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Weekly Fantasy Finishes - Wide Receivers



By Doug Orth | 11/12/20 |

About this time every year, I like to shine a light on each position and focus on how they fared among their peers on a weekly basis. While I am very much a believer that fantasy football is a weekly game and play the matchups as much as anything when it comes to fringe players, knowing how each player ranked among his position group each week is a handy little tool - whether you want a quick reference guide in your redraft leagues to help set expectations for a certain player or need an idea on the range of a player's performances to help break a tie between two or three options in your DFS lineups.

For the sake of time and space (not to mention my sanity), not every player that has scored a point appears below. My qualifications at wide receiver: at least five games played and one top-30 finish. (I kept a non-qualifier such as Michael Thomas on the table below for the sake of reference.) "Best" refers to the player's highest weekly fantasy finish, while "worst" obviously refers to his lowest. "Aver" is the player's average weekly finish. Squares were left blank when the player was active but failed to register a fantasy point. Got it? Good.

QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs
 Weekly Ranks for WRs
Rk Player 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Best Worst Avg
1 Davante Adams 1 73 DNP DNP b 30 2 2 2 1 73 18.3
2 Tyreek Hill 25 7 12 21 21 62 19 5 3 3 62 19.4
3 Travis Fulgham DNP DNP DNP 33 2 9 40 14 b 2 40 19.6
4 DK Metcalf 13 12 19 26 6 b 74 1 11 1 74 20.3
5 Stefon Diggs 22 2 31 17 13 17 47 26 15 2 47 21.1
6 A.J. Brown 54 DNP DNP b 11 4 5 36 17 4 54 21.2
7 Jamison Crowder 9 DNP DNP 18 7 32 DNP DNP 44 7 44 22.0
8 Kenny Golladay DNP DNP 22 23 b 20 23 DNP DNP 20 23 22.0
9 Keenan Allen 61 19 3 29 41 b 10 9 9 3 61 22.6
10 Terry McLaurin 36 4 37 10 63 22 12 b 10 4 63 24.3
11 DeAndre Hopkins 4 8 9 42 8 44 7 b 72 4 72 24.3
12 Tyler Boyd 63 9 10 21 51 28 4 15 b 4 63 25.1
13 Robby Anderson 6 14 44 15 18 34 36 43 25 6 44 26.1
14 Calvin Ridley 2 1 25 110 10 10 15 55 DNP 1 110 28.5
15 Allen Robinson 33 76 4 8 20 38 44 12 27 4 76 29.1
16 Robert Woods 18 41 11 47 22 26 68 3 b 3 68 29.5
