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Week 3 Wide Receiver Rankings 

Calvin Johnson

I addressed the injury epidemic in my RB Rankings this week, so reference that column for my take on that. I am going to keep my intro short as the NFL has dominated headlines all week with the off-field drama. I am assuming everyone just wants to watch some football be played. Let’s get right into it.

Week 3 WR Rankings

1. Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions. He had a pedestrian performance by his and out standards last week. He shows up against the Pack in a big way.

2. Jordy Nelson, G.B. Packers. Just the opposite of Megatron, he had a huuuuge week. I usually shy away from players having back to back big games, and sometimes these two teams do not light up the scoreboard like you would think. I feel that it will be a shootout.

3. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons. The Dirty Birds got completely shut down by the Bengals and will bounce back on Thursday Night Football. Roddy White may be out too, which only helps Julio deliver a monstrous game.

4. Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys. The Rams have not been torched through the air yet in their two games, but have not faced a receiver like Dez yet. He put up good numbers last week. It will continue in St. Louis.

5. Brandon Marshall, Chicago Bears. If he can put up 3 tds when he was not suppose to be on the field, what can he do when healthier and versus a pathetic Jets secondary that just let Jordy Nelson cremate them for 200 yards? Do not worry, he is not mad at you for benching him last week. He just showed you why you should never do it again.

6. Randall Cobb, G.B. Packers. Randall will get in on the action during the shootout in the Motor City too. He scored twice last week which keeps his value high in non ppr leagues.

7. Andre Johnson, Houston Texans. He has failed to score in the first two games and that ends in New York Sunday. Even with Fitzpatrick throwing him the ball, I have full confidence in him this game.

8. Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos. Seattle is a tough place to play, but Peyton won’t shy away from throwing him the ball, as evidenced by last year’s Super Bowl.

9. Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers. Carolina did just lose Greg Hardy as they were forced to follow the Viking lead with A.D. Still a very tough defense to face, but Ant always seems to get his, especially in ppr formats.

10. Keenan Allen, San Diego Chargers. He has had two quiet games and some people are worried about that. I am not one of those people. He played Patrick Peterson and Richard Sherman, the latter of which he did not do that badly against. This is what you call a classic buy low candidate. Trade for you now if you can, it may be your best chance to rip somebody off all year without doing anything sheisty or illegal.

11. Percy Harvin, Seattle Seahawks. He seemed to have an alright game against the Broncos in the Super Bowl, right? Usually more value in ppr leagues, but I believe he finds pay dirt as a receiver in this one too.

12. Alshon Jeffery, Chicago Bears. Assuming he is close to 100% this week, he will feast on that’s weak Jets secondary along with Marshall. All of your Bears are good starts in this one. Heck, even Santonio Holmes may get into the act against his former team.

13. Cordarrelle Patterson, Minnesota Vikings. He has really disappointed me in the first two games (as a receiver), but still has had some success running the ball and really has not been that bad. This just shows the expectations a lot of us have for him already and it is a little unfair. This is the game where he catches some bombs finally. No All Day, down against the Saints, and ready to break one again. I am keeping my faith in him.

14. Vincent Jackson, T.B. Bucs. This offense has been ugly so far. He is due for a good game and what better than on Thursday Night Football? Plus, the Falcons just got beat on bad by a team without their star receiver and manager to give up an 80 yarder to Mohamed Sanu. Vincenzo can do that too.

15. Julian Edelman, N.E. Patriots. He is Tom Brady’s favorite target thus far and somebody has to have a big game against the awful Raiders. New England will run the ball often, especially in the second half, but Julian is still the guy until the Gronk we know surfaces on the field.

16. Pierre Garçon, Washington Redskins. Just forget what happened last week once RGTres got hurt. Pierre and Kirk Cousins will connect more after a full week of practice and I do not see Niles Paul having that type of game again. DeSean Jackson says he will play, but I will bet on the healthier guy of the two showing up against a rival team. That rival team being Jackson’s old team only helps Pierre fly under the radar to get behind their secondary on occassion.

17. Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia Eagles. There will be a lot of focus by the Redskin on not letting Darren Sproles do to them what he did to Indy on Monday Night. This will open up the passing lanes downfield and Maclin will be the beneficiary of it.

