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With the adaptation of the NFL becoming a passing league, the wide receiver position is becoming the not only sexier but more efficient pick in fantasy drafts, especially in PPR leagues. The dominance of Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, and Odell Beckham Jr. has given team owners a lot to think about in who they want to draft with their first round pick. Our experts have broken down our picks for the Top 10 receivers and why you should think long and hard about who you want as your primary pass catcher.

All of these picks are congruent on all players starting Week 1 of the NFL season.

 Ryan DyrudTim SchwanRiley CarterLevi LeflerBilly Boynton
1.Odell Beckham Jr.
WR New York Giants
Julio Jones
WR Atlanta Falcons
Antonio Brown
WR Pittsburgh Steelers
Antonio Brown
WR Pittsburgh Steelers
Antonio Brown
WR Pittsburgh Steelers
The numbers are obvious, but the reason I jumped OBJ above Brown, and Jones is because of the simple fact that OBJ is the only true offensive weapon that the Giants have. Sterling Shepard is talented, but still a rookie as the other starting wideout, Victor Cruz is aging and missed all of last season with a calf injury, and Rashad Jennings is projected to be the opening day starter at running back? OBJ should put up huge numbers this year...again.Jones seems to have a love connection with QB Matt Ryan resulting in the most receptions in the league last year with 136. Age doesn't seem to be slowing him down by any means. After leading the league in receptions for two consecutive season, Brown has solidified himself as one of the most productive fantasy wide receivers, especially in PPR leagues. I don't think I need to explain why I have Antonio Brown as the #1 wideout for 2016. 100/1400/10 for Brown is as much a sure thing as anything this year. No explanation needed.
2.Antonio Brown
WR Pittsburgh Steelers
Antonio Brown
WR Pittsburgh Steelers
Julio Jones
WR Atlanta Falcons
Odell Beckham Jr.
WR New York Giants
Julio Jones
WR Atlanta Falcons
Aside from the points indicated above, Brown slid to #2 because of his reliance on the health of QB Roethlisberger. No one can argue the connection between Antonio and Big Ben, but his numbers dropped dramatically when Roethlisberger was out of the lineup. From weeks 4-7 (Roethlisberger injured) Brown averaged 4.25 receptions, 58.75 yards, and a whopping 0 TDs. If Big Ben takes as many hits as he does year in and year out, you could find yourself scrambling on the waiver wire. Tied Julio Jones for most receptions last year. Added 10 TDs to his 136 receptions. Brown is arguably the most talented receiver in the entire league.After tying Antonio Brown for most receptions and also leading the league in receiving yards last season, Jones proves that he is more than just a big physical target and can be relied on as a #1 receiver in any fantasy league.Could surpass Brown as the top WR this year as he has put up at least 90/1300/12 in each of his first 2 seasons. With Norman joining the Redskins in the NFC East this year, we will see if Norman really is a system CB but at the very worst, if Beckham repeats last years performance against Norman, he will only struggle in all of 2 games in 2016. Faces NO and TB twice a year, plus division just lost Josh Norman. #1 in Kyle Shanahan's offense and always top 5 in targets. Fewer options around him than anyone else.
3.Julio Jones
WR Atlanta Falcons
Jordy Nelson
WR Green Bay Packers
Odell Beckham Jr.
WR New York Giants
DeAndre Hopkins
WR Houston Texans
Odell Beckham Jr.
WR New York Giants
Expect another big year out of Julio. Should have a strong rushing attack with DeVonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman returning from injury, but will still be the clear cut number one option in the passing game for Matty Ice. Has the potential to lead the league in receptions for a second straight season. Nelson will be a sleeper this year since he missed all of last season due to injury. Has the ability to be the best receiver in the game if he can stay healthy, especially with number 12 throwing him the ball. After a stellar sophomore season, "OBJ" has proved he is no joke and is a serious threat in this league. Expect him to continue his already remarkable young career. Hauling in 111 catches for 1500 yards and 11 scores is noteworthy. Doing it with Hoyer, Weeden and Yates throwing the ball to you is incredible especially with no running game to speak of. The additions of Lamar Miller and Brock Osweiler will only help Hopkins this year. Year 3 for Eli in McAdoo system, will continue to feed him the ball in different ways. Most explosive player in the game. 4 matches vs DAL and PHI. Has scored 25 TDs in 27 games played.
4.DeAndre Hopkins
WR Houston Texans
Allen Robinson
WR Jacksonville Jaguars
Dez Bryant
WR Dallas Cowboys
Julio Jones
WR Atlanta Falcons
A.J, Green
WR Cincinnati Bengals
