2016 NFL DFS Wide Receivers Coach

Oh yeah, baby! It’s that time again when all the other sports are forgotten and the dollar signs in everyone’s eyes lead them to the wonderful world of daily fantasy football. While Week 1 always seems to be the craziest due to everyone’s unbridled enthusiasm to get the NFL season started, it’s also one of the most difficult to predict. Teams whose defense were super-soft last year tried to improve over the offseason, but we’ll never really know how successful they were until we actually see the games played. Take the New York Giants, for example. They had one of the worst pass defense last year but threw a ton of money at free agency to improve. Did it work? Well, we’re going to just have to wait and see what Dak Prescott and Dez Bryant do to them on Sunday.

For this initial piece, the spreadsheet below shows final numbers from 2015. Once we move to Week 2 we’ll have current numbers, so take these totals here with a grain of salt. A lot has changed between Week 17 of last year and today. You’ll notice the list does not include every receiver in the player pool, so when you are making your final lineup decisions, make sure you check the individual DFS sites for pricing on some guys, i.e. the rookie class of 2016.

As far as strategy goes, I’m all about paying up for premium receiver talent. Draft Kings is full-point PPR and while Fan Duel is only ½ point, the receivers tend to be the more explosive in your lineup. I like to grab two at the higher tiers and one quality bargain guy. I may go one elite, one mid and one bargain, but that all depends on the match-ups. Either way, you’re opening your DFS wallets for wideouts.

All that being said, let’s look at some of my suggested receivers for the week through a variety of pricing tiers:

High-Priced Talent

Odell Beckham, NYG – The divisional match-up always seems to end up as a shootout and Beckham is and will always be Eli’s favorite. The Cowboys get Orlando Scandrick back, but overall, their cover corners are weak.

Julio Jones, ATL – Even with the addition of Brett Grimes, the Tampa pass defense is just as weak now as it was last year. The Falcons revamped offensive line will give Matt Ryan plenty of time to find Julio downfield and in the end zone.

Allen Robinson, JAC – While the Packers pass defense is solid, the Jags’ is not which means we should get a reprise of last year’s “time to catch up, let’s throw the ball all day” Jaguars offense. Robinson was one of the most reliable DFS receivers last year and should see plenty of targets in this one.

DeAndre Hopkins, HOU – It should be interesting to see how Nuk does with Brock Osweiler under center this year, but he’s proven to be quarterback-proof anyway. He is the top guy on the team and will see the lion’s share of the targets. The Bears pass defense ranked in the bottom half last year and it doesn’t look like their standing will improve very much.

Dez Bryant, DAL – Welcome to the Dak Prescott Era. Should be interesting to see how he and Dez fare together, but Bryant has always been a guy capable of taking over a game. In a shootout with the Giants, look for him to get his cut.

Pricey But Affordable

Brandon Marshall, NYJ – One of the best DFS receivers last year and his price still gets deflated to start the season. Granted, the Bengals have a tough pass defense, but Ryan Fitzpatrick will easily find ways to get him the ball.

Brandin Cooks, NO – He’s a PPR monster and a great play on DK, especially with this match-up against the Raiders. Oakland did a nice job shoring up their defense in the offseason, but Drew Brees is a pass-happy guy who is always looking to throw the ball.

Sammy Watkins, BUF – Jimmy Smith is the only defensive back worth a lick in that Ravens secondary and he’ll be hurt by the second quarter. Watkins has all sorts of talent and shouldn’t have any trouble getting in on the action once the Bills establish their ground attack first.

Randall Cobb, GB – The presence of Jordy Nelson will help Cobb return to form this year and it starts this week. While I can’t vouch for the condition of Nelson’s knee or how many snaps he’ll take, I can assume that the defense will be paying attention to him which frees up Cobb to do his thing.

Amari Cooper, OAK – He’s the big-play threat and the No. 1 target for Derek Carr. The Saints pass defense is just as bad as it was last year which means he should be a fantastic option this week.

Solid Value

Golden Tate, DET – How many times have you heard Jim Bob Cooter’s name this preseason? Enough to at least know that the high-octane offense should be in full force against a weak Colts secondary that has already lost Vontae Davis. Tate should see the majority of targets in this one as he tries to firmly establish himself as the team’s bona fide No. 1.