17 Allen Lazard 16 67 6 DNP b DNP DNP DNP DNP 6 67 29.7
18 Julio Jones 8 93 DNP 64 DNP 2 18 12 23 2 93 31.4
19 Will Fuller 14 122 30 9 23 3 39 b 14 3 122 31.8
20 Tee Higgins 74 14 35 47 11 16 27 b 11 74 32.0
21 Chris Godwin 28 DNP 24 DNP DNP 40 8 DNP 66 8 66 33.2
22 Cooper Kupp 58 32 8 16 35 70 42 8 b 8 70 33.6
23 Tyler Lockett 20 11 1 76 49 b 1 52 61 1 76 33.9
24 Amari Cooper 17 22 23 2 77 7 27 93 38 2 93 34.0
25 JuJu Smith-Schuster 7 40 27 b 59 79 19 29 13 7 79 34.1
26 CeeDee Lamb 38 17 42 5 15 27 98 46 27 5 98 35.0
27 John Brown 15 13 DNP 55 DNP DNP DNP 77 19 13 77 35.8
28 Adam Thielen 3 80 38 4 4 24 b 62 74 3 80 36.1
29 Brandin Cooks 88 26 77 DNP 3 6 37 b 20 3 88 36.7
30 D.J. Chark 34 35 DNP 3 73 35 77 b 5 3 77 37.4
31 DeVante Parker 55 21 40 12 27 55 b 52 39 12 55 37.6
32 D.J. Moore 49 10 53 49 19 23 6 50 81 6 81 37.8
33 Brandon Aiyuk DNP 95 13 34 56 45 19 6 DNP 6 95 38.3
34 Corey Davis 21 33 40 b DNP DNP 27 4 108 4 108 38.8
35 Mike Evans 65 5 34 5 24 85 67 19 46 5 85 38.9
36 Curtis Samuel 50 81 48 57 36 DNP 24 10 7 7 81 39.1
37 Cole Beasley 44 38 28 40 38 20 11 69 67 11 69 39.4
38 Christian Kirk 113 61 DNP 44 29 4 14 b 12 4 113 39.6
39 Emmanuel Sanders 42 107 29 24 9 b DNP DNP 33 9 107 40.7
40 Odell Beckham Jr. 78 18 47 1 36 66 DNP DNP b 1 78 41.0
41 Sterling Shepard 40 88 DNP DNP DNP DNP 17 23 41 17 88 41.8
42 Adam Humphries 40 23 58 b DNP 12 80 DNP 12 80 42.6
43 Chase Claypool 71 16 90 b 1 13 97 32 25 1 97 43.1
44 Jarvis Landry 36 65 62 19 29 50 44 45 b 19 65 43.8
45 Jerry Jeudy 46 45 44 31 b 63 76 39 8 8 76 44.0
46 Justin Jefferson 83 68 2 28 66 1 b 63 53 1 83 45.5
47 Tim Patrick 68 93 33 7 b 24 60 DNP 37 7 93 46.0
48 David Moore 67 27 113 14 b 53 30 21 14 113 46.4
49 Jakobi Meyers 110 DNP b DNP 48 28 4 4 110 47.5
50 Nelson Agholor 50 105 78 27 26 b 13 34 13 105 47.6
51 Keelan Cole 24 16 55 52 43 8 86 b 100 8 100 48.0
52 Deebo Samuel DNP DNP DNP 62 75 14 41 DNP DNP 14 75 48.0
53 Marquise Brown 26 51 92 38 16 42 b 52 68 16 92 48.1
54 Randall Cobb 84 42 18 78 43 36 19 b 76 18 84 49.5
55 Kendrick Bourne 77 44 46 72 40 56 21 DNP 21 77 50.9
56 Marvin Jones 48 37 58 101 b 77 37 16 35 16 101 51.1
57 Darius Slayton 5 76 67 57 12 32 74 40 99 5 99 51.3
58 Michael Gallup 58 62 7 81 38 67 34 69 7 81 52.0
59 Mecole Hardman 109 69 21 37 58 52 7 63 7 109 52.0
