Week 17 Wide Receiver Rankings

Written/ranked by Brian Johnson (@btxj)

1. Julio Jones vs NO
You have to feel good about Julio Jones’ prospects this week after he just dropped 9-178-1 on Carolina. The Saints have allowed the most touchdowns to wideouts, and according to Football Outsiders, they rank 27th in defending No. 1 receivers.

2. Odell Beckham vs PHI
Odell Beckham is back from suspension, so look for him to just put his head down and go to work against a piss-poor secondary. The Eagles have allowed the fourth-most yards and the third-most touchdowns to wide receivers, and OBJ scored each time he faced Philly.

3. DeAndre Hopkins vs JAX
DeAndre Hopkins torched Jacksonville for 10-148-2 back in October, and he could easily do the same on Sunday. The last three primary receivers to face the Jags all had huge days: Brandin Cooks (5-123-1), Julio Jones (9-118-1), and T.Y. Hilton (4-132). Brian Hoyer is also scheduled to make his return, which gives Hopkins a nice bump (not like he needs it).

4. Antonio Brown at CLE
Antonio Brown had 10-139-2 when these teams me mid-November, and the Steelers are going to need that kind of production from him in a must-win game. While the Browns’ run defense has tightened up, their ability to defend the pass has all but vanished. Over the last five weeks, Cleveland has allowed eight touchdowns to wide receivers.

5. Brandon Marshall at BUF
Brandon Marshall had a quiet day in the first meeting between these teams (3-23), but he did manage to find the end zone, which is something he’s done nine times in his last eight games. The Bills’ secondary has been ravaged by injuries, and they’ve all but packed it in. Sure, Rex Ryan will want to win this game, but look for Marshall and the Jets to pile it on as they look to secure a playoff berth.

6. A.J. Green vs BAL
A.J. Green ripped the Ravens a new one with 10-227-2 back in September and Baltimore’s secondary is still just as bad, if not worse. Including that game, Green has scored in his last four games against the Ravens, totaling five touchdowns. Giddy up.

7. Allen Robinson at HOU
Allen Robinson is nursing a shoulder injury, and it’s yet to be determined if his status for Sunday is actually in any doubt. Obviously, this is a situation you’ll want to monitor closely, but as we all know by now, A-Rob is an auto-start when he suits up. This isn’t a great matchup, but Robinson managed 6-86-1 when these teams met in October.

8. Doug Baldwin at ARI
Doug Baldwin now has 12 TDs over his last seven games. Redonkulous. Arizona isn’t a prime matchup by any means, but they just lost Honey Badger, and Baldwin has had monster performances in their last two meetings: 7-134-1 in Week 10 and 7-113 last season in late December.

9. Jeremy Maclin vs OAK
Jeremy Maclin has scored in four of his last five games, totaling five touchdowns. One of those games was against the Raiders, where he went off for 9-95-2. According to Football Outsiders, Oakland is allowing 93 YPG to No. 1 receivers, so Maclin is in a good spot on Sunday.

10. Demaryius Thomas vs SD
San Diego has been a tough draw for receivers, but Demaryius Thomas managed to have a good day in San Diego with 6-61-1 in Week 13. And yes. Brock Osweiler was the quarterback in that game. Thomas sure does love to beat up on the Bolts. He has totaled eight touchdowns over their last eight meetings.

11. Eric Decker at BUF
With 6-85-1, Eric Decker didn’t disappoint when these teams in Week 10, and you have to feel good about his chances on Sunday. The Bills’ secondary has been ravaged by injuries, and they’ve all but packed it in. Sure, Rex Ryan will want to win this game, but look for Marshall and the Jets to pile it on as they look to secure a playoff berth.

12/13. Michael Floyd/John Brown vs SEA
Michael Floyd rolled up 7-113-2 on the Seahawks in Week 10, and that game was in Seattle, so he’s still a viable play in a tough matchup. As is John Brown, who didn’t play in that game, but has just as good a chance to produce. The Seahawks have surrendered only one wide receiver touchdown over their last four games, but during that span, they faced the impotent pass attacks of Minnesota, Baltimore, Cleveland, and St. Louis.

14. Jarvis Landry vs NE
Jarvis Landry has been targeted a whopping 39 times over the last three games, and he should remain heavily involved on Sunday. Landry had a respectable 6-71 against the Pats in Week 8, which is probably a safe floor here. New England has also allowed slot receivers like Jordan Matthews, Andre Caldwell, and Dwayne Harris to score in recent games.

