After laying the groundwork this offseason with full Dynasty player rankings, I wanted to circle back and provide some tiers for added context to those ranks.

Some really quick methodology here if you are new to how I do tiers.

I make my Dynasty tiers based on a blend of age, fantasy performance, career arc, team situation, and fantasy archetype.

There is some overlap to actual player rankings, but these tiers do not specifically follow the rankings but rather those archetypes.

The purpose of tiers not being a carbon copy of player rankings is to spot a potential arbitrage situation and shop in different buckets based on how you are constructing your team in startups. They are also useful when looking for trade opportunities.

A veteran starter that can accrue points immediately might be worth more based on where a current roster is. Other times, it might make sense to chase more youth and upside for the future.

While these tiers will largely be a condensed view of the subset of tiers themselves, you can read more immediate detailed thoughts on every player in the 2023 wide receiver rankings.

Dynasty Fantasy Football Tiers, 2023:

*Player Age = Age on 9/1/2023

Tier 1 Wide Receivers:

  • Ja’Marr Chase (Age: 23.5)
  • Justin Jefferson (24.2)

Nothing has changed in a year. We still have a two-man tier at the top of the position with these former college teammates.

No player has ever had more receptions (324) or receiving yards (4,825 yards) than Justin Jefferson has through three seasons in the league.

Ja’Marr Chase has opened his career as the WR5 and the WR4 in per-game scoring.

I have zero pushback if you have Jefferson over Chase. I am breaking a close call in Dynasty based on Chase being attached to Joe Burrow for what looks like the entire apex of his career while the Minnesota quarterback position appears to be fluid after 2023.

Tier 2 Wide Receivers:

  • Tyreek Hill (Age: 29.5)
  • Stefon Diggs (29.8)
  • Cooper Kupp (30.2)
  • Davante Adams (30.7)

This is the elite tier of productive wideouts approaching the age cliff at the position.

I have mentioned this before, but the point of no return for alpha wideouts has historically been age 32. That leaves meat on the bone for all of these players to still impact fantasy at a high-end level for multiple seasons, but their market value is going to remain stagnant at best and likely decline year-over-year.

In startups, I am largely bypassing this tier unless someone slides below ADP, but these are not assets that you have to completely avoid if your league is kicking off just this season.

Stefon Diggs and Tyreek Hill have more immediate stability in terms of playing with younger quarterbacks in explosive offenses.

Cooper Kupp could run into some concerns after 2023 if the Rams are forced to move on from Matthew Stafford, so there is some fragility there.

Tier 3 Wide Receivers:

  • CeeDee Lamb (Age: 24.4)
  • A.J. Brown (26.2)
  • Garrett Wilson (23.1)
  • Chris Olave (23.2)

WR3 in Dynasty is completely up for grabs and varies from person to person. All of these wideouts have flashed enough that you can make a case they have the best odds to deliver a WR1 overall scoring season during their career.

A.J. Brown has given us the largest body of work flirting with that upside, even if he is a touch older than some of the others here. In his first season with the Eagles, Brown was the WR6 in overall scoring and the WR8 in per-game output, averaging a career-high 5.2 catches per game.

The wild part is there is even more room to grow since Brown was 21st in second half targets (61) and 47th in fourth quarter targets (25) since the Eagles flooded teams so heavily a year ago.

CeeDee Lamb had a true breakout in year three, with 107 catches for 1,359 yards and nine touchdowns. All were highs over his first three seasons in the league.

Lamb led all wideouts in receiving yards from the slot (867) but was also a top-15 in yards per route run outside as well. Cooper Kupp, Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams, and Chris Olave were the only other wideouts in the top-15 in both.

Garrett Wilson is the best bet if suggesting that any of these players could jump up into contention with Jefferson and Chase. Wilson led all rookies with 1,103 receiving yards and won the Rookie of the Year award.

