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Fantasy Football Draft Outlook: DeVonta Smith, Jordan Addison, Nico Collins, Tank Dell

Fantasy Football Draft Outlook: DeVonta Smith, Jordan Addison, Nico Collins, Tank Dell

Identifying players to avoid isn’t just about drafting players who are not good at football. It’s more about finding the players who are good at football, just not good enough to outplay their situation or are at an elevated cost compared to similarly talented players. March may be too early for a lot of things in fantasy football but it isn’t too early to identify the players who aren’t worth their cost in your fantasy drafts. Here are the wide receivers who top my list for 2024.

Way-Too-Early Redraft WRs to Avoid

The Highest Drafted Texans WR

The Texans were one of the bright spots of the 2023 season. CJ Stroud proved he was here to stay and he was able to bring both Nico Collins and Tank Dell along on his breakout journey. Both wide receivers were able to impress at every level of the field. While Stroud does deserve a lot of the credit, these pass-catchers are now both top-20 dynasty assets, if not higher. In redraft, the best way to decide who to draft in these situations is to focus on traits. The nuanced route runners also gain the edge when trying to find the little advantages between two players. The issue here is that both Collins and Dell are great route runners. So, it all comes down to acquisition cost. That is where we get a clearer picture of who you should avoid in drafts. Nico Collins has an average draft position (ADP) of WR12. Tank Dell, primarily due to his injury, has an ADP of WR17. Assuming this difference remains over the next few months, and I am betting it will, Collins becomes the clear player to avoid in redraft leagues. Again, both players are good and this is not an indictment on Collins; I prefer him in dynasty leagues, but you take the discount and reap the reward in 2024 redraft leagues.

Jordan Addison (WR – MIN) 

Jordan Addison is a fun dynasty asset in fantasy football. However, look elsewhere for answers at wide receiver in redraft. Addison had a strong rookie season, posting 900 yards and an impressive 10 touchdowns. However, I worry about how sustainable his production was in 2023. Touchdowns aren’t an overly predictive metric, so while fun, they don’t paint a clear picture for Addison in 2024. He was in the 56th percentile in yards per route run and profiles as a big-play threat rather than a genuinely elite wide receiver. Addison also benefitted tremendously from not having to share targets with the best wide receiver in all of football (Justin Jefferson). On top of this, Kirk Cousins is no longer in the picture and the Vikings are committed to drafting a rookie signal-caller. I am not entirely out on Addison for the long term but when it comes to 2024, he is the player I am pounding the table against the most at wide receiver.

DeVonta Smith (WR – PHI)

There may not be a player with as significant a discrepancy between fantasy and NFL value as DeVonta Smith. The 2023 season saw Smith come back to earth, production-wise. He still profiles as an alpha, but unfortunately, he shares the field with one of 10 or so players who are better than him. My issue with Smith last season was that Jalen Hurts and the Eagles offense didn’t look like it had much more to offer its pass-catchers than we saw in 2022. While the ceiling is there for Smith, it would be a flawed process for us to expect the Eagles to recapture that 2022 glory. DeVonta Smith has an ADP of WR13 on Sleeper pre-draft. While I would not be surprised to see him fall to the WR16-WR18 range, that would still land him in “meh” waters when determining if a player brings your team’s increased value during your drafts. He is averaging 117 targets per season in his career. In his breakout season, he had nearly 140 targets. In my early projections, I have him sitting at 118 targets, which would have him falling shy of his WR13 ADP. The one thing in Smith’s favor in PPR formats would be if we see him get the opportunity to play in the slot as much as he did near the end of last season. I would be happy to pass on Smith in 2024 if it means being able to draft Michael Pittman, DJ Moore or Drake London, who are in a similar range right now.

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