By: Nate Ramacher
We all know about the stud WRs at the top of the draft – I really think at least half of the top 12 picks in any draft should be WRs. However, there is major hay to be made in the middle rounds of drafts with valuable WRs.
After the first 50 picks, essentially 5 rounds in a 10 team league and 4 rounds in a 12 team league, there are a number of WRs who can be excellent assets for a team. Getting 2 or even 3 of the players on this list with your picks between 50 and 80 overall will give your team depth and production. Then you can grab a couple values at QB before stockpiling late round RBs.
Here are the top targets to maximize production from your mid round picks:
1. Larry Fitzgerald – Ari: The Ageless One had a solid season in 2016 and could uptick a bit in production, particularly if QB Carson Palmer stays relatively healthy this year. That might be a lot to ask of these old pros but Fitz is still the best WR on his team so his floor is pretty high.
2. Stefon Diggs – Min: Diggs is the best combination of upside and limited downside on this list. He will be the Vikes #1 whenever he is on the field and their passing game should take a step forward this season. The scheme fits his skillset and and his role is assured.
3. Brandon Marshall – NYG: Marshall gets to be the #2 WR for really the first time in his career. The Giants could have a high volume passing game and Marshall brings skills that no one in this O besides OBJ can match. He could be in line for a big TD season and lots of receptions.
4. Martavius Bryant – Pit: Bryant has as much upside as any WR outside of the top 10. He probably won’t be a high volume pass catcher so his production could be inconsistent. However, his big play ability and size make him a tantalizing target.
5. Kelvin Benjamin – Car: Many folks are sour on Benjamin but he is still the clearcut #1 for a good QB and an imposing physical presence. I still believe in his upside.
6. Michael Crabtree – Oak: Crabtree is looked at as the #2 on Oakland because of the presence of Amari Cooper but he is really at worst 1B. The Oakland O has a ton of upside Crabtree is their best TD producer.
7. Donte Moncrief – Ind: I am not a huge fan of Moncrief’s but he has fallen far enough in some drafts to be worth a gamble as a WR3 or 4.
8. Golden Tate – Det: Another #1 WR for a big armed QB, Tate will get plenty of targets and is an even better play in PPR formats.
9. DeVante Parker – Mia: Parker is another tremendous upside play although he has yet to live up to his potential over any meaningful stretch. I like him as a high end WR4 who could emerge along with the Miami O.
10. Julian Edelmann – NE: Tom Brady’s favorite target is most helpful in PPR formats but still will produce enough to be excellent depth on your fantasy team.
Others to consider: Emmanuel Sanders – Den, Jarvis Landry – Mia, Tyrell Williams – LAC, Pierre Garcon – SF.