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WR3 By Committee - PPR

Finding a Third Starting Wide Receiver by Committee in a PPR League for 2013

Over the past few years, there have been two very popular articles written by our very own Chase Stuart that look at an interesting approach to building a fantasy team with late value picks. Based upon the theory of using both Strength of Schedule ("SOS") and taking two players as a combination to build one very good player, he has discussed both Team Defense by Committee ("TDBC") and Quarterback by Committee ("QBBC") as a general fantasy league strategy. In general I think that this is a wise move because very early on in fantasy drafts there are a ton of RB and WR prospects to go after to build a great team. While there are a few studs at QB and also a few choice defenses, I do not see a huge need in leagues to pursue either too hard in the beginning stages of a fantasy draft.

So with this in mind, I started to think about what else can be done with the committee approach. Tight end? Perhaps. Running back? Maybe. Wide receiver? Hmmm, that's really intriguing, but we should probably look at say the third starting option - "Fantasy WR3". What if you could grab two wide receivers later in the draft that could combine to perform on a WR3 - or even WR2 - level, based solely on their current projections and their schedule? Now we're talking. This really got my attention, so I went after this. Let's take a look at how I went about this and then we can digest and discuss the results.

Eligible Receivers

So how to begin? Defenses and quarterbacks are relatively easy to "committee" together. There's usually only one QB and certainly only one team defense per NFL club, so the approach is pretty simple as far as picking out which players / teams to try and pair up. When it comes to wide receivers, the line is not quite so easy to draw, but I needed some basis to pick which players it made sense to try and combine for a decent committee. I decided that I would use the following criteria to decide which players to start with for evaluating:

Criteria #1 - WR37 and Beyond

This seems pretty simple. If we want to have a duo that puts up WR3 numbers, that means we want WR36 or better production - else we would just draft WR36 or higher and forget the whole idea. So here is the list of players with which I started, based on their Average Draft Position (ADP):

ADP Player ADP Player
WR37 Anquan Boldin WR49 Alshon Jeffery
WR38 Josh Gordon WR50 Ryan Broyles
WR39 Danario Alexander WR51 Chris Givens
WR40 Lance Moore WR52 Brian Hartline
WR41 Denarius Moore WR53 Rueben Randle
WR42 Justin Blackmon WR54 Cordarrelle Patterson
WR43 Michael Floyd WR55 Greg Little
WR44 DeAndre Hopkins WR56 Aaron Dobson
WR45 Emmanuel Sanders WR57 Darrius Heyward-Bey
WR46 Vincent Brown WR58 Santonio Holmes
WR47 Kendall Wright WR59 Golden Tate
WR48 Sidney Rice WR60 Malcom Floyd

Table 1: Wide Receivers WR37-WR60 Based on PPR ADP

Great, now we have 24 guys to pair up and see how they do. That makes 276 potential committees, so there had better be a decent one (or several, we hope) out of all of those couplets. Now, before I go over the method of how to pair them up and the results, we need one more rule:

Criteria #2 - No more than one WR from Round 7 and one from Round 8.

This could get tricky here, but understand the overall goal. The point of WR3BC is to "free up" the first 6 rounds of your fantasy draft to pursue 2-3 receivers (especially in PPR leagues) after grabbing a stud RB in Round 1. After six rounds you can have 2-3RBs, 2-3 WRs and possibly even a stud QB or TE, depending on your personal preference, or even to get your WR3 have the "WR3BC" be your WR4. Flexibility is the name of the game here. We all want value in our drafts, and having the ability to grab two WRs in Rounds 7 and 8 to act as our WR3BC gives us that ability.

There is some good news – all of the WR3BC candidates have ADPs that are after Round 7.  There are some wide receivers that might go in Round 8, so planning on taking two of them could leave you scrambling for your ninth pick if you wait too long for your WR3BC choice.  I will have to keep all those details in mind when we look at the WR3BC result because it would not make sense to expect two of these receivers to make it into a committee combination based on their ADP.

So what do we do now to figure out some WR pairs?

Criteria #3 - Use Footballguys' WR Strength of Schedule

This sounds pretty simple, doesn't it? Just take the WR Strength of Schedule to figure out when certain players are more likely to score well. What I did is similar to what the Projections Dominator and Draft Dominator do for you - take the projected fantasy points and slice them up over 16 weeks based on the strength of schedule. I call this result the "distributed fantasy points" for each receiver.

After I had all 24 wide receivers with distributed fantasy points on a weekly basis, I just compared all of the possible WR pairs to find the best duos for WR3BC. So here we are - time for some results.

