2016 Fantasy Football PPR Rankings: Wide Receiver (Preseason Week 3) - Roto Street Journal
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2016 Fantasy Football PPR Rankings: Wide Receiver (Preseason Week 3)

With Fantasy Draft Season full in swing, The Roto Street Journal has you covered. We’ll update our Cheat Sheets and Big Board throughout “dress rehearsal” weekend to reflect all the latest news and preseason action, providing you the most up-to-date rankings to dominate your draft.

Updated – August 28th to reflect Saturday’s preseason action and the Tony Romo news.

Key

? = guy I’m significantly higher on.

? = guy I’m significantly lower on

↗️ = slight bump up.

↘️ = slight bump down

⬆️ = major bump up.

⬇️ = major bump down

? = health risk

? = 30+ concern

? = rookie

Tier 1 – The PPR God

1. Antonio Brown (Pittsburgh Steelers)

 

Tier 1.5 – WRs worth #2 consideration

2. Odell Beckham Jr. (New York Giants)

3. Julio Jones (Atlanta Falcons)

 

Tier 2 – Desirable WR1s

4. DeAndre Hopkins (Houston Texans)

5.↗️ A.J. Green (Cincinnati Bengals)

6. ↗️Allen Robinson (Jacksonville Jaguars)

7. Dez Bryant (Dallas Cowboys) – August 27th update –  Both of Dez’s preseason TDs have come on dimes from Dak Prescott, so I’m not overreacting to Tony Romo’s broken back bone. Yes, this could hurt Dez’s outlook, yet there’s also a chance it helps. He remains my WR7, but will probably drop a few spots overall on the Big Board.

8. Brandon Marshall (New York Jets)

 

Tier 3 – Acceptable WR1s, Elite WR2s

9. ⬆️Mike Evans (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) – August 27th update – Evans and Winston reportedly worked on their rapport all offseason, and Week 3 served as the glaring evidence of this. His five catch, 115 yard, TD performance was impressive, as Evans was leaping all over the place and dusting the coverage. With regularity. Even scarier, Evans and Winston just missed on a second 85 yard TD. With a final preseason line of 8 catches 143 yards and 2 TDs, Evans has flashed all the necessary signs of a WR primed to ascend into the elite. There’s a real chance he beats his 12 TDs from his rookie season.

10. Keenan Allen (San Diego Chargers)

11. Jordy Nelson (Green Bay Packers) – Could rise above Keenan Allen now that he’s activated off the PUP, want to see how he looks first.

12. Alshon Jeffrey (Chicago Bears)

13.? Jarvis Landry (Miami Dolphins)

14. Sammy Watkins (Buffalo Bills)

15. ⬆️Amari Cooper (Oakland Raiders) August 28th update – In an effort to build chemsitry, Carr and Cooper have been rooming together, studying film every day after practice with one another, occassionally sharing a sleeping bag and a pint of Ben & Jerry’s. But in all seriousness, the trust & rapport shown on Cooper’s 29 yard diving TD snare was incredible, and the sophomore wideout finished with three catches, 52 yards and a TD. Cooper reportedly played through painful plantar fasciitis all last season, and was so embarrassed with his play that he struggled watching 2015 film. Cooper’s ceiling is far from established, and the sophomore could explode for elite WR1 numbers in 2016.

 

Tier 4 – High End WR2s

16. ↘️ Demaryius Thomas (Denver Broncos) – So much for Sanchez looking competent. He was a horror show in Week 2, and now there’s a real chance a thing named Trevor Siemian is going to be throwing Demaryius the rock (as covered by Jimbo slice here). While the downgrade might not be overly steep from Peyton Manning’s corpse, it’ll still be a downgrade. Yes, the targets should still be there in a Kubiak offense that loves funneling looks to the X receiver. Targets won’t matter if they come from a garbage heap QB.

17. ⬆️?Donte Moncrief (Indianapolis Colts) – August 27th update – During the team’s dress rehearsal, Moncrief dominated Luck’s attention and defensive backs alike. He led the team with six targets, and hauled in all five Luck threw his way for 52 yards, including a couple impressive jump ball wins. He’s my favorite to lead the Colts in all meaningful receiving categories, and as a guy who will be a possession guy, deep ball threat, and red zone jump ball terror, ‘Crief has all the tools to be a bonafide WR1. He’s my bet to emerge as 2016’s Allen Robinson, 

18.? Doug Baldwin (Seattle Seahawks) – True to his word, Pete Carroll’s preseason offense has mimicked the end of season air show which led to Baldwin’s breakout. This was especially apparent in their dress rehearsal vs. the Cowboys. Baldwin has again been Wilson’s favorite target, and outside of a missed deep ball, the chemistry has been as real as ever. He’s one of the draft’s biggest discounts right now.

