Readers returning from previous years probably remember receiver matchups being posted. This is the first one for this season.
I use Football Outsiders’ Defense vs. Receiver types chart to determine these rankings. As suggested on that post, I use the yards allowed to the position as opposed to the DVOA ranking.
There are a few caveats here. They also specify that their definition of a team’s No. 1 wide receiver and No. 2 wide receiver is somewhat fluid, meaning it may be Brandin Cooks one week and Willie Snead the next.
That can lead to some bad plays, but you’ll get that with almost any predictive metric, especially in fantasy football. Football Outsiders and DVOA have helped me more than they’ve hurt me in the past.
I did my best to try to figure out the hierarchy of depth charts, but there are a lot of questionable players in the receiving ranks this week. This list was created Thursday morning and will not be updated, so, as always, check player news at a site like Rotoworld to make sure a player is in the starting lineup or is at least supposed to get their normal share of the work.
Wide receiver 1 matchups
|Odell Beckham Jr.||NYG||PHI||BYE||STL|
|Willie Snead||NO||ATL||Allen Robinson||JAX||HOU|
|Steve Smith/Kamar Aiken||BAL||SF||Randall Cobb||GB||SD|
|Kendall Wright||TEN||MIA||Jarvis Landry||MIA||TEN|
|Jeremy Maclin||KC||MIN||Calvin Johnson||DET||CHI|
|Anquan Boldin||SF||BAL||Demaryius Thomas||DEN||CLE|
|Julian Edelman||NE||IND||Brandon Marshall||NYJ||WAS|
|Percy Harvin||BUF||CIN||Ted Ginn Jr.||CAR||SEA|
We go right to an injured player. Odell Beckham Jr. is questionable and is not expected to practice on Thursday. Steve Smith, who has broken ribs, is another player who we might consider if we knew he was playing.
Wide receiver 2 matchups
|Charles Johnson||MIN||KC||Stevie Johnson||SD||GB|
|Allen Hurns||JAX||HOU||Leonard Hankerson||ATL||NO|
|Danny Amendola||NE||IND||Ryan Grant||WAS||NYJ|
|Albert Wilson||KC||MIN||Brandin Cooks||NO||ATL|
|Marquess Wilson||CHI||DET||Corey Brown||CAR||SEA|
I can’t really recommend starting Charles Johnson in any matchup until we see something out of him, but Torrey Smith and Danny Amendola make sneaky plays. Marquess Wilson has been playing like a No. 1 for the Bears. If Alshon Jeffery comes back this week, he may see fewer targets, but have more space to roam.
Slot/bench wide receiver matchups
|Jamison Crowder||WAS||NYJ||Chris Conley||KC||MIN|
|Roddy White||ATL||NO||Lance Moore||DET||CHI|
|Martavis Bryant||PIT||ARI||Michael Floyd||ARI||PIT|
|Andre Caldwell||DEN||CLE||Kenny Stills||MIA||TEN|
|Mohamed Sanu||CIN||BUF||Taylor Gabriel||CLE||DEN|
|Stefon Diggs||MIN||KC||Brian Tyms||NE||IND|
Jamison Crowder impressed last week and, on paper, has a great matchup this week. However, according to one article I read he’s going to face Buster Skrine, one of the best in slot coverage. Football Outsiders and DVOA say differently. If you’re starting Crowder you’re probably dealing with bye week or injury issues anyway, so you may not have a choice. Just understand there’s a lack of clarity here.
I’ll have a bunch of Dwayne Harris this week in daily fantasy.
Tight end matchups
|Tight ends/start||TM||OPP||Tight ends/sit||TM||OPP|
|Jacob Tamme||ATL||NO||Jimmy Graham||SEA||CAR|
|Darren Fells||ARI||PIT||Vernon Davis||SF||BAL|
|Greg Olsen||CAR||SEA||Delanie Walker||TEN||MIA|
Jacob Tamme led the Falcons in receiving yards, catches and targets last week. Julio Jones is expected to play. I’m not sure how hobbled he’ll be. I’m taking a chance on Tamme in a couple season long leagues and daily leagues.
That concerns me a bit because I’m not a big fan of playing too many players from the Thursday night games in daily fantasy leagues. Short week, not enough rest or game-planning.
Running back receiving matchups
|Receiving RBs/start||TM||OPP||Receiving RBs/sit||TM||OPP|
|Anthony Dixon||BUF||CIN||Chris Ivory||NYJ||WAS|
Not only does C.J. Anderson have a good rushing matchup, the Browns are also horrible at stopping pass-catching backs. Ronnie Hillman usually fills that role, but he’s banged up and may not be 100% for the game.
This receiving ranking is another reason why I’ll probably have a Devonta Freeman–Mark Ingram pairing or two this week. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see C.J. Spiller pop a long touchdown, like that 80-yard game-winner a couple weeks ago.
It’s never fair of opponents when elite do-it-all running backs like Le’Veon Bell and Arian Foster get top-shelf receiving matchups.