What is impressive about Wilson’s season is that 16.3% of his targets were deemed inaccurate by the quarterback, which was the fourth-highest rate among all NFL wide receivers to have 100 or more targets in 2022. We just need to get multiple seasons out of Aaron Rodgers in New York.

Among all wide receivers to run 100 or more pass routes in 2022, Chris Olave ranked sixth in targets per route run (27.7%) and eighth in yards per route run (2.43).

If fleshing out his sample among rookie wideouts to play as much as he did, Olave’s 2.43 yards route run were only bested by Odell Beckham (2.76), A.J. Brown (2.71), Justin Jefferson (2.68), and Ja’Marr Chase (2.52) among rookie wide receivers over the past decade to run at least 300 routes in their first season.

Tier 4 Wide Receivers:

  • Jaylen Waddle (24.8)
  • Drake London (22.1)
  • DeVonta Smith (24.8)
  • Amon-Ra St. Brown (23.9)
  • DK Metcalf (25.7)
  • Tee Higgins (24.6)

This tier is not far away at all from the previous group, and you can make a case for the inclusion of any of them in the same breath as the wideouts we just touched on. But while I view all of these wideouts as extreme talents and want as many as possible on my rosters, do they truly have the upside to be the WR1 overall in a given season?

Jaylen Waddle overachieved his expected fantasy output last season, but Mike McDaniel also clearly knew the assignment when it comes to using Waddle the correct way.

After averaging 7.09 air yards per target as a rookie, Waddle averaged 12.6 air yards per look in 2022. After he played 54.0% of his snaps in the slot as a rookie, Waddle was inside for 19.9% a year ago. As a rookie, Waddle had just 8.6% of his targets on throws 20 yards or further downfield, which climbed up to a 17.7% rate this past season.

Those newfound downfield opportunities allowed Waddle to raise his 9.8 yards per catch as a rookie up to a league-leading 18.1 yards per catch in 2022. With the way Tyreek Hill was used last season, Waddle could have a ceiling that even I am selling short down the line when he takes over as the feature pass catcher.

Drake London did not have the same counting stats as Wilson and Olave last season, but his efficiency and production within the parameters of his offensive environment were rock solid and better in some departments.

London was targeted on 28.2% of his routes run as a rookie, which ranked fifth in the league among all wide receivers. He accounted for 29.3% of the Atlanta team targets (third among wideouts). London’s 2.09 yards per route run was 16th among all NFL wideouts last season and trailed only Olave among rookies.

He was also 55th among all wide receivers in total routes run (415) despite running a route on 85% of the team dropbacks. I still believe 2023 will be more of a WR3 season for London as Atlanta has shown us nothing on the surface that they are going to open up the offense this upcoming season. That may push you off of him on rosters shooting for immediate spoils, but he still has a long and successful career lined up.

Building off the strong second-half break out of his rookie season in 2021, Amon-Ra St. Brown closed his second season as the WR11 in points per game. St. Brown was second behind only Tyreek Hill in target rate per route run (30.3%) among wideouts while he accounted for 33.3% of his team targets when he was on the field, which also only trailed Hill (36.2%).

The only minor bugaboo for St. Brown is that we still have yet to see the “future Cooper Kupp” usage downfield to unlock the apex outcome. His 6.5 air yards per target ranked 130th among wideouts while just 4.1% of his targets were deep targets, a rate only ahead of JuJu Smith-Schuster and Richie James among 140 wide receivers to run 100 or more pass routes.

DK Metcalf has not given us that full season that we believe still exists, but his 2022 usage kind of flew under the radar a bit. Metcalf set career highs in targets (141) and catches (90) last season as he was used as a total receiver and not just a vertical playmaker.

Metcalf received more volume and had more intermediate field usage, which aided a career-high 8.3 targets per game. After 20% or more of his targets were deep targets over each of his first three seasons in the league, Metcalf only had a 12.1% deep target rate in 2022. As a byproduct, his 30% intermediate target rate was his highest since his rookie season while his 53.2% short target rate was a career-high.

