Wide Receivers to Avoid (2022 Fantasy Football)
In fantasy football, points per reception (PPR) have become the prevalent way to play fantasy football. With this rise in PPR leagues, we need to ensure we draft the correct wide receivers (WR) for our teams to help with our fantasy success. Within this article, we will break down which WR you should actively avoid in your draft. We will start with the highest wide receiver according to the average draft position (ADP) and work towards the bottom of the draft.
Deebo Samuel (WR – SF): (ADP 16)
When drafting a wide receiver with this high of an ADP, you need a safer floor for fantasy points. Deebo Samuel looks to have the safest floor of all the early WR draft picks due to his rushing totals from 2021, where he ran for 59 total carries, 365 yards and eight touchdowns. However, if you look deeper into his stats, you will see Samuel has a tale of two seasons. In the first nine weeks of the season, Samuel averaged 11 targets as a wide receiver. In those nine weeks, he had only six of his carries for the season. After the first nine weeks, Samuel averaged only five targets a game for the final eight games in the season.
This low total was masked by the fact he carried the ball 53 times during that span. With the news throughout the offseason of Samuel wanting to lessen his load as a running back, never mind that he is amid trade rumors, you have to worry about the consistency you will get out of this early draft pick.
Amari Cooper (WR – CLE): (ADP 50)
I have two rules of thumb when drafting wide receivers. The first rule is: “If the QB situation is murky, stay away.” Well, murky would be an understatement for the Cleveland Browns. Between Deshaun Watson‘s legal issues, Baker Mayfield requesting a trade and Jacoby Brissett handling the starting role this season, the Browns’ offense could struggle far more than the masses realize. With Amari Cooper’s ADP, the risk/reward ratio is too far into a danger zone to reap a proper reward. The second rule is, “You can’t win your fantasy league within your first seven rounds, but one wrong selection can make you lose your league.” Air on the side of caution and chase a better risk/reward ratio with your wide receivers in your redraft league.
Elijah Moore (WR – NYJ): (ADP 75)
Across the “Twitterverse” and dynasty circles, many fantasy football advocates have fallen in love with Elijah Moore from the New York Jets. However, we are discussing redraft and the concern here is how the Jets view the wide receiver. This past NFL Draft, the Jets drafted tenth overall, Garrett Wilson. The team also brought back Braxton Berrios on a two-year deal, while Corey Davis earns a base salary of $13 million this season.
Their wide receiver room now has a plethora of talent who can eat into the 77 targets Moore received in 2021 (49th overall for WRs). Finally, the New York Jets brought in top-rated running back Breece Hall to help replicate Robert Saleh and Mike LaFleur’s run-heavy system they brought to New York from San Francisco.
With Elijah Moore facing the most challenging strength of schedule for wide receivers in the NFL and a crowded wide receiver room, you should be searching to draft receivers lower in ADP, such as Gabriel Davis (84) or Rashod Bateman (92).
DeAndre Hopkins (WR – ARI): (ADP 82)
DeAndre Hopkins is being suspended six games for violating the NFL’s Performance Enhancing Drug policy. Even though this former alpha WR falls into WR 3/4 range, a baked-in risk is attached to his name outside the suspension. Hopkins’ major issue is how Arizona has reloaded when it comes to the tools around him. The Arizona Cardinals now have Marquise Brown, Zach Ertz, Trey McBride, A.J. Green, Rondale Moore and James Conner. Even when Hopkins returns from his suspension, he may find an issue receiving his high target totals from the past that helped raise his fantasy production to WR1 levels.
Ravens’ WR Not Named Rashod Bateman
Everyone wants to be the person who drafts the diamond in the rough onto their team. The player who comes from obscurity to deliver you a fantasy championship. Not to burst anyone’s fantasy dreams, but this player won’t come from the Baltimore Ravens wide receiver room. This team is a run-first team in Baltimore, and whoever you choose at best would be the third option in the receiving game.
The highest ADP of a Ravens receiver not named Rashod Bateman is Devin Duvernay, with an ADP of 280. This pick could be an ultimate dart throw. However, it’s more likely than not a wasted last-round pick that you’ll drop for the first running back on the waiver wire. Our suggestion, draft a handcuff to your Running back core, or even a running back that you think could have a breakout to begin the season allowing your team to have a more vital depth at a challenging position.
Understanding the ADP game is crucial to your success when playing fantasy football. Now that you have a breakdown of which wide receivers to avoid within your fantasy drafts, you will have the proper knowledge to build a championship-winning team.
If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup based on accurate consensus projections – to our Waiver Wire Assistant – which allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.