Fantasy Football 2013: Ranking the Top 20 Wide Receivers

1 of 21

Top 20 Wide Receivers For The 2013 Fantasy Football Season

Football
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

With the NFL becoming more of a passing league than ever before, there is now an incredible amount of great pass catchers. When it comes to fantasy football, we now have the deepest wide receiver corps that I have ever seen. You can get No. 1 receiving options on a good offense in the middle-to-late rounds of your draft. The position is ridiculously deep, but there are still some elite guys that rise above the rest.

The biggest problem with wide receivers in fantasy football is consistency. The position relies too much on other players and even if the player is the No. 1 option, he may only see three or four balls thrown his way in a certain game. It is frustrating, but if a defense double- or triple-covers a receiver, the smart move for a quarterback is to throw in another direction, no matter how talented a receiver is.

While the wide receiver position is very inconsistent, there are exceptions. Guys like Calvin Johnson and A.J. Green are the best of the best. These guys are the best players on their respective offenses, so they become focal points of the offensive game plan. Guys like Megatron will always get their targets and you can expect elite fantasy points from them week in and week out. This is why I recommend taking one of the elite wide receivers if you can get your hands on them.

The passing game has really taken off the past few seasons. This has allowed for a very deep quarterback and wide receiver pool. On elite offenses, there are multiple potential starting fantasy receiver options. Teams like the Denver Broncos and Green Bay Packers have a ton of legitimate fantasy pass catchers that will be fighting for targets all season long. That is a big question in fantasy football right now, do you take one of the receivers on an elite offense that will have to fight for targets? Or do you take a No. 1 option that will get targets on a lesser offense? That is for you to decide, but I am going to try and help you here with my top 20 rankings of the wide receiver position for 2013 fantasy football.

The one notable exception to my list is Percy Harvin, who is struggling with a hip injury. Harvin is a dynamic talent, but he cannot seem to stay healthy. This hip injury may need surgery which would probably hold Harvin out for the rest of the season. We will reportedly know more about the injury on Tuesday, but it is not looking good and I am going to leave him unranked until we hear more.

Daniel is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @D_Schmelzer and add him to your network on Google.

2 of 21

20. Antonio Brown

Brown
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

With Mike Wallace leaving via free agency and Heath Miller rehabbing from a knee injury, somebody has to catch passes from Ben Roethlisberger. Antonio Brown will now be the No. 1 receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has great speed, runs good routes and does not drop the ball. If Brown can stay healthy, he should have a great season for the Steelers and his fantasy owners.

3 of 21

19. Pierre Garcon

Garcon
Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Pierre Garcon is a guy that I am targeting this year. When he was healthy last season, he put up great numbers for the Washington Redskins. Injury is definitely a risk with Garcon, but he showed great rapport with quarterback Robert Griffin III and he is a dynamic talent. Garcon will be a risky pick, but if he stays healthy, he will be very productive.

4 of 21

18. Danny Amendola

Amendola
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Danny Amendola has some huge shoes to fill with the New England Patriots. He was brought in as the replacement for Wes Welker, but I think he will now take on a different role. Amendola is not just a slot receiver like many people think, he is bigger and faster than Welker and his skills work on the outside as well. Amendola will be a big-time target for Tom Brady this season if he can just stay healthy. Health is always the question with Amendola.

5 of 21

17. Reggie Wayne

Wayne
Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Reggie Wayne showed that he still had it last season. Wayne had 106 receptions for 1,355 yards and five touchdowns. Quarterback Andrew Luck showed great confidence in his veteran wide receiver and I think that will continue. I do think that Wayne's numbers will take a little bit of a hit this season because new offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton will look to run the ball more. Wayne is still a nice fantasy receiver, but I do not expect the same kind of numbers as last season.

6 of 21

16. Hakeem Nicks

Nicks
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

As always, the question with Hakeem Nicks is health. If the New York Giants' wide receiver can just stay on the field, then he will be a very productive fantasy receiver. The problem is that Nicks always has nagging injuries to hold him back. He is a dynamic talent that will produce if healthy, but I just cannot see him playing 16 games this season.