T.Y. Hilton, IND – Andrew Luck could seriously average 45-50 passes a game this year and Hilton should be the primary beneficiary. He may see a lot of Darius Slay, but he’ll still find ways to get open downfield.

Jeremy Maclin, KC – He’s really the only receiver on this team. With the Chargers defense looking a little suspect and Jamaal Charles out, you can probably expect Alex Smith to pass it a little more than usual. Sure, he’s got Spencer Ware, but even Andy Reid might not want to have him tote the rock all day like Charles usually does.

Doug Baldwin, SEA – Time to see if that big contract pays off! The Seahawks look now like they did at the tail end of last season as the backfield injuries continue to disrupt Pete Carroll’s run-first desires. But the Miami defense is vulnerable as the change from Brett Grimes to Byron Maxwell is, most definitely, not an upgrade.

Stefon Diggs, MIN – Should be interesting to see how Diggs jells with his new QB on the field, but facing a horrible secondary like that of the Titans should help. He’s the top wideout on the team and should see the majority of targets once Adrian Peterson’s ground work opens up the passing lanes.

Donte Moncrief, IND – There are many out there who belief Moncrief will actually out-produce Hilton this season. We’ll have to wait and see about that, but at least this first week, with Darius Slay likely to hang around Hilton more, things should open up nicely for Moncrief.

Bargain Hunting

Michael Crabtree, OAK – He was a target-monster for Carr last season and his role as the lead possession receiver hasn’t changed. Expect strong target numbers against a super-sucky Saints secondary and try to say that three times fast.

Mohamed Sanu, ATL – There will be a lot of defensive attention paid to Mr. Jones this week, so look for Matt Ryan to find Sanu much in the same way Carr found Crabtree last year. He is certainly an upgrade to what Roddy White was last year, so let’s see by just how much. Tampa Bay’s secondary does not project to be a very strong group at all.

Sterling Shepard, NYG – How about another Carr/Crabtree comparison as Shepard should fit that mold with the Giants. We’re likely to see a shootout between the Giants and Cowboys, so if Shepard makes a few early catches and proves reliable, Eli will look for him all game long.

Marvin Jones, DET – He’s out of the shadow of A.J. Green and now the No.2 guy in Detroit. Yes, Detroit – home of the Jim Bob Cooter offense! With a banged-up Colts secondary, Jones should be able to thrive in this system.

Terrelle Pryor, CLE – I’m not a fan of the Eagles defense and I’m a HUGE fan of garbage-time point. Couple those two beliefs with Pryor’s big-play ability and the likelihood that the Browns will be forced to air it out a bunch, Pryor should prove to be the darling late-round sleeper I’ve been hyping for the last month.