Rank Wide Receiver 1 Wide Receiver 2 Value
1 Lance Moore Justin Blackmon 231.3
2 Denarius Moore Justin Blackmon 229.3
3 Josh Gordon Justin Blackmon 227.1
4 Kendall Wright Justin Blackmon 226.2
5 Emmanuel Sanders Justin Blackmon 224.9
6 Vincent Brown Justin Blackmon 224.1
7 Danario Alexander Justin Blackmon 223.5
8 Kenny Britt Justin Blackmon 222.9
9 Sidney Rice Justin Blackmon 222.0
10 Brian Hartline Justin Blackmon 221.0
11 Anquan Boldin Justin Blackmon 219.4
12 Chris Givens Justin Blackmon 219.1
13 Michael Floyd Justin Blackmon 217.1
14 Justin Blackmon Golden Tate 216.3
15 Anquan Boldin Lance Moore 215.7
16 Justin Blackmon Greg Little 215.6
17 DeAndre Hopkins Justin Blackmon 213.4
18 Anquan Boldin Emmanuel Sanders 213.2
19 Anquan Boldin Kendall Wright 211.5
20 Justin Blackmon Alshon Jeffery 211.2
21 Anquan Boldin Denarius Moore 210.5
22 Justin Blackmon Darrius Heyward-Bey 209.7
23 Emmanuel Sanders Lance Moore 209.5
24 Anquan Boldin Chris Givens 209.1
25 Kendall Wright Lance Moore 208.3
26 Anquan Boldin DeAndre Hopkins 207.8
27 Anquan Boldin Kenny Britt 207.7
28 Anquan Boldin Josh Gordon 207.6
29 Kendall Wright Emmanuel Sanders 207.4
30 Justin Blackmon Malcom Floyd 207.2
31 Anquan Boldin Brian Hartline 206.8
32 Kendall Wright Josh Gordon 206.4
33 Anquan Boldin Sidney Rice 205.2
34 Anquan Boldin Vincent Brown 205.0
35 Emmanuel Sanders Josh Gordon 204.9
36 Anquan Boldin Danario Alexander 204.5
37 Lance Moore DeAndre Hopkins 204.3
38 Emmanuel Sanders Michael Floyd 203.9
39 Emmanuel Sanders Kenny Britt 203.8
40 Josh Gordon Lance Moore 203.5
41 Josh Gordon Michael Floyd 203.5
42 Emmanuel Sanders Denarius Moore 203.0
43 Lance Moore Michael Floyd 203.0
44 Kendall Wright Denarius Moore 202.8
45 Lance Moore Kenny Britt 202.5
46 Anquan Boldin Golden Tate 202.4
47 Justin Blackmon Santonio Holmes 202.3
48 Kendall Wright Brian Hartline 201.8
49 Denarius Moore Josh Gordon 201.5
50 Justin Blackmon Cordarrelle Patterson 200.9
51 Emmanuel Sanders Chris Givens 200.8
52 Kendall Wright Chris Givens 200.7
53 Emmanuel Sanders Sidney Rice 200.5
54 Josh Gordon Kenny Britt 200.5
55 Anquan Boldin Greg Little 200.5
56 Kendall Wright Michael Floyd 200.2
57 Lance Moore Chris Givens 199.8
58 Emmanuel Sanders DeAndre Hopkins 199.3
59 Josh Gordon DeAndre Hopkins 199.3
60 Emmanuel Sanders Brian Hartline 199.0
61 Anquan Boldin Alshon Jeffery 199.0
62 Denarius Moore DeAndre Hopkins 198.8
63 Anquan Boldin Cordarrelle Patterson 198.7
64 Anquan Boldin Malcom Floyd 198.7
65 Anquan Boldin Darrius Heyward-Bey 198.6
66 Emmanuel Sanders Vincent Brown 198.4
67 Anquan Boldin Michael Floyd 198.4
68 Lance Moore Sidney Rice 198.3
69 Emmanuel Sanders Danario Alexander 198.0
70 Denarius Moore Kenny Britt 197.9
71 Lance Moore Brian Hartline 197.7
72 Lance Moore Vincent Brown 197.7
73 Kendall Wright Sidney Rice 197.5
74 Lance Moore Danario Alexander 197.0
75 Denarius Moore Michael Floyd 196.8
76 Josh Gordon Chris Givens 196.5
77 Josh Gordon Brian Hartline 196.4
78 Justin Blackmon Rueben Randle 196.4
79 Michael Floyd DeAndre Hopkins 196.3
80 Emmanuel Sanders Golden Tate 196.3
81 Kendall Wright Greg Little 196.2
82 Kenny Britt Brian Hartline 196.0
83 Michael Floyd Chris Givens 196.0
84 Anquan Boldin Aaron Dobson 195.8
85 Michael Floyd Vincent Brown 195.7
86 Kenny Britt Chris Givens 195.5
87 Michael Floyd Kenny Britt 195.4
88 Denarius Moore Lance Moore 195.2
89 Justin Blackmon Aaron Dobson 195.2
90 Michael Floyd Sidney Rice 195.1
91 Michael Floyd Danario Alexander 194.9
92 Emmanuel Sanders Alshon Jeffery 194.6
93 Emmanuel Sanders Greg Little 194.3
94 Denarius Moore Brian Hartline 194.3
95 Denarius Moore Sidney Rice 194.0
96 Kendall Wright Golden Tate 193.8
97 Brian Hartline DeAndre Hopkins 193.4
98 Denarius Moore Vincent Brown 193.2
99 Lance Moore Greg Little 192.8
100 Justin Blackmon Ryan Broyles 192.8
101 Kendall Wright Cordarrelle Patterson 192.6
102 Emmanuel Sanders Ryan Broyles 192.6
103 Denarius Moore Danario Alexander 192.6
104 Lance Moore Golden Tate 192.6
105 Kendall Wright Ryan Broyles 192.1
106 Michael Floyd Brian Hartline 192.0
107 Kendall Wright Rueben Randle 192.0
108 Emmanuel Sanders Rueben Randle 191.8
109 Denarius Moore Chris Givens 191.7
110 Emmanuel Sanders Malcom Floyd 191.5
111 Josh Gordon Vincent Brown 191.4
112 Vincent Brown Brian Hartline 191.3
113 Kendall Wright Aaron Dobson 191.3
114 Kenny Britt Sidney Rice 191.3
115 Denarius Moore Greg Little 191.1
116 Josh Gordon Sidney Rice 191.0
117 Emmanuel Sanders Darrius Heyward-Bey 190.7
118 Josh Gordon Danario Alexander 190.7
119 Brian Hartline Danario Alexander 190.5
120 Lance Moore Alshon Jeffery 190.3
121 Kendall Wright DeAndre Hopkins 190.2
122 Anquan Boldin Rueben Randle 189.9
123 Anquan Boldin Ryan Broyles 189.9
124 Anquan Boldin n/a 189.9

