Chris Conley
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Fantasy football is not unlike NFL betting in that sleepers and underdogs can often come outta nowhere and save the day. Like Tom Brady, who is neither a wide receiver nor a sleeper fantasy pick but was selected by the New England Patriots with the 199th overall pick in the sixth round of 2000 NFL Draft. With the benefit of hindsight one would never select Brady that late, nor would one pick these wide receivers in the early rounds – which are reserved for the likes of Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, Odell Beckham Jr., etc. but the following aren’t going until the 10th round in standard fantasy football leagues.
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Chris Conley

On the plus side Conley played the most snaps of any Kansas City Chiefs receiver (818) and recorded 45.47 Reception Net Expected Points in 2016 even though he did not score a touchdown. On the downside quarterback Alex Smith ranked second-lowest in intended air yards per attempt in 2016, and the Chief ranked 25th in pass plays (577).
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Tyler Lockett

Locket’s 0.71 Reception NEP per target in 2016 placed him behind Seattle Seahawks teammates Doug Baldwin and Jimmy Graham (0.75 and 0.74 respectively) and matched Antonio Brown’s Reception NEP per target. Locket had just 66 targets overall, but had at least six targets in five of his last six games before breaking his tibia and fibula in week 16.
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Zay Jones

Sammy Watkins was dealt away, Jordan Matthews is injured, Anquan Boldin found a higher calling, and Brandon Tate, Walter Powell, and Dezmin Lewis all had only 22 catches last season. all of which opens the door for rookie Zay Jones – who is the all-time NCAA Division I career receptions leader (399) and all-time NCAA Division I single season receptions leader (158) – to potentially become the Buffalo Bills’ top receiver.
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Sterling Shepard

The New York Giants 26th-ranked offense in 2016 (they scored 110 fewer points than the previous season and had 25% fewer red zone receiving opportunities) did not prevent Shepard from finishing with 65 catches for 683 yards and eight touchdowns. His output could actually increase this season if, as expected, defenses focus on Odell Beckham and Brandon Marshall.
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Ted Ginn Jr.

Ginn has become a Saint in receivers’ heaven – also known as New Orleans – presided over by Breesus. While the Cam Newton failed to reach 4000 passing yards in both of Ginn’s stints with the Carolina Panthers, Drew Brees has passed for more than 5,000 yards in four of the last six years. Furthermore, Brandin Cooks, who had 117 targets in 2016, was traded to the Patriots. Ginn is something neither Willie Snead nor Michael Thomas is; “the fastest player on the field,” according to Saints head coach Sean Payton.
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Taylor Gabriel

Gabriel had a 1.03 Reception NEP per target among receivers with at least 50 targets last season; better than his Atlanta Falcons teammate Julio Jones or anyone else for that matter – the league’s Reception NEP per target average last season was 0.66. Gabriel sure made the most of that minimum 50 targets he had.

Click here to enter the 2017 Lester’s Legends Fantasy Football Team Name Contest!
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Julio Jones Super Bowl
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With fantasy drafts taking place, here’s an updated and expanded look at the 2017 fantasy football wide receiver landscape.
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1. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
2. Odell Beckham, Jr., New York Giants
3. Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers
4. A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals
5. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
6. Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers
7. Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys
8. Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints
9. T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts
10. DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans
11. Amari Cooper, Oakland Raiders
12. Brandin Cooks, New England Patriots
13. Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks
14. Terrelle Pryor, Washington Redskins
15. Alshon Jeffery, Philadelphia Eagles
16. Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos
17. Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars
18. Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers
19. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers
20. Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins
21. Michael Crabtree, Oakland Raiders
22. Martavis Bryant, Pittsburgh Steelers
23. Sammy Watkins, Los Angeles Rams
24. Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina Panthers
25. Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
26. Brandon Marshall, New York Giants
27. Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs
28. Golden Tate, Detroit Lions
29. Chris Hogan, New England Patriots
30. Eric Decker, Tennessee Titans
31. Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos
32. DeSean Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
33. Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts
34. Devante Parker, Miami Dolphins
35. Stefon Diggs, Minnesota Vikings
36. Jamison Crowder, Washington Redskins
37. Jeremy Maclin, Baltimore Ravens
38. Randall Cobb, Green Bay Packers
39. Adam Thielen, Minnesota Vikings
40. Kenny Britt, Cleveland Browns
41. Pierre Garcon, San Francisco 49ers
42. Tyrell Williams, Los Angeles Chargers
43. Willie Snead, New Orleans Saints
44. Mike Wallace, Baltimore Ravens
45. Jordan Matthews, Buffalo Bills
46. Corey Davis, Tennessee Titans
47. Corey Coleman, Cleveland Browns
48. Marvin Jones, Detroit Lions
49. Ted Ginn, New Orleans Saints
50. Kevin White, Chicago Bears
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Also check out:

