Wide Receiver #3 By Committee (PPR)
By Jeff Pasquino
July 30th, 2010

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
Running Back
ADP
Running Back
WR37
Dez Bryant
WR49
Nate Burleson
WR38
Eddie Royal
WR50
Golden Tate
WR39
Mohamed Massaquoi
WR51
Devin Thomas
WR40
Johnny Knox
WR52
Kevin Walter
WR41
Antonio Bryant
WR53
Mario Manningham
WR42
Donnie Avery
WR54
Wes Welker
WR43
Mike Thomas
WR55
Bernard Berrian
WR44
Braylon Edwards
WR56
Vincent Jackson
WR45
Devin Aromashodu
WR57
Dexter McCluster
WR46
Pierre Garcon
WR58
Jacoby Jones
WR47
Santonio Holmes
WR59
Nate Washington
WR48
Chris Chambers
WR60
Arrelious Benn

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 a little bit of bad news – some of the players listed above have ADPs that are prior to Round 7. Dez Bryant and Pierre Garcon are both rapidly climbing the WR charts and several receivers are moving up as well either because they are getting healthy (Wes Welker) or because some believe that their contract issues will be resolved (Vincent Jackson). We will have to keep that in mind when we look at the 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.

Rk
Wide Receiver 1
Wide Receiver 2
Value
1
Mohamed Massaquoi
Santonio Holmes
182.0
2
Mike Thomas
Santonio Holmes
176.1
3
Eddie Royal
Santonio Holmes
175.8
4
Antonio Bryant
Santonio Holmes
175.5
5
Johnny Knox
Santonio Holmes
175.1
6
Donnie Avery
Santonio Holmes
173.9
7
Santonio Holmes
Devin Thomas
173.5
8
Santonio Holmes
Mario Manningham
172.5
9
Devin Aromashodu
Santonio Holmes
171.2
10
Santonio Holmes
Vincent Jackson
169.6
11
Dez Bryant
Eddie Royal
168.9
12
Pierre Garcon
Santonio Holmes
167.1
13
Dez Bryant
Mohamed Massaquoi
166.8
14
Santonio Holmes
Nate Burleson
166.3
15
Mohamed Massaquoi
Wes Welker
166.2
16
Dez Bryant
Johnny Knox
165.7
17
Santonio Holmes
Nate Washington
165.7
18
Dez Bryant
Antonio Bryant
165.1
19
Eddie Royal
Wes Welker
164.8
20
Santonio Holmes
Golden Tate
164.5
21
Dez Bryant
Santonio Holmes
164.1
22
Santonio Holmes
Bernard Berrian
163.9
23
Braylon Edwards
Santonio Holmes
163.7
24
Eddie Royal
Mohamed Massaquoi
163.2
25
Dez Bryant
Donnie Avery
163.2
26
Santonio Holmes
Chris Chambers
162.7
27
Dez Bryant
Devin Aromashodu
162.6
28
Johnny Knox
Wes Welker
162.4
29
Dez Bryant
Mike Thomas
162.2
30
Dez Bryant
Devin Thomas
161.6
31
Dez Bryant
Pierre Garcon
161.0
32
Santonio Holmes
Kevin Walter
160.9
33
Donnie Avery
Wes Welker
160.9
34
Pierre Garcon
Wes Welker
160.6
35
Dez Bryant
Vincent Jackson
160.1
36
Mike Thomas
Wes Welker
159.9
37
Dez Bryant
Nate Burleson
159.8
38
Nate Burleson
Wes Welker
159.8
39
Dez Bryant
Braylon Edwards
159.6
40
Eddie Royal
Antonio Bryant
159.3
41
Devin Thomas
Wes Welker
159.3
42
Eddie Royal
Arrelious Benn
159.2
43
Santonio Holmes
Dexter McCluster
158.9
44
Mario Manningham
Wes Welker
158.6
45
Antonio Bryant
Wes Welker
158.6
46
Santonio Holmes
Jacoby Jones
158.3
47
Devin Aromashodu
Wes Welker
158.2
48
Eddie Royal
Johnny Knox
158.0
49
Braylon Edwards
Wes Welker
157.7
50
Eddie Royal
Golden Tate
157.6
51
Dez Bryant
Mario Manningham
157.3
52
Dez Bryant
Golden Tate
157.1
53
Dez Bryant
Nate Washington
156.9
54
Dez Bryant
Kevin Walter
156.7
55
Dez Bryant
Wes Welker
156.5
56
Mohamed Massaquoi
Mike Thomas
156.2
57
Mohamed Massaquoi
Antonio Bryant
156.0
58
Wes Welker
Vincent Jackson
156.0
59
Mohamed Massaquoi
Devin Thomas
155.9
60
Mohamed Massaquoi
Pierre Garcon
155.7
61
Mohamed Massaquoi
Golden Tate
155.7
62
Dez Bryant
Jacoby Jones
155.4
63
Mohamed Massaquoi
Donnie Avery