15. Allen Hurns at HOU
How can you sit Allen Hurns? The answer? You can’t. Houston is a tough matchup, but Hurns had 2-30-1 when these teams met in October, and 11 of his 16 career touchdowns have now come on the road. He must hate Florida’s humidity or something.

16. Brandin Cooks at ATL
Brandin Cooks wet the bed when these teams met in Week 6 (4-41), but he’s been red-hot lately, with eight touchdowns in his last eight games. Atlanta has only allowed seven wide receiver touchdowns, but four of those scores have come in the last four weeks.

17. Calvin Johnson at CHI
Calvin Johnson came out of his coma last week, and he’ll look to cap a somewhat disappointing season with a solid performance on Sunday. One of Megatron’s best games came in Week 6 against the Bears (6-166-1), who are ranked 31st in defending No. 1 receivers by Football Outsiders.

18. Mike Evans at CAR
Mike Evans will continue to see additional targets with Vincent Jackson on IR, but they come in a bad matchup. Behind the shutdown powers of Josh Norman, Carolina is ranked 2nd in defending No. 1 receivers by Football Outsiders. In addition, only 25% of the touchdowns the Panthers have surrendered to wide receivers have come at home.

19. Martavis Bryant at CLE
Martavis Bryant had 6-178-1 against the Browns in Week 10, and despite Ben Roethlisberger’s documented road struggles, Bryan is a must-play in a must-win game for Pittsburgh.

20. Emmanuel Sanders vs SD
Emmanuel Sanders didn’t factor much when these teams met in Week 13 (3-19), so there’s cause for concern in a tough matchup. San Diego has surrendered a mere 10 touchdowns to wideouts, and according to Football Outsiders, opposing No. 2 receivers are averaging just 50 YPG.

21. Sammy Watkins vs NYJ
Sammy Watkins has been a huge fantasy helper for weeks, but that could come to an end on Revis Island. Watkins had just 3-14 against New York in Week 10, and that kind of line is a possibility again, so be warned.

22. Larry Fitzgerald vs SEA
Larry Fitzgerald has conceded a lot of stats to the healthy duo of Michael Floyd and John Brown, but this matchup is ripe for him, as Seattle has struggled to defend slot receivers all season. Fitzgerald had 10-130 against the Seahawks in Week 10, so we know he can get open from the seam.

23. Kamar Aiken at CIN
Kamar Aiken is too heavily targeted to be ignored this week. Since Week 10, he has averaged 10 targets and has failed to catch fewer than five balls in any game during that stretch. Aiken didn’t too much when these teams first met, but Steve Smith was healthy then, so that was ages ago.

24. Ted Ginn vs TB
With 2-18-2, Ted Ginn had a very Ted Ginn line back in October against the Bucs. He’s about as boom-or-bust as you can get, but the Panthers have something to play form which makes him and his homerun potential worth the start.

25. *DeSean Jackson at DAL
DeSean Jackson (knee) is a little banged up and might not play in a meaningless game for Washington. Be warned.

26. Golden Tate at CHI
27. T.Y. Hilton vs TEN
28. *Amari Cooper at KC
29. Jordan Matthews at NYG
30. Stefon Diggs at GB
31. Randall Cobb vs MIN
32. *Danny Amendola at MIA
33. *Julian Edelman at MIA
34. Tyler Lockett at ARI
35. Michael Crabtree at KC
36. Donte Moncrief vs TEN
37. Rueben Randle vs PHI
38. *Eddie Royal vs DET
39. Terrance Williams vs WAS
40. Keshawn Martin at MIA
41. Marvin Jones vs BAL
42. Brandon LaFell at MIA
43. Davante Adams vs MIN
44. Willie Snead at ATL
45. Markus Wheaton at CLE
46. *Stevie Johnson at DEN
47. Dorial Green-Beckham at IND
48. *Kendall Wright at IND
49. Travis Benjamin vs PIT
50. Dontrelle Inman at DEN
51. James Jones vs MIN
52. Pierre Garcon at DAL
53. Anquan Boldin vs STL
54. Chris Givens at CIN
55. Nate Washington vs JAX
56. Devin Funchess vs TB
57. DaVante Parker vs NE
58. Jamison Crowder at DAL
59. Marques Colston at ATL
60. Jermaine Kearse at ARI
61. Tavon Austin at SF
62. Malcolm Floyd at DEN

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