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25 Early RB & WR Rankings Standouts (2024 Fantasy Football)

25 Early RB & WR Rankings Standouts (2024 Fantasy Football)

It’s never too early to start looking ahead at the fantasy landscape to see which expert consensus rankings you disagree with the most.  There’s plenty of value out there being overlooked, as some in the space may be overreacting to disappointing seasons specific players had last year. The inverse is also true, as some fantasy managers may ignore changing circumstances and draft athletes higher than they should based on last year’s stats. Which players do our featured experts project differently than their peers? Read on to find out.

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Which half-PPR RB consensus ranking do you disagree with the most and why?

Kyren Williams (RB – LAR)

“I think Kyren Williams as RB6 is too low. I’m not saying that it is an easy task moving any of Bijan, CMC, Hall, Gibbs and JT down below him, but I do have a problem with Kyren NOT being in tier one with CMC, Hall and Bijan. Kyren scored 15 TDs last year in just 12 games. He had 12 rushing TDs in those 12 games. I think Kyren leads the league in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns in 2024.”
Smitty (TheFantasyFootballShow)

Kyren Williams at RB6 and 13th overall is too rich for my blood. Don’t get me wrong, he was a league winner in 2023 and was on many of my rosters, but he was the beneficiary of an almost unheard-of workload in the backfield and also benefitted from lengthy Cooper Kupp absences. Williams came into the season buried down the Rams depth chart, so it’s clear that not even they believed in him, and that’s why I won’t pay this price. In 2022, we saw Day 3 running backs such as Isiah Pacheco, Dameon Pierce, and Tyler Allgeier explode in value due in large part to heavy workloads brought on by injuries to their teammates. A year later two of those three saw their value fall off a cliff completely, with Pacheco being the only one to salvage some semblance of hope. Williams may be the real deal, but with almost no draft capital invested in him, his current cost is at his ceiling and nowhere near his likely finish. Sell high on Kyren Williams because the odds are stacked against him.”
Aaron St Denis (Fantasy Football Universe)

Trey Benson (RB – FA) | Jase McClellan (RB – FA)

Trey Benson’s current ECR (Expert Consensus Ranking) is RB45, while Jase McClellan’s current ECR ranking is RB105! Both RBs are big (221 lbs.); Benson is fast (40 time- 4.39), while McClellan’s game speed looks decent. Both can catch and have the talent to be bellcow RBs if given a chance, in my opinion. And even if they don’t get a bellcow role, both can clear their current consensus rankings in street shoes. Just to help you visualize it, last year, Ty Chandler finished tied for RB45 and averaged 5.7 fantasy points a game, while Hunter Luepke finished as RB 105 with 11.2 points total for the season! Give me Trey Benson at his current ranking, and if you act right now, you’ll get Ringo’s Longshot Special, Jase McClellan, absolutely free in drafts.”
Mark Ringo (Sleepers and Busts)

Nick Chubb (RB – CLE)

Nick Chubb was a top-20 fantasy running back in each of the previous five seasons before his 2023 injury. He was the RB6 in 2022 and the RB10 in his one full game last year. I understand being afraid of injury, but calling him the RB25 seems to be dynasty-brain kicking in. In Redraft, Chubb should be going somewhere in the RB15 to 20 range at worst. His upside is undeniable, and we’ve seen backs return to form from knee injuries in recent years.”
Ryan Weisse (Club Fantasy FFL)

James Conner (RB – ARI)

“It’s hard to justify one of the few true workhorses RBs in the league being drafted outside the top 20 at his position. Veteran running backs tend to be undervalued, more so with each passing season. James Conner will be 29 when the 2024 NFL season starts, but he’s still one of the best fantasy RBs in the game. He finished as the RB9 in half-PPR fantasy points per game last season despite playing on a mostly anemic offense. He wasn’t carried by TD luck or a ton of dump-offs either; he averaged five yards per carry. The Cards will bolster their WR corps and O-line in the draft, making it easier for Conner to operate in the backfield. ”
Pierre Camus (Fantasy Endgame)