Antonio BrownPITAWAS1697419312.061368.50.701,834101$9300$9800$6450
Odell BeckhamNYGADAL1584615810.53966.40.611,450132$9100$9300$6200
Julio JonesATLHTB1696820312.691368.50.671,87183$9000$9400$6300
Allen RobinsonJACHGB168721519.448050.531,400140$8500$8300$5500
DeAndre HopkinsHOUHCHI161075192121116.940.581,521111$8400$8800$6150
Jordy NelsonGBAJACN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A$8400$7700$5300
A.J. GreenCINANYJ168821328.25865.380.651,297101$8200$8400$5700
Dez BryantDALHNYG9444728313.440.4340130$8000$8500$5450
Mike EvansTBAATL157751489.87744.930.501,20631$7900$7400$5100
Brandon MarshallNYJHCIN16100217310.811096.810.631,502143$7700$7800$5400
Brandin CooksNOHOAK169021298.06845.250.651,13891$7600$7700$5000
Alshon JefferyCHIAHOU94439410.445460.5780741$7500$7900$5000
Keenan AllenSDAKC84688911.13678.380.7572540$7400$8000$5200
Sammy WatkinsBUFABAL13652967.38604.620.631,04790$7300$6900$4750
Julian EdelmanNEAARI9464889.78616.780.6969271$7300$6100$5400
Kelvin BenjaminCARADENN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A$7300$5500$4750
Demaryius ThomasDENHCAR1681517711.061056.560.591,30462$7200$0$5100
Larry FitzgeraldARIHNE169831459.061096.810.751,21592$7200$6300$4950
Randall CobbGBAJAC169861298.06794.940.6182960$7200$7600$4800
Amari CooperOAKANO167821308.13724.50.551,07061$7100$7200$5000
Allen HurnsJACHGB158181057644.270.611,031102$7000$5800$4900
Eric DeckerNYJHCIN158471328.8805.330.611,027121$6900$6600$4800
Golden TateDETAIND168771288905.630.7081361$6900$7300$4700
Michael FloydARIHNE15653895.93523.470.5884960$6900$5900$4750
Emmanuel SandersDENHCAR158041379.13765.070.551,13561$6800$0$4850
T.Y. HiltonINDHDET168651348.38694.310.511,12451$6800$7500$4900
Jeremy MaclinKCHSD157801248.27875.80.701,08882$6800$6500$4900
Doug BaldwinSEAHMIA167531036.44784.880.761,069141$6700$6600$4900
Steve SmithBALHBUF73457310.43466.570.6367030$6700$4900$4400
Jarvis LandryMIAASEA1674516610.381106.880.661,15740$6600$6000$4800
Jordan MatthewsPHIHCLE168701288855.310.6699782$6600$6700$4800
DeSean JacksonWASHPIT9360495.44303.330.6152840$6600$6100$4650
John BrownARIHNE158261016.73654.330.641,00371$6500$5200$4500
James JonesSDAKC16968996.19503.130.5189081$6500$3500$4300
Willie SneadNOHOAK157291016.73694.60.6898432$6400$4800$4250
Kamar AikenBALHBUF169331277.94754.690.5994451$6300$4700$4350
Pierre GarconWASHPIT167211116.94724.50.6577760$6300$4400$4600
Stefon DiggsMINATEN13616846.465240.6272042$6300$4800$4400
Donte MoncriefINDHDET167511056.566440.6173360$6200$6000$4500
Tyler LockettSEAHMIA16624694.31513.190.7466460$6200$5000$4350
Devin FunchessCARADEN16438633.94311.940.4947351$6200$5500$4000
Michael CrabtreeOAKANO167531469.13855.310.5892291$6100$5500$4850
Markus WheatonPITAWAS16657794.94442.750.5674950$6100$5400$4100
Danny AmendolaNEAARI14508876.21654.640.7564830$6000$4200$4250
Brandon LaFellCINANYJ11554746.73373.360.5051500$6000$3900$4200
DeVante ParkerMIAASEA14345503.57261.860.5249430$6000$5300$4200
Ted GinnCARADEN15617966.4442.930.46739100$5900$5500$4450
Vincent JacksonTBAATL10535626.2333.30.5354330$5900$4400$4350
Anquan BoldinDETAIND146981117.93694.930.6278941$5800$4500$4200
Mohamed SanuATLHTB16615493.06332.060.6739401$5800$5100$4200
Andrew HawkinsCLEAPHI8412435.38273.380.6327601$5700$3800$3900
Travis BenjaminSDAKC167101257.81684.250.5496651$5600$4100$4300
Torrey SmithSFHLA16712623.88332.060.5366340$5600$4900$4200
Philly BrownCARADEN14702543.86312.210.5744740$5600$0$3500
Marvin JonesDETAIND168491036.44654.060.6381640$5500$0$4450
Robert WoodsBUFABAL14705805.71473.360.5955232$5500$4600$4150
Mike WallaceBALHBUF16714724.5392.440.5447320$5400$4200$4100
Rishard MatthewsTENHMIN11483615.55433.910.7066240$5200$3300$3500
Andre JohnsonTENHMIN16664774.81412.560.5350340$4900$3900$4100
Dorial Green-BeckhamPHIHCLE16524674.193220.4854940$4900$4500$4000
Kenny StillsMIAASEA16527633.94271.690.4344030$4900$3200$3500
Terrelle PryorCLEAPHI31582.6710.330.134200$4900$3000$3950
Quinton PattonSFHLA16363573.56301.880.5339410$4800$4000$3000
Breshad PerrimanBALHBUFN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A$4800$3700$3800
Chris HoganNEAARI16439593.69362.250.6145020$4700$3600$3500
Eli RogersPITAWASN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A$4500$4200$3000