7 of 21

15. Victor Cruz

Cruz
Andrew Mills/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Victor Cruz has been one of the top fantasy receivers since he burst onto the scene in 2011. He has good talent, I just wonder whether his touchdowns are sustainable. Touchdowns have a bit of randomness to them and I hate to draft players that rely on them like Cruz does. He puts up solid yardage numbers, but a bulk of his fantasy production comes from TDs. Unless I am getting great value on him, I will not be owning Cruz in many leagues this season.

8 of 21

14. Marques Colston

Colston
Matt Stamey-USA TODAY Sports

Marques Colston is a top receiving option on a great offense. The pure amount of options that Drew Brees has to throw to makes Colston a little scary, but the guy has been productive. Colston is a bit inconsistent, but sometimes he gives you those games that single-handedly wins you weeks. I like Colston to continue to be productive in an elite offense this season.

9 of 21

13. Dwayne Bowe

Bowe
Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Now, here is a guy that I love this season. Alex Smith is the best quarterback that Dwayne Bowe has ever played with. Bowe has always put up solid numbers, but he has never had a legitimate quarterback throwing him the ball, now he does. Also, new head coach Andy Reid is known as a guy that loves to throw the ball. I think that Bowe is in for a break-out season in 2013 and I am targeting him in every fantasy draft that I do.

10 of 21

12. Jordy Nelson

Nelson
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

In only 12 games last season, Jordy Nelson had 49 receptions for 745 and seven touchdowns. He is one of the top receiving options for one of the best quarterbacks in the league. If he can just stay on the field, I think that Nelson will have a huge fantasy impact this season.

11 of 21

11. Andre Johnson

Johnson
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Andre Johnson is a guy that is starting to slip in my eyes. I just cannot take him in the third round like he has been going. Johnson still has some life in the tank, but I think he is being overvalued. The Houston Texans are a run-first offense and I think that DeAndre Hopkins takes some targets away from Johnson. Unless he starts to fall, I will not be owning Johnson this season.

12 of 21

10. Vincent Jackson

Jackson
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Vincent Jackson is a big, physical and fast wide receiver that finally started to get some consistency last season. The knock on Jackson has always been the fact that he will disappear at times. Last season, Jackson was a stud pretty much all the way through the season. I think he will continue that this year and I will be looking to draft him for the right price.

13 of 21

9. Randall Cobb

Cobb
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Randall Cobb is a guy that everybody loves in fantasy. He is probably Aaron Rodgers' favorite target and he has the talent to take it to the house from anywhere on the field. Cobb is a very exciting player and I would love to have him on my teams this season, I just am not willing to put him in the "elite" category just yet like some people are. Cobb will have to fight for targets this season and while Rodgers does love to throw to him, he is known as a QB who will spread the ball around.

14 of 21

8. Roddy White

White
Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports

Roddy White is as consistent as they come. He puts up big-time numbers year after year and I do not see that ending just yet. Yes, he will have to battle for targets on an offense that is loaded with talent, but quarterback Matt Ryan will always look for White. I would be happy taking White in the fourth round and I have seen him fall there many times.

15 of 21

7. Larry Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I think Larry Fitzgerald has a big comeback season in 2013. The Arizona Cardinals now have a legitimate quarterback in Carson Palmer, who is the best QB that Fitzgerald has played with since Kurt Warner. Fitzgerald is still extremely talented and he is the obvious No. 1 option for the Cardinals.

16 of 21

6. Demaryius Thomas

Thomas
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Even though the Broncos have a ton of good receiving options, I think Demaryius Thomas is head and shoulders above the rest. He is a dynamic big-play receiver that can do a lot of different things. He has good size and great speed that he uses to stretch the field. Peyton Manning is still an amazing quarterback and I think that Thomas will continue to grow with Manning under center. The sky is the limit for Thomas and I would love to have him on my fantasy teams.