James Conner’s RB21 ranking in ECR is a slap in the face. In Arizona, Conner has finished no lower than RB13 in fantasy points per game. He is coming off arguably his most efficient season as a rusher and has shown no signs of slowing down. Last season, he ranked eighth in missed tackles forced per attempt and fifth in yards after contact per attempt (per Fantasy Points Data). Let’s put some respect on his name and rank him in the RB12-15 range because he deserves it. ”
Derek Brown (FantasyPros)

Kenneth Walker III (RB – SEA)

“When Kenneth Walker came into the league in 2022, there were some NFL Draft and fantasy analysts who liked him as much as Breece Hall. KW3 has met expectations thus far, so it’s odd that his ECR is outside the top 10 at running back. I’d draft him over Josh Jacobs, Derrick Henry, Isiah Pacheco and Rachaad White, all of whom have higher ECRs. Walker has averaged just a smidge under 80 scrimmage yards per game in his two NFL seasons and has scored nine TDs in both years. As Ryan Heath of Fantasy Points has noted, no running back has forced more missed tackles than Walker over the last two seasons. The presence of 2023 second-round pick Zach Charbonnet might be discouraging interest in Walker, but Walker averaged 16.5 touches a game last year — about twice as many as Charbonnet. If interest in Walker is as tepid as his ECR suggests, he’ll end up on a lot of my redraft rosters in 2024.”
Pat Fitzmaurice (FantasyPros)

Zack Moss (RB – BUF)

“You have to wonder if the Bengals bring in anyone else, but as of now, Zack Moss is their guy. Sure, he might lose out on some passing down work, but he should carry the load at running back and get the goal-line work. Joe Mixon was the sixth overall fantasy running back in this offense and was one of the worst in all of football after contact, averaging just 1.4 yards per carry after contact. Moss excels in that area and should be a big upgrade for this offense. He is capable of being a top-20 fantasy back.”
Jeff Paur (RTSports)

Raheem Mostert (RB – MIA)

Raheem Mostert at RB29 is wild to me. He was the clear-cut RB3 in ppg last season – behind only Kyren Williams and Christian McCaffrey – and he demonstrated an ability to remain healthy for the majority of the season. At his age and given the presumed rise of De’Von Achane, Mostert should see a slight decline in overall touches. Even still, Mike McDaniel’s offense is electric, and Mostert will retain the goal-line role. Mostert, as anything less than RB20, is blasphemous. Less than RB12? Still pretty hard to swallow.”
Jeremy Shulman (Fantasy Football Universe)

Jahmyr Gibbs (RB – DET)

Jahmyr Gibbs should be a top-10 running back but not a top-five guy. After he and David Montgomery missed time because of injuries in the first half of the 2023 season, both played the final nine regular season games. While Gibbs out-snapped Montgomery in seven of those games, he had more half-point PPR fantasy points than the veteran in only five of those contests. More importantly, Gibbs was the RB10 on a points-per-game basis (14.9) over the final nine weeks of the regular season, posting a lower average than Isaiah Pacheco and James Conner. While Gibbs should get drafted ahead of those veterans and Montgomery, I’m not taking him over guys with a featured role like Jonathan Taylor, Kyren Williams, and Saquon Barkley.”
Mike Fanelli (FantasyPros)

Derrick Henry (RB – BAL)

“I think Derrick Henry’s ECR as the RB11 is too high. Sure, I understand the allure of the Big Dog in the Ravens offense that produced Gus Edwards and his 13 TDs last season. Still, that resulted in Gus Bus as the RB32 in points per game. And that’s because Baltimore operated with an RBBC, an approach that won’t change under OC Todd Monken even after the addition of Henry. The Ravens’ prior commitment to a traditional thunder/lightning backfield does raise eyebrows about the sheer volume Henry might receive. He’s always been a back that requires 15+ carries before he can do damage. Edwards had five games last season with 15+ carries. The former Titans RB is also a zero in the passing game, making his fantasy value extremely TD-dependent. The Ravens O-line also took a major step backward this offseason, making Henry even tougher to draft as an RB1 entering age 30. ”
Andrew Erickson (FantasyPros)