155.1
64
Eddie Royal
Mario Manningham
155.1
65
Kevin Walter
Wes Welker
155.1
66
Eddie Royal
Pierre Garcon
154.7
67
Eddie Royal
Kevin Walter
154.5
68
Eddie Royal
Devin Aromashodu
154.3
69
Wes Welker
Bernard Berrian
154.2
70
Eddie Royal
Bernard Berrian
154.0
71
Eddie Royal
Chris Chambers
153.9
72
Dez Bryant
Chris Chambers
153.9
73
Eddie Royal
Nate Burleson
153.8
74
Santonio Holmes
Arrelious Benn
153.8
75
Chris Chambers
Wes Welker
153.7
76
Mohamed Massaquoi
Kevin Walter
153.6
77
Eddie Royal
Braylon Edwards
153.5
78
Mohamed Massaquoi
Arrelious Benn
153.5
79
Mohamed Massaquoi
Chris Chambers
153.1
80
Johnny Knox
Antonio Bryant
153.1
81
Eddie Royal
Jacoby Jones
153.0
82
Eddie Royal
Vincent Jackson
152.9
83
Mohamed Massaquoi
Braylon Edwards
152.8
84
Mohamed Massaquoi
Nate Washington
152.6
85
Mohamed Massaquoi
Nate Burleson
152.6
86
Wes Welker
Nate Washington
152.6
87
Johnny Knox
Golden Tate
152.6
88
Mohamed Massaquoi
Vincent Jackson
152.5
89
Wes Welker
Jacoby Jones
152.5
90
Dez Bryant
Bernard Berrian
152.4
91
Mohamed Massaquoi
Jacoby Jones
152.1
92
Antonio Bryant
Donnie Avery
151.8
93
Mohamed Massaquoi
Bernard Berrian
151.8
94
Dez Bryant
Dexter McCluster
151.6
95
Eddie Royal
Dexter McCluster
151.2
96
Johnny Knox
Mike Thomas
150.9
97
Johnny Knox
Devin Thomas
150.7
98
Mohamed Massaquoi
Dexter McCluster
150.5
99
Johnny Knox
Arrelious Benn
150.3
100
Johnny Knox
Pierre Garcon
150.0
101
Wes Welker
Dexter McCluster
150.0
102
Eddie Royal
Donnie Avery
149.9
103
Johnny Knox
Donnie Avery
149.8
104
Antonio Bryant
Mario Manningham
149.8
105
Johnny Knox
Nate Burleson
149.6
106
Pierre Garcon
Golden Tate
149.6
107
Donnie Avery
Golden Tate
149.4
108
Antonio Bryant
Nate Burleson
149.4
109
Antonio Bryant
Mike Thomas
149.2
110
Antonio Bryant
Braylon Edwards
149.1
111
Mohamed Massaquoi
Johnny Knox
149.0
112
Antonio Bryant
Devin Thomas
148.8
113
Eddie Royal
Mike Thomas
148.7
114
Antonio Bryant
Pierre Garcon
148.6
115
Golden Tate
Devin Thomas
148.5
116
Eddie Royal
Devin Thomas
148.2
117
Antonio Bryant
Golden Tate
148.2
118
Antonio Bryant
Devin Aromashodu
148.0
119
Mike Thomas
Golden Tate
148.0
120
Donnie Avery
Arrelious Benn
147.8
121
Johnny Knox
Braylon Edwards
147.7
122
Donnie Avery
Braylon Edwards
147.3
123
Mike Thomas
Nate Burleson
147.3
124
Johnny Knox
Kevin Walter
147.2
125
Johnny Knox
Chris Chambers
147.2
126
Antonio Bryant
Kevin Walter
147.2
127
Dez Bryant
Arrelious Benn
147.1
128
Donnie Avery
Bernard Berrian
147.0
129
Devin Aromashodu
Golden Tate
147.0
130
Antonio Bryant
Bernard Berrian
146.7
131
Johnny Knox
Nate Washington
146.6
132
Johnny Knox
Bernard Berrian
146.5
133
Nate Burleson
Golden Tate
146.5
134
Antonio Bryant
Chris Chambers
146.4
135
Mohamed Massaquoi
Devin Aromashodu
146.2
136
Donnie Avery
Pierre Garcon
146.1
137
Mike Thomas
Devin Aromashodu
146.1
138
Antonio Bryant
Vincent Jackson
146.0
139
Pierre Garcon
Arrelious Benn
145.7
140
Donnie Avery
Mario Manningham
145.7
141
Braylon Edwards
Golden Tate
145.7
142
Mike Thomas
Pierre Garcon
145.6
143
Antonio Bryant
Jacoby Jones
145.5
144
Donnie Avery
Nate Burleson
145.4
145
Mike Thomas
Mario Manningham
145.4
146
Mike Thomas
Kevin Walter
145.4
147
Chris Chambers
Golden Tate
145.3
148
Johnny Knox
Vincent Jackson
145.2
149
Johnny Knox
Jacoby Jones
145.2
150
Donnie Avery
Kevin Walter
145.1
151
Mohamed Massaquoi
Mario Manningham
145.1
152
Donnie Avery
Chris Chambers
145.0
153
Mike Thomas
Braylon Edwards
144.9
154
Golden Tate
Bernard Berrian
144.9
155
Dez Bryant
None
144.8

