Everyone has heard of the Zero-RB draft strategy. However, the Zero-WR strategy rarely gets mentioned. Yet, it’s one of my favorite draft strategies because of the depth at the wide receiver position.
How does the Zero-WR draft strategy work? Like a Zero-RB strategy, you don’t avoid that position the entire draft. Instead, you focus on other positions early in the draft before targeting wide receivers starting in the fifth or sixth round.
Ideally, you load up at the running back position in the early rounds, grabbing two superstar-caliber guys. Fantasy players also want to draft an elite quarterback and tight end before picking their first wide receiver with this draft strategy. The point of this strategy is to sacrifice at the wide receivers position, so you have a star-studded lineup everywhere else.
Below are 10 wide receivers I am targeting this year when using a Zero-WR draft strategy. Ideally, I want to leave my draft with at least five of these players on my team.
- Draft Targets for Every Round: Early | Middle | Late
- Fitz’s Draft Primers: QB | RB | WR | TE
- Fantasy Football Mock Draft Simulator
- Snake Draft Pick Strategy: Early | Middle | Late
2023 Zero-WR Wide Receiver Draft Targets
Round 5 & 6 Targets
DJ Moore (CHI): ADP 56.3 | WR22
Mostly everyone is excited about Moore in Chicago this season. Yet, his ADP is barely inside the first five rounds. The veteran has spent his career playing with sub-par quarterbacks with the Carolina Panthers. Yet, the former Maryland star has been a consistent WR2 for fantasy players since his rookie season. Moore totaled at least 1,150 receiving yards or seven touchdowns in four consecutive years. Meanwhile, the star wide receiver has built a strong connection with Justin Fields this offseason. Last year the fantasy community saw A.J. Brown have a career season with Jalen Hurts. Don’t be surprised if that happens for Moore in 2023.
Jerry Jeudy (DEN): ADP 58.7 | WR23
Last year Denver’s offense had high expectations after the team traded for Russell Wilson. While the veteran quarterback struggled, Jeudy had the best year of his career. The former Alabama star was the WR21, averaging 11.4 half-point PPR fantasy points per game, setting career highs in receptions, receiving yards, touchdowns, and fantasy points scored. More importantly, he was excellent to end the season. Jeudy was the WR2 over the final five weeks, averaging 8.2 targets and 16.8 fantasy points per game. After struggling with injuries and poor quarterback play early in his career, the former Alabama star is primed for a breakout season.
Drake London (ATL): ADP 62.3 | WR24
Many thought London would be the top-scoring rookie wide receiver. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. However, the former USC star finished fifth in target share (29.4 percent), 11th in yards per route run (2.4), and 18th in red zone targets (15) among wide receivers last season. Fortunately, the second-year receiver will no longer be held back by Marcus Mariota. Last year London finished 27th in target quality rating and 31st in catchable target rate among wide receivers. More importantly, the Falcons didn’t do much to improve their receiving corps in the offseason, giving the former USC star an easy pathway to a significant target share.
Round 7 & 8 Targets
Diontae Johnson (PIT): ADP 82.7 | WR33
Johnson was the WR9 in 2021, averaging 13.8 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. He finished second in the NFL with 169 targets and had eight receiving touchdowns, a career-high. Unfortunately, the former Toledo star was only the WR39 last season, averaging 8.1 fantasy points per game after scoring zero touchdowns. Yet, the veteran had a 27 percent target share, the 13th-highest among wide receivers. Furthermore, he finished seventh in the NFL with 147 targets (8.7 per game), down only 1.3 targets per game compared to 2021. Had Johnson scored 6.7 touchdowns last season (his career average entering the year), he would have been the WR19.
Marquise Brown (ARI): ADP 84.3 | WR34
Arizona will likely be the worst team in the NFL this season. However, that won’t keep me from drafting Brown at his ADP. While the veteran missed time last year with a foot injury, the former Oklahoma star was the WR6 over the first six weeks without DeAndre Hopkins, averaging 14.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. Meanwhile, he averaged seven targets per game in the five contests without Kyler Murray. More importantly, the team has a lack of proven pass catchers. And with the Cardinals likely to be in negative gamescripts most of the season, this should create plenty of targets and garage-time fantasy points for Brown.
