Win. Your. League.

Receive 3 Free Downloads More Details

Passing Game Weekly Ceiling Study

Ranking the passing games from 1-32 based on their ability to generate 15+ point games in PPR leagues.

Investigation and research to compile rankings can lead to some unexpected and fascinating places. I looked at Top 10 PPR finishes by team backfield over the course of the 2017 season and found some interesting results. For wide receiver and tight end, I decided to change the methodology and instead look at 15, 20 and 25+ PPR point weeks. The 1-32 ranking will reflect the team’s total 15+ point weeks by wide receivers and tight ends combined. Before we get to that, here's some interesting facts that emerged in the research:

WR/TE Weekly Ceiling Trivia

  • Three teams failed to record a 25+ point wide receiver week: San Francisco, Houston, and Philadelphia. San Francisco and Philadelphia were both deficient in quarterback and wide receiver quality, but the blame for Houston should rest directly on Brock Osweiler’s shoulders.
  • Five teams had five or more 25+ point wide receiver weeks: Green Bay (7), New Orleans (6), Pittsburgh (6), Cincinnati (5), and Atlanta (5). Green Bay (Nelson 4, Adams 2, Cobb 1) and New Orleans (Cooks 3, Thomas, 2, Snead 1) each had three different receivers hit the mark. Pittsburgh (Brown 5, Coates 1), Atlanta (Jones 4, Gabriel 1), and Cincinnati (Green 3, Lafell 2) each had two receivers hit the mark.
  • In addition to Jordy Nelson, Antonio Brown (5), and Julio Jones, TY Hilton, Mike Evans and Odell Beckham all had four 25+ PPR point games. Emmanuel Sanders, Doug Baldwin, Golden Tate, and Larry Fitzgerald had three apiece.
  • Most surprising names on the 25+ PPR point week list: J.J. Nelson, Robert Woods, Travis Benjamin, Dontrelle Inman, Sammie Coates Jr, Kendall Wright, Marquess Wilson, and Brandon LaFell somehow showing up twice.
  • When expanded to 20+ wide receiver weeks, Buffalo and Philadelphia bring up the rear with only 2, and the Jets, Houston, and San Francisco could only muster three.
  • Green Bay (12), New Orleans (10), Atlanta (10), Pittsburgh (9), and Denver lead the way when expanded to 20+ point weeks.
  • New England (Edelman, Hogan, Mitchell, Amendola) and Chicago (Royal, Jeffery, Meredith, Wilson) each had four different receivers record 20+ point weeks. Miami (Landry, Stills, Parker), Jets (Decker, Marshall, Enunwa), Cleveland (Coleman, Hawkins, Pryor), Chargers (Inman, Benjamin, Williams), Washington (Crowder, Garcon, Jackson), Detroit (Boldin, Tate, Jones), Atlanta (Jones, Gabriel, Sanu), Rams (Austin, Quick, Britt), Arizona (Brown, Fitzgerald, Nelson), Green Bay (see above), and New Orleans (see above) had three different receivers put up 20+ point games.
  • Brown leads the way in 20+ point games (8) with Jones and Evans at seven and Hilton, Beckham, and Nelson posting six.
  • Most surprising names on the 20+ PPR point week list: Danny Amendola, Albert Wilson, Brian Quick, and Eddie Royal.
  • Two players with no 25+ point games had four 20+ games - Demaryius Thomas and Tyrell Williams.
  • Green Bay (22), New Orleans (19), Atlanta (19), and the Giants (18) accounted for the most 15+ point wide receiver point games. All but the Giants had more than 50 percent of the total come from 20+ point games, while the Giants had 12 of their 18 15+ wide receiver games not top 20 points.
  • Familiar names at the bottom of the list when expanded to 15+ point games include Philadelphia (5) and San Francisco (6). Seattle (7), Kansas City (7), Buffalo (8) and Houston (8) were also wastelands for quality wide receiver games.
  • Odell Beckham, Jordy Nelson, and Antonio Brown all posted 11 15+ point games, but Brown gets the gold medal here, with one more 25+ point game and one more 20+ point game.
  • Mike Evans (10), TY Hilton (9), Julio Jones (9), Michael Thomas (8), Larry Fitzgerald (8), and Demaryius Thomas (8) round out the top ten. AJ Green (6 in 9 complete games), Dez Bryant (7 in 12 complete games) also deserve mention for producing big games at a top ten rate.
  • Tyrell Williams had the same number of 15+ games as Davante Adams (7).
  • Golden Tate had the same number of 15+ games as Amari Cooper (6).
  • Taylor Gabriel, Quincy Enunwa, Brandon LaFell and Tavon Austin had the same number of 15+ games as Allen Robinson and Doug Baldwin (5).
  • Pierre Garcon only had three 15+ games, but he had seven more games between 12 and 15 points.
  • Most surprising names on 15+ point game list: Demarcus Ayers, Geronimo Allison, Quinton Patton, Rod Streater, Bryan Walters, Greg Salas
  • The Patriots led all teams in 15+ games by tight ends (9) with Kansas City (8), Minnesota (7), and the Chargers (7) also finishing high on the list.
  • Four teams failed to post a 15+ game at tight end: Denver, the Giants, Arizona, and the Jets.
  • Philadelphia had more 15+ games from tight ends (6) than wide receivers (5). Green Bay had only one 15+ game from a tight end compared to 22 for wide receivers.
  • Travis Kelce and Kyle Rudolph tied for the most 15+ games among tight ends (7), but Rob Gronkowski was basically four for four in healthy games and Tyler Eifert had three in six healthy games.
  • Greg Olsen, Martellus Bennett, Cameron Brate, and Zach Ertz came in next at five, with Antonio Gates and Dennis Pitta among the more surprising names with four.
  • Indianapolis and the Chargers both produced two different tight ends with at least three 15+ point games.
  • Only Jordan Reed had two 25+ point games, but the New England passing game also produced two.