19. ↗️Randall Cobb (Green Bay Packers)

August 27th update – Cobb should return to form with Jordy Nelson’s attention-hogging presence back. He looked nimble on his Week 3 TD reception, and Cobb should be utilized similarly to 2014 when he finished as a top 10 PPR wideout.

20. Brandin Cooks (New Orleans Saints)

21. ↘️?Julian Edelman ?(New England Patriots) 

August 27th update – Edelman showed no chemistry with Jimmy Garoppollo, who favored Chris Hogan and was generally underwhelming yet again. Though Edelman still has blow up potential when Brady returns in Week 5, he might not yield much value to begin 2016. This, plus his checkered injury history, make Edelman a riskier buy than his on-field PPR consistency suggests.
22. T.Y. Hilton (Indianapolis Colts)

August 27th update – While Hilton still looks solid, he was the clear #2 to Moncrief during the team’s dress rehearsal, consistent with practice reports throughout camp. He’ll still explode for some monster efforts, keeping him a highly viable #2 option. ‘Crief feels like the better bet for a true WR1 ceiling here
**Note – Ideally you draft three of these top 21 as starters, especially in PPR leagues. There’s a big drop off in either ceiling or dependability here.

 

Tier 5 – Solid WR3s

23. Eric Decker (New York Jets)

August 27th update – Decker reminded us of his red zone chops on a powerful 22 yard TD recepton against the Giants. If Marshall’s hip injury proves to be problematic, Decker has a huge ceiling.
24. ??Larry Fitzgerald (Arizona Cardinals)

25. ⬇️Kelvin Benjamin (Carolina Panthers) – The reports that Benjamin’s out of shape, combined with those on Funchess’ rise, have me much more nervous about his 2016 fantasy outlook. There’s still oodles of upside here, but the floor has become a whole lot lower.

26. ?Jeremy Maclin (Kansas City Chiefs)

27. ⬆️?Josh Gordon (Cleveland Browns) – August 27th update – With only two preseason catches, Gordon has erased all on field concerns. He was as long and deceptively fast as ever on his two catches for 87 yards, and literally hung dong on Brent Grimes’ face during his 43 yard score. Paired with the best deep ball thrower of his career (and one who he already has established chemistry with nonetheless), Gordon will carry as much upside as any WR in the game from Week 5 on. As soon as I’ve filled in my top three WR starters, Gordon becomes the first name on my list. Pair him with DeAngelo Williams as a flex option, and you could very well inject a WR1 into your line up for the stretch run at minimal cost.

28↗️. Desean Jackson (Washington Redskins) – August 27th update –  DeSean Jackson led the team with four catches for 56 yards in preseason dress rehearsal against the Bills, and will enter 2016 as Cousins’ #1 WR. He flashed that extra gear which makes him so special on his 39 yard catch and run, and has added motivation in a contract year. Redskins color analyst Joe Theismann noted that Jackson has been in great shape this offseason, even packing on six pounds of muscle, which is evidence of his 2016 drive.  He could have a WR1 type of season.

29. ⬆️Marvin Jones (Detroit Lions) – Jones looked damn good on his 4 catches and 65 yards in preseason Week 2, and this marked the second week in a row in which he made an acrobatic catch along the sidelines. His rapport with Stafford is clearly strong, and reports that he’s the #1 option are looking quite accurate so far.

30. ?Golden Tate (Detroit Lions)

Tier 6- Upside WR4s

31. Tyler Lockett (Seattle Seahawks) – He’s cruising this preseason as the #2 WR, and was the guy Wilson looked for while under duress in the red zone for a TD strike. He’s made veteran plays like not flashing his hand on a deep ball, and appears primed for a true breakout.

32. ↗️Michael Floyd (Arizona Cardinals) – Floyd rises in John Brown’s absence, as he’s provided the chance to become the clear #2 (or even #1) in this explosive aerial assault.

33. Allen Hurns (Jacksonville Jaguars)

34. ? Jordan Matthews (Philadelphia Eagles)

35. ?Sterling Shepard (New York Giants) – Preseason Week 1 showed us this guy was as pro ready as any prospect in recent years. He carries very real 1,000 yard and 8-9 TD upside in this explosive attack.

36. Stefon Diggs (Minnesota Vikings)

37.⬆️ Willie Snead (New Orleans Saints) – August 27th update –  The blonde muskrat rises after Friday’s battle with the Steelers provided a glaring reminder of his strong rapport with Drew Brees. Snead hauled in all four of his looks for 58 yards, including an incredible 17-yard score over two defenders. He’s a dependable WR4 and flex play if you rolled the dice early, an would make a great Josh Gordon fill-in over the early season.