18. Mike Wallace, Miami Dolphins. Something does not feel right ranking him this high, but he is receiving a lot of targets and now their running game took a big hit with Knowshon Moreno getting injured. A home game versus the Chiefs should help too.

19. Michael Crabtree, S.F. 49ers. He is Colin Kaepernick’s favorite target and they will be focused on the task at hand against a divisional opponent after a second half meltdown Sunday evening.

20. Sammy Watkins, Buffalo Bills. He had his break-out, welcome to the NFL performance last week and it is only a sign of things to come. I think he will be one of those players who really thrives off the home crowd’s energy. The Bills have looked above average on offense and will keep rolling for another week.

21. Wes Welker, Denver Broncos. This may be too high for him in his first game back on the road at Seattle. He has a lot more value in ppr leagues and it is hard to say how the ball is distributed between he and Emmanuel Sanders now. The one thing you can be assured of is that he is well-rested.

22. Roddy White, Atlanta Falcons. He says he will play Thursday Night and would probably be ranked higher knowing he would definitely play and is not too gimpy out there if he does. This is a good middle-ground ranking for him in a nice matchup based off those speculations.

23. Brandin Cooks, N.O. Saints. So his week one explosion came back to earth in Week 2 with Jimmy Graham doing Jimmy Graham thangs out there. The one thing to really keep in eye on is Marques Colston had no targets in that game and played healthy as far as we know. With the Vikings coming into town, we know the Saints will be able to throw on them, and somebody besides Graham has to catch a few. Right?

24. Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis Colts. TY Hilton had the more lucrative fantasy game of the two on Monday night, but Reggie Wizzle always bounces back from subpar performances and delivers. He is a sneaky vet like that. Also, it’s the Jacksonville Jaguars.

25. Michael Floyd, Arizona Cardinals. Let me be clear, Drew Stanton scares me if I own Floyd or Larry Fitzgerald. It could have been worse though in a spot start and maybe an extra week of preparation really helps him connect with his receivers. Let’s hope so with the Niners coming into town off a real tough loss.

26. TY Hilton, Indianapolis Colts. Like I said, it’s the Jacksonville Jaguars.

27. Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos. It is tough to list three Broncos receivers in the top 27 wideouts, and that is not even considering Julius Thomas. Either Sanders or Wes will have a poor game most likely, but I really think they will struggle to run the ball and throw it a ton. So you never know, maybe it ends up being a fairly even spread all over the field. Peyton may be forced to pick and choose his spots to mix it up in that rowdy environment.

28. Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina Panthers. He did have quite a few bad drops last week. I still think he will be a very good receiver for Carolina and the Pitt defense is not what it once was.

29. Steve Smith, Baltimore Ravens. He really has looked like the Mighty Mouse of old so far this year. Somehow he has surpassed Torrey Smith, though it is a very small sample size of two games. He is starting to look like one of those ageless wonders you cannot doubt quite yet.

30. Victor Cruz, NY Giants. Did he ever have a case of the bad dropsies or what? The Giants offense can not be this bad can it?! If it is after a third consecutive week, I do not know what to tell those of you who drafted him where he was regularly going this summer. All you can do is hope and be patient. And scour the waiver wire and/or your bench for his replacement in your starting lineup.

31. Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals. His coach said he is dealing win some knee issue or something, so keep an eye on that. Other than that slight problem, he seems to play well against the Niners if my memory serves me correctly. I am getting old though, so my memory is not what it once was either.

32. James Jones, Oakland Raiders. Two words; garbage time. That is mainly the only reason he beat put a few other players for the final spot on this list. That and he does have the numbers to back it up somehow. They will be done big and early against the Pats. He will get some targets in the second half while they attempt to put points on he board and make it look respectable.

Just missed the cut: Marques Colston, N.O. Saints. Golden Tate, Det Lions. DeSean Jackson, Wash Redskins. Kendal, Wright, Tenn Titans. Torrey Smith, Balt Ravens. Brian Quick, St. Louis Rams. Mohamed Sanu, Cincy Bengals. DeAndre Hopkins, Hou Texans.

Ranked as OUT; AJ Green, Eric Decker.

Please leave comments and feedback below. I will get to all of your questions as promised. My Twitter handle is @Friction218. Feel free to contact me with your questions there also. Best of luck during Week 3! See you next week.

Aaron Fritch