Passing Game Weekly Ceiling Ranking

Legend: Total WR/TE15+ point games (WR: 15+ point games [25+/20-25/15-20] TE: 15+ point games [25+/20-25/15-20])

1. New England: 24 (WR: 15 [1/4/10] TE: 9 [2/2/5] )

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Edelman
1
1
5
7
Bennett
1
1
3
5
Hogan
0
1
3
4
Gronkowski
1
1
2
4
Mitchell
0
1
2
3
Amendola
0
1
0
1

What I learned: Rob Gronkowski is probably still worth a first-round pick. His four for four in healthy games rate is eye-popping even among wide receivers and would easily lap the field at tight end. Julian Edelman’s seven 15+ point games led the wide receivers, but six came in games with a less than healthy Gronkowski. If Gronkowski stays healthy, a big chunk of his big games will come out of the TE2 (Bennett five last year), but it’s fair to say that Brandin Cooks will at best reproduce his total of six from 2016 (although three 25+) if Gronkowski plays most of the games. Chris Hogan [0/1/3] will be even more sporadic with Cooks in town. Malcolm Mitchell’s [0/1/2] in a small window during his rookie year portends better things in the future, but the arrival of Cooks and possibility of a healthy Gronkowski likely puts his arrival on hold. Those factors also make this the best passing game in the league. I won’t fault you for taking Brady early. Martellus Bennett’s five 15+ point games only included one with a healthy Gronkowski, but it was a 30+ game, although Bennett was playing hurt for the second half of the year too. Keep Dwayne Allen on waiver wire speed dial, although with his injury history, remember the name James O’Shaughnessy.

2. Green Bay: 23 (WR: 22 [7/5/10] TE: 1 [0/1/0])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
JNelson
4
2
5
11
Adams
2
3
2
7
Cobb
1
0
2
3
Allison
0
0
1
1
Cook
0
1
0
1

What I Learned: The Packers passing game heated up in October. Nine of their ten 20+ point wide receiver games came after Week 6. That leaves some room for growth to absorb the addition of Martellus Bennett to give the Packers their best receiving tight end threat since Jermichael Finley and the return of a healthy Randall Cobb, although they will compete for targets in the middle of the field. Jordy Nelson has the same profile as wide receivers going a half-round or more ahead of him, although more targets to the middle of the field and the introduction of Bennett in the red zone could lower his ceiling. Davante Adams is also a regression candidate if Bennett contributes and Cobb stays healthy, with five of his seven 15+ point games coming after Cobb got hurt. Like Brady, Rodgers has some hidden upside with a better set of weapons (include Ty Montgomery’s development in that picture) for most of 2017 than he had at any point in 2016.

