games with a couple of TD’s scored in this stretch. The Ravens isn’t a great matchup, but they don’t have anything to play for now and could turn in a lackluster performance. LaFell is a legitimate option as a FLEX play or WR3 this week.
  • The Pittsburgh Steelers have a premier matchup this week against the Cleveland Browns, but the Steelers will be resting their starters, including Antonio Brown and Ben Roethlisberger. It’s tough to guess who will step up at the wideout position, but the most obvious choice would be Eli Rogers. This could be a big game for him given the matchup, but at the same time with Landry Jones throwing him the ball it’s hard to know just how productive he’ll be.
Week 17 Rankings (2016): Top 15 Defenses
Week 17 Rankings (2016): Top 20 Tight Ends


  1. Tony says:


    Now that there will be a head coach change in Jacksonville, who do you think would have the best impact on Bortles to return A Robinson into the top 10 WRs? Not sure that means the new head coach would replace Bortles, or make him better? Some ‘experts’ suggest McDaniels bringing Garoppolo with him, but I’m not sure that could happen, though Jax should have some high draft picks to offer the Patriots?

    Anyway, you provide great insight, so curious about your opinion considering the names of coaches being mentioned as candidates for the head coach there.

    Thanks very much and hope you have a great 2017!

    • It’s too early to tell, obviously, but McDaniels would certainly be one of the better options. You never know who’s going to come available or which coach may ultimately opt to leave college though

      • tony says:

        Thanks for answering my question- I appreciate it!

        Possibly Sean Payton would be good as well since his name has appeared in the rumor mill, with the Rams interested in him and McDaniels. Granted, just the coaching change at Jax showed some improvement for both Bortles and AR. I think he got more yards these past two games than his past six combined?

        Anyway, guess we’ll find out soon enough. SF an attractive option for coaches as well with the GM finally let go there.

        Thanks again!

  2. Chris says:

    Thielen, blue or zenner as flex????

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