 

38. ↘️John Brown (Arizona Cardinals) – These concussions should be a non-issue, but the missed time has me a little down on Brown.

39. ? ↘️Corey Coleman (Cleveland Browns) – August 27th update –Coleman’s zero catch preseason debut was particularly disappointing because not only did he underwhelm, but Gordon also flashed and ended Coleman’s hopes at being the top target beyond Week 5. He still has plenty of chances to establish himself as a top target, and carries a tantilizing skillset, but he’s tough to trust as a flex or starter at this point.

40.?Michael Thomas (New Orleans Saints) – August 27th update – Fleener’s ineptitude should open up even more targets for this massively talented rookie. I think he’s the best all-around wideout on this team, but Brees’ well-established rapports with others like Snead could slow Thomas’ fantasy roll.

41. ⬆️Devin Funchess (Carolina Panthers) – Nothing but positive praise has been heaped onto Funchess this offseason, with people close to the team prediciting he could outperform Kelvin Benjamin. I don’t buy this clearly, but also feel his production could be damn close. He’ll keep rising if these reports keep coming.

 

 

Tier 7 – Solid Depth

42. Michael Crabtree (Oakland Raiders)

43. ⬇️DeVante Parker (Miami Dolphins) – August 26th update I’m officially hopping off the DeVante Parker train. He’s running behind Kenny Stills in two WR sets, which isn’t a major issue given the Dolphins will roll with three wideouts most of the time. Still, Parker hasn’t flashed anything special yet this preseason, while Stills is showing tremendous chemsitry with Tannehill. There’s a real chance Stills outscores Parker despite the latter’s more imposing natural ability, making DeVante one of the most overdrafted players in all of fantasy. He’s still worth a look late given his incredible natural skillset, but Parker probably won’t ever fall to where I’d draft him.

44. ⬆️? Mike Wallace (Baltimore Ravens)

August 27th update- Week 3 gave us our first brief glimpse at the Wallace/Flacco rapport, and the results were highly encouraging. Wallace accounted for three of Flacco’s first seven completions, netting 37 yards. The #1 WR in pass-happy OC Marc Trestman’s scheme carries serious fantasy value, and Wallace appears to have the inside track to this job. Steve Smith was #8 in WR PPG last season in this role.

I loved the report that Flacco and Wallace are clicking for highlight plays on a daily basis. Wallace has always been at his best with a strong-armed signal caller, and neither Bridgewater nor Tannehill fit that bill. Flacco, however,throws one of the most frozen ropes in the league, and the two meshing has me giddy. OC Marc Trestman will call one of the pass-heaviest scripts every week and Wallace should have a few chances for monster plays on a weekly basis. Remember, Steve Smith was 8th in PPG in this scheme last year. Wallace is a poor man’s DeSean Jackson.

45.↘️ Kevin White (Chicago Bears) – White’s imposing physical skills have been on display, but he’s apparently playing tentative and coming along slowly after missing the entire 2015 season due to injury.
46.? Emmanuel Sanders (Denver Broncos) – He’ll outperform plenty above him, but his ceiling just doesn’t excite me in the least. This is even more true in light of the QB struggles.

47. ⬆️ Vincent Jackson (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) – August 27th uppdate – All of Tampa’s ships rise with Jameis Winston’s step forward, including Vincent Jackson. The #2 option in a potential offensive juggernaut generally holds value, and VJax showed he has some tread left on those 33 year old tires with 4 catches for 78 yards on Friday night.  While he’s not the most exciting pick, Jackson can add some relaible depth to a bench.
48. Phillip Dorsett (Indianapolis Colts)

49. ? ⬆️Kenny Stills (Miami Dolphins) – August 26th update – Stills is officially Ryan Tannehill’s most-targeted wideout this preseason, and has shown well with these looks. The four catches and 46 yards he tallied in Week 3 bring stills to seven catches for 117 yards and two TDs.  Stills was one of my key takeaways from preseason Week 2, and is now even further up my rankings. His chemistry with Tannehill is very real, and Gase should maximize his deep ball skills.

50. ?⬆️ Tyler Boyd (Cincinnati Bengals)

51. ↗️Steve Smith (Baltimore Ravens) – Smith was finally activated off the PUP, and instantly should be on fantasy radars. He was #8 in WR PPG, but this injury was terrifying given his age. He could fly up the board if he shows he still has it.