60 James Washington 35 90 50 b 64 16 57 16 90 52.0
61 Laviska Shenault 29 45 54 31 25 70 60 b 105 25 105 52.4
62 KJ Hamler DNP 54 69 b DNP 69 41 29 29 69 52.4
63 Damiere Byrd 30 71 35 b 51 81 57 42 30 81 52.4
64 Anthony Miller 19 36 83 59 72 71 24 56 19 83 52.5
65 Mike Williams 38 100 97 DNP 5 b 92 11 36 5 100 54.1
66 Sammy Watkins 10 108 35 72 46 DNP DNP DNP DNP 10 108 54.2
67 Greg Ward 57 112 15 57 31 61 30 71 b 15 112 54.3
68 Hunter Renfrow 85 72 16 45 68 b 56 35 61 16 85 54.8
69 Scotty Miller 32 102 43 13 92 9 55 94 9 102 55.0
70 Diontae Johnson 45 6 115 b 97 DNP 3 89 31 3 115 55.1
71 Tre'Quan Smith 112 28 56 11 83 b 50 44 58 11 112 55.3
72 Jalen Reagor 74 60 DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP 32 b 32 74 55.3
73 Preston Williams 75 87 49 84 13 40 b 74 24 13 87 55.8
74 Darnell Mooney 70 33 86 46 79 52 64 18 55 18 86 55.9
75 Julian Edelman 31 3 84 69 b 67 83 DNP DNP 3 84 56.2
76 Zach Pascal 89 42 76 50 79 19 b 51 45 19 89 56.4
77 A.J. Green 43 81 50 105 DNP 15 30 72 b 15 105 56.6
78 Russell Gage 11 19 80 87 78 37 43 68 87 11 87 56.7
79 Braxton Berrios 14 26 94 77 59 38 91 14 94 57.0
80 Olamide Zaccheaus 109 58 20 85 16 16 109 57.6
81 Rashard Higgins 106 DNP DNP 33 48 25 82 b 25 106 58.8
82 Marquez Valdes-Scantling 12 49 111 53 b 57 96 76 18 12 111 59.0
83 Danny Amendola 30 95 96 60 b 65 51 48 30 30 96 59.4
84 N'Keal Harry 68 24 73 42 b 91 DNP DNP 24 91 59.6
85 Breshad Perriman 80 102 DNP DNP DNP 39 72 DNP 6 6 102 59.8
86 Marcus Johnson DNP DNP DNP 90 50 18 b 60 84 18 90 60.4
87 Gabriel Davis 93 65 39 48 42 90 87 22 22 93 60.8
88 Josh Reynolds 99 89 61 79 61 28 30 48 b 28 99 61.9
89 Demarcus Robinson 79 84 87 31 92 20 46 20 92 62.7
90 Cedrick Wilson 5 70 31 76 98 100 5 100 63.3
91 Michael Thomas 80 DNP DNP DNP DNP b DNP DNP 49 49 80 64.5
92 Willie Snead 23 91 101 87 69 b 22 64 22 101 65.3
93 T.Y. Hilton 53 84 56 76 28 82 b 78 DNP 28 84 65.3
94 Marvin Hall 93 49 b 90 24 74 24 93 66.0
95 Dontrelle Inman 85 97 20 66 97 43 b DNP 20 97 68.0
96 Jalen Guyton 102 57 82 29 64 b 26 95 96 26 102 68.9
97 Isaiah Ford 96 25 90 50 b DNP 87 DNP 25 96 69.6
98 Andy Isabella 54 17 99 69 90 b 89 17 99 69.7
99 Henry Ruggs III 46 114 DNP DNP 16 b 66 78 104 16 114 70.7
100 DaeSean Hamilton 98 112 101 b 73 17 86 17 112 81.2