Table 2: PPR Wide Receiver #3 Committee Pairs

As we can see from Table 2, we have some very good pairs to select from for WR3BC. Unlike last year, we have a ton of options that meet or exceed WR37 (Anquan Boldin) by himself.  With 123 different duos to select from, there will be lots of options to try and find a very strong pair for 2013.  To challenge this option further, I am baselining the target WR3BC goal at WR36, Miles Austin, who is projected to have 196.4 fantasy points in 2013.  To make it both more fair and more challenging, I added 10 points for Austin’s bye week, as a WR37-WR60 type player would be inserted into the lineup for Austin for that game, so our target for a successful WR3BC had better achieve 206 or more fantasy points.  That reduces the list from Table 2 to 32 pairs that provide 206 or more fantasy points and combine favorably as a WR3.  Let's also take a look at how often some of these guys show up on the table:

Wide Receiver Frq Wide Receiver Frq
Justin Blackmon 19 Kenny Britt 2
Anquan Boldin 10 Malcom Floyd 2
Kendall Wright 5 Alshon Jeffery 1
Emmanuel Sanders 4 Danario Alexander 1
Lance Moore 4 Darrius Heyward-Bey 1
Josh Gordon 3 Golden Tate 1
Brian Hartline 2 Greg Little 1
Chris Givens 2 Sidney Rice 1
DeAndre Hopkins 2 Vincent Brown 1
Denarius Moore 2    

Table 3: PPR Wide Receiver #3 Committee Pair Appearances by Player

As we can see from Table 3, Justin Blackmon dominates the list, with Anquan Boldin claiming a strong second spot.  Three other WRs show up on this list at least four times – Kendall Wright, Emmanuel Sanders and Lance Moore.  All of these names should surprise no one that read Table 1, as these five guys are all near the Top of the WR37 and beyond ADP list. The most intriguing player by far is Justin Blackmon.  Had he not be suspended for the first four games, his ADP would likely have been well in the WR3 range, but as a result of the forced vacation his ADP has dropped all the way down to WR42.  Provided he is healthy and gets decent quarterback play, Blackmon will be a true steal in the WR40 range and be a key part of a WR3BC approach this season.