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. There is a huge amount (154 sets) of pairs that are worth more than Dez Bryant (WR37) by his lonesome, who is projected to come in with 144.8 (PPR) points. Let's also take a look at how often some of these guys show up on the table:

Wide Receiver
Frq
Wide Receiver
Frq
Dez Bryant
24
Braylon Edwards
10
Mohamed Massaquoi
23
Kevin Walter
9
Santonio Holmes
22
Chris Chambers
9
Eddie Royal
22
Bernard Berrian
9
Wes Welker
20
Mario Manningham
8
Johnny Knox
20
Devin Thomas
8
Antonio Bryant
20
Devin Aromashodu
8
Donnie Avery
16
Vincent Jackson
7
Golden Tate
15
Jacoby Jones
7
Mike Thomas
14
Arrelious Benn
7
Pierre Garcon
11
Nate Washington
5
Nate Burleson
10
Dexter McCluster
5

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

As we can see from Table 3, Dez Bryant dominates the list, but six other WRs show up on this list at least 20 times – Mohamed Massaquoi, Santonio Holmes, Eddie Royal, Wes Welker, Johnny Knox and Antonio Bryant. Five 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. What is noteworthy are two other wideouts that appear often – Wes Welker and Santonio Holmes. Welker is not likely to be available later in drafts as he is skyrocketing in value, but Holmes is a very interesting player. He projects to put up solid numbers after his four game suspension, which makes him for a sneaky choice for some solid pairs.

Putting It All Together

Now that we have over 150 possible pairs that are better than Dez Bryant, what exactly does that mean? Should Dez Bryant 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, using PPR, sorted by projected fantasy points:

ADP
WR Rk
Wide Receiver
FPs
FP Rk
32
13
Steve Smith (NYG)
209.4
12
37
15
Steve Smith (CAR)
209.2
13
58
22
Hines Ward
208.9
14
44
17
Chad Ochocinco
208.4
15
24
11
DeSean Jackson
206.8
16
52
18
Hakeem Nicks
198.3
17
35
14
Anquan Boldin
188.0
18
57
21
Percy Harvin
185.4
19
42
16
Michael Crabtree
180.5
20
64
25
Jeremy Maclin
180.1
21
56
20
Dwayne Bowe
175.0
22
55
19
Mike Sims-Walker
171.8
23
131
49
Jabar Gaffney
169.0
24
69
26
Mike Wallace
168.0
25
116
45
Lee Evans
167.6
26
106
40
Derrick Mason
166.5
27
77
31
Santana Moss
165.4
28
72
28
Donald Driver
161.0
29
92
34
Devin Hester
160.1
30
126
46
Jerricho Cotchery
157.9
31
79
32
T.J. Houshmandzadeh
157.1
32
91
33
Steve Breaston
156.9
33
95
35
Malcom Floyd
153.5
34
98
36
Kenny Britt
151.1
35
75
30
Robert Meachem
149.2
36

Table 4: Projected PPR Fantasy Points for WRs 13-36

Based on Table 4, we see that WRs beyond the Top 20 are really jumbled all over the place. Some are going to early in drafts (DeSean Jackson, Anquan Boldin) 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. Mike Sims-Walker (WR23, 171.8 fantasy points projected) is the last of the "upper tier" of wideouts that are projected to top 170 fantasy points in 2010. Looking at our possible pairs, we have nine duos that beat 170 fantasy points, while the top pair lines up well against Percy Harvin (WR19) and Michael Crabtree (WR20). This tells us that choosing the correct pair can give us the result we wanted - WR3 production (and borderline WR2) on the cheap.

