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Wide Receiver Draft Values, Breakouts & Busts (2024 Fantasy Football)

Wide Receiver Draft Values, Breakouts & Busts (2024 Fantasy Football)

While the 2023 NFL season is over, fantasy football is a year-long thing. Therefore, it’s never too early to look ahead to next year.

Today, I look back at the 2023 season, highlighting some of the top ADP values, breakouts, and busts at the wide receiver position while also taking an early look at potential candidates in these areas for the 2024 season.

2024 Dynasty Fantasy Football Guide

Wide Receiver Draft Values, Breakouts & Busts

2023 General Review

The 2023 season was full of surprises at the wide receiver position. While many doubted Mike Evans and Keenan Allen because of their age, both wide receivers had top-10 finishes in half-point PPR scoring. Furthermore, five rookie wide receivers finished the year inside the top 30. More importantly, Puka Nacua was a league winner as a fifth-round rookie. He ended the year as the WR4, averaging 14.5 fantasy points per game while breaking multiple rookie receiving records.

2023 Top ADP Values

Mike Evans (TB)

Many refused to draft Evans entering the 2023 season. The star wide receiver turned 30 in August and lost Tom Brady to retirement. Yet, the former Texas A&M star had his best year since 2019, averaging 14.3 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. Evans had 1,255 receiving yards, ranking ninth in the NFL, keeping his streak of over 1,000-yard seasons alive. More importantly, he massively outperformed his preseason ADP. Evans got drafted as a mid-range WR3 in most leagues but ended the year as a top-five wide receiver.

Keenan Allen (LAC)

Unfortunately, Allen missed the final four games this season with a heel injury. Yet, that didn’t stop the star wide receiver from a top-10 finish. He was the WR8, averaging 17.3 half-point PPR fantasy points per game, posting a higher per-game average than any wide receiver other than Tyreek Hill and CeeDee Lamb. Yet, the two superstars were first-round picks during fantasy drafts, while Allen slid into the fourth-round range. He scored double-digit fantasy points in 76.9% of the games in 2023.

2023 Top Breakouts

Nico Collins (HOU)

Collins was a popular third-year breakout candidate during the preseason. Yet, no one expected him to become one of the top wide receivers in fantasy football. The former Michigan star was the WR9, averaging 14.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. He was a go-to target for C.J. Stroud. Collins led the team in target share (21.1%), target per route run rate (28%), receiving yards market share (32.5%), yards per route run (3.37), end zone targets (10), and first-read target share (27%) this season (per Fantasy Points Data).

DJ Moore (CHI)

The former Maryland star was a somewhat polarizing preseason breakout candidate. Some argued that Moore couldn’t be a breakout candidate after four consecutive years finishing as a WR2. Others said the wide receiver wasn’t elite. Regardless of which stance they took – they were wrong. Moore finished the 2023 season as the WR6, averaging 14 half-point PPR fantasy points per game, up 10.7% from his previous career high in 2019. Furthermore, he was outstanding despite averaging 7.3 fantasy points per game in the four contests Tyson Bagent started.

2023 Top Busts

Cooper Kupp (LAR)

Injuries are part of the game, but it was crushing to see Kupp struggle to stay healthy in 2023. The superstar wide receiver suffered a hamstring injury early in training camp before re-aggravating it right before Week 1. Kupp missed the first four weeks because of the injury but also had an ankle injury during the season. He ended the year as the WR41, averaging 11.2 half-point PPR fantasy points per game, his lowest average since 2020. Kupp’s days as a top-10 fantasy wide receiver are unfortunately over.

Garrett Wilson (NYJ)

Everyone expected Wilson to have a breakout season after the Jets acquired Aaron Rodgers. Unfortunately, the future Hall of Famer tore his Achilles in Week 1, effectively ending any chance Wilson had of fantasy success in 2023. The former Ohio State star was the WR32 for the year, averaging 9.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. Those numbers are down from the season before when he averaged 10.2 fantasy points per game and was the WR19. Wilson averaged only 7.7 fantasy points per game during the fantasy playoffs.

2024 General Preview

When wide receivers reach the age of 30, many in the fantasy football community start to panic. Unfortunately, several big-name wide receivers will be on the wrong side of 30 heading into next season. Wide receivers are entering the NFL more ready to make an immediate impact than in the past, making the top-12 ADP for 2024 fun to watch. Which young guy will come away with the WR1 title, or could Tyreek Hill steal that honor despite turning 30 in March?

2024 Potential ADP Values

Tee Higgins (CIN)

The 2023 season was one to forget for Higgins and anyone with him on their fantasy team. The star wide receiver had the worst year of his career, averaging only 9.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. However, he had two 20 or more fantasy points performances during the fantasy playoffs with Ja’Marr Chase hurt. Higgins is currently the WR28 in Underdog ADP. The former Clemson would be a steal at this price, especially if he leaves Cincinnati in the offseason.

Amari Cooper (CLE)

Cooper has never gotten the respect he deserves from the fantasy football community. The star wide receiver was the WR18 in 2023, averaging 12.7 half-point PPR fantasy points per game despite missing two games and playing with four different quarterbacks. More importantly, he was productive with every quarterback not named Dorian Thompson-Robinson. Cooper averaged 15.1 fantasy points per game in the 12 games he played that the rookie didn’t start. If Deshaun Watson returns at 100%, the star wide receiver will again be a steal at his ADP.

2024 Potential Breakouts

Rashee Rice (KC)

You can question whether Rice is a legitimate breakout candidate after how he ended his rookie season. The former SMU star was the WR27, averaging 10.8 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. However, he has some Amon-Ra St. Brown vibes to him. Rice was on fire over his final six regular season games, averaging 14.9 fantasy points per contest, a similar finish to St. Brown in 2021. While his fantasy playoffs numbers weren’t massive, the rookie should be Patrick Mahomes‘ clear-cut No. 1 wide receiver next year.

A.T. Perry (NO)

This pick is more a sleeper candidate than a traditional breakout one. Perry had a limited but promising rookie season, averaging 5.5 half-point PPR fantasy points per game. However, the rookie finished third on the team in receiving touchdowns (four) despite not seeing a target until Week 10. Furthermore, he ended the year playing well, scoring double-digit fantasy points in two of the final three games. With Michael Thomas unlikely to return in 2024, Perry could turn into a touchdown-upside WR3 like Romeo Doubs for New Orleans.

2024 Potential Busts

Stefon Diggs (BUF)

Unfortunately, Diggs’ fantasy outlook is drastically different than at the end of last year. The star wide receiver struggled to end the year for the second consecutive season. He averaged 7.5 half-point PPR fantasy points per game over the final eight contests. By comparison, Diggs scored fewer than 8.3 fantasy points in three of his final four games in 2022. Buffalo could trade the receiver in the offseason, creating uncertainty about his fantasy future. More importantly, Diggs is on the wrong side of 30 and has shown signs of decline.

Davante Adams (LV)

While Adams will go down as one of the top wide receivers in NFL history, fantasy players should have concerns about him next season. The superstar averaged 12.6 half-point PPR fantasy points per game in 2023, his lowest average since his second year in the league. Furthermore, his fantasy points per game average, and yards per route run rate (per Fantasy Points Data) have declined in three consecutive seasons. Adams shouldn’t have a higher Underdog ADP than Tank Dell or Chris Olave, regardless of where he plays in 2024.

More Early 2024 Fantasy Football Draft Prep

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Mike Fanelli is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @Mike_NFL2.

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