Putting It All Together

Now that we have over 30 possible pairs to construct a WR3BC, what exactly does that mean? Should WR36, Miles Austin, be the basis of our comparison? Of course not. Remember our goal - find a pair of wide receivers that can combine for WR3 (or better) fantasy production. To figure that out we need a better metric, so here are the projections for WR13 through WR36 (with a few extra receivers), using PPR, sorted by projected fantasy points:

ADP WR Rank Player FPs FP Rank
41 13 Jordy Nelson 231.2 13
42 14 Wes Welker 218.1 20
43 15 Marques Colston 232.0 17
44 16 Dwayne Bowe 229.9 14
45 17 Danny Amendola 229.7 16
47 18 Reggie Wayne 226.7 18
49 19 Hakeem Nicks 211.3 23
56 20 Eric Decker 216.2 21
57 21 Pierre Garcon 206.8 26
58 22 Antonio Brown 231.1 15
60 23 Mike Wallace 204.8 25
61 24 Torrey Smith 208.9 22
64 25 Steve Smith 218.9 19
71 26 Tavon Austin 194.2 32
72 27 James Jones 182.5 35
74 28 Greg Jennings 206.2 27
75 29 Cecil Shorts 209.8 24
77 30 Steve Johnson 207.1 28
79 31 T.Y. Hilton 187.3 34
80 32 Percy Harvin n/a n/a
83 33 Mike Williams 199.9 31
85 34 DeSean Jackson 197.5 29
88 35 Kenny Britt 175.1 42
89 36 Miles Austin 196.4 30
90 37 Anquan Boldin 189.9 33

Table 4: Projected PPR Fantasy Points for WRs 13-37

Based on Table 4, we first see that Percy Harvin’s name is on the list.  We will not consider him for WR3BC for fear he will miss too much of 2013.  Next we see that WRs beyond the Top 20 are really jumbled all over the place. Some are going too early in drafts (Pierre Garcon, Tavon Austin) based on current projections, while others are available at what appears to be a discount. Filtering through all of this "noise", we see some players that catch our eye. Steve Johnson (WR30, 207.1 fantasy points projected) is the last of the "upper tier" of wideouts that are projected to top 200 fantasy points in 2012. Taking the 200 point target and adding 10 points for a bye week filler, we next look at our possible pairs to see how many exceed 210 projected points for 2013, and the answer is a solid 21 pairs, with three more just missing the cut.  Digging a little deeper, the top five pairs line up well against Hakeem Nicks (WR19), Eric Decker (WR20) and Pierre Garcon (WR21). This tells us that choosing the correct pair can give us the result we wanted – high end WR3 production (and borderline WR2) on the cheap.

Considering all of the results, the recipe looks very clear - get Justin Blackmon. Nabbing him in Round 7 or Round 8 allows you to choose from several other WRs that will post numbers comparable to a WR3. Even with the uncertainty at quarterback in Jacksonville and a slight injury concern for Blackmon, all of that should be settled down by Week 5 when Blackmon should be back in action.  Blackmon offers several pairing possibilities, led by Lance Moore and Emmanuel Sanders.  Sanders is the cheaper option with an ADP that should make him available later, whereas Moore could be gone before Blackmon and should be in most drafts.  That is why I am recommending Justin Blackmon and Emmanuel Sanders as the WR3BC for 2013.  Take Blackmon in Round 7 (late) or Round 8 (early) and follow up with Sanders in Round 8 or 9 to secure the value.  Another option would be to take Lance Moore right after Blackmon if he was to still be available, and smart owners with a flex spot would still snap up Sanders if he lasted to Round 10.

