Already only two weeks through the preseason we have seen some major injuries to some of the top receivers. Kelvin Benjamin was first getting hurt during practice, and now Jordy Nelson has joined him. Both guys have ACL injuries that will keep them out for the entire 2015 season. Hopefully you haven't had your drafts yet, but that isn't always case. I had a draft a week ago today, and was excited to get Jordy Nelson in the 2nd round with the 23rd pick. Now that pick has turned into a guy who has to be dropped, but that is just how it goes sometimes.
One thing though that I did, and recommend, is stock piling receivers in your drafts. Who knows who the next guy to go down to injury is of the top 20 guys, so it is best to be prepared. Wide Receivers are more likely to get hurt than your QB, so why take a backup QB when you can take another receiver as a safety blanket for potential injuries.
Let's move on though to the reason why you are reading this, the rankings. Below are my rankings for Standard scoring leagues. See the other preseason content we have dropped here.
|6||Odell Beckham Jr.||Giants|
|45||Steve Smith Sr.||Ravens|
Antonio Brown - The clear cut number one for me with his mixture of consistency and upside. Brown is at least going to give you 70 yards, and realistically going to be closer to 90 week in and week out.
A.J. Green - Last year Green was victim to injuries. The two prior years he averaged 97.5 receptions, 1,388 receiving yards, and 11 TD's. There is no reason why Green can't return back to his previous form this season. Dalton is still his QB, which means that no matter how many guys Green has covering him, Dalton will try to force him the ball, and Green is good enough to make some of those tougher catches.
Randall Cobb - The injury to Jordy Nelson does help the value of a couple of players, Cobb and Adams. Cobb already was a top 10 guy, but before I would have had him in a different tier than the top guys. Now I would put him in the same tier as Green, Beckham Jr., and Calvin. Should be at or near 100 receptions this year as Rodgers number one option.
DeAndre Hopkins - I just love what I saw from Hopkins last season. He showed that he is a true number one receiver in this league, and should be drafted as such. Brian Hoyer being named the QB doesn't change his value, but rather keeps it steady. It wouldn't shock me if at the end of the year Hopkins found his way into the top 3 receivers.
Amari Cooper - The Oakland offense loved to have Carr throw the football last year, and that was with some subpar options at receiver. Enter now Amari Cooper who is ready to step into this offense and perform from week one. Carr showed as the season went on last year that he is an average QB who can get the ball out to his receivers. I believe in Coopers skills, and the offense will be conducive to production, a nice option for a top 20 receiver.
Davante Adams - This guy I had the hardest time ranking after the Jordy Nelson injury. I projected what I believe his outcome will be and came up with the following: 130 targets, 80 receptions, 1008 receiving yards, 7 TD's. That would have been good enough for 18th last year. I have him actually ranked as the 18th guy here, but that is because I would rather have Cooper, by a good margin, and think Adams is a fair bit better than Vincent Jackson. He essentially has his own tier in the rankings here.
DeVante Parker - This is the one guy who could make me look like a genius, or look like a complete fool. I have watched the film on Parker, and wow does he look great. Before Parker got hurt he was getting rave reviews from the Dolphins organization. He has been taken off the preseason PUP list, but it is expected he won't play in any of the two remaining preseason games. I don't even think he will be 100% for the first week, but by week 4, I think he could start to show the skills he had at Louisville. Parker was my second favorite receiver in the 2015 draft class behind Cooper, and nothing that I have seen has changed that. I believe in his skills, and love how the Dolphins offense could be great for a number one outside receiver.
John Brown - He is my pick out of the three Cardinal receivers to put up a good season. He may be a little inconsistent from week to week, but I see him being the bigger threat than Fitzgerald and Floyd. An entire season, hopefully, of Carson Palmer provides Brown the QB necessary to take the leap in his production.
Victor Cruz - I honestly have no idea what to think of Cruz. Does he play in week one? Is he going to be able to play like he used to? I think the answer to the first question is yes, but he will get the same treatment Gronk had in New England last year. Cruz will be used right away, but his snaps will be limited until they feel he can take on a bigger role. The second question I think the answer is no, but if it is yes, he is definitely worth being ranked in the top 50 here, and will outperform this spot.
On Saturday i will also be posting an updated version of my top 200 rankings. The last iteration of that was over a month ago, so I figured it was time to get that updated as well. Until then, if you have any questions on a specific player, want the projections of a guy, or think i am crazy about some guys in my rankings, let's here your thoughts below.