3. New Orleans: 21 (WR:19 [6/4/9] TE: 2 [1/1/0])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
MThomas
2
3
3
8
Snead
1
1
4
6
Cooks
3
0
2
5
Fleener
1
1
0
2

What I Learned: The balance among wide receivers in this offense is impressive and a tribute to Drew Brees. No other offense produced three wideouts with five 15+ games and only one (Atlanta) produced three with four 15+ games. No other offense had three wide receivers produce multiple 20+ point games. Ted Ginn Jr might not duplicate Brandin Cooks [3/0/2] line, but he could be a lot closer than his late ADP indicates. Coby Fleener was a mess with only two games in the 10-15 point range to match his two 20+ point games, but more familiarity in year two might increase the number of peaks he climbs.

4. Atlanta: 21 (WR: 19 [5/5/9] TE: 2 [0/0/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Julio
4
3
2
9
Gabriel
1
0
4
5
Sanu
0
2
2
4
ARobinson
0
0
1
1
Tamme
0
0
1
1
Toilolo
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Julio Jones missed two games but only Antonio Brown put up more 20+ point games. Mohamed Sanu’s [0/2/2] line has me wanting to take a longer look at him in the late rounds considering that he was playing through a shoulder injury. I haven’t been giving him enough respect. Taylor Gabriel’s [1/0/4] line is only surprising if you didn’t watch the Falcons. While he might have benefited from Sanu being limited, Gabriel joined the team inseason and should be more integrated into the offense this year. There’s a lot of injury upside among this wide receiver trio - another argument for Gabriel and Sanu in the late rounds. Austin Hooper is possibly ready to take on a larger role in a tight end position that only produced two 15-20 point games last year.

5. Washington: 21 (WR: 16 [1/3/12] TE: 5 [2/1/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Jackson
0
2
5
7
Crowder
1
0
5
6
Reed
2
1
1
4
Garcon
0
1
2
3
Davis
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: DeSean Jackson [2/0/5] vacated enough big games to make Terrelle Pryor promising and build in upside to Jamison Crowder’s [1/0/5]. Pierre Garcon being the king of the 10-15 game (seven to go with his [0/1/2] line hides the offense’s clearly demonstrated ability to support three quality fantasy wide receivers - a good sign for Josh Doctson. Jordan Reed had four 12-15 point games, making this a bonafide four-target offense. The absence of Reed lowered the ceiling of the pass offense, with zero of the four 20+ point wide receiver games in his six limited/out games, and an expected five of 12 15-20 games. There’s also a chance that the transition to Pryor and Doctson from Jackson and Garcon is a bit choppy, but their natural talent and the competence of the offensive staff should keep the odds of a significant drop low.

6. Tampa Bay: 19 (WR: 14 [4/3/7] TE: 5 [0/2/3])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Evans
4
3
3
10
Brate
0
2
3
5
Humphries
0
0
3
3
Shepard
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Mike Evans earned his first-round ADP with a [4/3/3] line and eight of those coming in the first 11 weeks. I’m not sure he can earn it in 2017 with DeSean Jackson pumping life into a supporting wideout cast that only produced four other 15-20 point games last year. If Jackson is near his [0/2/5] line from last year, it could come out of Evans’ weekly ceiling, or perhaps Cameron Brate’s very strong [0/2/3] which is also under pressure from the arrival of OJ Howard. While this does increase Jameis Winston’s weekly ceiling, Howard is a good run blocker and Doug Martin will return in Week 4, so expect this to remain a balanced offense to pair with an ascendant defense.

7. Chargers: 19 (WR: 12 [2/5/5] TE: 7 [0/2/5])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Williams
0
4
3
7
Gates
0
1
3
4
Inman
1
1
1
3
Henry
0
1
2
3
TBenjamin
1
0
1
2

What I Learned: The Chargers finished this high with no Keenan Allen and a limited Travis Benjamin and Tyrell Williams in the second half of the year. That speaks volumes about Philip Rivers’ ability to generate pass offense. Williams was able to put up a [0/4/3] line but it’s fair to wonder if he can do that again if Allen stays healthy. Dontrelle Inman’s [1/1/1] helped fill some cracks, and the tight ends picked up the slack with their seven 15+ point games. A healthy Benjamin, Williams, Allen should enhance Rivers’ stock greatly, but Allen probably won’t dominate targets like he did in 2015 before he got hurt - his third round ADP does reflect that, as similarly drafted receivers are in the 5-7 15+ game range, very doable for Allen. Allen's ADP isn’t out of whack, but Williams’ is going well into the double digit rounds at times. Hunter Henry’s [0/1/2] is very strong for a rookie, but a banged up at times Antonio Gates still put up [0/1/3]. A healthy wide receiver group could limit those high ceiling weeks from Gates as he aged and generally shift the high ceiling week balance heavier to wide receivers. The Chargers could easily be top three on this list next year.