Click here to enter the 2017 Lester’s Legends Fantasy Football Team Name Contest!
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Julio Jones Super Bowl
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Here is an early look at 2017 wide receiver fantasy football rankings. Click here for updated rankings.
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1. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
2. Odell Beckham, Jr., New York Giants
3. Antonio Bryant, Pittsburgh Pirates
4. A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals
5. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
6. Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers
7. Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys
8. T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts
9. DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans
10. Amari Cooper, Oakland Raiders
11. Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints
12. Brandin Cooks, New England Patriots
13. Alshon Jeffery, Philadelphia Eagles
14. Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos
15. Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks
16. Allen Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars
17. Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers
18. Julian Edelman, New England Patriots
19. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers
20. Terrelle Pryor, Washington Redskins
21. Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins
22. Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs
23. Michael Crabtree, Oakland Raiders
24. Brandon Marshall, New York Giants
25. Eric Decker, Tennessee Titans
26. Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos
27. DeSean Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
28. Golden Tate, Detroit Lions
29. Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
30. Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina Panthers
31. Donte Moncrief, Indianapolis Colts
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Also check out:

antonio brown
Antonio Brown“ (CC BY-SA 2.0) by  Keith Allison 
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Last season, the likes of Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham Jr and Julio Jones played crucial roles for a number of fantasy football teams. Many running backs struggled to inspire confidence or suffered season-ending injuries, which helped to raise the stock of wide receivers throughout the campaign. And it is hard to see the running backs fighting back to buck the trend in 2016…
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Pittsburgh Steelers star Brown was absolutely sensational, especially in PPR leagues. He is widely regarded as the best wide receiver in the National Football League and it would be fair to say he is a fantasy goldmine. Brown was effective in the receiving game but also played a brief role rushing out of the backfield when required. Basically, the Steelers have a fantastic asset at their disposal and you should definitely consider moving for Brown early on in the draft.
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Ultimately, this man is a huge asset in fantasy sports – especially those that include points for punt and kick returns. The Steelers number 84 recorded 1,834 yards at an average of 13.5 yards per catch; an impressive feat to say the least. And if Brown performs just as well in 2016, the Steelers could be set for a very successful campaign.
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At the time of writing, Pittsburgh are priced at 12/1 to win the Super Bowl in Paddy Power’s NFL betting odds and Brown could be the man to lead the Steelers to glory. However, he might not finish as the leading wide receiver again this time around. Julio Jones and Odell Beckham Jr are both in with a great chance of recording league-leading fantasy numbers this season and you would do well to select either star in your fantasy draft.
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Jones is a dominant figure on the Atlanta Falcons offense and the emergence of Devonta Freeman in the backfield really helped to boost his’ stock last season. While Freeman was taking a bunch of carries, the running back’s production meant that opposing defences couldn’t focus purely on Jones – they had to be aware of Freeman’s threat and that allowed quarterback Matt Ryan to expose the defense on more than one occasion.
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By the same token, Beckham Jr is equally as important for the New York Giants and he could be the difference for your fantasy team this year. Beckham Jr is a difference-maker and Eli Manning now has a genuine talent to look for when under pressure. He is a stud wide-out and it is only a matter of time before Beckham blossoms into the best receiver in the NFL. At times, his temperament comes into question but his skill and upside is unrivalled.
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via GIPHY

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You heard it here first, draft wide receivers early this year and YOU could be on your way to the fantasy championship…

Here are some Wide Receivers and Tight Ends putting up serious preseason numbers.  Let’s take a look and see if they have a chance to translate some of that preseason production into fantasy worth in regular season play. 