Jahan Dotson (WAS): ADP 95.3 | WR38
The 2022 NFL Draft class had several talented wide receivers. Yet, Dotson quietly led all rookies in receiving touchdowns (seven) despite missing five games and playing several others limited. Removing his first three games back from a nagging hamstring injury (where he played under 67 percent of the snaps in every contest), the rookie would have averaged 12.1 half-point PPR fantasy points per game last season. Over a 17-game pace, he would have been the WR11. Dotson won’t replace Terry McLaurin as Washington’s No. 1 wide receiver. However, the former Penn State star is primed for a sophomore-year breakout season.
Round 9 & 10 Targets
Brandin Cooks (DAL): ADP 100.3 | WR39
Some might consider the veteran wide receiver over the hill after his disappointing 2022 season. However, Cooks has plenty of gas left in the tank. While he struggled last year, the former Oregon State star was productive in 2021. Cooks was the WR20 that season, averaging 11.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. Furthermore, he finished seventh in air yards share (38.9 percent) and 13th in deep targets (24) among wide receivers that year. More importantly, the veteran has been outstanding at training camp and looks determined to return to his old level of play. While CeeDee Lamb will limit his fantasy upside, Cooks should outperform his ADP.
Elijah Moore (CLE): ADP 115.7 | WR45
Everyone labeled Moore a second-year breakout last season. The former Ole Miss star ended his rookie year on fire. He was the WR2 over his final five games, averaging 17.3 half-point PPR fantasy points per contest. Furthermore, Moore finished ninth in route win rate (47.8 percent), 20th in total touchdowns (six), and 24th in deep targets (20) among wide receivers that year despite missing six games. Unfortunately, everything went wrong last year. However, the former Ole Miss star has been the talk of offseason workouts in Cleveland. More importantly, Moore has built a strong connection with Deshaun Watson. He is my favorite post-hype sleeper wide receiver.
Late Round Targets
Skyy Moore (KC): ADP 142.7 | WR53
After the Chiefs traded away Tyreek Hill, everyone tried to guess who would replace him as the No. 1 wide receiver. Unfortunately, Moore struggled, finishing fourth among the team’s wide receivers in targets and fifth in routes run. However, he has been the focal point of offseason workouts. The second-year receiver will replace JuJu Smith-Schuster in the slot and potentially his 101 targets from last season. Furthermore, Moore has earned the most starting reps in two receiver sets in practice. Meanwhile, Kadarius Toney’s Week 1 status is up in the air. Moore is vastly underrated at his ADP, especially given his potential upside.
Nico Collins (HOU): ADP 163.7 | WR61
Reportedly Collins is the favorite to be the No. 1 wide receiver after the Texans traded Brandin Cooks. Last year the former Michigan star was the WR48 on a points-per-game basis, averaging 7.9 half-point PPR fantasy points per contest, only 0.4 fewer than George Pickens. Yet, he has an ADP nearly 6.5 rounds later than the Pittsburgh receiver. Meanwhile, Collins finished second in contested catch rate (66.7 percent) among wide receivers despite Davis Mills ranking 43rd in catchable pass rate last season. Thankfully Houston drafted C.J. Stroud, giving the young receiver a legit franchise quarterback. The former Michigan star is an under-the-radar third-year breakout candidate.
More Players to Target & Avoid
- Pat Fitzmaurice: (Targets | Avoids) (Premium)
- Andrew Erickson: (Targets | Avoids) (Premium)
- Derek Brown: (Targets | Avoids) (Premium)
- Fantasy Football Sleepers for Every Team (Premium)
- How to Identify Fantasy Football Busts (Premium)
- Erickson’s Guide to Drafting Players on Good Offenses
- Fantasy Football Draft Values for Every Round
- Predicting First-Round Bust Candidates
- DBro’s Wide Receiver Lottery Tickets
- Erickson’s Running Back Lottery Tickets
- Hoppen’s 4 Players Who Could Become First-Round Picks Next Year
- Players to Target in Each Round (v2 | v3)
- Players to Avoid in Each Round
- Late-Round Draft Targets
- Late-Round QB Targets in Superflex Leagues | More QB Sleepers
- Late-Round RB Targets | More RB Sleepers | July RB Targets
- Late-Round WR Targets
- Late-Round TE Targets
- Deep Dart Throw Draft Targets
- WRs to Target in the RB Dead Zone (v2)| RBs to Avoid in the RB Dead Zone | RBs to Target in RB Dead Zone
- Identifying the Next WR1s | Identifying the Next RB1s
- 2022 Duds That Will Become 2023 Studs
- 4 Kickers To Target at the End of Drafts
- Making the Case for RB1
- Post-Hype Sleepers