I don't think I've ever seen a wide receiver better than Calvin Johnson. But then, I also can't remember a time with so many young pass-catchers on the verge of delivering huge seasons. There's plenty of fantasy value to be had among wide receivers this year. Read on to see who ranks first in our Top 10 Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings...
1. Calvin Johnson, Lions
Well, if you need a lengthy explanation as to why Calvin Johnson is the best wide receiver in fantasy football, then you don’t follow the NFL very closely. Calvin is a beast, the Lions throw a ton, everyone double-covers him but they still can’t stop him.
2. Victor Cruz, Giants
This might be too high for some, but I’m a big believer in Cruz. Not only did he finish third in the NFL receiving yards last year, but he barely played in the first two weeks of the season. Eli Manning always loves throwing to those quick slot-type receivers, and I can’t imagine Cruz having anything less than an All-Pro year.
3. Wes Welker, Patriots
Welker’s numbers will probably drop slightly now that superb deep threat Brandon Lloyd has joined the Patriots (you know, this Brandon Lloyd). But he’s still Tom Brady’s favorite target, and he’s still awfully tough for defensive backs to cover.
4. Andre Johnson, Texans
Johnson is an amazing talent, he just can’t stay healthy. He’s as good as anyone not named Calvin Johnson if he stays in the lineup for 16 games, but that’s a big if for a guy who’s missed 12 games over the past two seasons.
5. Hakeem Nicks, Giants
Nicks is working his way back from a major foot injury, though it looks like he’ll be ready to play by the end of the exhibition season. Eli Manning might prefer Victor Cruz as his top target, but there will be enough throws for Nicks as well. When healthy, he’s one of the best at coming up with the big catch downfield.
6. Jordy Nelson, Packers
Nelson blew up last year, becoming Aaron Rodgers go-to target when the Packers get down around the end zone (which is quite often). So far in exhibition games and in reportedly in practices as well, he’s been absolutely unstoppable. He could very well finish the year as fantasy’s No. 2 wide receiver.
7. Julio Jones, Falcons
Jones was slowed by injuries for most of his rookie year, but he’ll be healthy entering 2012. Even teammate Roddy White, who’s put up huge numbers in recent years, has admitted that he’ll take a back seat to Jones this season. The Falcons are going to more of an aggressive passing offense, and Jones should absolutely light it up this season.
8. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
There’s no questioning Fitzgerald’s talent, who’s as good as anyone outside of Calvin Johnson. But the Cardinals are still trying to figure out their quarterback situation. Fitz will be catching passes from either Kevin Kolb, who has done nothing but struggle since being traded to the Cardinals, or the raw John Skelton.
9. Percy Harvin, Vikings
With Adrian Peterson working his way back from a knee injury, Harvin will be the focal point of the Vikings offense for most, if not all, of this season. He’s proven to be a dangerous playmaker who can turn short passes into big gains.
10. Greg Jennings, Packers
Jennings is another guy who was hampered by injuries last season, and the emergence of Jordy Nelson as a star will cut into Jennings’ statistics. But he’s still one of the best deep threats in the NFL, and he’s part of an explosive offense with an MVP-caliber quarterback throwing to him.