Jonathan Stupar, Buffalo Bills - Stupar leads the NFL with 15 preseason receptions for 155 yards and a TD.  He’s third on the Bills’ Tight End depth chart so don’t get any thoughts of fantasy worth.

Jared Cook, Tennessee Titans - Now Cook is a TE with some fantasy value.  The Rookie out of South Carolina has 12 catches for 120 yards in the preseason.  With Tennessee’s limited options in the passing game, Cook could become one of their more reliable targets.  He’s worth taking as a TE2.

Chris Henry, Cincinnati Bengals - As long as he can stay out of Roger Goodell’s office, Henry has a chance to really break out this year.  He has 11 catches for 155 yards and 2 TDs.  Now that he seems to have put his troubles behind him, he could put up huge numbers in a full season.  He is going in the later rounds of fantasy drafts, and could end up putting up WR2 or WR3 numbers. 

Dwayne Bowe catch
Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City Chiefs
- For all the talk of Bowe not fitting into the Chiefs’ system or being at odds with Todd Haley, he has looked good in the preseason games with 8 catches for 107 yards and a TD. If you moved him down in your WR rankings, you may want to move him back up.

Troy Williamson, Jacksonville Jaguars - The former #1 bust leads the NFL with 221 preseason receiving yards on 7 caches.  He caught a pair of deep balls for the bulk of the yardage. It’s great to see him make some plays, but I wouldn’t trust him to continue to produce.  His hands have long been a question mark.

Chad Ochocinco TD
Chad Ochocinco, Cincinnati Bengals
- Ocho has 142 yards on 5 catches.  He even added an Extra Point.  More importantly he has kept relatively quiet.  If he can avoid being a distraction, he should be a real nice WR2 this year.

David Clowney, New York Jets - Clowney is hoping to be the next third year WR to break out.  He has five receptions for 135 yards and 2 TDs this preseason.  He is fighting with Chansi Stuckey to start opposite Jerricho Cotchery.

Justin Harper, Baltimore Ravens - Harper has been productive in the preseason games with 6 catches for 119 yards, but has dropped too many passes in practice.  For a team with a limited passing game, dropping passes is a good way to be buried on the depth chart.

Laurent Robinson, St. Louis Rams - Laurent has taken advantage of Donnie Avery’s foot injury by catching 7 passes for 117 yards.  He is going to start for the Rams so he’s worth grabbing in deep leagues, but he likely won’t be a viable fantasy option this year.

Robert Meachem, New Orleans Saints - Meachem has been a sleeper candidate the past two years now.  He has 5 catches for 106 yards, including a 64-yard TD.  If he can get on the field, he has a great chance to be productive in that offense.  Draft him as a fantasy reserve and hope for the best.

Legedu Naanee, San Diego Chargers – This list is littered with third-year WRs.  Legedu has 5 catches for 84 yards and 2 TDs.  He is buried as the Chargers #4 WR behind Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers, and Malcom Floyd.  It’s also an offense that throws heavily to TE Antonio Gates and RBs LT and Darren Sproles.  Don’t expect much from a fantasy perspective from Naanee this year.

Images courtesy of Icon SMI

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There was a trio of wideouts in the news today.

The Good
Instead of running on an injured foot, NFL Draft prospect Michael Crabtree has decided to have his surgery next week.  He will have a screw inserted to repair a stress fracture in his left foot.  Crabtree will have two or three months of rehab to get ready for the OTAs.  It’s hard to say at this point what effect his injury will have on his draft stock.  Considering he is shorter than anticpated and more injured than anticipated, he could lose his grip on top wideout drafted.  Regardless of his draft position, I think the young man is using good judgement nipping this problem in the bud.

The Bad
Tampa Bay signed Michael Clayton to a five-year extension.  Yes, the same Michael Clayton who 125 receptions over the past four years for 1513 yards and 2 TDs.  That’s an average of 31.25 receptions for 378.25 yards and 0.5 TDs per season if you’re keeping track at  home.  Hardly the production that would merit a $26 million payday.

