Recent ADP Trends -- The All-Important Wide Receivers
If there’s one thing that everyone in the fantasy community can agree on, it’s that, while the position is incredibly deep, wide receivers are continuously on the rise and are becoming much more valuable to owners each year. And we’re just talking standard scoring here. Forget about PPR leagues. In those, the values of some are going through the roof. But even in standard leagues, they are steadily climbing up the charts.
Obviously the depth of the quarterback position coupled with the lack of depth (and reliability) of the running backs is what’s helping boost the value of receivers, but you simply cannot slight the talent to be found as receivers today are better than ever. Names like Calvin Johnson, A.J. Green and Brandon Marshall adorn the elite tiers, but even “secondary guys like Eric Decker and Mike Williams are posting fantasy numbers that can be the difference-maker during any weekly match-up. Given the fact that many leagues now use three wide receivers and a flex in the starting roster requirements, the receivers’ level of importance has grown immensely and even though there’s tremendous talent to be had in the later rounds, you’re not going to want to wait.
We know the ADP value of many receivers is going to be higher in PPR leagues and we’ll do a full piece on that soon enough. For today, though, let’s start with the base and discuss the trends we are seeing right now in standard-scoring drafts. Similarly to what we saw in the running backs the other day, the position on the whole is rising. The majority of receivers have seen an ADP increase over the last two weeks and those that haven’t are either saddled with a debilitating injury, a suspension or have a decrease that is, for all intents and purposes, negligible.
|Player||Pos||Team||Current ADP||Change||1 Wk Ago||Change||2 Wks Ago||Overall Trend|
Golden Tate, SEA (+25.20%) – He may not be the biggest guy out there, but Tate has excellent speed, good hands and can be a fantastic deep threat when the Seahawks want to spread the field. But Tate isn’t seeing a rise in his ADP because of his talent and potential alone. He’s climbing up the ranks thanks to a Percy Harvin injury and lack of other options in Seattle. He’ll start opposite a slightly banged-up Sidney Rice and should see a considerable amount of targets from a more comfortable and confident Russell Wilson. He’s still a pretty good bargain with an ADP of 133.59, but should he continue to climb, you better be careful and not reach too high.
Andre Roberts, ARI (+24.00%) – Confidence is high with Carson Palmer taking over in Arizona and while Larry Fitzgerald should still dominate the targets, Roberts is getting more and more respect in fantasy drafts as many owners are realizing just how talented he is and how underutilized he’s been. He’s actually listed third on the depth chart with Fitz and Michael Floyd leading the way, but should Floyd stumble even just a little bit, Roberts is more than capable of stepping in as the number two.
Vincent Brown, SD (+23.80%) – He was already on the rise back in June, now that he’s at full health finally, but now with Danario Alexander (ACL) out for the year and Malcom Floyd (knee) almost following suit, Brown continues to climb both the team depth chart and the ADP rankings. He’s an incredibly talented receiver, but be careful with him as he’ll start to lose value once more and more people start writing about him and his ADP climbs above where it normally should be. That’s not to say that he’s going to be a bust if you take him in the fifth or sixth round, but he’ll be so much more valuable if you can snag him in the ninth round and beyond .
A.J. Jenkins, SF (18.60%) – There is so much talent to be had here and if you ask any of his teammates about him, you’ll hear more gushing than an erupting volcano. Unfortunately, Jenkins isn’t shining when it counts most. While he looks great in practice, he is floundering during games, as evidenced by his drops and lost fumble during the team’s first preseason game. The 49ers have another 10 receivers in camp, all vying for the chance to be the team’s number two guy opposite Anquan Boldin, so Jenkins needs to start picking up his level of play all around if he even wants to make the team. His age and potential should help keep him around, but if he doesn’t step it up soon, he could be on the outs.
Santonio Holmes, NYJ (18.50%) – While he may still be dealing with a foot issue that could sideline him for more than just a few weeks again, fantasy owners are looking to grab him in the middle to later rounds with the hopes that he will show that once-explosive level of play he had while with the Steelers years ago. Should he return both healthy and to form, Holmes would make for an outstanding pick at roughly the 173rd pick. Any higher and you better be sure that he’s going to bounce back.
Nate Burleson, DET (+16.50%) – He’s listed on the Detroit depth chart as the number two receiver, but has an ADP of 165.18 due to the lack of targets he’ll really get while Calvin Johnson is still around. But be careful here as well, as Burleson’s stay as the number-two guy may be short-lived given the talents of Ryan Broyles who emerged last season as a reliable and trustworthy receiver. Broyles has awesome sleeper potential and if he lives up to it, Burleson better step up his game if he wants to continue to be relevant.
In addition to the above wide receivers, here’s a list of those who have recently been drafted, but were not as of a week or even two weeks ago. They are, technically, on the rise and should be monitored closely in deeper leagues as they have the potential to be fantasy relevant at some point during the season, but for right now, we’re not looking at anyone who can’t be had on the waiver wire over the first few weeks of the season.
Howard Bender has been covering fantasy sports for over a decade on a variety of web sites. You can find his personal musings on RotobuzzGuy.com and for questions, thoughts or comments, you can follow him on Twitter at @rotobuzzguy or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.