8. Pittsburgh: 18 (WR: 16 [6/3/7] TE: 2 [0/1/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
ABrown
5
3
3
11
Rogers
0
0
3
3
Coates
1
0
0
1
Ayers
0
0
1
1
Green
0
1
0
1
James
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: All hail Antonio Brown, whose [5/3/3] was the best line among wide receivers despite sitting out Week 17. Before you say Martavis Bryant is coming back, remember that Brown had five (!!) 30+ point games in the eleven games Bryant played in 2015 (Bryant had five 18+ point and two 29+ games in that span. Bryant’s presence will make the Steelers rise on this list, absorbing the [1/0/4] from the complementary receivers last year and adding more. The tight end group was a yawner because of Ladarius Green’s injury, and neither of Xavier Grimble and Jesse James has the juice to matter in this pass offense without significant wide receiver injuries. Ben Roethlisberger can obviously outproduce ADP if Bryant is back for real, and Rogers and Juju Smith-Schuster only add value.

9. New York Giants: 18 (WR: 18 [4/2/12] TE: 0)

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Beckham
4
2
5
11
Shepard
0
0
6
6
Cruz
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: The Giants neglected the tight end position, so the draft upgrade to Evan Engram makes a lot of sense. Odell Beckham, like Antonio Brown, took a step back from his previous levels, but still remained among the top of the class with his [4/2/5] line. Sterling Shepard did enough ancillary work during his regular touchdown games to put up six 15-20 point games. Even if Brandon Marshall cannibalizes Shepard’s weekly ceiling, Shepard is an upgrade from Victor Cruz and his [0/0/1] and Beckham isn’t going away, so either Marshall is going to disappoint, Beckham’s weekly ceiling is going to take a hit, or Eli Manning is undervalued.

10. Indianapolis: 17 (WR: 11 [4/2/5] TE: 6 [1/1/4])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Hilton
4
2
3
9
Doyle
0
1
2
3
Allen
1
0
2
3
Moncrief
0
0
2
2

What I Learned: TY Hilton dominated wide receiver big game production, notching all but two 15-20 games - the others came from Donte Moncrief. Jack Doyle and Dwayne Allen combined to make a TE1, but split the production down the middle. If Eric Swoope is for real, he’ll likely create a similar situation with Doyle this year. Donte Moncrief was not very explosive in addition to missing seven games. How much did Andrew Luck’s shoulder injury affect production from secondary wide receivers? That’s the potential for someone other than Hilton to deliver above ADP, because on its face the Colts passing games looks disappointingly bereft of regular impact players even though it has an elite quarterback.

11. Minnesota: 17 (WR:10 [4/2/4] TE: 7 [1/1/5])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Rudolph
1
1
5
7
Diggs
2
2
1
5
Thielen
2
0
2
4
Patterson
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: For a team with a decimated offensive line, quarterback acquired on the eve of the season, and mid-season offensive coordinator change, not too shabby. Kyle Rudolph was one of the unsung heroes at tight end, tying Travis Kelce for the most 15+ point games with seven. Adam Thielen [2/0/2] and Stefon Diggs [2/2/1] traded off big weeks when they got the lion’s share of the wide receiver targets. There’s a good foundation here for Diggs (if he stays healthy) and Thielen to return value on ADP and buoy best ball lineups with big games, although there is some danger of a more balanced offense if the running game is functional with the additions of Latavius Murray and Dalvin Cook. This is a sleeper pass offense with some arrows pointing up. A Laquon Treadwell breakout might muddy the water while increasing the quality of the offense as a whole.

