Over The Middle: Week 16 Top Five Fantasy Football Wide Receivers
The Football season is quickly grinding to a close, and so is fantasy football. Each week becomes more and more important for key players to contribute both on the field, and in the fantasy point columns. As teams look to both close out and finish the regular season strong, wide receivers become an enormous asset due to secondaries becoming fatigued from chasing wide outs around the field all season long. Josh Gordon has had an amazing season along with the likes of Calvin Johnson and Antonio Brown, but who will be the top five for this week 16?
Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh Steelers: As Antonio Brown nears the 100 catch club for the season, those who are lucky enough to have this breakout star on their roster continue to rejoice. Big Ben continues to rely heavily on Brown, and will do so again this week against a weak Green Bay Packer’s secondary. In the last three weeks the Packers have given up five touchdowns to wide receivers. With no real threat to play alongside of Brown, he’s pretty much it in the Steel City. Week in and week out Brown has produced, and last week he added punt return to that resume. PPR league owners should salivate over Brown, and when you add in special teams opportunities the sky is the limit for Brown in week 16.
Dez Bryant – Dallas Cowboys: Tony Romo has played statistically extremely well, for the most part. Granted his interceptions are cause for concern, luckily we are only looking at wide receivers so that headache is not a problem for right now. Dez Bryant is a fantastic wide receiver with bundles of talent, making circus catches and producing weekly. Bryant was targeted 17 times last week, making the most out of it reeling in 11 of those attempts. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you Washington’s secondary is vulnerable, so without saying so Bryant is very much poised to have a big game in this must win situation.
Alshon Jeffery – Chicago Bears: Philadelphia has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers in the entire NFL. It seems every game is a shootout, or on the cusp of a shootout when Philly is involved. Last week Jay Cutler was 16-18 when targeting anybody other than Brandon Marshall, who could be the biggest beneficiary of that this week? Alshon Jeffery, Chicago’s new big play, big game wide receiver. There was worry when Cutler came back Jeffery’s play would slide, but after last week we can safely put those concerns to bed. Moving forward teams have to choose, Marshall or Jeffery and it seems most teams have chosen to slow down Marshall leaving Alshon Jeffery to dominate the stat sheet.
Julian Edelman – New England Patriots: Baltimore’s defense is good, there is no doubt there. Tom Brady isn’t so shabby himself, and so long as he is at the helm I give the edge to his wide receivers. Last week Julian Edelman saw 19 targets, that’s exactly what a PPR league owner loves to see. Now he may not see quite that many this week, but his torrid streak of 37 catches over the last four games will continue with a productive game against the Ravens. The Gronk is out, the wide receivers are banged up and Edelman is soaking it in all the available targets. These aren’t just any targets, they are both quality run after the catch and red zone targets. Last week saw 13 receptions, in prior weeks he pushed the double digit barrier twice in three weeks with nine grabs. Baltimore may not be a pushover, but Julian Edelman has finally carved out his niche in this offense and should make the Ravens pay. Oh and make fantasy football owners extremely happy they held onto him as he figured his role out.
Josh Gordon – Cleveland Browns: It seems every week I’m either writing or talking about this guy. Leading the league in yards and an impressive near 19.8 yards per catch are exactly the reasons why. 22 out of his 74 catches have gone for over 25 yards, soak that in for a moment. That means one out of four of his catches goes over 25 yards. This guy has been a beast, and with who throwing him the ball? It doesn’t matter apparently he has produced with each quarterback the Browns have put out on the field. The New York Jets defensive backfield is banged up and has allowed six touchdowns in the last five games to opposing wide receivers. Gordon has done a lot with the little bit he has to work with, here is to hoping he’s working you right into that fantasy football championship!
Sports=Kings Down and Distance Contributor – Ryan Alexander
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