USA Today

Week 6: Wide Receiver Corps To Watch

Fantasy Football Expert Mark Morales-Smith looks at a few wide receiver groups to watch heading into Week 6!

NOT A MEMBER? JOIN NOW!

Baltimore Ravens

Steve Smith Sr. – Mike Wallace – Kamar Aiken – Breshad Perriman

Sign up for Scout Fantasy!
Why join?

Injuries struck the already shaky Ravens WR corps this week. Steve Smith Sr. suffered what is believed to be a high-ankle sprain. He exited the game Week 5 and was not able to return despite his best efforts to jog it off. His chances of playing this week against the New York Giants are looking grim. This will likely lead to Kamar Aiken manning the slot on Sunday. Aiken stepped up in a major way last season in the midst of a rash of injury woes. He finished 2016 with 74 receptions for 944 yards and five TDs. So he is a proven asset in Fantasy Football. Rookie Chris Moore could see some snaps in the slot as well.

To make matters worse, Mike Wallace was spotted wearing a non-contact jersey in practice Wednesday. The Ravens most dangerous deep threat is dealing with a rib injury. It’s likely he’ll be slapped with a questionable tag, which is a much broader tag this season. We will have to monitor his status throughout the week. His absence could open the door for Chris Matthews to have an expanded role on the outside.

In a rare occurrence, Breshad Perriman is looking like the only sure thing at wide receiver in Baltimore this week. He will be starting on the outside. Despite his big play speed, he is yet to show any ability to be a Fantasy star. He’s caught ten passes in five games and has maxed out at 35 yards in Week 1.

If Wallace plays and Smith is out, Wallace is by far the best Fantasy option on the Ravens. If both Smith and Wallace are out, I will roll with Aiken. He’s the only player with any consistent track record on this team. Even then he’d be desperation flex option or low-price DFS long shot.  

Los Angeles Rams

Kenny Britt – Brian Quick – Tavon Austin

The Rams are among the worst WR corps in the NFL. There most targeted wideout is Tavon Austin. However, he and Case Keenum are extremely inefficient. Austin has caught just 23 of his 46 targets for 218 yards and one TD. He has also seen at least one carry out of the backfield in every game this season, totaling nine carries for 50 yards. His Fantasy production has significantly fallen off compared to last season due to the fact he hasn’t been scoring TDs like he did last season. In 2015 he totaled ten touchdowns (five receiving, four rushing, one return). For the kind of player, his TD numbers were unsustainable for the 176-pounder. Still, he has the highest floor of all the Rams wideouts.

Kenny Britt has only seen 32 targets, yet has far outproduced Austin through the air. He also caught 23 passes and for 356 yards. Despite his superior efficiency rating, lack of targets and no touchdowns has held him back. His 15.5 average yards per catch compared to Austin’s 9.5 has caught the attention of Fantasy owners and made Britt a more targeted option as of late. The hope is his loftier production with fewer targets will lead to expanded opportunities.

Then we have Brian Quick. He’s the real boom-or-bust option in L.A. While Quick has only been targeted 18 times this season, he has amassed 11 receptions, 204 yards and a team-high three receiving touchdowns with an 18.5 average. I prefer him much more as a low-cost high-upside DFS option than a year-long starter. With that said, if you are in a bind and are in need of someone to throw in your flex Quick’s upside is intriguing.

Overall the Rams wide receivers are better off avoided altogether. Nonetheless, each one does bring a different skill set to the table and could step up any given week. They are all long shots, but there is some value to be found. This week they play the Detroit Lions who are very susceptible to the passing attack and are the tenth worst defense at slowing down Fantasy wideouts according to our SCOUT Fantasy Points Allowed Tool.

Cleveland Browns

Terrelle Pryor – Andrew Hawkins – Ricardo Louis

These wide receivers are just one of many reasons the Browns are the NFL’s worst team. The one exception here is Terrelle Pryor. As a matter of fact, a recent report stated that the Browns were willing to trade any player on the roster other than Pryor who was “untouchable.” It’s amazing because last year the Browns picked him up for nothing as he was grasping for one last chance to stay in the NFL. Now he’s a modern day and much better version of a 1990’s Kordell Stewart.

Pryor is doing it all for Cleveland as a receiver and even as a quarterback and runner. Josh Gordon was supposed to return last week. Unfortunately, we learned that would not turn out to be the case. Gordon ended up checking himself into rehab after a yet another “slip-up.” First-round pick Corey Coleman has also been sidelined since Week 2 with a broken hand and isn’t expected back before midseason.

With all of that said, Pryor has still only accounted for 396 total yards and two TDs. That’s how terrible this WR corps is. Don’t get me wrong, he’s been much better than those numbers show, but this is their only untouchable player. The biggest complementary pieces in the wide receivers group are Andrew Hawkins and Ricardo Louis.

Hawkins has caught 12 passes for 126 yards and a TD, while Louis has amounted eight catches and 81 yards. Tight end Gary Barnidge is the only real pass-catching option in Cleveland other than Pryor. What makes Pryor so valuable is his ridiculous upside. The Browns QBs are so banged up Pryor has a real shot to end up playing quarterback. If you can start an already strong WR at QB in your Fantasy league, you may have a Fantasy gold mine.

Washington Redskins

DeSean Jackson – Pierre Garcon – Jamison Crowder

None of the Redskins wide receivers have been able to separate themselves from the pack. DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon and Jamison Crowder all have about the same production this season which makes deciding on which one to play from game-to-game difficult. First-round pick Josh Doctson suffered an Achilles’ injury, which at least cleared things up a bit.

Redskins Top 3 WRs

REC

TAR

YARDS

AVG

TD

DeSean Jackson

18

32

278

17.6

1

Pierre Garcon

22

32

230

10.5

1

Jamison Crowder

21

30

231

11.0

2

As you can see in the graph above, all these receivers are almost interchangeable from a Fantasy perspective. It’s pretty much a roll of the dice currently. Although, head coach Jay Gruden did just say this week that they need to get the ball to Jackson more. It’s possible he could be a strong play against the Philadelphia Eagles this week.

This is a big week for the Redskins wideouts because star tight end Jordan Reed is likely out and they will be going up against a lackluster secondary in Philly. Our SCOUT Fantasy Rankings rank D-Jax first, Crowder second and Garcon third. Jackson is ranked significantly higher than the other too. This is because he has the highest ceiling. It’s important to understand that he also has the lowest floor and holds the least PPR value. This is a tough group to decipher, but we suggest you swing for the fences with Jackson.  


Scout Fantasy Top Stories