12. Oakland: 16 (WR: 15 [3/4/8] TE: 1 [0/0/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Crabtree
1
1
6
8
Cooper
2
3
1
6
Roberts
0
0
1
1
Walford
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Not much, really. Amari Cooper [2/3/1] did stand out as having a line that matches more 3rd/4th round ADP wide receivers than 1st/2nd. Michael Crabtree [1/1/6] was very strong and he’ll be a value if Cooper doesn’t “take control” of the wide receiver targets this year. Even the addition of Jared Cook is unlikely to boost tight end production to fantasy relevance. This is a “dynamic duo” team, so it’s unclear how much the passing game would lose if one of the top two targets were to go down.

13. Chicago: 16 (WR: 13 [3/3/7] TE: 3 [1/0/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Meredith
2
1
2
5
Miller
1
0
2
3
Jeffery
0
1
2
3
Thompson
0
0
2
2
Royal
0
1
1
2
MWilson
1
0
0
1

What I Learned: Despite the ragtag bunch of quarterbacks and wide receivers, the Bears produced some valuable weeks in the passing game. Not only were the Bears the only pass offenses with five wideouts posting 15+ point PPR games in 2016, they actually had more wide receivers (4) with multiple 15+ point games than the Patriots (3). Part of this is volume, which could be lost now that Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley are in San Francisco (which is a boon for Pierre Garcon and Jeremy Kerley). Cameron Meredith [2/1/2] led the way, and if he can reproduce that line, he’ll be a solid value this year. Alshon Jeffery [0/012] was weak even when taking into account his suspension, but he did have five 12-15 point games. Deonte Thompson [0/0/2], Eddie Royal [0/1/1] and Marquess Wilson [1/0/0] round out the five, which means Kevin White didn’t break through once in his short stint among the main wide receivers. Zach Miller did all the heavy lifting for the tight ends, but Dion Sims’ presence will likely cap his weekly upside - if he survives final cuts. The Bears passing game results were a pleasant surprise, but the changes at quarterback and wide receiver are likely to make for a picture that matches low expectations in 2017.

14. Dallas: 16 (WR: 13 [2/3/8] TE: 3 [1/0/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Bryant
2
2
3
7
Beasley
0
1
3
4
Witten
1
0
2
3
Butler
0
0
1
1
Williams
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Jason Witten still has a pulse, although the possible emergence of Rico Gathers could make it fainter. Dez Bryant’s [2/2/3] line is even more impressive when you factor in the low volume pass offense and three missed games plus one game that the Cowboys rested their starters. He’s still worth an early second round pick. Cole Beasley’s [0/1/3] makes him look like a steal in the late rounds, but he faded late and fourth-round pick Ryan Switzer might be a better version of him anyway. All in all, very good for a team that finished 30th in pass attempts.

15. Miami: 16 (WR: 13 [1/5/7] TE: 3 [0/0/3])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Landry
1
2
3
6
Parker
0
1
3
4
Stills
0
2
1
3
Sims
0
0
2
2
Cameron
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Miami passed even less than Dallas and still ended up doing respectably in this ranking. They were one of the most balanced wide receiver groups with three putting up at least three 15+ point games. Jarvis Landry [1/2/3] led the way, and DeVante Parker’s [0/1/3] was not expected in a year that was a disappointment. If Parker breaks out this year, Landry’s weekly ceiling is in danger, or perhaps Kenny Stills [0/2/1] will evaporate. Another possibility is that we are underestimating Tannehill and this pass offense will increase in volume and efficiency. Pour one out for Jordan Cameron who actually had a 15+ game before his season and career ended. Dion Sims posted the other two 15+ tight end games, so there’s room there for Julius Thomas to contribute in best ball leagues.

16. Detroit: 15 (WR: 11 [4/3/4] TE: 4 [0/0/4])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Tate
3
2
1
6
Ebron
0
0
4
4
Boldin
0
1
2
3
MJones
1
0
1
2

What I Learned: Golden Tate [3/2/1] is undervalued with all six of his 15+ games coming in the last 12 games after his benching. Anquan Boldin’s line [0/1/2] is up for grabs, with Eric Ebron [0/0/4] the best candidate to catch it. Ebron’s lack of touchdowns held him out of the 20+ point column. Marvin Jones Jr [1/0/1] at least added four 12-15 point games, but was basically a non-factor after his hot start. A better 2017 could elevate the whole pass offense, although the return of Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick playing more than 10 games could also strain the split in targets between running back and wide receiver.