James Cook (RB – BUF)

James Cook at RB14 could be a top 10 RB this upcoming season. The Bills lost WRs Stefon Diggs & Gabriel Davis, meaning there are 200+ targets up for grabs. The immediate benefactors should be Dalton Kincaid & possibly Dawson Knox. However, Cook caught 81.4% of passes last season on 54 targets. There is a possibly he gets 80+ targets this season. If he keeps up with his 80% reception rate, then he could see 60+ receptions, which I think could help boost him into a top-10 back. This is with him gaining over 1,000 rushing yards again.”
Miguel ‘SC’ Romero (Fantasy Football Universe)

Josh Jacobs (RB – GB)

“Not only am I higher than consensus (ECR: RB9), but no analyst has Josh Jacobs ranked higher (RB6) than I do (as of Wednesday night). He may like to forget 2023, but the 26-year-old back is two years removed from leading the NFL in rushing, yards from scrimmage, and finishing as a top-three fantasy back across all scoring formats. While he’s not as talented of a receiver as Aaron Jones, Jacobs has still managed to average 50.15 receptions per 17 games since 2020 and could even see an uptick in targets in Green Bay. As long as his health cooperates, Jacobs has a high floor and ceiling given his expected volume within Green Bay’s ascending offense.”
Kevin Hanson (EDSFootball)

“Everyone seems to be quite excited about the arrival of Josh Jacobs taking the role left by Aaron Jones. I agree he has Top 12 potential, but I disagree with considering him a Top 10 for 2024. The volume could excite us, but the Packers retained AJ Dillon, and an increase in passing plays is expected due to what Jordan Love showed last year. We must not forget that he comes from having the lowest yards-per-carry average of his career (3.5). At his ECR range, I prefer Travis Etienne, De’Von Achane, Rachaad White and Derrick Henry.”
Mauricio Gutierrez (Estadio Fantasy)

Travis Etienne Jr. (RB – JAC)

“The half-PPR consensus ranking I disagree most with is Travis Etienne Jr. as RB8. Yes, he is coming off a season where he finished RB7. However, I cannot rank or draft Etienne at RB8 this season. Much of Etienne’s production came at the start of the season and reliant on touchdowns. From week 10 onward, you got two RB1 finishes while getting 5 games outside the top 20, three of which were outside the top 30. The Jags seem to want to lighten his load every year, and his inconsistency throughout the season makes it so I could not draft or rank him as an RB1.”
Dylan Licciardo (FF Gamers)

2024 NFL Draft Guide

Which half-PPR WR consensus ranking do you disagree with the most and why?

Cooper Kupp (WR – LAR)

Cooper Kupp is certainly not a lock to play elite football for 17 games in 2024; however, he ranks way, way too low at WR26. I think he can still play elite-ish fantasy football per start in 2024, and even missing a handful of games (and I do believe he does miss a few based on his age of 31), he easily earns top 15-20WR value this season. He is as low-risk as it gets at WR26.”
Smitty (TheFantasyFootballShow)

Marvin Harrison Jr. (WR – FA)

“I know why most analysts have Marvin Harrison Jr. ranked much lower than me with a current ECR (Expert Consensus Ranking) of WR 18. It’s because he’s a rookie. But not all rookies, or even draft classes, are cut from the same cloth. Marvin Harrison Jr. is special. He’s big (6’4″), he’s fast (estimated 40 time- 4.39), and he runs good routes. Marvin will be an impact player on day one, imo. And if he gets paired with a talented QB throwing him the ball- lookout! Ringo’s current ranking- WR 4! Ringo’s comp- Harrison Jr. is bigger and faster than his dad, who was an all-pro for the Colts. He reminds me of Julio Jones in his prime.”
Mark Ringo (Sleepers and Busts)