The Ugly
Stop me if you heard this before.  Brandon Marshall was arrested.  It was only his fourth time being arrested since 2006.  If you recall he had a three game suspsension, which was later reduced to one game, for his Pacman Jones-like behavior.  I don’t think Roger Goodell is going to be as forgiving this time around.  Couple this with the Jay Cutler mess, and one has to think this is karma for signing Brian Dawkins away from Philadelphia.

You’ve seen the Sleepers.  Now it’s time to explore the players who I feel will be disappointments to fantasy football owners.  Here are the Wide Receivers I’d avoid.

Anquan Boldin – Boldin isn’t happy about his contract.  He has also had a hamsting issues thus far.  That’s a recipe for disaster in my book. 

Santana Moss – The Redskins brought in a couple of high-profile rookie WRs in Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly.  I wouldn’t be too keen on that if I were a Santana Moss owner.

Javon Walker – He nearly retired.  Extreme Buyer Beware!

Derrick Mason – There is no way he can match last season numbers.  No way.

Greg Jennings – No way do I see him coming close to matching 2007 production with Aaron Rodgers instead of Brett Favre.

Reggie Williams – He won’t come close to 10 TDs like he had last year.  Look elsewhere.

I’m going to preface this by stating that in this day and age there really are no “sleepers” since there is so much coverage that a fourth string WR can’t make a one-handed grab in practice without the world knowing about it.  That said, here is a list of WRs that I feel will exceed expectations this season.

Anthony Gonzalez – OK, he’s not a sleeper to most fantasy football fans, but I see Anthony Gonzalez leapfrogging a lot of WRs that will be picked in front of him.  With Reggie Wayne, Marvin Harrison, and Dallas Clark demanding attention, Gonzalez will be the posion most defenses will pick.

Nate Burleson – Nate had a rough start to his Seattle Seahawk career.  He turned it on down the stretch last year though grabbing five TDs in the last five weeks.  He meshed well with Hasselbeck, and should be his go-to-guy this year.

Sidney Rice – I thought Rice was decent at times last year.  His numbers would have been even better if his QB (T-Jack) could have hit him when he was open.  With Bernard Berrian working the deep routes and Bobby Wade working the slot, Rice could find himself with plenty of opportunities.  I like his size (6’4″) in the red zone.

Bryant Johnson – Bryant is going from Third Fiddle to First Fiddle in San Francisco.  He’s also moving to a Mike Martz offense.  With Isaac Bruce taking some of the pressure off, he should have a solid year by the Bay.

Ted Ginn, Jr.  – If his small frame can avoid big hits, he could be a nice surprise for fantasy owners.  He’s super quick and has big game ability.  He just needs to stay focused.  He should be playing from behind quite a bit increasing his opportunties. 

Deeper Sleepers
James Hardy
– Dude is 6’7′.  He should be money in the goal line for the Bills.
Devin Hester – Is this the year he does better at WR than KR since he’ll be avoided at all costs in the return game?
Jacoby Jones – Has the build (6’2″, 210 lbs).  Does he have the game?
Troy Williamson – Will he finally produce or will he just produce more drops?
Devard Darling – Will the move from Baltimore pay off like Priest Holmes?  Ha.  Could be decent though.
Robert Meachem – Flopped as a Rookie.  Will he show strides in Year 2?
Chad Jackson – Big and fast and plays for Tom Brady.  Good combo.
DeSean Jackson – Rookie for Philly could have solid Freshman Year.
Limas Sweed – Big Red Zone target for Big Ben.
Devin Thomas/Malcolm Kelly – Washington’s Rookie Wideouts could be produce.  Kelly bigger red zone threat.

Big Dogs
The beauty about the WR position is there are more Big Dogs than any other position.  For that reason, many fantasy footballers are contemplating grabbing stud WRs in the middle-to-late first round and early second round rather than mindlessly taking the best RB available.  With that in mind, let’s take a look at who those characters are.

Randy Moss – How can you start anywhere else after the historic season Moss produced last year?  The thing that worries me about Moss is he looked vulnerable to physical play during the playoffs.  If you’re expecting another 23 TDs, you’ll be disappointed.

Terrell Owens – So far so good in Big D for MeO, I mean T.O.  As long as he’s happy, he’ll continue to produce in bunches.  I can see T.O. lead all WRs in scoring this year.