17. Cincinnati: 15 (WR: 12 [5/2/5] TE: 3 [1/1/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Green
3
1
2
6
LaFell
2
1
2
5
Eifert
1
1
1
3
Boyd
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Tyler Eifert is Gronk lite, with three 15+ point games (including one 20-25 and one 25+) in only six healthy games. Only Gronkowski had a better rate of 15+ games in healthy start to finish contests. AJ Green’s [3/1/2] is also deceptive as he basically missed seven games. His rate of 15+ point games and especially 25+ point games shows why he is going in the first round. A healthy Eifert could bring down his weekly ceiling a bit, as could a more effective running game. Of course, the offensive line woes are a possible critical point of failure in all of these questions. I’m not sure I was more surprised by anything this study revealed than Brandon LaFell’s [2/1/2] line. Two of his five big games came with Green on the field, so it wasn’t just a target substitution effect, although only one came with a healthy Eifert. With all of the extra weapons and likelihood that Green and Eifert play more games this year, this pass offense is looking up for Andy Dalton - assuming he can stay healthy behind that piecemeal offensive line.

18. Carolina: 15 (WR:10 [1/3/6] TE: 5 [1/2/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
KBenjamin
1
2
3
6
Olsen
1
2
2
5
Ginn
0
1
2
3
CBrown
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Like in his rookie campaign, Kelvin Benjamin put together another season that was rife with disappointment on the field but actually delivered on investment in best ball leagues [1/2/3]. Ted Ginn Jr’s [0/1/2] may give you pause when targeting him as a back half of the draft boom/bust weekly option, but he was [3/0/3] in 2016 and that is a better picture of his 2017 ceiling in New Orleans. Curtis Samuel also has the potential to finish between 2015 and 2016 Ginn. Greg Olsen’s [1/2/2] doesn’t knock you off of your feet, but with some improvement from Newton, he could also approach his 2015 line of [2/1/4] and be a slight value. This passing game could improve on the whole with a return to form from Newton, but Christian McCaffrey will shift some targets to the previously ignored in the passing game running back position.

19. Kansas City: 15 (WR: 7 [1/3/3] TE: 8 [1/3/4])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Kelce
1
3
3
7
Hill
1
2
2
4
AWilson
0
1
0
1
Maclin
0
0
1
1
Harris
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Travis Kelce’s combination of high ceiling games and durability made him the most valuable tight end of 2016 [1/3/3]. Jeremy Maclin’s departure should only shift more targets to Kelce, invest with confidence. Tyreek Hill’s [1/2/2] came mostly in the second half of the season when he was used more in the offense, so there’s room for growth there, but a reproduction of that line would mostly justify his ADP. The Chiefs still remain one of the most unexciting offenses for a wide receiver, in part because of the ascendant threat they have at tight end.

20. Arizona: 15 (WR: 15 [4/2/9] TE: 0)

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Fitzgerald
3
0
5
8
JJNelson
1
1
1
3
Brown
0
1
2
3
Floyd
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Larry Fitzgerald was a hit with his [3/0/5] line. Even with some decline factored in, Fitzgerald is poised to be a value again this year. J.J. Nelson’s [1/1/1] shouldn’t be underestimated in best ball leagues with Michael Floyd gone. John Brown’s [0/1/2] symbolizes the disappointment in his 2016 campaign. His [1/0/5] in 2015 with another four games in the 12-15 range are a more accurate measure of his ceiling. The Cardinals aren’t going to use the tight end position enough to create value, but you knew that already

21. Tennessee: 14 (WR: 10 [2/2/6] TE: 4 [1/2/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
RMatthews
1
2
3
6
Walker
1
2
1
4
Wright
1
0
1
2
Sharpe
0
0
2
2

What I Learned: Rishard Matthews was very valuable at [1/2/3], an identical line to Jarvis Landry and more valuable than DeAndre Hopkins or Allen Robinson in his same division. Delanie Walker’s [1/2/1] represents the only other fantasy performer of any significance last year. His value is trending down with the signing of Eric Decker.. Introduce Decker and Corey Davis to this offense and the weekly ceiling of the passing game (ie Marcus Mariota) should spike. Matthews might not reproduce his 2016, but he’s still a proven performer and he’s being underestimated in some drafts.