DeVonta Smith caught fire over the back half of the year. From Week 10 through the close of the regular season, he was then the WR5 overall and WR6 in expected points. Over that span, Smith was tied for fourth among all wide receivers in targets, was sixth in receptions, and sixth in receiving yards. From Week 9 through the Super Bowl, Smith out-targeted A.J. Brown (107-to-104).

Higgins has gotten better for fantasy in each of his three seasons in the league, closing as the WR28, WR24, and WR19 in overall points to open his career. Last season he did take a step back in per-game output, but he also had three weeks where he played just 37 combined snaps, which played a role in that per-game output diminishing. Higgins still managed 74 catches for 1,029 yards and caught a career-high seven touchdowns.

Higgins is in the final season of his rookie contract with the Bengals having multiple incoming huge contracts to cast some gray on if Higgins will be squeezed out after the season. But he has strong contingency value paired with a standalone attachment to Joe Burrow for the short term.

Tier 5 Wide Receivers:

  • Jaxon Smith-Njigba (Age: 21.5)
  • Jameson Williams (22.6)
  • Jordan Addison (21.6)
  • Jerry Jeudy (24.4)
  • Christian Watson (24.3)
  • Rashod Bateman (23.8)
  • Treylon Burks (23.4)
  • Jahan Dotson (23.4)
  • Quentin Johnston (22.0)
  • Zay Flowers (23.0)
  • George Pickens (22.5)

Our first relatively largely tier.

These are the younger wideouts on their rookie contracts that have not fully popped yet for fantasy but come attached with a high level of perceived talent and the draft capital that supports that belief.

Both Jerry Jeudy and Rashod Bateman have given us flashes of the talent levels. We are just waiting for them to deliver over a full season.

Jeudy had 11 games in which he played 60% of the team snaps. In those games, he was the average weekly WR20, averaging 5.5 catches for 79.9 yards per game those weeks. He was a WR2 or better in eight of those 11 games and lower than the WR27 just twice.

After missing five games as a rookie in 2021, Bateman played in just six games last season due to a foot injury. When Bateman was on the field, he was averaging 19.0 yards per reception and 10.2 yards per target before the injury. He only played in six games and was still tied for third on the team with five receptions of 20 or more yards, behind Mark Andrews (nine) and Devin Duvernay (six).

Here we have our four rookie wideouts that were selected in a row in the first round this spring. You can find pre-draft writeups on all of those first-year wideouts and their immediate landing spots here.

I believe Jordan Addison has the best 2023 path to production and will be a solid WR2-plus in the NFL, but all of Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Quentin Johnston, and Zay Flowers could have higher ceiling potential big picture.

Here we also have a smattering from last year’s rookie class that did not quite deliver to the levels of the ones in previous tiers but still carry plenty of positive market value.

Jameson Williams is arguably my favorite dynasty buy right now in startups. Many had him as the WR1 in last year’s draft class. He missed nearly all of 2022 with a knee injury and now is suspended for the opening six games this season.

But if the higher-end range of outcomes is that he can be just as good as Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, or Drake London, then I will gladly buy the dip on a 22-year-old wideout with a true athletic trump card to play.

Christian Watson could outright be a value while many are proceeding with a level of caution based on his touchdown output last season being unstable and the departure of Aaron Rodgers. But we already know that Watson was a target earner (something we do have to see for Jameson Williams) and is an athletic marvel. From Week 9 through the rest of the season, Watson was targeted on 25.6% of his routes (12th).

Tier 6 Wide Receivers:

  • D.J. Moore (26.4)
  • Terry McLaurin (28.0)
  • Chris Godwin (27.5)
  • Deebo Samuel (27.6)
  • Christian Kirk (26.8)
  • Marquise Brown (26.2)
  • Brandon Aiyuk (25.5)
  • Michael Pittman (25.9)
  • Diontae Johnson (27.2)

Tier 6 is full of players that are onto the next wave of their career arc compared to the previous tier but have all established themselves as fantasy-viable starters. We undoubtedly will draw a few WR1 seasons from this group, but they are largely treated as WR2-plus options on rosters.

