Just a reminder, for these articles, a "Value Pick" will be a player that will in all likelihood start on a fantasy team and will get you similar numbers to players drafted far ahead of them. The term "Sleeper" will be reserved for those players that should be available late in your draft and have the possibility of being a useful pick and potential starter or fill in starter. This week, we take a look at Value and Sleeper receivers.
Value Pick WRs
5) Golden Tate - DET (NFL: 45; ESPN: 26)
I really like the Tate to Detroit move. Sure, they have a lot of weapons, which could lesson Tate's impact on your fantasy team, but Tate did a decent job in Seattle as the #1, despite not being a #1 and being the only receiving threat. With Johnson, Bush, Ebron and Pettigrew, Tate should see a lot of single coverage and a lot of #2 CB's - that should spell good numbers for Tate...numbers better than a WR ranked between 26-45.
4) Doug Baldwin -Sea (NFL: 58; ESPN: 54)
Baldwin put up decent numbers in 2013 (50 rec, 778 yds, 15.6 avg and 5 TDs) as the #2 behind Tate. Assuming Harvin is healthy, Baldwin will still be the #2, but what I like about Baldwin is what I saw in the playoffs, 13 rec, 202 yds and 1 TD in 3 games. Translated out over a full season, that would be approximately 70 catches, 1,100 yards and 5 TDs - numbers that would be vey good for a WR you can likely get pretty late in the draft.
3) Jeremy Maclin - PHI (NFL: 54; ESPN: 32)
He is coming off an ACL tear, has never played in Chip Kelly's offense and has never had 1,000 yards receiving, but, he is likely to replace DeSean Jackson as the Eagles #1 receiver. In 2013 Jackson had 82 rec, 1,332 yds and 9 TDs and some - if not most - of that production will go to Maclin. Plus, in his last 3 healthy seasons, Maclin has 7, 5 and 10 TDs respectively - an average of 7+ TD/yr.
2) Michael Floyd - AZ (NFL: 32; ESPN: 28)
Based on his rankings, Floyd is tough to consider a "value" receiver, but, if Floyd takes the next step, the 6'2" 220 pound Floyd could be a top 15 receiver - or twice as good as his ranking. In 2013, Floyd had 65 rec, 1,041 yds and 5 TDs. Larry Fitzgerald will be 31 when the season starts, his numbers have declined (he hasn't topped 1,000 yards in 2 years) and the Cardinals should have an explosive offense. All of those things point to a bigger role (and more fantasy points) for Floyd.
1) Cordarrelle Patterson - MIN (NFL: 25; ESPN: 25)
It is even tougher to consider a guy ranked 25 as a "value" pick, but with his explosiveness and ability to be used in so many ways, Patterson will likely touch the ball 100+ times and will have the opportunity to be a top 10 receiver (in fantasy points). Despite only 45 rec and 469 yds in his rookie season, Patterson had 9 TDs (4 receiving, 3 rushing), 158 yds rushing and a league leading 32.4 yds/KO return and 2 KO return TDs.
5) Greg Jennings - MIN (NFL: 60; ESPN: 43)
It has been 3 years since Jennings went over 1,000 yards, but I like Teddy Bridgewater and think he will start. I believe Bridgewater and his accuracy can help bring Jennings back a little closer to his GB days. With Patterson and AP garnering most of the attention of the defense, I see Jennings going above 1,000 yards in 2014.
4) Odell Beckham, Jr. - NYG (NFL: 77; ESPN: 68)
Beckham is not a big receiver (5'11", 198 lbs) but I liked him coming out of LSU and believe that his playmaking ability will be utilized well with Eli Manning. He also could give you special teams production as well if the Giants use him there.
3) Mike Williams - BUF (NFL: 62; ESPN: 61)
A guy with 22 rec, 216 yds and 2 TDs, playing in a new offense with a questionable QB is not going to draw a lot of attention during your draft. However, this is a 6'2" receiver that has twice had seasons of 950+ yards and 9+ TDs. With a change of scenery and some good weapons around him (Spiller, Watkins, Jackson), Williams could have a bounce back year.
2) Kenny Britt - STL (NFL: NR; ESPN: 73)
Britt is a high risk high reward pick. He is has attitude issue, possible off the field concerns, has never had more than 775 yards receiving and has just 7 TDs and less than 1,000 yards in his last 3 seasons...combined!
But, Britt is a 6'3" 223 pound former first round pick that is only 25 years old and despite what you think about Bradford, he is the best QB Britt has ever had. And, the last time Britt was with Fisher, he put up 775 yards and 9 TDs and those would be great numbers for a guy that you may find available in that last rounds of your draft.
1) Brandin Cooks - NO (NFL: 67; ESPN: 52)
Colston is 31 and rarely healthy for a whole season and Darren Sproles is in Philly, so that leaves a lot of opportunity for an explosive rookie playing in an explosive, pass first offense. If Cooks and Brees get on the same page early, this is a rookie that could put up big numbers, numbers far outpacing his rankings.