52. ⬇️Tavon Austin (LA Rams) – Those Goodell socks on Hard Knocks really changed my opinion on Tavon as a human. Don’t think I could stomach drafting him now.

Tier 8 – Remaining names worth consideration

53.↗️ Tajae Sharpe (Tennessee Titans) – August 27th update – The Tajae Sharpe Express is pumping ahead at full steam, with the UMass stud flashing yet again in Week 3 of the preseaso with a. 60 yard catch-and-run. This raised Sharpe’s preseason stat line to 9 catches for 153 yards. His quarterback and coaches love him, and Sharpe is a sneaky bet to make a major splash in 2016. No, this run-heavy offense isn’t the most appealing place for WRs, but Sharpe has looked like Mariota’s go-to guy on pressured situations. A #1 WR is always exciting, epecially one who’s gotten as much positive press as Sharpe.

54. ⬆️Will Fuller (Houston Texans) Fuller becomes highly relevant after ascending to the clear #2 WR in Houston and thriving in this role: 4 catches, 73 yards and a TD. He could have some week-winning performances in 2016.

55. ↗️Markus Wheaton (Pittsburgh Steelers) – Wheaton gets a bump strictly because of Sammie Coates’ struggles. Mike Tomlinson and Big Ben will roll strictly with who they trust, and Wheaton will be that guy. The #2 guy in this explosive attack is always worth a look.

56. ⬆️ Terrelle Pryor (Cleveland Browns) – Why not? Pryor’s an athletic freak, and is showing good chemistry with RGIII so far. He also dusted Marcus Trufant, 2015’s least targeted CB, by a few strides. I’m a believer in the Browns in 2016.

57. Ted Ginn Jr. (Carolina Panthers)

58. ⬆️ Chris Hogan (New England Patriots) –August 27th update – Even with Edelman back on the field, Hogan was the most trusted target of both Garoppolo and Brady. He hauled in a gorgeous 33 yard TD throw from the GOAT, and seems to be thriving in this system. He seems reliant on injury to hold true relevance, but Hogan could step in and be an upside flex play if he’s ever filling in.

59. ⬆️Chris Conley (Kansas City Chiefs) – In a class of talent like Kevin White and Amari Cooper, it was Chris Conley who ran the fastest 40 (4.35), posted the highest vertical (45 inch?) and broad jump (139 inch) at 6’2″. Sure, he could just be a workout warrior, but he definitely looked smooth on his 3 catches for 66 yards in preseason Week 2. I’m not sure this ball-control offense yields enough aerial volume for consistency, but Conley possesses the athleticism for some blow-up performances. Why not chuck him on a deep bench?

60. ⬆️Eli Rogers (Pittsburgh Steelers) – August 27th update –The nifty slot WR is operating as the clear #3 guy in Todd Haley’s explosive attack. In fact, Haley has already gushed about having a true slot WR for the first time. There’s upside here.

 
Tier 9 – Other names

61. ⬇️?Torrey Smith (San Francisco 49ers) – August 27th update –  Torrey Smith is one of this preseason’s biggest fantasy losers. He has seen a robust one target across three games, and seems to have no chemistry with Blaine Gabbert. Perhaps Kelly is holding his cards close to the vest, and has major plans for this offense. As of now, there isn’t a sinle pass catching option I trsut in San Francisco.

62. ⬇️Bruce Ellington (San Francisco 49ers) – August 27th update – The positive drum was beating early, but Ellington hasnt been able to shake the injury imp. Maybe he’ll show something in Week 3 of the preseason.

63. Sammie Coates (Pittsburgh Steelers) – August 27th update  Coates finally had a positive moment since his hype train came screeching off the rails, hauling in two catches for 66 yards and a TD. Yet, this all came with the second stringers, as Coates is firmly behind slot WR Eli Rogers. He carries the most athleticism to the table, but this doesn’t earn any points for riding the pine.

64. Kendall Wright (Tennessee Titans) – Big chance to rise when he’s back on the field if he claims the #1 WR role in Tennessee.

65.↗️ Malcolm Mitchell (New England Patriots) – If he truly has a shot at starting for the Patriots, which his preseason play would warrant, Mitchell would instantly warrant consideration even if fifth on the target totem pole. He would be a good late round pick in dynasty formats with the uncertainty of Amendola’s future health.

66. Travis Benjamin (San Diego Chargers)

67. Laquon Treadwell (Minnesota Vikings)

68. Josh Doctson (Washington Redskins)

Author

  • Founder of Roto Street Journal. Lover of workhorse backs, target hog wideouts, and Game of Thrones. Aspiring to be the "Brady" and "Leo" of the fantasy universe.

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