17 of 21

5. Julio Jones

Jones
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Inconsistency is a concern with Julio Jones, but he is a very talented receiver in a very good offense. Jones is one of the best deep threats in the NFL, as he uses his elite size, speed and jumping ability very well. Jones is a dynamic talent that will continue to get more and more targets. He is a guy that I will be targeting this season.

18 of 21

4. Brandon Marshall

Marshall
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

While I think that Brandon Marshall will still be a strong fantasy receiver, I do not think he will get the kind of targets that he got last season. Quarterback Jay Cutler seemed to look for Marshall on every single play in 2012. He forced the ball to him many different times. While this is great for Marshall's fantasy value, it is not the most effective way for the Chicago Bears to score points. I think that new head coach Marc Trestman will look to spread the ball around the field a little bit more and I think that will cut into Marshall's value. He is still an elite fantasy option, but I recommend tempering expectations a little bit.

19 of 21

3. A.J. Green

Green
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Green is an absolute beast that will continue to be the top receiving option on his team. Earlier, I said that I like to draft one elite WR because they are always consistent. In a position that is very inconsistent, it is nice to own a player like Green who will put up numbers week in and week out.

20 of 21

2. Dez Bryant

Bryant
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

I absolutely love Dez Bryant this season. He really started to come on late last year and I think that he will continue that into this season. Bryant has always had the talent, but maturity has been an issue. All reports have been that Bryant has completely changed and is now focused on helping the Dallas Cowboys win a Super Bowl. Bryant is an elite talent and nothing seems to be holding him back. I expect huge things out of him this season.

21 of 21

1. Calvin Johnson

Johnson
Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

Johnson is the best wide receiver in the NFL and it really is not even close. Last season, while he set the NFL record for receiving yards, he did not score as many touchdowns as usual. I think we will see Johnson's touchdowns rise considerably this year as he is too talented to keep out of the end zone. Johnson is one of the safest picks in the first round and I would be just fine drafting him that early.

1 of 21

Top 20 Wide Receivers For The 2013 Fantasy Football Season

Football
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

With the NFL becoming more of a passing league than ever before, there is now an incredible amount of great pass catchers. When it comes to fantasy football, we now have the deepest wide receiver corps that I have ever seen. You can get No. 1 receiving options on a good offense in the middle-to-late rounds of your draft. The position is ridiculously deep, but there are still some elite guys that rise above the rest.

The biggest problem with wide receivers in fantasy football is consistency. The position relies too much on other players and even if the player is the No. 1 option, he may only see three or four balls thrown his way in a certain game. It is frustrating, but if a defense double- or triple-covers a receiver, the smart move for a quarterback is to throw in another direction, no matter how talented a receiver is.

While the wide receiver position is very inconsistent, there are exceptions. Guys like Calvin Johnson and A.J. Green are the best of the best. These guys are the best players on their respective offenses, so they become focal points of the offensive game plan. Guys like Megatron will always get their targets and you can expect elite fantasy points from them week in and week out. This is why I recommend taking one of the elite wide receivers if you can get your hands on them.

The passing game has really taken off the past few seasons. This has allowed for a very deep quarterback and wide receiver pool. On elite offenses, there are multiple potential starting fantasy receiver options. Teams like the Denver Broncos and Green Bay Packers have a ton of legitimate fantasy pass catchers that will be fighting for targets all season long. That is a big question in fantasy football right now, do you take one of the receivers on an elite offense that will have to fight for targets? Or do you take a No. 1 option that will get targets on a lesser offense? That is for you to decide, but I am going to try and help you here with my top 20 rankings of the wide receiver position for 2013 fantasy football.

The one notable exception to my list is Percy Harvin, who is struggling with a hip injury. Harvin is a dynamic talent, but he cannot seem to stay healthy. This hip injury may need surgery which would probably hold Harvin out for the rest of the season. We will reportedly know more about the injury on Tuesday, but it is not looking good and I am going to leave him unranked until we hear more.