Jayden Reed (WR – GB)

“If I can land Jayden Reed as the WR35, I’ll take that value in every draft. In his rookie year, where he only started 13 games, he finished as the WR25. If you look at the schedule, he really stepped into the WR1 role after the Packers’ Week 6 bye. From Week 7 on, Reed was the WR7 in fantasy. He has already beaten that ADP and that doesn’t even factor in the growth of Reed, Jordan Love, or this Green Bay offense as a whole.”
Ryan Weisse (Club Fantasy FFL)

Drake London (WR – ATL)

Drake London is ready to take his place as a top-10 WR, and that’s where he belongs, not WR17. The upgrade to Kirk Cousins (and the absence of Arthur Smith) cannot be overstated. Last year, London had to mostly contend with Desmond Ridder, who ranked 38th out of 38 QBs in PFF’s player grades. The slew of uncatchable targets and the questionable play-calling can no longer hold him back.”
Pierre Camus (Fantasy Endgame)

Drake London is currently WR16 and 30th overall, and that is way too high. Through his two NFL seasons, he has finished as WR31 and WR37. The argument here will be that Kirk Cousins is a huge upgrade over any quarterback that has been thrown to him so far, and while that is true, this is another case of drafting a player at his ceiling. I like London coming out of college, and he has mountains of potential if Cousins can help him reach it, but to draft an unproven player this high is simply a case of the risk outweighing the reward. You can get Tee Higgins three rounds later, and he already has three top-30 seasons.”
Aaron St Denis (Fantasy Football Universe)

Nico Collins (WR – HOU)

Nico Collins’s ECR of WR16 is wildly optimistic now that the Texans have added Stefon Diggs. As much as I love Collins’s game, and as bullish as I am on the Houston passing game, a WR16 ranking for Collins is daft. The presence of Diggs and 2023 rookie sensation Tank Dell will deprive Collins of the sort of target volume he needs in order to return high-end WR2 value — even if he’s as freakishly efficient in 2024 as he was in 2023 when he averaged 11.9 yards per target and 3.11 yards per route run. Collins is big and sure-handed, and he’s an absolute beast after the catch. He has statistically prolific seasons in his future, but Collins is unlikely to put up huge numbers in 2024 as a member of the Texans’ ensemble WR cast.”
Pat Fitzmaurice (FantasyPros)

Mike Evans (WR – TB)

“I currently have Mike Evans as my WR26. He led all receivers with 13 receiving touchdowns last season, which really padded his fantasy numbers. He has not reached 80 receptions since 2018, so if he has just a little regression in his touchdowns totals, his fantasy numbers could take a big hit. Plus, you have to worry about an overall regression in production because of his age (31).”
Jeff Paur (RTSports)

Diontae Johnson (WR – CAR)

“Given his relative youth and ability, Diontae Johnson stands out as the best offensive weapon on the Carolina Panthers roster right now. And it’s not particularly close. So why, then, is he listed as if he’s still stuck in a hapless Pittsburgh offense as the WR41 in the consensus ranks? Bryce Young had his struggles last season, but rookie head coach Dave Canales will install his offense in Carolina this year after successful stints in Seattle and Tampa. With Johnson continuing to get open at will, I doubt he’ll have much trouble finding targets. He should find himself once again hovering around WR2 territory in 2024.”
Jeremy Shulman (Fantasy Football Universe)

Diontae Johnson is criminally underrated as the WR41 in the rankings. He was the WR42 in half-point PPR scoring and the WR37 on a points-per-game basis among wide receivers, with at least nine games played in 2023. Yet, his situation has drastically improved from last year. Johnson gets a quarterback upgrade in Bryce Young, who should be significantly after the Carolina Panthers improved their offensive line and hired head coach Dave Canales this offseason. More importantly, he has limited competition for targets and is one of the better route runners in the NFL. Zay Flowers, Jordan Addison, and Chris Godwin have no business being ahead of Johnson in the rankings.”
Mike Fanelli (FantasyPros)