D.J. Moore and Terry McLaurin have been the Spider-Man meme for the start of their careers. Both have shown the talent to warrant large extensions but have been plagued by inept quarterback play so far that has limited their fantasy output.

Neither have pristine situations again in 2023. We don’t know where the ceiling for Justin Fields and Sam Howell are as passers, but the lights are still on.

Michael Pittman is on a similar trajectory as both Moore and McLaurin based on his quarterback play to this point, only we have not seen enough individual upside from him to say that he doesn’t carry some of the blame himself.

Deebo Samuel is a one-of-one player, but we largely knew that his 2022 campaign was a perfect runout and would be hard to replicate. All of his peripheral metrics immediately reverted back to his career norms last season in that he was a low depth of target option that has to rely on splash plays to hit his ceiling. Samuel has yet to average 5.0 catches per game in any NFL season.

His teammate Brandon Aiyuk has improved every year of his career but has been limited to Samuel’s availability and the low-volume nature of the San Franciso passing game. Aiyuk had his fifth-year option picked up already, so we know he will be with the 49ers for at least the next two seasons.

Aiyuk has nine WR1 scoring weeks since entering the league. Five of those have come in games Deebo Samuel has missed. He had 20 or more PPR points three times last season and Samuel was absent for two of those weeks.

Both Chris Godwin and Marquise Brown are in unique spots this season. Both could see their market value take hits if their situations play out as their projected team outcomes. Both could also end up on new teams after the season.

Christian Kirk finally had his breakout season, but his underlying usage suggests that there is room for him to be overvalued this season while the team has added Calvin Ridley to the fold.

Kirk was targeted on 21.5% of his routes (36th among all wideouts with 100 or more routes run) with 1.79 yards per route run (32nd).

Tier 7 Wide Receivers:

  • Amari Cooper (29.2)
  • Calvin Ridley (28.7)
  • Mike Williams (28.9)
  • Brandin Cooks (29.9)

These wideouts are in a similar spot as the previous tier for 2023 projected output but are just a smidge older and approaching their thirties.

Amari Cooper has been one of the better fantasy values running for multiple seasons and 2022 was no different. He matched a career-high with 132 targets on the season while his 14.9 yards per reception were the second-best mark of his career. Cooper accounted for 26.0% of the Cleveland targets (11th among wide receivers) and averaged 2.08 yards per route run (WR17).

Calvin Ridley missed all of 2023 due to suspension. When we last saw him on the field in 2022, he was injured and a shell of the production we had early in his career. Ridley dealt with a foot injury and noted his mental health was not where it needed to be over that span and set football aside for the remainder of that 2021 season.

While there is a risk that Ridley never regains his early-career production, there is an immediate floor and upside outcome for a wideout that was the WR19 and WR4 in points per game over the 2019-2020 seasons.

Brandin Cooks is changing teams yet again but gets an upgrade in the environment heading to Dallas. He has been a WR2 or better in seven of his nine NFL seasons.

We have a good idea of what Mike Williams is as a splash-play-dependent fantasy wideout. Williams has yet to play in every game since his rookie season and has played 80% of the snaps or more in just one season now in the NFL.

When on the field, he averaged 14.2 yards per catch while his 9.6 yards per target were his highest rate in a season since 2019. Consistently inconsistent, he had six weeks as the WR15 or better to go along with seven as the WR34 or lower.

Tier 8 Wide Receivers:

  • DeAndre Hopkins (Age: 31.2)
  • Keenan Allen (31.3)
  • Mike Evans (30.0)
  • Tyler Lockett (30.9)
  • Michael Thomas (30.5)
  • Odell Beckham (30.8)

Our decorated veteran tier. All of these wideouts have true fantasy high points over their careers, but all will have reached age 30 by the time the season begins.