At least in the mind of this fantasy analyst, Davante Adams was a fairly obvious pick to be the overall WR1 this year. We may not have been able to anticipate him missing three weeks (two games and a bye) with a hamstring injury, but the fact he has been so consistently excellent should not have come is that much of a surprise. The degree to which he is scoring right now is a bit of a surprise. The list of receivers that appear after him is an order no one could have anticipated.

Tyreek Hill was a bit of a bust in a "weather game" against Buffalo in Week 6, but his average weekly finish in his eight other outings is 14.1. That is incredibly impressive for a player who may have been considered by many to be an elite vertical threat and not much else this summer. D.K. Metcalf is busting those same myths about his game as well. Although he hasn't delivered the goods every single week, he has finished as a WR2 or better in six of eight games (including four WR1 efforts). That's not bad for a player who many thought could run about three routes at this time last year. His only kryptonite so far was seeing Patrick Peterson on 85.5 percent of his routes in Week 7. To be fair, however, it's reasonable to wonder if that game (against the Cardinals) was more about exploiting Dre Kirkpatrick in coverage (receivers converted 13 of 16 targets for 136 yards and two touchdowns in his coverage) than it was about avoiding Peterson.

There didn't appear to be much doubt before the season whether or not Calvin Ridley could be a WR1 in 2020, but his consistency has been impressive nonetheless. If we count only the six games in which he wasn't either affected by injury somewhat (Week 4) or left early due to injury (Week 8), his average weekly finish is 10.5, and his lowest weekly finish is 25. He's not going to benefit from easy matchups for the remainder of the year per se, but he's an alpha receiver on a team with a bigger and badder alpha (Julio Jones), so he will continue to see favorable coverage regardless of how difficult a matchup might appear on paper. Ridley has already excelled in what were supposed to be difficult on-paper matchups against Chicago in Week 3 (5-110-0) and Carolina in Week 5 (8-136-0) when Jones was out and Ridley was the focus of the defense.

Although such observations are tricky because the public usually isn't privy to such information week after week, OC Tim Kelly has reportedly called plays for the Texans all season long. (The one week he was supposed to give those duties up to HC Bill O'Brien, the latter was fired.) The reason I mention this is because very little about the offensive brain trust has changed since O'Brien departed. However, it is probably more than coincidence that Brandin Cooks has posted a WR1, WR1, WR2 and WR3 finish in the four games since O'Brien's departure. (For those that may not remember, Cooks was borderline droppable after three weeks.) His average weekly finish since O'Brien left is 16.5, while Will Fuller's is 19.8. It's not a statement that Cooks has passed Fuller as the top dog in Houston, but the pair appears to be on equal footing. Given the Texans' defensive issues, it's probably a safe bet Fuller and Cooks maintain their current level of production.

Do we need to beware of Minnesota receivers? HC Mike Zimmer has made it abundantly clear he wants his offense to run the ball and it makes sense when Dalvin Cook can turn 25 touches into 200-plus yards. While it's not necessarily Cook's volume that affects the receivers, Minnesota has established a firm pattern in its wins and losses: in three wins, Kirk Cousins has attempted no more than 22 passes and thrown a total of 56. In the Vikings' five losses, he is averaging 30.6 attempts. It may not appear to be a huge difference, but the extra 7-8 targets per game make a huge difference in the receivers' ability to pay off in fantasy. During Cooks' two-game surge since Minnesota's Week 7 bye, Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson have seen a total of 17 targets. As a result, Jefferson's 53rd place finish last week is the best the duo has posted in that stretch. It's likely a blip on the radar since at least one receiver was paying off in the three previous games, but let this serve as a reminder there is rarely enough volume in this passing game to allow both players to hit in fantasy in the same week.

Of note: The Rams' devotion to the running game has the same kind of effect on their receivers as it has on the Vikings' wideouts, although Robert Woods has been more immune to inconsistency than Cooper Kupp, Thielen and Jefferson. Woods been given at least eight opportunities (targets plus carries) in all but one game and scored at least 14 PPR points in five of eight games (at least 11.3 in six contests). In the Rams' three losses, he has averaged 21.2 fantasy points. In five wins, his average drops to 12.3. Kupp topped 12 fantasy points for the first time in a month in the Rams' last game (Week 8). Unlike Woods, who has been a top-26 receiver in five of eight outings, Kupp has been a low-end WR3 or lower in five of his eight. I can't wait to find out the story behind the story this offseason regarding Mike Evans and D.J. Moore. Most people know Evans is operating at far less than 100 percent, but let's break down his weekly ranks anyway: two WR1 efforts, two WR2s and four other performances where he was 46th or lower among his position group. Moore's breakdown looks very similar: two WR1s, two WR2s and five efforts that ranked 49th or lower among all receivers. The fantasy world is justified in believing Jakobi Meyers won't be able to repeat last week's 12-169-0 performance on 14 targets. But once folks realize his 37.9 percent target share since Week 7 trails only Davante Adams (38.8) over that span, they might be a little more willing to buy into him as a weekly starter moving forward.


Doug Orth has written for FF Today since 2006 and been featured in USA Today’s Fantasy Football Preview magazine since 2010. He hosted USA Today’s hour-long, pre-kickoff fantasy football internet chat every Sunday in 2012-13 and appears as a guest analyst on a number of national sports radio shows, including Sirius XM’s “Fantasy Drive”. Doug is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.