Considering all of the results, the recipe looks very clear - get Santonio Holmes. Nabbing him in Round 7 or Round 8 allows you to choose from several other WRs that will post numbers comparable to a WR3. The best duo, in fact, will post numbers similar to a moderate value WR2. With Mohamed Massaquoi in a questionable offense and both Jacksonville and Denver unsettled with their passing games, both Mike Thomas and Eddie Royal are not recommended as top committee choices. Antonio Bryant’s value plummets with Terrell Owens now in Cincinnati. That is why I am recommending Johnny Knox and Santonio Holmes as the WR3BC for 2010. Take Holmes in Round 7 and follow up quickly with Knox in Round 8 to pair together for your WR3 committee.

For thoroughness Table 2 should be your guide on Fantasy Draft Day if you attempt to use WR3BC. One option is to take Holmes in Round 7 and then grab the next WR on the list that you like, with a strong preference to Knox or Avery.

Rk
Wide Receiver 1
Wide Receiver 2
Value
ADP1
ADP2
1
Mohamed Massaquoi
Santonio Holmes
182.0
39
47
2
Mike Thomas
Santonio Holmes
176.1
43
47
3
Eddie Royal
Santonio Holmes
175.8
38
47
4
Antonio Bryant
Santonio Holmes
175.5
41
47
5
Johnny Knox
Santonio Holmes
175.1
40
47
6
Donnie Avery
Santonio Holmes
173.9
42
47
7
Santonio Holmes
Devin Thomas
173.5
47
51
8
Santonio Holmes
Mario Manningham
172.5
47
53
9
Devin Aromashodu
Santonio Holmes
171.2
45
47
10
Santonio Holmes
Vincent Jackson
169.6
47
56
11
Dez Bryant
Eddie Royal
168.9
37
38
12
Pierre Garcon
Santonio Holmes
167.1
46
47
13
Dez Bryant
Mohamed Massaquoi
166.8
37
39
14
Santonio Holmes
Nate Burleson
166.3
47
49
15
Mohamed Massaquoi
Wes Welker
166.2
39
54
16
Dez Bryant
Johnny Knox
165.7
37
40
17
Santonio Holmes
Nate Washington
165.7
47
59
18
Dez Bryant
Antonio Bryant
165.1
37
41
19
Eddie Royal
Wes Welker
164.8
38
54
20
Santonio Holmes
Golden Tate
164.5
47
50
21
Dez Bryant
Santonio Holmes
164.1
37
47
22
Santonio Holmes
Bernard Berrian
163.9
47
55
23
Braylon Edwards
Santonio Holmes
163.7
44
47
24
Eddie Royal
Mohamed Massaquoi
163.2
38
39
25
Dez Bryant
Donnie Avery
163.2
37
42
26
Santonio Holmes
Chris Chambers
162.7
47
48
27
Dez Bryant
Devin Aromashodu
162.6
37
45
28
Johnny Knox
Wes Welker
162.4
40
54
29
Dez Bryant
Mike Thomas
162.2
37
43
30
Dez Bryant
Devin Thomas
161.6
37
51
31
Dez Bryant
Pierre Garcon
161.0
37
46
32
Santonio Holmes
Kevin Walter
160.9
47
52
33
Donnie Avery
Wes Welker
160.9
42
54
34
Pierre Garcon
Wes Welker
160.6
46
54
35
Dez Bryant
Vincent Jackson
160.1
37
56

Table 5: Top 35 PPR WR3BC Options for 2010

Here is a final summary of the combined schedules for Johnny Knox and Santonio Holmes, and when the committee approach suggests starting each one:

Wk
Suggested Starter
Opponent
1
Johnny Knox
Detroit
2
Johnny Knox
at Dallas
3
Johnny Knox
Green Bay
4
Johnny Knox
at New York Giants
5
Johnny Knox
at Carolina
6
Johnny Knox
Seattle
7
Johnny Knox
Washington
8
Santonio Holmes
Green Bay
9
Santonio Holmes
at Detroit
10
Santonio Holmes
at Cleveland
11
Santonio Holmes
Houston
12
Santonio Holmes
Cincinnati
13
Santonio Holmes
at New England
14
Santonio Holmes
Miami
15
Santonio Holmes
at Pittsburgh
16
Santonio Holmes
at Chicago

Table 6: Suggested PPR WR3BC Schedule Plan

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

© 2010 Footballguys - All Rights Reserved