The keg is not dry yet for this tier and we could even see someone here push the second tier of aging producers and be a WR1 again this season. But these wideouts have not run as pure as that tier recently in bulk, so there is still a step of faith to take.

On win-now rosters, this is a great tier to shop around in as none of these players will cost you the same tax as the Tier 2 wideouts.

There seems to be a majority consensus that many of these guys are washed, but I am positive we will have multiple players here pump out viable fantasy seasons over the next two years. That is not to say we should overly bet on these guys carefree, but there will be value here on winning rosters.

DeAndre Hopkins is one of those players whom the market just seems out on at this stage after back-to-back seasons with injuries and a suspension. While Hopkins may not be the early-career producer he was, he still was a target earner last season and a tangible fantasy option.

When on the field, Hopkins averaged 7.1 catches for 79.7 yards per game after 4.2 catches for 57.2 yards per game in 2021. From Weeks 7-16 while active, Hopkins was the WR7 in overall scoring and the WR4 in expected points.

Keenan Allen also missed a ton of time but was just as good as ever when playing last season. Allen has now averaged at least 6.0 catches for 70.0 yards per game in six straight NFL seasons. From Weeks 12-19, Allen was third among all wide receivers in targets (75), third in receptions (55), and sixth in receiving yards (581) to go along with four touchdowns.

Tyler Lockett has been the WR16 or better in overall scoring in each of the past five seasons. He has been the WR24 or better in per-game scoring in each of those seasons, which includes closing as the WR17 in points per game a year ago.

Lockett did run hot last season in touchdowns as he was the WR25 in expected points scored. His 22.0% target rate per route was 30th while he had 24 fewer targets than DK Metcalf when the two were on the field together. With the addition of Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Lockett could be used more vertically and outside of the slot.

Mike Evans notched his ninth straight 1,000-yard season in 2022 but his days of being a front-end elite wideout could be closing.

Evans was targeted on 20.1% of his routes last season, which was 48th among all wide receivers to run 100 or more pass routes. His 1.75 yards per route run ranked 35th among the same group. Week 17 (10-207-3) showed that Evans still has the juice to pop for a spike week, but he also had just five weeks last season finishing higher than WR28.

The expectations for Michael Thomas and Odell Beckham are the lowest of this group based on recent seasons and injuries, but both are still drawing breath.

Thomas did still show that he has a pulse in his limited sample last season when he is available. Over the opening three games of the season, Thomas caught 16-of-22 targets for 171 yards and three touchdowns.

Tier 9 Wide Receivers:

  • Courtland Sutton (27.9)
  • Darnell Mooney (25.8)
  • Gabriel Davis (24.4)
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster (26.8)
  • Jakobi Meyers (26.8)
  • Michael Gallup (27.4)
  • Chase Claypool (25.2)

This is our hands-in-the-air tier. What exactly is it you do here?

All of these wideouts have given us spots of production and upside but also plenty of down moments to go along with them to the point of frustration.

All of these wideouts are still young enough with situation changes that will have gamers kicking the tires on their immediate dip in value to see if they can catch lightning in a bottle.

Closing 2022 as the WR43 in points per game, Courtland Sutton now has just one season inside of the top 40 wideouts in points per game. With Sean Payton coming in there is some hope for Sutton to run a more diverse route tree that is not solely built on low-efficiency targets.

Darnell Mooney and Chase Claypool are fighting for seconds behind D.J. Moore in a low-volume passing game in Chicago, but both are unrestricted free agents after this season.

Gabe Davis was a splash play option, averaging 17.4 yards per catch (second in the NFL for all wideouts with 30 or more catches) while another 14.6% of his catches went for scores (third). But it is the in-between consistency between big plays for Davis that makes him a volatile fantasy asset. Davis was targeted on only 16.0% of his routes (88th among receivers).