Reggie Wayne – Well, he officially surpassed Marvin Harrison as the Top Dog in Indy, and I don’t see that changing any time soon.  You can pretty much pencil him in for 1300 yards and 10 TDs.  How many RBs can you say that with?  That’s why he’s a safer pick than a Clinton Portis or Willis McGahee.

Braylon Edwards – Braylon finally showed why he was a 3rd pick last year scoring 16 TDs.  I don’t see him reaching paydirt quite as often, especially with the addition of Donte Stallworth, but double-digits isn’t out of the question.

Andre Johnson – He averaged close to 95 yards and nearly a TD a game last year.  That translates to 1500 yards and 14 TDs.  Will he reach those lofty numbers?  I doubt it, but he’ll come close if he gets a full season in.

Larry Fitzgerald – I am a huge fan of Fitzy.  He just seems to get it.  Must be his Minnesota ties.  Every other year he gets 1400 yards and 10 TDs.  If he can avoid his even-year slump, he’ll be worth his weight in gold again for fantasy owners.

Steve Smith – Here’s a guy who NEEDS his QB to stay healthy.  He’s had two down years (compared to his 2005 masterpiece), but he still has what it takes to be an elite WR in this league.  If Delhomme goes down, he could easily lose his Big Dog status.

Chad Johnson – Ocho Cinco had 1440 yards and 8 TDs last year.  Unfortunately his TDs came in just 4 games last year.  That’s what bugs me about Ocho.  His end of the year stats look great, but he’s not as solid week-to-week like some of the Big Dogs.  His contract situation is a little scary, but I think he’ll play.

T.J. Houshmandzadeh – Unlike Ocho, Housh likes to spread the wealth out during his season.  He scored a TD in his first 8 games last year.  He’s not going to wow you with big yardage (only three weeks over 100 and none after Wek 6), but you’ll be happy with his production.

Marques Colston – I was tempted to put him a tier lower, but his improvement on an already outstanding rookie season was too hard to ignore.  If the 3rd Year Rule applies to Colston, the league better look out because he’s already blown up.  He caught nearly 100 balls last year for over 1200 yards and 11 TDs.  Those are solid digits.

Torry Holt – Holt had a down year by his standards last year, failing to produce either 1200 yards or 10 TDs for the first time since his rookie season.  I see Marc Bulger bouncing back this year though, and Holt will rebound with him.  He’s going to be a great value pick this year.

Plaxico Burress – I wasn’t going to put him in the Big Dog Club, but when you consider what he did last year despite knee and ankle injuries.  He scored in his first 6 games last year and racked up 1025 yards and 12 scores for the year.  It was his second straight double-digit TD year with the G-Men, and Eli’s added confidence (and pressure from NY media and fans removed) following the Super Bowl victory should keep the success going.

Second Tier WRs
These will most likely be your 2nd or 3rd WRs depending on your league size and your draft stratgey.  They are solid wideouts, but not quite the caliber of the Big Dogs.

Brandon Marshall – The only thing that kept Brandon Marshall from runnin’ with the Big Dogs is his maturity, or lack thereof.  Numbers are numbers though and he went for over 1300 yards and 7 TDs last year.  If he can avoid fast food bags, he should have another solid year.  He’s the one 2nd Tier WR that’s most likely to be a Big Dog.

Wes Welker – When the Patriots offense is clicking, there really is no answer for Welker.  I still think if he caught 20+ passes in the Super Bowl the outcome would have been different.  The Giants had no answer for him.  112 catches last year.  That’s amazing.  I think he can catch more if that’s what the Defenses present to TB. 

Anquan Boldin – Boldin took a step back in yardage last year, but his TD production went up.  He caught a career high 9 TDs depsite missing 4 games.  If he gets steady QB play again this year he’ll produce with the best of them.

Greg Jennings – Jennings was awesome last year.  He had 12 TDs and nearly 1000 yards.  Of course, Brett Favre was throwing to him.  I couldn’t quite justify making him a Big Dog without his favorite gunslinger.  He scored in 10 of the 13 games he played in last year.