22. Baltimore: 14 (WR: 10 [1/5/4] TE: 4 [1/1/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Smith
1
2
2
5
Wallace
0
3
1
4
Pitta
1
1
2
4
Perriman
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Steve Smith’s [1/2/2] and Dennis Pitta’s [1/1/2] being vacated frees up big point totals that could fatten up Mike Wallace [0/3/1] or Jeremy Maclin [0/0/1] or Breshad Perriman [0/0/1]. With no clear tight end option on the horizon, one of these wide receivers should outperform ADP. Wallace has stayed healthier in recent years, Maclin is the most likely to present a lot of high percentage targets, providing everything Kamar Aiken was in his Garcon-esque [0/2/2] in 2016 with six games in the 12-15 range and more. Perriman is the one on the way up in his career and he’ll be the #1 vertical threat. I expect this passing game to produce more in 2017 than it did in 2016, and someone is going to benefit big from that.

23. Denver: 13 (WR: 13 [3/5/5] TE: 0)

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
DThomas
0
4
4
8
Sanders
3
1
1
5

What I Learned: This was this simplest passing game in the league. Emmanuel Sanders [3/1/1] and Demaryius Thomas [0/4/4] accounted for all of the 15+ games in the Broncos pass offense. There should be some improvement with the Mike McCoy reunion, possible offensive line upgrades and a young starting quarterback who is year more into their development. Thomas is over his underreported hip injury from last year, so he is a candidate to put up the same kind of numbers in 2017 as receivers going in the first round.

24. New York Jets: 13 (WR: 13 [1/2/10] TE: 0)

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Enunwa
0
1
4
5
Marshall
1
0
3
4
Anderson
0
0
3
3
Decker
0
1
0
1

What I Learned: Chan Gailey makes some tasty chicken salad. Too bad he’s not still with the team. Good luck John Morton. The Jets had some balance in their passing game with three receivers putting up at least three 15+ point games. Brandon Marshall’s [1/0/3] was a bust at his early ADP, but Quincy Enunwa [0/1/4] and Robby Anderson [0/0/3] were waiver wire finds in a dumpsterfire passing game. The price for Enunwa and Anderson is right, but the Jets could be last on this list next year. You are investing in probably the worst quarterback situation in the league when you buy parts of the Jets passing game.

25. Jacksonville: 12 (WR: 11 [1/4/6] TE: 1 [0/0/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Robinson
1
3
1
5
Lee
0
0
4
4
Hurns
0
1
0
1
Walters
0
0
1
1
JThomas
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Allen Robinson’s [1/3/1] was actually better than I expected and puts him in the top 15 wideouts in 20+ point games. Even though it means counting on Blake Bortles, Robinson’s ADP has come down enough that he’s worth the risk considering the 2016 floor is more valuable in best ball leagues than it felt as we lived it if we invested a first in Robinson. Marqise Lee [0/0/4] was the other notable contributor. Allen Hurns [0/0/1] was down from a very strong [2/2/3] in 2015, but it’s hard to know where the equilibrium between him and Lee will rest if both are healthy. If one is a clear WR2 option, there’s value there even if Bortles doesn’t improve.

26. Los Angeles Rams: 12 (WR: [1/3/7] TE: [0/0/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Britt
1
0
4
5
Austin
0
2
3
5
Quick
0
1
0
1
Kendricks
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Scoff at Goff, but this passing game was better at producing big fantasy weeks in the passing game than you remember. It wasn’t just Kenny Britt [1/0/4] either. Tavon Austin’s [0/2/3] was basically as valuable as Britt in terms of ceiling, but Britt had four 12-15 games to Austin’s one. With the additions on the line, competent offensive coaching, and improvement from Goff, this passing game could build on Robert Woods [1/0/2] from last year in Buffalo and keep Austin (weird) among the best values to bolster your bottom line in best ball leagues.

27. Cleveland: 11 (WR: 10 [3/1/6] TE: 1 [0/0/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Pryor
2
0
5
7
Hawkins
0
1
1
2
Coleman
1
0
0
1
Barnidge
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Terrelle Pryor should get a purple heart for his [2/0/5] in this passing game last year. Kenny Britt imports a [1/0/4] from an equally bad or worse Rams passing game, but Corey Coleman was only good enough to post [1/0/0], so unless Cody Kessler takes a big step forward or DeShone Kizer is a rookie sensation, it’s hard to picture both Coleman and Britt hitting this year. Gary Barnidge fell off a cliff at tight end last year, and neither David Njoku or Seth DeValve will likely be in the game plan as much as Barnidge was, so that could give the top two wideouts a small bump, but this isn’t a place to fish for a big hit unless you think Britt is Pryor’s equal and Coleman will struggle again.