He did play through an early-season ankle injury that may have hampered his hopeful breakout season and the Bills did not bring in any wideouts that can push him off being someone who gets major playing time attached to Josh Allen, but Davis is also in the final season of his rookie contract and is not guaranteed to have that attachment for long.

JuJu Smith-Schuster has now been a top-46 scoring wide receiver in per-game output just once over the past four seasons. He will directly be replacing Jakobi Meyers in the New England offense (fortunately no longer led by Matt Patricia).

Meyers is coming off a season in which he averaged 4.8 receptions for a career-high 57.4 yards per game. Meyers will have a hard time rolling over his 22.8% (25th) and 23.6% (27th) target per route rates playing alongside Davante Adams while Jimmy Garoppolo has not supported high-end fantasy wideouts to this stage of his career.

Michael Gallup will be a full year removed from his ACL injury. Even with an expected rebound in health, Brandin Cooks has been a better wide receiver than Gallup, which could keep him third in the target pecking order. We just do not have a large sample of Gallup being a consistently productive fantasy asset. He will enter his sixth season with no season catching 70 passes or more than six touchdowns.

Tier 10 Wide Receivers:

  • Wan’Dale Robinson (22.6)
  • Kadarius Toney (24.6)
  • Rondale Moore (23.2)
  • Jonathan Mingo (22.4)
  • Rashee Rice (22.4)
  • Elijah Moore (23.4)
  • Jalin Hyatt (21.9)
  • Jayden Reed (23.3)
  • Marvin Mims Jr. (21.5)
  • Skyy Moore (23.0)
  • Josh Palmer (23.9)
  • Alec Pierce (23.3)
  • Cedric Tillman (23.4)
  • Josh Downs (22.1)
  • Tyquan Thornton (23.1)
  • Tank Dell (23.8)
  • Romeo Doubs (23.4)
  • Nico Collins (24.5)
  • John Metchie (23.1)
  • Tutu Atwell (23.9)

We are in a deep tier of young potential. This is the widest tier on the board since we are pooling together a surplus of wideouts all on their rookie contracts. Nearly all of them come attached to solid draft capital that was on the second day of the draft.

If you are young, were selected with tangible draft capital, and are attached to Patrick Mahomes, the fantasy community is going to give you as many chances to fail as necessary. All three of Kadarius Toney, Skyy Moore, and Rashee Rice carry that Kansas City stigma of hope.

While I believe the Chiefs will be a sum of parts again at wide receiver in 2023 over having an individual WR1, there is going to come a time in which this offense does not have Travis Kelce.

Toney has averaged 2.12 yards per route run (WR19 over the past two seasons) and has been targeted on 27.6% of his routes (WR7) but we still have to take a step of faith in him drawing playing time since 139 wide receivers have run more pass routes than him since he entered the league.

The future leader of the Giants’ passing game is still wide open, so both Wan’Dale Robinson and Jalen Hyatt have an opportunity to be focal points late this season or in 2024. Given the combination of both of their archetypes, there is a path for both of these players to complement each other as well if we believe Daniel Jones is going to support multiple weapons in a passing game.

Jonathan Mingo has the cleanest runway to 2023 production joining a Carolina-wide receiving unit filled with vagabonds. Mingo never had a 1,000-yard season in college and failed to top 379 yards before his season year, but he averaged 15.7 yards per catch over his career, 12th in this class.

He also is 6’2” and 220 pounds while running a 4.46 forty (90th percentile speed score) at that size. Checking the boxes of size, speed, and early opportunity is something easy to take on with an early second-round rookie pick.

Outside of those players, we are largely looking for these players to progress in their careers and build toward larger roles in the future. We really are not counting on much from this group in 2023.

There are some exceptions in needing to see some more out of players of Elijah Moore and Nico Collins, whom each can have their market value tumble with another year of stunted growth.

Collins still distinctly stands out among the Houston wideouts because they have a gaggle of slot archetypes in Tank Dell, John Metchie, and Xavier Hutchinson, but we are going to need more out of Collins in year three to keep things or he is going to plummet.