Roy Williams – Roy took a major step back from the 1300 yard 2006 season he produced.  That doesn’t mean he can’t return there though.  He needs to prove he can stay healthy and he’ll be a heck of a value come draft day.

Third Tier WRs
Again, these will be #2 & #3 wideouts for most teams.  They have a little more question marks than the previous tier.

Santonio Holmes/Hines Ward – Has Santonio Holmes officially surpassed Hines Ward as the top dog?  Juding by last year’s stats (942 yards, 8 TDs to 732, 7) and it appears that way.  I’m not quite ready to write Hines Ward off, but Holmes will likely be the first Steeler WR drafted.  They will probably be picked fairly close together and produce very similar numbers.

Marvin Harrison – Last year was a wasted year for the former Syracuse Orangeman.  Then he showed some bad judgement in the offseason.  Was last year the beginning of the end for #88?  I don’t think so.  I think he keeps himself in good enough shape, has one of the games best QBs slinging it to him, and has great knowledge of his system that he’s in for a nice rebound.

Calvin Johnson – Here’s a guy I’m high on.  He has the size and speed to be an elite wideout.  He was decent enough (756 yards, 4 TDs) as he was adjusting to the NFL.  Now that he has a year behind him, I can see his career taking off.

Dwayne Bowe – Bowe had a nice rookie campaign last year, nearly hauling in 1000 yards.  I see him leaving that mark behind as well as tacking on a couple of TDs to his decent five-spot he produced last year.

Roddy White – Roddy had a sneaky 1200 yards last year.  On name recognition alone I wouldn’t put him in this tier, but his numbers talk.  He was one of the top wideouts from Week 12 on (minus the dud he dropped in Week 15) scoring in 4 games and topping 140 yards twice.

Chris Chambers – I think San Diego was a good fit for CC.  With a full training camp and preseason with the Bolts, I expect him to do even better.   He’s one of the WRs I’m targeting for ’08.

Lee Evans – If someone can just convince Evans that December year round (17 of his 29 career TDs have come in December), he’ll make the leap into Big Dog status.  He almost always starts off slow out of the gate so he’s a guy you may want to hold off on using during the beginning weeks of the season.  However, targeting him for a midseason trade may not be a bad idea.  I think he can return to the 1000 yard territory with 8 TDs.  Let’s just hope they don’t all come in December.

Jerricho Cotchery – He’s produced back-to-back 82 reception seasons for the Jets.  He topped the 1100 yard mark.  He just needs to prove he can be more a factor in the endzone.  His measly 2 TDs conjure up thoughts of past Jet Wideouts like Keyshawn Johnson.

Donald Driver – Driver slid under the Third Tier wall like Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark.  He failed to reach 1200 yards for the first time since 2003 last year, but his 1048 weren’t bad.  What was bad was the 2 TDs he scored.  Greg Jennings was clearly Brett’s go-to-guy last year in the red zone.  With a new QB though, the steady Driver could be leaned on heavier than the explosive Jennings.

Serviceable WRs
These will likely either be your 3rd WR or make up your WR depth. 

Kevin Curtis/Reggie Brown - Curtis was decent last year for the Eagles.  He had a couple of huge games.  I’d like to see DeSean Jackson push for the starting job opposite of Reggie Brown, who should bounce back from his mediocre 780 yard 4 TD season, which would allow Curtis to got to the slot and utilize his speed like Wes Welker.  If that happens, all three could be viable plays.

Laveranues Coles – Coles had a decent season going before the wheels fell off in Week 8.  If he can produce like he did the first seven weeks (460 yards, 6 TDs), he’ll be worth an occasional start.

Joey Galloway – How long can Mr. Galloway keep it up?  Dude will turn 37 in November.  He’s registered three straight 1000+ yards seasons though.  One warning, he was very inconsistent last year. 

Santana Moss – Moss has barely matched his outstanding 2005 numbers when you combine the past two years.  However, he still has big-play ability.  He’s scary to own, and even scarier to start, but he can occasionally almost single-handedly win a matchup for you.

Javon Walker – Who knows how he’ll respond following last year’s lost season and butt-whoopin’ he took in Vegas.  When he’s healthy though, he can produce.  That hasn’t always been easy for him though.