Not much to argue with here. Hopkins killed it with an array of bad QBs. Stat line of 111/1,500/11. Even if Osweiler doesn't become a star he is still an upgrade at QB and should be able to heave some long balls Hopkins way. Expect at least a duplicate year, but most likely an increase in production. All this barring Hopkins gets a long term deal and starts week 1.Robinson led the NFL last season with 14 TDs. He is on a very exciting offense with a QB that should continue to get better. In my opinion, Dez is arguably the most physical wide receiver in the league causing nightmares for the DBs covering him. After a devastating foot injury that sidelined him for most the season, expect Dez to come back with a vengeance to prove he is still an elite wideout in the game.When healthy Jones is an easy lock as a top WR in the game. Injuries have him in the past but 2 straight seasons of 15 games played have yielded seasons of 104/1593 and 136/1871. However, his career high in TDs of 10 came back in 2012 which is the reason he falls behind Hopkins on this list. Underrated stud whose team just lost 2 WRs and has an injury prone TE. Offensive Coordinator Jackson split for Cleveland so QB Dalton will have to rely heavily on Green.
5.Demaryius Thomas
WR Denver Broncos
Keenan Allen
WR San Diego Chargers
Jordy Nelson
WR Green Bay Packers
Demaryius Thomas
WR Denver Broncos
Keenan Allen
WR San Diego Chargers
DT is often forgotten in the mix of elite receivers but he has to be one of the most consistent. One of only three receivers to have four straight seasons 90 receptions, 1,300 yards, and at least 6 TDs. Last year was a down year for DT and he still finished 11th overall in receiver scoring (PPR League, 13th in standard scoring). Thomas has vowed to perform even better this year, and if his offseason regiment says anything, he is easily worthy of a first-round pick.Another possible sleeper pick this season because of injury last season that resulted in Allen missing games. With Phillip Rivers at QB, the Chargers throw the ball more than any team in the league, meaning Allen gets a lot of balls thrown his direction. After having the best season of his career (98 receptions, 1,519 yards and 13 TDs), Jordy unfortunately suffered a season ending injury in the preseason that kept him off the field in 2015. He is now back at 100% and with the help of Aaron Rodgers, expect him to regain his rank among the top receivers in the league.If you want consistency look no further than DT. Since becoming a full time starter in 2012, Thomas' worst stat line reads 105/1304/6 which was last year as the Broncos QB unit was the least productive in the league. He also became one of 3 players in NFL history with 4 straight seasons of at least 90 catches and 1300 yards. Don't expect anything less from Thomas this year. He was on pace for 134 catches before injury cut his season short. With and aging Antonio Gates, Allen becomes the top Red Zone target for Phillip Rivers. The Chargers have a knack for always playing from behind, meaning they turn into a very pass heavy team.
6.Brandon Marshall
New York Jets
Odell Beckham Jr.
WR New York Giants
DeAndre Hopkins
WR Houston Texans
A.J. Green
WR Cincinnati Bengals
DeAndre Hopkins
WR Houston Texans
One of the best YAC receivers in the game. Could almost be considered a sleeper standout from last season as he was drafted surprisingly low in most leagues. Finished 3rd in points among receivers in PPR leagues with an average of 21.2 points per week. With Fitzpatrick resigning right before training camp, I fully expect this connection to be even more on point this season. Beckham finished the 2015 season with 13 TDs and 1400 yards receiving. He is still very young and has a ton of room for growth and improvement. Hopkins has proven that he does not need an elite QB to produce big numbers. Last season he put up 111 receptions, 1,521 yards and 11 TDs with mediocre QBs Brian Hoyer, Ryan Mallet, and "others to be named later." Even if Brock Osweiler doesn't pan out, Hopkins is still a for sure fantasy producing receiver. If it wasn't for an injury that held Green out for 4 games in 2014, he may very well have joined Thomas with stats. As long as he stays healthy, expect another 1300 yard, 10 TD season. His unbelievable pace slowed a little the 2nd half of the 2015 season. Osweiler is an upgrade at the QB position but he is still a young QB in a new system. Surrounding talent also makes it easy for teams to double him.
7.Keenan Allen
WR San Diego Chargers
Kelvin Benjamin
WR Carolina Panthers
Allen Robinson
WR Jacksonville Jaguars
Jordy Nelson
WR Green Bay Packers
Dez Bryant
WR Dallas Cowboys
Was on pace for a monster season before injury ended the year for Allen. Averaged 20.2 points per week in the games he played. Plays in a pass heavy offense that is usually playing from behind. Potentially will have the most targets out of everyone on this list. Benjamin is a big body that Cam Newton will love to have back as a red zone target. Could fall in some leagues due to injury last season. Along with his QB Blake Bortles, Robinson also had a magnificent sophomore season (80 receptions, 1,400 yards and 14 TDs). The chemistry shown this past season shows that Bortles will rely on Robinson whenever he can, making him a prime fantasy pick for this year and years to come. After sitting out the entire 2015 season with a torn ACL, Nelson should be ready for another great season. His body should be fully recovered after not taking any hits for a year. Double digit TDs is almost a guarantee for Rodgers' favorite target. Dez is an easy top 5 talent if he and QB Romo can remain healthy for an entire season.