Rank Wide Receiver 1 Wide Receiver 2 Value ADP1 ADP2
1 Lance Moore Justin Blackmon 231.3 40 42
2 Denarius Moore Justin Blackmon 229.3 41 42
3 Josh Gordon Justin Blackmon 227.1 38 42
4 Kendall Wright Justin Blackmon 226.2 47 42
5 Emmanuel Sanders Justin Blackmon 224.9 45 42
6 Vincent Brown Justin Blackmon 224.1 46 42
7 Danario Alexander Justin Blackmon 223.5 39 42
8 Kenny Britt Justin Blackmon 222.9 35 42
9 Sidney Rice Justin Blackmon 222.0 48 42
10 Brian Hartline Justin Blackmon 221.0 52 42
11 Anquan Boldin Justin Blackmon 219.4 37 42
12 Chris Givens Justin Blackmon 219.1 51 42
13 Michael Floyd Justin Blackmon 217.1 43 42
14 Justin Blackmon Golden Tate 216.3 42 59
15 Anquan Boldin Lance Moore 215.7 37 40
16 Justin Blackmon Greg Little 215.6 42 55
17 DeAndre Hopkins Justin Blackmon 213.4 44 42
18 Anquan Boldin Emmanuel Sanders 213.2 37 45
19 Anquan Boldin Kendall Wright 211.5 37 47
20 Justin Blackmon Alshon Jeffery 211.2 42 49
21 Anquan Boldin Denarius Moore 210.5 37 41
22 Justin Blackmon Darrius Heyward-Bey 209.7 42 57
23 Emmanuel Sanders Lance Moore 209.5 45 40
24 Anquan Boldin Chris Givens 209.1 37 51
25 Kendall Wright Lance Moore 208.3 47 40
26 Anquan Boldin DeAndre Hopkins 207.8 37 44
27 Anquan Boldin Kenny Britt 207.7 37 35
28 Anquan Boldin Josh Gordon 207.6 37 38
29 Kendall Wright Emmanuel Sanders 207.4 47 45
30 Justin Blackmon Malcom Floyd 207.2 42 60
31 Anquan Boldin Brian Hartline 206.8 37 52
32 Kendall Wright Josh Gordon 206.4 47 38
33 Anquan Boldin Sidney Rice 205.2 37 48
34 Anquan Boldin Vincent Brown 205.0 37 46
35 Emmanuel Sanders Josh Gordon 204.9 45 38
36 Anquan Boldin Danario Alexander 204.5 37 39
37 Lance Moore DeAndre Hopkins 204.3 40 44
38 Emmanuel Sanders Michael Floyd 203.9 45 43
39 Emmanuel Sanders Kenny Britt 203.8 45 35
40 Josh Gordon Lance Moore 203.5 38 40
41 Josh Gordon Michael Floyd 203.5 38 43
42 Emmanuel Sanders Denarius Moore 203.0 45 41
43 Lance Moore Michael Floyd 203.0 40 43
44 Kendall Wright Denarius Moore 202.8 47 41
45 Lance Moore Kenny Britt 202.5 40 35
46 Anquan Boldin Golden Tate 202.4 37 59
47 Justin Blackmon Santonio Holmes 202.3 42 58
48 Kendall Wright Brian Hartline 201.8 47 52
49 Denarius Moore Josh Gordon 201.5 41 38
50 Justin Blackmon Cordarrelle Patterson 200.9 42 54
51 Emmanuel Sanders Chris Givens 200.8 45 51
52 Kendall Wright Chris Givens 200.7 47 51
53 Emmanuel Sanders Sidney Rice 200.5 45 48
54 Josh Gordon Kenny Britt 200.5 38 35
55 Anquan Boldin Greg Little 200.5 37 55
56 Kendall Wright Michael Floyd 200.2 47 43

Table 5: Top 56 PPR WR3BC Options for 2013

Here is a final summary of the combined schedules for Justin Blackmon and Emmanuel Sanders, and when the committee approach suggests starting each one:

Wk Suggested Player Opponent
1 Emmanuel Sanders Tennessee
2 Emmanuel Sanders at Cincinnati
3 Emmanuel Sanders Chicago
4 Emmanuel Sanders at Minnesota
5 Justin Blackmon at St. Louis
6 Justin Blackmon at Denver
7 Justin Blackmon San Diego
8 Justin Blackmon San Francisco
9 Emmanuel Sanders at New England
10 Justin Blackmon at Tennessee
11 Justin Blackmon Arizona
12 Justin Blackmon at Houston
13 Justin Blackmon at Cleveland
14 Justin Blackmon Houston
15 Justin Blackmon Buffalo
16 Justin Blackmon at Kansas City

Table 6: Suggested PPR WR3BC Schedule Plan

Questions, suggestions and comments are always welcome to pasquino@footballguys.com.


More from Jeff Pasquino:

Eliminator Pool: Week 9 - October 30
Against The Spread Pool: Week 9 - October 30
For the Win: Week 9 - October 29
Money Talks (Free Agent Bidding Advice): Week 9 - October 28
The Daily Grind - Daily Fantasy Contest News: Week 8 - October 25
Eliminator Pool: Week 8 - October 23
Against The Spread Pool: Week 8 - October 23
For the Win: Week 8 - October 22
Money Talks (Free Agent Bidding Advice): Week 8 - October 21
The Daily Grind - Daily Fantasy Contest News: Week 7 - October 17