28. Houston: 11 (WR: 8 [0/3/5] TE: 3 [0/1/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Hopkins
0
1
5
6
Fuller
0
2
0
2
Fiedorowicz
0
1
1
2
Griffin
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Brock Osweiler, what hath thou wrought? DeAndre Hopkins’ jaw-dropping [4/4/4] from 2015 ended up plummeting to [0/1/5]. 2017 should be kinder to Hopkins, but maybe not enough justify a low WR1 ADP. Will Fuller V [0/0/2] and tight ends CJ Fiedorowicz [0/1/1] nibbed around the edges of this corpse. Tom Savage or Deshaun Watson should be improvements, but probably not huge ones.

29. Seattle: 11 (WR: 7 [4/2/1] TE: 4 [1/1/2])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Baldwin
3
1
1
5
Graham
1
1
2
4
Lockett
1
1
0
2

What I Learned: Russell Wilson didn’t make this passing game go last year. If Tyler Lockett [1/1/0] is healthy this year, it’s not going to be good news for Doug Baldwin’s somewhat overvalued [3/1/1]. Of course, Wilson should be a better passer as he himself will be healthier, but Jimmy Graham [1/1/2] could also soak up some of the extra upside, along with Paul Richardson Jr, who showed up when Lockett went down. Jermaine Kearse will also steal some targets of value. Some of this name being this low was probably due to Wilson being hurt half of the year, as Baldwin went for [5/2/0] in 2015 and Lockett went for [1/1/3] (and Jermaine Kearse had 3 15-20 point games). Lockett is going at a price where delivering those numbers in 2017 would create a profit. Expect a bounceback from this passing game.

30. Philadelphia: 11 (WR: 5 [0/2/3] TE: 6 [1/2/3])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Ertz
1
2
2
5
JMatthews
0
2
1
3
DGB
0
0
1
1
Agholor
0
0
1
1
Burton
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: A rookie quarterback and one of the worst wide receiver groups in the league isn’t going to generate weekly ceiling in the passing game. Jordan Matthews salvaged an [0/2/1] line but otherwise the wide receiver group was abysmal. Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith will improve the outside group, so Matthews isn’t going to have much of a chance to build on those numbers. Zach Ertz [1/2/2] was a second half of the year stud, but will the volume be there for him with actual viable outside wide receivers? Could Carson Wentz improve enough to grow the pie and support Ertz and Jeffery at their ADP? I’m not sure the Eagles pass offense is where I want to take leaps of faith right now.

31. Buffalo: 10 (WR: 8 [2/0/6] TE: 2 [1/1/0])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Woods
1
0
2
3
Watkins
1
0
1
2
Goodwin
0
0
2
2
Clay
1
1
0
2
Salas
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: Robert Woods [1/0/2] wasn’t chopped liver while Sammy Watkins was out and he can probably generate at least that in the poor Rams offense after surviving his time in Buffalo. Marquise Goodwin [0/0/2] has some poor man’s Taylor Gabriel potential with Kyle Shanahan given the 49ers likely high passing game. Sammy Watkins’ 2015 [3/1/3] shows you what he is capable of when he carries nagging injuries through the season. That alone would justify a pick in the third - ignore his [1/0/1] in a lost 2016.. Watkins is really the only fantasy player this pass offense can support with Charles Clay’s knee not in great shape. It should be a better pass offense than the one in the bad old Rex Ryan years, but it’s the Watkins show.

32. San Francisco: 7 (WR: 6 [0/3/3] TE: 1 [0/0/1])

Player
25+
20-25
15-20
Total
Kerley
0
3
0
3
Streater
0
0
1
1
TSmith
0
0
1
1
Patton
0
0
1
1
Mcdonald
0
0
1
1

What I Learned: And we arrive at the end. Chip Kelly’s pass offense was a fantasy abomination. Somehow Jeremy Kerley mustered a [0/3/0] line, and he’ll be around to benefit from the much higher volume quarterbacks. The pass offense this year will feature Pierre Garcon and look a lot different, but this result does still stand for the possibility when we look at the Jets passing game at the end of 2017.