Daniel is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @D_Schmelzer and add him to your network on Google.

2 of 21

20. Antonio Brown

Brown
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

With Mike Wallace leaving via free agency and Heath Miller rehabbing from a knee injury, somebody has to catch passes from Ben Roethlisberger. Antonio Brown will now be the No. 1 receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has great speed, runs good routes and does not drop the ball. If Brown can stay healthy, he should have a great season for the Steelers and his fantasy owners.

3 of 21

19. Pierre Garcon

Garcon
Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Pierre Garcon is a guy that I am targeting this year. When he was healthy last season, he put up great numbers for the Washington Redskins. Injury is definitely a risk with Garcon, but he showed great rapport with quarterback Robert Griffin III and he is a dynamic talent. Garcon will be a risky pick, but if he stays healthy, he will be very productive.

4 of 21

18. Danny Amendola

Amendola
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Danny Amendola has some huge shoes to fill with the New England Patriots. He was brought in as the replacement for Wes Welker, but I think he will now take on a different role. Amendola is not just a slot receiver like many people think, he is bigger and faster than Welker and his skills work on the outside as well. Amendola will be a big-time target for Tom Brady this season if he can just stay healthy. Health is always the question with Amendola.

5 of 21

17. Reggie Wayne

Wayne
Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Reggie Wayne showed that he still had it last season. Wayne had 106 receptions for 1,355 yards and five touchdowns. Quarterback Andrew Luck showed great confidence in his veteran wide receiver and I think that will continue. I do think that Wayne's numbers will take a little bit of a hit this season because new offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton will look to run the ball more. Wayne is still a nice fantasy receiver, but I do not expect the same kind of numbers as last season.

6 of 21

16. Hakeem Nicks

Nicks
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

As always, the question with Hakeem Nicks is health. If the New York Giants' wide receiver can just stay on the field, then he will be a very productive fantasy receiver. The problem is that Nicks always has nagging injuries to hold him back. He is a dynamic talent that will produce if healthy, but I just cannot see him playing 16 games this season.

7 of 21

15. Victor Cruz

Cruz
Andrew Mills/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Victor Cruz has been one of the top fantasy receivers since he burst onto the scene in 2011. He has good talent, I just wonder whether his touchdowns are sustainable. Touchdowns have a bit of randomness to them and I hate to draft players that rely on them like Cruz does. He puts up solid yardage numbers, but a bulk of his fantasy production comes from TDs. Unless I am getting great value on him, I will not be owning Cruz in many leagues this season.

8 of 21

14. Marques Colston

Colston
Matt Stamey-USA TODAY Sports

Marques Colston is a top receiving option on a great offense. The pure amount of options that Drew Brees has to throw to makes Colston a little scary, but the guy has been productive. Colston is a bit inconsistent, but sometimes he gives you those games that single-handedly wins you weeks. I like Colston to continue to be productive in an elite offense this season.

9 of 21

13. Dwayne Bowe

Bowe
Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Now, here is a guy that I love this season. Alex Smith is the best quarterback that Dwayne Bowe has ever played with. Bowe has always put up solid numbers, but he has never had a legitimate quarterback throwing him the ball, now he does. Also, new head coach Andy Reid is known as a guy that loves to throw the ball. I think that Bowe is in for a break-out season in 2013 and I am targeting him in every fantasy draft that I do.

10 of 21

12. Jordy Nelson

Nelson
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

In only 12 games last season, Jordy Nelson had 49 receptions for 745 and seven touchdowns. He is one of the top receiving options for one of the best quarterbacks in the league. If he can just stay on the field, I think that Nelson will have a huge fantasy impact this season.

11 of 21

11. Andre Johnson

Johnson
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Andre Johnson is a guy that is starting to slip in my eyes. I just cannot take him in the third round like he has been going. Johnson still has some life in the tank, but I think he is being overvalued. The Houston Texans are a run-first offense and I think that DeAndre Hopkins takes some targets away from Johnson. Unless he starts to fall, I will not be owning Johnson this season.

