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In recent years, we have seen the NFL Draft produce copious amounts of very good to great wide receivers.  I fully expect the position to flex again in 2024 after seven WRs were drafted in the first round and another four went in the second round.  If you are a returning reader of my column(s), then you know full well I have no issue with bold predictions that go against the grain.  I am confident you do not need to be told that Justin Jefferson, Ja’Marr Chase, and Davante Adams will be top-flight WRs.  You come here for predictions like my 2024 “make Puka Nacua your final draft selection in all leagues.”  Let’s see if I can help set you up for success with a bold prediction about this crop of young WRs. 

I predict the rookie foursome of Marvin Harrison Jr. (ARI), Malik Nabers (NYG), Rome Odunze (CHI), and Xavier Legette (CAR) will be outscored in fantasy by the group of Brian Thomas (JAX), Xavier Worthy (KC), Ladd McConkey (LAC), and Adonai Mitchell (IND).  My analysis will be short and sweet.  I am here to plant an early WR flag versus boring you with too many stats from college.

Post draft, I feel it is incumbent upon me to update my 2024 rankings for the WR position.  You will see a couple of the Round 1 & 2 WRs in this section of my column, as they are on my radar to discuss later.  Both Ricky Pearsall and Keon Coleman snuck into the end of the first round/beginning of the second round, and both feel like slight reaches to me.  I want to see the Brandon Aiyuk situation shake out prior to providing too much of an opinion on Pearsall.  Also, since you are here @Razzball, check out the QB rankings updated by my buddy @Derek_Favret, and the latest Running Back (Fantasy Football Running Back Rankings (razzball.com) and Quarterback (Fantasy Football Quarterback Rankings – Free Agent Frenzy (razzball.com) articles and rankings for free over at Home – Razzball Fantasy Football.

 

Top Wide Receiver Draft Picks

  • Player: Marvin Harrison Jr.
  • Drafted By: Arizona Cardinals
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR37 (WR54)

Clear WR1 in the desert with a QB that has proven to hyper focus on his favorite WR.  I believe Harrison will emerge in training camp as that player for Kyler Murray.  There will be targets a plenty for the first WR selected, but I do not think he can carry the foursome in this column.  Keep reading to hear why I feel that way.

  • Player: Malik Nabers
  • Drafted By: New York Giants
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR42 (WR61)

Awful offensive situation with a QB, in Daniel Jones, that has not proven effective at the NFL level.  The Giants always feel as if they have 13 WRs without a true WR1.  I love the player as much as I hate the situation for him.

  • Player: Rome Odunze
  • Drafted By: Chicago Bears
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR57 (WR64)

Too many mouths to feed in Chicago. Might be the first time I have ever thought that, and I know it is the first time I have ever typed that.  Odunze is a fantastic route runner, and he will be a solid NFL WR at some point soon.  I am not sure that is 2024 with the likes of DJ Moore and Keenan Allen demanding 150+ targets each while Cole Kmet and D’Andre Swift eat, too.

  • Player: Xavier Legette
  • Drafted By: Carolina Panthers
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): Not Ranked in Top 60 (WR106)

Two words: Bryce Young.

  • Player: Brian Thomas Jr.
  • Drafted By: Jacksonville Jaguars
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR53 (WR92)

Now, onto the guys I think will overperform their NFL and fantasy draft slots.  Thomas paired nicely with Nabers at LSU, and some “experts” preferred Thomas over Nabers.  I am not going that far except for the situation each landed during the draft.  I much prefer Thomas’ QB over Nabers’, and for that reason, I have Thomas on the positive side of this prediction.  Sure, Trevor Lawrence is just a higher paid version of Gardner Minshew (GO COUGS and look at their stats if you think I am crazy), and they are not wrong, but I think I prefer Sunshine over Danny Dimes all day.

  • Player: Xavier Worthy
  • Drafted By: Kansas City Chiefs
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR60 (WR110)

HC Andy Reid continues to load up this HOF resume by winning Super Bowls.  I think some take for granted how wonderful Reid and his staff are at drafting the right player at the right time.  The Chiefs clearly see something special in Worthy.  I am confident they do not move up to 28th overall to draft the Longhorns speedster without having a plan to use him, a lot.  Add in a guy named Patrick Mahomes and I love this opportunity for Worthy.

  • Player: Ladd McConkey
  • Drafted By: Los Angeles Chargers
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR54 (WR102)

Who is Justin Herbert going to throw to other than McConkey?  I’ll wait.  Keenan Allen = Gone.  Mike Williams = Gone.  Austin Ekeler = Gone.  Gerald Everett = Gone.  Joshua Palmer = Not Him.  Quentin Johnston = Bust Candidate.  Hayden Hurst = Will Never Be Him.  I have McConkey penciled in for an easy 180 targets and truly believe he can eclipse 100 receptions as a rookie.  As you scoff to yourself, remember, this a part of a larger bold prediction.

  • Player: Adonai Mitchell
  • Drafted By: Indianapolis Colts
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): WR59 (WR104)

With AR15 back in the mix I am excited to see Michael Pittman Jr claim the WR1 crown in Indy while Adonai Mitchell supplants the underwhelming Josh Downs.  Give me the athletic, game-breaker for the fourth WR on my list of players to win my little fantasy football bold prediction parlay.

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the full list of my Top 60 WRs:

 

Download Table as CSV
Note: Filters and sorting in the table below apply to the output

# Name Team
CeeDee Lamb DAL
Amon-Ra St. Brown DET
Justin Jefferson MIN
Tyreek Hill MIA
Ja’Marr Chase CIN
Puka Nacua LAR
DJ Moore CHI
Brandon Aiyuk SF
A.J. Brown PHI
Davante Adams LV
Chris Olave NO
Garrett Wilson NYJ
Deebo Samuel SF
Mike Evans TB
Michael Pittman Jr. IND
Keenan Allen CHI
Cooper Kupp LAR
Nico Collins HOU
Drake London ATL
Rashee Rice KC
DK Metcalf SEA
DeVonta Smith PHI
Tee Higgins CIN
Stefon Diggs HOU
Calvin Ridley TEN
Jaylen Waddle MIA
Mike Williams NYJ
Zay Flowers BAL
Jordan Addison MIN
Jayden Reed GB
George Pickens PIT
DeAndre Hopkins TEN
Christian Kirk JAX
Amari Cooper CLE
Tank Dell HOU
Courtland Sutton DEN
Marvin Harrison Jr. ARI
Terry McLaurin WAS
Marquise Brown KC
Christian Watson GB
Diontae Johnson CAR
Brian Thomas JAX
Jakobi Meyers LV
Jaxon Smith-Njigba SEA
Romeo Doubs GB
Rashid Shaheed NO
Tyler Lockett SEA
Brandin Cooks DAL
Gabe Davis JAX
Jameson Williams DET
Rome Odunze CHI
Chris Godwin TB
Malik Nabers NYG
Ladd McConkey LAC
Curtis Samuel BUF
Khalil Shakir BUF
Rome Odunze CHI
Jerry Jeudy CLE
Adonai Mitchell IND
Xavier Worthy KC

 

How high are you willing to draft rookie WRs in your 2024 leagues?  Let’s discuss in the comments.

 

Look for my articles right here each week and be sure to follow me on Twitter/X @Stiles08.  Also, tune into our Tuesday @RazzballNFL podcast on YouTube from 6pm PST/9PM EST as I join @BobbyLamarco, @SkyGuasco, and @Derek_Favret to discuss all things fantasy football.  Come for the analysis.  Stay for the laughs.

 

-Stiles-