Diontae Johnson, currently being ranked as the consensus WR41, is the ranking I disagree with the most. Johnson is being valued too low because his new situation on paper seems to be a downgrade for fantasy. However, last year, we saw how Carolina could provide fantasy value when Adam Thielen was producing as a WR1 early in the season before falling off with coordinator changes and his age perhaps catching up to him. Now Diontae can come in and be the new WR1 option for Bryce Young where he will be peppered with targets due to his ability to get open through elite route running. Beyond that, Dave Canales, as the new head coach, has shown a great ability to scheme guys open, as seen with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin last year. Despite all the worries around Bryce Young, I believe Diontae will still produce for fantasy and should be closer to a WR2 than a WR4 as he is currently ranked.”
Dylan Licciardo (FF Gamers)

Stefon Diggs (WR – HOU)

Stefon Diggs should not be viewed as a top-24 WR as the newest member of the Houston Texans. ECR has him listed as the WR21. But 2023 was a terrible year for Stefon Diggs. From Week 10 onward, Diggs was the WR45, averaging a meager 7.3 points and 42 receiving yards per game. Khalil Shakir had more receiving yards than Diggs over this time frame. This makes it tough to draft Diggs confidently, coming off career lows across the board entering his age 31 season. Even with C.J. Stroud as his QB, competition from both Tank Dell and Nico Collins could mark the end of Diggs’ alpha WR status in fantasy football.”
Andrew Erickson (FantasyPros)

Brandon Aiyuk (WR – SF)

Brandon Aiyuk as a top 10 WR. Aiyuk is a talented WR, but even after gaining over 300 more yards in 2023 than he did in 2022, he finished in roughly the same area. A top 15 WR. The touchdowns or the receptions may need to go up. (He had three fewer receptions in 2023 with nine fewer targets.) But with Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, & George Kittle still in town, there are too many mouths to feed. Aiyuk is a top 15 WR at best, and I do not think he pushes into the top 10.”
Miguel ‘SC’ Romero (Fantasy Football Universe)

DJ Moore (WR – CHI)

“Look. I love D.J. Moore just as much as the next spreadsheet nerd, but WR12 is a spicy meatball that I don’t know if I can partake in. Last year, he outplayed expectations and his volume as the WR9 in fantasy points per game. Moore was the WR19 in expected fantasy points per game. Will Moore be terrible this season with Caleb Williams under center? No, but his current ranking is pretending like the addition of Keenan Allen didn’t happen. Allen remains a top-shelf target drawing stud. Last year, he was second in target share, targets per route run, and first read share (per Fantasy Points Data). Moore is a solid WR2 for 2024, but he is not a WR1.”
Derek Brown (FantasyPros)

Curtis Samuel (WR – BUF)

Curtis Samuel’s ECR is too low (WR56). Even though he has exceeded 656 receiving yards only once in his career, the versatile receiver has finished as the WR36, WR25, WR34, and WR44, respectively, in his last four seasons playing 15+ games. His career season (2020, WR25) occurred with Joe Brady as his offensive coordinator, and they are now reunited in Buffalo. Granted, (nearly) every mock draft will slot a receiver to the Bills, but there will still be plenty of opportunity for Samuel to outpace his ECR with Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis out of town.”
Kevin Hanson (EDSFootball)

Khalil Shakir (WR – BUF)

“The Bills selecting a WR early in the draft is more anticipated than the next total solar eclipse. Still, Khalil Shakir is shaping up to establish himself as Josh Allen‘s top option in 2024, at least among his WRs. Last year, Shakir was the WR with the highest average of yards per target. Also, he was the most reliable WR for the Bills during playoffs. As of now, he has to be considered as a low WR3 instead of a WR4.”
Mauricio Gutierrez (Estadio Fantasy)

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