Moore had a disastrous 2022 season with the Jets but has new life with the Browns. New York messed around with his role as a slot receiver in year two and he fell out of favor with the staff.

There is not a plethora of target volume available in the Cleveland passing game, but the Browns have trended toward using more wideouts on the field.

Cleveland used 11 personnel on 70.9% of their passing plays in 2022. That was 20th in the NFL still, but well up from the 53.4% (29th) and 45.4% (31st) rates that the team deployed under Kevin Stefanski’s first two seasons. That 11 personnel rate climbed up to 76.8% of the passing plays with Deshaun Watson under center compared to a 68.0% rate with Jacoby Brissett.

Tier 11 Wide Receivers:

  • Zay Jones (28.4)
  • Allen Lazard (27.7)
  • D.J. Chark (26.9)
  • Tyler Boyd (28.8)
  • Curtis Samuel (27.1)
  • Hunter Renfrow (27.7)
  • Corey Davis (28.6)
  • Darius Slayton (26.6)
  • K.J. Osborn (26.2)
  • Richie James (28.0)
  • Van Jefferson (27.1)

We largely have a strong idea of what type of fantasy assets this veteran tier of wideouts is at this stage. Nearly everyone here is a solid player on the football field that will make rosters and earn snaps for their remaining time but are more ancillary options in an offense and need dominoes to fall to provide high target numbers.

Zay Jones is coming off a solid 2022 season, but a good amount of what he did in 2022 was volume driven as his 1.44 yards per route run ranked 64th at the position while his 10.0 yards per catch were 44th out of 51 wideouts to catch 50 or more passes. With Calvin Ridley now on the team, Jones could fall as far as fourth on the team in targets in 2023.

As of right now, Corey Davis is still on the Jets. While the team could still release or move him this summer, I do believe that he is an outright better receiver than Allen Lazard and would take some deeper cuts on him with spare change in your leagues in the event he does stay with New York for this season.

Davis has given us spouts of production, had elite draft capital, and has played with nothing but subpar quarterback play his entire career.

We have a great understanding of what we have in Lazard. He is strong in the contested catch game and a solid isolation receiver that struggles with nuance and creating separation.

Lazard was targeted on 26.6% of his routes with 1.93 yards per route run against man coverage last season, while he was targeted on 16.6% of his routes with 1.45 yards per route run against zone coverage.

Odds are that neither Davis nor Lazard is a smash play or consistent starter for fantasy, but don’t ignore Davis having the potential here to be a contributor.

It is a bummer we are here with Tyler Boyd, but he has only been a contingency bet for the past two years with the ascendence of Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins.

Tier 12 Wide Receivers:

  • Adam Thielen (33.0)
  • DeVante Parker (30.6)
  • Marquez Valdes-Scantling (28.9)
  • Tim Patrick (29.8)
  • Allen Robinson (30.4)
  • Jarvis Landry (30.8)
  • Sterling Shepard (30.6)
  • Robert Woods (31.4)
  • Parris Campbell (26.1)
  • Russell Gage (27.6)
  • Josh Reynolds (28.5)
  • Kenny Golladay (29.8)

This group of veteran wideouts is an extension of the previous tier, largely just older and a little less productive. It is hard to really love a lot of the options here as more than roster fillers.

Adam Thielen is no man’s land on the age spectrum, and his recent production should not inspire any confidence. But if you are looking for a wideout that is going to be on the field that is available this late or this cheaply, he is that.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling wears the right uniform to keep the lights on, but even with the Chiefs, he was the same player that he was playing with his previous future Hall of Fame quarterback. In 20 games played a year ago, MVS reached 50 yards in a game just seven times and caught more than four passes in just two games.