8.Jordy Nelson
WR Green Bay Packers
Jarvis Landry
WR Miami Dolphins
A.J. Green
WR Cincinnati Bengals
Alshon Jeffery
WR Chicago Bears
Allen Robinson
WR Jacksonville Jaguars
Top receiver for arguably the best quarterback in the game. Coming back from a season long injury so there is always a question mark there. If he remains healthy and returns to his 2014 form, expect Pro-Bowl numbers yet again from Nelson.Landry finished the year with over 100 receptions on a team that was trending in the wrong direction with an interim head coach. New system this year and Ryan Tannehill continues to improve as a passer. Green may look freakishly frail and skinny or the NFL, but he continues to prove that he is an elite wideout year in and year out, especially with the help of QB Andy Dalton.Injuries have held Jeffery back in the early part of his career but when healthy Jeffery has proven to be one of the most dangerous WR in the league as he possesses breakaway speed as well as his ability to work in the middle of the field in the short passing game. The Jags passing game percentage is unsustainable for 2016 and Robinson may have a TD regression from last year, but he should catch more that 80 passes this season.
9.A.J. Green
WR Cincinnati Bengals
Brandon Marshall
WR New York Jets
Keenan Allen
WR San Diego Chargers
Dez Bryant
WR Dallas Cowboys
Alshon Jeffery
WR Chicago Bears
Finished 8th in receiver scoring and is always a model of consistency for QB Andy Dalton. Has the ability to blow the game wide open, but also has had a tendency to disappear from some games. With the implementation of a new offensive system, Green will be relied on to be the rock of the offensive production. Marshall had a monster season last year with a genius caveman throwing him the ball. He finished with over 100 receptions and 14 TD. After having an unsatisfactory sophomore season, Allen came out like a bat out of hell with 67 receptions, 725 yards and 4 TDs in the first 8 games of the season. However, the injury bug kept him off the field the rest of the season. If healthy, Allen has proven that he has no problem racking 10+ catches week in and week out. After coming back from injury last year, Bryant struggled to put up big numbers. With an offseason of recovery he should be ready to pick up where he left off, but like the Cowboys team, much of Bryant's success depends on the health of Tony Romo. The addition of Elliot in the backfield should open up the passing game this year regardless of who is starting at QB for the Cowboys any given week. If healthy, watch out. Cutler leans heavily on his favorite pass catcher, and the Bears lost top TE Bennett. Bears defense is very poor as well keeping the focal point on the offense and passing game.
10.Allen Robinson
WR Jacksonville Jaguars
A.J. Green
WR Cincinnati Bengals
Jarvis Landry
WR Miami Dolphins
Brandon Marshall
WR New York Jets
Jordy Nelson
WR Green Bay Packers
Came out of nowhere last season to become the bright spot on anyone's team that drafted him late. Finished 6th in overall scoring with an average of 19 points per game. Playing alongside talented Allen Hurns makes them one of the best receiving duos in the game, but can also give fantasy owners anxiety with who gets majority targets per game. It will be hard to sustain the 14 TDs that he had last year but he should garner more than 80 receptions, thus evening out his fantasy total and making him a top pick. Green had 10 TDs last year even with starting QB Andy Dalton missing time with injury. The offense plays with the design to get him the ball. Some may question this choice for my #10 wideout, so let me explain. Landry had 110 receptions and 1,157 yards last season along with 4 TDs. Landry also contributed with a special teams return TD along with one rushing TD which shows his versatility in multiple aspects of the game. Expect Landry to be the sole focus of the offense in Miami this season. No matter who starts at QB though, Marshall remains one of the most targeted receivers in the league. Even with his high drop percentage, the old adage more=more will help Marshall look to repeat another 100 catch season.Finished as a WR2 in 2014. He is the favorite target of the best passer in the game.
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Ryan Dyrud

Author Ryan Dyrud

Founder and CEO of SportsAlDente.com. Grew up in Denver with a passion for all sports and an emphasis on the NFL. Moved to Los Angeles where I graduated from Long Beach State with a degree in Leisure Services (Yes the Van Wilder degree). My opinions are my own, but they should be yours too.

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