12 of 21

10. Vincent Jackson

Jackson
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Vincent Jackson is a big, physical and fast wide receiver that finally started to get some consistency last season. The knock on Jackson has always been the fact that he will disappear at times. Last season, Jackson was a stud pretty much all the way through the season. I think he will continue that this year and I will be looking to draft him for the right price.

13 of 21

9. Randall Cobb

Cobb
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Randall Cobb is a guy that everybody loves in fantasy. He is probably Aaron Rodgers' favorite target and he has the talent to take it to the house from anywhere on the field. Cobb is a very exciting player and I would love to have him on my teams this season, I just am not willing to put him in the "elite" category just yet like some people are. Cobb will have to fight for targets this season and while Rodgers does love to throw to him, he is known as a QB who will spread the ball around.

14 of 21

8. Roddy White

White
Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports

Roddy White is as consistent as they come. He puts up big-time numbers year after year and I do not see that ending just yet. Yes, he will have to battle for targets on an offense that is loaded with talent, but quarterback Matt Ryan will always look for White. I would be happy taking White in the fourth round and I have seen him fall there many times.

15 of 21

7. Larry Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I think Larry Fitzgerald has a big comeback season in 2013. The Arizona Cardinals now have a legitimate quarterback in Carson Palmer, who is the best QB that Fitzgerald has played with since Kurt Warner. Fitzgerald is still extremely talented and he is the obvious No. 1 option for the Cardinals.

16 of 21

6. Demaryius Thomas

Thomas
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Even though the Broncos have a ton of good receiving options, I think Demaryius Thomas is head and shoulders above the rest. He is a dynamic big-play receiver that can do a lot of different things. He has good size and great speed that he uses to stretch the field. Peyton Manning is still an amazing quarterback and I think that Thomas will continue to grow with Manning under center. The sky is the limit for Thomas and I would love to have him on my fantasy teams.

17 of 21

5. Julio Jones

Jones
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Inconsistency is a concern with Julio Jones, but he is a very talented receiver in a very good offense. Jones is one of the best deep threats in the NFL, as he uses his elite size, speed and jumping ability very well. Jones is a dynamic talent that will continue to get more and more targets. He is a guy that I will be targeting this season.

18 of 21

4. Brandon Marshall

Marshall
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

While I think that Brandon Marshall will still be a strong fantasy receiver, I do not think he will get the kind of targets that he got last season. Quarterback Jay Cutler seemed to look for Marshall on every single play in 2012. He forced the ball to him many different times. While this is great for Marshall's fantasy value, it is not the most effective way for the Chicago Bears to score points. I think that new head coach Marc Trestman will look to spread the ball around the field a little bit more and I think that will cut into Marshall's value. He is still an elite fantasy option, but I recommend tempering expectations a little bit.

19 of 21

3. A.J. Green

Green
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Green is an absolute beast that will continue to be the top receiving option on his team. Earlier, I said that I like to draft one elite WR because they are always consistent. In a position that is very inconsistent, it is nice to own a player like Green who will put up numbers week in and week out.

20 of 21

2. Dez Bryant

Bryant
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

I absolutely love Dez Bryant this season. He really started to come on late last year and I think that he will continue that into this season. Bryant has always had the talent, but maturity has been an issue. All reports have been that Bryant has completely changed and is now focused on helping the Dallas Cowboys win a Super Bowl. Bryant is an elite talent and nothing seems to be holding him back. I expect huge things out of him this season.

21 of 21

1. Calvin Johnson

Johnson
Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

Johnson is the best wide receiver in the NFL and it really is not even close. Last season, while he set the NFL record for receiving yards, he did not score as many touchdowns as usual. I think we will see Johnson's touchdowns rise considerably this year as he is too talented to keep out of the end zone. Johnson is one of the safest picks in the first round and I would be just fine drafting him that early.


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