Tier 13 Wide Receivers:

  • Rashid Shaheed (25.0)
  • Donovan Peoples-Jones (24.5)
  • Isaiah Hodgins (24.9)
  • Deonte Harty (25.7)
  • Mecole Hardman (25.5)

This is a mini-tier of limbo wide receivers. They are a bit older than the wideouts we are hopeful for in Tier 10 and younger than the wideouts in Tiers 11-12 but also have less body of work and more fragility in playing time than those older options.

I am more inclined to swing on some wideouts here and hope to run into something than those previous tiers, but it all comes down to what types of rosters we have simmering.

Donovan Peoples-Jones was pressed into becoming a full-time wide receiver last season and ran a route on 92.5% of Cleveland dropbacks, which was 11th among all wide receivers in the NFL.

On the surface, Peoples-Jones looks a lot like a newer version of Marquez Valdes-Scantling. He was targeted on 16.9% of his routes (81st among all wideouts with 100 or more routes run) while averaging 1.48 yards per route run (59th). With the additions of Elijah Moore and Cedric Tillman, Peoples-Jones will be pressed harder behind Amari Cooper than he was a year ago and concede ground to the younger options.

Rashid Shaheed was a 24-year-old undrafted rookie, but there was a spark when he was on the field last season. Shaheed averaged 2.60 yards per route last season in his first season but did so running just 188 routes.

A depleted receiving corps forced him to get more playing time to close the season, but it is unlikely the Saints are placing a ton of faith into Michael Thomas at this point, which does give Shaheed more hope to play in three-receiver sets and gain elevation should Thomas miss time again.

Tier 14 Wide Receivers:

  • Kyle Philips (24.2)
  • Michael Wilson (23.5)
  • Charlie Jones (24.8)
  • Tyler Scott (21.9)
  • Tre Tucker (22.5)
  • Parker Washington (21.4)
  • K.J. Hamler (24.1)
  • Danny Gray (24.4)
  • Calvin Austin (24.4)
  • Derius Davis (23.0)
  • Justin Shorter (23.4)
  • Kayshon Boutte (21.3)
  • Trey Palmer (22.4)
  • Puka Nacua (22.3)
  • Xavier Hutchinson (23.3)
  • Andrei Iosivas (23.9)
  • A.T. Perry (23.8)

Bringing this home, our dart throws and deep cuts. This is largely made up of rookies and year two options that come attached to lower-end draft capital that we are hoping to show a pulse.

There are some options that are intriguing down here. I am sure that you have your flavors of choice, but I will share a few of mine.

There is some hope that Kyle Philips can develop into a solid slot receiver. Philips caught 6-of-9 targets for 66 yards in Week 1 last year. He also operated as the primary punt returner and his first return went for 46 yards. But he suffered ankle and hamstring injuries that forced him to miss 13 games. With Tennessee failing to add any real receivers this offseason, Philips could be a floor-based option in PPR formats if you can get past his offensive attachment.

My esteemed editor Raymond Summerlin would be upset if we did not touch on Charlie Jones. We aren’t counting on much from Jones in 2023 behind the triumvirate of Chase, Higgins, and Boyd, but as of right now, neither Higgins nor Boyd is signed beyond this season. Jones caught 110 passes for 1,361 yards and 12 touchdowns this past year at Purdue and can immediately dress for the Bengals operating as their return man. Jones handled 122 career punt and kickoff returns, the most in the 2023 class.

I also remain fascinated by Puka Nacua. I have no real expectations about him as a fantasy producer, but if anyone has an idea of how to use Nacua’s versatility as a receiver and rusher, it has to be Sean McVay after he has watched Deebo Samuel incinerate his team repeatedly over his career.

Nacua had 39 rushes for 357 yards and five rushing touchdowns the past two seasons, used on jet motion sweeps and runs out of the backfield. In 2021, the only players to average more yards per route run than Nacua’s 3.44 were Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Jacob Cowing, Treylon Burks, Wan’Dale Robinson, and Drake London. No wide receiver in this draft class averaged more yards per route run than Nacua in 2022 (3.53 yards) as he was third in the country.


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