Hello, fellow Dynasty leaguers! In this series I will be going through the top-48 WRs in Dynasty, providing stats and insight on them. The WR market can be hard to pick apart because there are so many players in so many situations and so many factors in play. Here I will try to help make it easier by giving my thoughts on some players I find interesting and maybe it can help you navigate the market and find some values. When considering WR Dynasty value there are three main things I look at: a path to accruing value, immediate projectable production, and value insulation. These three things can be applied to every player and I use them often to compare who I value more. To do this I will be using BulletProof ADP and separating the players into tiers. Let’s dive right in with the first tier.
Tier 1 – The Elite, Young Alphas
This tier consists of just two players, Justin Jefferson, and Ja’Marr Chase. These guys are the elites of the elite, the young alphas that should be in the running for WR1 overall year in and year out for the next decade. There is not much interesting to talk about here except which one should we be taking first. The market would make it seem like that choice is pretty obvious, Justin Jefferson’s ADP is three spots over Chase and I rarely see Chase selected first. Is this correct? I do not think so. I would prefer Ja’Marr Chase for two main reasons. The first is that Chase has been right on par with Jefferson in terms of their career experience, even outperforming him. As rookies they were on par, both scoring 18.7 PPR ppg. But as sophomores, we saw Chase put up a 20.2 PPR ppg season compared to Jefferson’s 19.4. I don’t see any reason we can’t expect a further explosion in year three from Chase as well, like we just from Jefferson. The second reason is simply that one WR has an aging QB and an unknown situational future, while the other has one of the best young passers in the game, Joe Burrow for the rest of his career. When picking between these two, highly-elite assets we need to split hairs to make a decision. For me, it comes down to Burrow and knowing Chase is safe for the next decade on a team favored by online sports betting companies to make a deep playoff run.
Tier 2 – The Young Very Goods (and Waddle)
For the rest of these tiers, I made some charts to help compare the WRs in the tier, I will go over that now. This chart shows each player’s 2022 stats and advanced metrics that I think help provide some context behind their value. The first column is just the player’s name and the second is their ADP according to the Bulletproof link I posted earlier. Next is their age according to the WR stats on BulletProofFF. The next column is their games in which they played 50%+ of the snaps. Next, is the player’s raw PPG throughout the whole season, followed by that is the player’s PPG over only the games that they played 50%+ of the snaps. Doing this as a one-off thing when comparing players causes issues, but since I am going to adjust everyone’s PPG by the same method I think it can be very insightful.
Next is a player’s ‘Boom Rate’ or how often they were a weekly WR1, for example in 2022 A.J. Brown was a weekly WR1 in 41% of his games. Paired with that column is the player’s ‘Bust Rate’ which is the rate at which they scored under 10 PPR ppg in a week. The next column is target share, which is just a player’s targets divided by the pass attempts of the team. Following this is expected points per game (XPPG) this takes a player’s opportunities, where they occur on the field, and other factors to get a baseline for what we should expect a player to score in a given week. Do this for the season and you get a points-per-game metric. I like this stat because it can help identify which players are over-performing, under-performing, or performing appropriately relative to expectation.
The next few are a bit simpler, they are just targets per game (Tar/G), touchdowns per game (TD/G), and receptions per game (R/G). The next two stats are pure efficiency metrics and have no reliance on team volume, they help describe a player only when they played so they avoid any missed time. The first is targets per route run (T/RR), this is essentially the target rate and this tells you how often a player was targeted when they run a route. For example, A.J. Brown was targeted on 24% of his routes. The second is, yards per route run (Y/RR) this is a player’s total yards divided by their routes run. The next metric is yards per team pass attempt (Y/TPA), this tells you how involved a player was in their passing offense and it helps adjust for the passing volume of a system. If a player was involved, regardless of how many passes their team threw, this number will be high.
The last metric is average depth of target (ADOT) this just tells you how far down the field a player is being targeted, usually a larger number is better but we will see a couple of examples where a low number is just fine, specifically Cooper Kupp. Next is ESPN Open Grade, which is essentially an overall rating telling you how good a person was a getting open. You can think of it like a PFF separation grade or a generic film grade almost. Lastly, we have the player’s QB, this just helps identify situation and potential projectable production.
I have them sorted by their ADP, I have also color-coded the metrics to help make them more digestible. Dark green is the best, dark red is the worst, and white is the median if it applies. These distinctions are also made only within each tier, not among the position as a whole. So something red in this tier could be green in another tier. I also highlighted the most relevant column headers as green to let you know what to pay attention to most. Now we can talk about players.
I think CeeDee Lamb and A.J. Brown should be the clear top two in this tier. They are both littered with green boxes, produce well, and know how to get open. These guys are young studs. Garrett Wilson is an interesting case study for me. He is being valued right with Lamb and Brown even though he only had his rookie season and it also was not anything spectacular. It is hard to judge Wilson off some of these stats because of how bad his QB situation was last year but we can see he scored under his XPPG which is interesting. The XPPG mark should account for the situation and a talented player should be able to hit or exceed expectations. His targets per route run and yards per route run are also not entirely impressive. I do believe in Wilson as a talent and think Rodgers will help a ton, but I think Wilson is a bit pricey at this cost relative to guys like AJB and Lamb who are still young that we have already seen produce elite numbers.
Amon-Ra St. Brown is my favorite WR in this tier. He missed a few games to injury which caused a large discrepancy between his PPG and adjusted PPG. He also has a very low bust rate, this paired with his high target share and XPPG marks make him an attractive receiver that also carries a high upside. The Lions’ offense was scoring a lot in 2022, but a lot of their points went to the RB position. Last season the Lions’ RB group as a whole was the highest-scoring of any of the 32 teams in the league. If this regresses to the mean there will be a lot more scoring and reception opportunities for ARSB in 2023 and beyond. He is my buy in this tier.
I do not see why Olave and Wilson are almost a full round different in ADP. They both had relatively successful seasons for rookies and showed elite flashes at times for sure. They both had about 13.4 adjusted PPG, but Olave had a higher target share, T/RR, and Y/RR. So I don’t get it. Olave was arguably better, is also not a good situation. This makes Olave another guy I am a fan of drafting in this tier at cost.
Here we have the first player I refuse to draft in this tier, Jaylen Waddle. Let’s look at the target shares in this tier; 29%, 25%, 28%, 28%, 21%, 26%. One of these things is not like the other and it is Jaylen Waddle. Waddle is known as a Boom-Bust player but in reality, his Boom and Bust rates are equal! I want my elite, WR1, second-round startup pick to not be losing me the same amount of games that he is winning for me. The distribution should be more similar to what we see from A.J. Brown, CeeDee Lamb, and ARSB.
My favorite buy in this tier is St. Brown, I also do like selecting A.J. Brown and CeeDee Lamb at cost. I am fading Wilson and taking him if he falls to the mid-second, I like Olave at, or slightly above cost. And then Waddle is just a complete avoid for me. I rank this tier: CeeDee Lamb, A.J. Brown, ARSB, Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, and Jaylen Waddle. This series will continue starting with the next tier: Tyreek Hill, Tee Higgins, DeVonta Smith, Stefon Diggs, Cooper Kupp, Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Drake London, and D.K. Metcalf.
Wow, you read all the way through! Thank you, I appreciate you using your time to enjoy my content. If you would like to talk to me about my article or ask me any generic dynasty or trade questions. You can find me on Twitter @ChrisMiles1017, DFF Draft Director. Shoot me a DM; they are always open. Come join the #DFFArmy, where I provide #Dynasty, #Redraft, and #Analytics content for @DFF_Dynasty. Thank you so much!
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