Bernard Berrian – He’s a mystery heading into the year.  He produced in Chicago, but we’ll see how he does in Minnesota.    The Viking certainly have the running game to keep the DBs honest. I’m just leery of T-Jack’s accuracy.

Anthony Gonzalez – Here’s another guy I’d love to see end up on my team.  He gained valuable experience as a rooke, and if Marvin Harrison returns to form, he could be looking at some cupcake matchups.  He could be the poison that defenses pick, which is great news to his fantasy owners.

Scrap Pile
These are guys you’ll use during bye weeks and as injury replacements. 

Bobby Engram/Nate Burleson/Deion Branch – Engram is the Old Guy in the Club.  He had a great season last year.  Nate is the underachiever.  Branch was voted Least Likely to Stay Healthy.  They all could be used at times next year though.

Derrick Mason/Mark Clayton – Mason had kind of a turn-back-the-clock season.  I don’t see him repeating it, but he could have some decent weeks.  I think Clayton can make the leap to decent WR this year.  I thought the same thing last year though.

D.J. Hackett – Like Clayton, I was huge on Hackett last year.  He produced when he was healthy, but ankle injuries can simply derail a season.  We’ll see how he does opposite Steve Smith and Mushin.

Donte Stallworth – Stall is moving on once again.  He should have opportunities as Braylon and Winslow should open things up for him. 

Patrick Crayton – He has the luxuyr of playing opposite of T.O. , plus Jason Witten takes plenty of attention.  Crayton should have a decent year.

Ted Ginn, Jr. – I don’t know why, but I think Ginn could be a decent play at times this year.  I love his speed, but he’ll need to be able to take some hits.

Sidney Rice – I liked Rice last year as a rookie.  If T-Jack can actually hit him when he’s open, he’ll have a decent year.  At 6’4″, he’s a big target in the red zone.

Vincent Jackson – Everyone was on Jackson last year like white on rice.  He didn’t live up to the hype.  He’s the 4th option (LT, Gates, Chambers) this year, which may hurt (not enough touches) or help (less defensive pressure).  He’s also a big target.

Bryant Johnson/Isaac Bruce – The 49ers brought in two new WRs and Martz.  They should be good for some decent yards.  Obviously, I’m higher on Johnson.

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Running Backs

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Scrap Pile
We’ve profiled the Big Dog WRs, Second Tier WRsThird Tier WRs, and Serviceable WRs, now it’s time to examine the final wave of wideouts.  These are guys you’ll use during bye weeks and as injury replacements. 

Bobby Engram/Nate Burleson/Deion Branch – Engram is the Old Guy in the Club.  He had a great season last year.  Nate is the underachiever.  Branch was voted Least Likely to Stay Healthy.  They all could be used at times next year though.

Derrick Mason/Mark Clayton – Mason had kind of a turn-back-the-clock season.  I don’t see him repeating it, but he could have some decent weeks.  I think Clayton can make the leap to decent WR this year.  I thought the same thing last year though.

D.J. Hackett – Like Clayton, I was huge on Hackett last year.  He produced when he was healthy, but ankle injuries can simply derail a season.  We’ll see how he does opposite Steve Smith and Mushin.

Donte Stallworth – Stall is moving on once again.  He should have opportunities as Braylon and Winslow should open things up for him. 

Patrick Crayton – He has the luxuyr of playing opposite of T.O. , plus Jason Witten takes plenty of attention.  Crayton should have a decent year.

Ted Ginn, Jr. – I don’t know why, but I think Ginn could be a decent play at times this year.  I love his speed, but he’ll need to be able to take some hits.

Sidney Rice – I liked Rice last year as a rookie.  If T-Jack can actually hit him when he’s open, he’ll have a decent year.  At 6’4″, he’s a big target in the red zone.

Vincent Jackson – Everyone was on Jackson last year like white on rice.  He didn’t live up to the hype.  He’s the 4th option (LT, Gates, Chambers) this year, which may hurt (not enough touches) or help (less defensive pressure).  He’s also a big target.

Bryant Johnson/Isaac Bruce – The 49ers brought in two new WRs and Martz.  They should be good for some decent yards.  Obviously, I’m higher on Johnson.

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