2018 Preseason Rankings: Top 50 Wide Receivers: Who Should We Trust?, Where Are The Risks? & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We all know who the elite wide receivers in the league are, even though there may be concerns about Odell Beckham’s return to health.  How do things shake out behind what we can dub “The Big Four”?  Things are cloudier, but there is significant talent and potential bargains to be found.  With that thought in mind, let’s take a look at how our rankings currently look:

  1. Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh Steelers
  2. DeAndre Hopkins – Houston Texans
  3. Julio Jones – Atlanta Falcons
  4. Odell Beckham Jr. – New York Giants
  5. Keenan Allen – Los Angeles Chargers
  6. Davante Adams – Green Bay Packers
  7. Mike Evans – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  8. Michael Thomas – New Orleans Saints
  9. A.J. Green – Cincinnati Bengals
  10. Tyreek Hill – Kansas City Chiefs
  11. Doug Baldwin – Seattle Seahawks
  12. Stefon Diggs – Minnesota Vikings
  13. Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona Cardinals
  14. Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos
  15. T.Y. Hilton – Indianapolis Colts
  16. Josh Gordon – Cleveland Browns
  17. Golden Tate – Detroit Lions
  18. Adam Thielen – Minnesota Vikings
  19. Amari Cooper – Oakland Raiders
  20. Devin Funchess – Carolina Panthers
  21. Allen Robinson – Chicago Bears
  22. Alshon Jeffrey – Philadelphia Eagles
  23. JuJu Smith-Schuster – Pittsburgh Steelers
  24. Jarvis Landry – Cleveland Browns
  25. Marvin Jones – Detroit Lions
  26. Brandin Cooks – Los Angeles Rams
  27. Robert Woods – Los Angeles Rams
  28. Michael Crabtree – Baltimore Ravens
  29. Will Fuller – Houston Texans
  30. Pierre Garcon – San Francisco 49ers
  31. Cooper Kupp – Los Angeles Rams
  32. Emmanuel Sanders – Denver Broncos
  33. Robby Anderson – New York Jets
  34. Jamison Crowder – Washington Redskins
  35. Rishard Matthews – Tennessee Titans
  36. Chris Hogan – New England Patriots
  37. Julian Edelman – New England Patriots
  38. Starling Shepard – New York Giants
  39. Mohamed Sanu – Atlanta Falcons
  40. Sammy Watkins – Kansas City Chiefs
  41. Randall Cobb – Green Bay Packers
  42. Kelvin Benjamin – Buffalo Bills
  43. DeVante Parker – Miami Dolphins
  44. Corey Davis – Tennessee Titans
  45. Jordy Nelson – Oakland Raiders
  46. DeSean Jackson – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  47. Nelson Agholer – Philadelphia Eagles
  48. Allen Hurns – Dallas Cowboys
  49. Marquise Goodwin – San Francisco 49ers
  50. Kenny Stills – Miami Dolphins

Notes:

  • If Odell Beckham Jr. is healthy it’s easy to argue him for the #2 spot on these rankings.  That said we don’t know how big of an impact last year’s injury will have on him moving forward and therefore we have to drop him down a few spots(though his upside is too great to consider him outside the top tier of options).
  • Michael Thomas is coming off a big year (104 receptions for 1,245 yards), but it’s very possible that the Saints go RB heavy, he only scored 5 TD and converted 70% of his targets into receptions.  In other words, there’s a lot of risk involved (and we will take a closer look at it shortly).
  • Stefon Diggs over Adam Thielen?  We recently spoke about the risks Thielen faces this season, with a new coach and a new quarterback potentially limiting his opportunities.  For our in-depth look, click here.
  • While T.Y. Hilton continues to prove to be a boom or bust receiver, he’s also proven that he can’t consistently produce when Andrew Luck is on the field.  Will Luck be on the field in 2018?  If he is, will he be the same player he once was?  Don’t ignore the risks involved in entrusting Hilton this season, though the upside is clearly there.
  • If there were no questions hanging over Robby Anderson it would be easy to push him to a borderline Top 20 option.  He clearly had a breakout last season, with 63 receptions, 941 yards and 7 TD, though he has some off-the-field issues and also could have to adjust to a rookie quarterback throwing him the football (you have to think Sam Darnold will get an opportunity at some point).  Both of those drag him down a little bit, though he’s still worth the investment.
  • Michael Crabtree should get out of the “shadow” of Amari Cooper, and instead of operating as a 1/1A he’s going to be the top option for the Ravens.  While Joe Flacco may not be the best quarterback in the league, he’s not a bad option and Crabtree should deliver WR3 value.
  • Obviously Julian Edelman is among the better options in the game, though his suspension is going to drag him down the rankings a little bit.  Once he’s back on the field he could easily be a Top 25 option, so if he falls into the WR3/4 range he’s worth the gamble.
  • DeVante Parker and Corey Davis didn’t live up to the hype last season, but both have the potential to produce gaudy numbers in ’18.  As reserves they are the types of home run swings we want to take.

Make sure to check out all of our 2018 preseason rankings:

Position
Date Updated
Quarterback08/31/18
Running Back09/02/18
Wide Receiver 08/29/18
Tight End08/24/18
Kicker08/28/18
Defense08/09/18
Top 10 Rookie Running Backs For 2018: Is There Any Value Beyond The Obvious?
2018 Preseason Rankings: Top 40 Running Backs (Where Does Alvin Kamara Fall, Injury Returns & More)

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