Third year receivers are always considered “breakout potential”, but which of yesterday’s treasures could be today’s trash? Let’s take a look at which fourth year receivers you may want to avoid on draft day for various reasons:
Mike Wallace – Pittsburgh Steelers
We have all seen what a lengthy holdout can do to a player. Obviously the position does change things, but we can’t let last years Chris Johnson debacle completely slip from our minds, can we?
Even if there wasn’t a hold out issue, there would be at least a little bit of concern regarding Wallace as we enter 2012. As Will Overton recently pointed out, over the final 10 games of 2011 Antonio Brown actually out produced Wallace, 51 receptions to 39. Could there be a changing of the guard?
Obviously Wallace and Ben Roethlisberger already have a rapport, but it is still going to take time for them to gel. With Brown and Emmanuel Saunders getting a full preseason, it’s not unthinkable that Roethlisberger targets them more early on.
Throw in that Wallace is more of a big play threat, and it really is going to take a few weeks for the timing to be there. I would think he will have a bigger impact in the second half of the year (unless he signs soon), so if you are going to draft him I would plan accordingly.
Would I completely avoid Wallace? Not if the value is right (fifth round or so). However, there is a lot of risk and I wouldn’t go out of my way to target him either.
Jeremy Maclin – Philadelphia Eagles
It’s not that Maclin is superstar, but the consensus seems to be that he is going to be the top receiver in Philadelphia. According to Mock Draft Central he has an ADP of 69.46, going just ahead of teammate DeSean Jackson.
Is it an unreasonable spot? Absolutely not, though I would still prefer Jackson, who has a lot to play for this season. Yes, Maclin had a big 2010 campaign (70 receptions for 964 yards and 10 TD), and was good in 2011 though missing three games suppressed his numbers.
Despite that success, prior to last season who would you have drafted first? My guess would be Jackson, and I wouldn’t let last season’s debacle change that. Jackson is going to be streaky, but he also has the higher upside.
Percy Harvin – Minnesota Vikings
Can he stay healthy? If he can he has a chance to be among the elite receivers in the game. Of course, last year was the first time in his career he achieved the “feat” of playing 16 games.
I actually like Harvin, but he currently is the 12th wide Receiver coming off the board. That’s before Jordy Nelson, Dez Bryant and Steve Smith, just to name a few.
Given his risk and propensity to miss games, he is being drafted way too early in my book. I would rather miss on Harvin and instead take a more dependable Smith or Nelson, both of which could easily outperform Harvin given their situations.
What are your thoughts on these three players? Are you willing to draft any of them? Why or why not?
Make sure to check out our 2012 fantasy football rankings: