It’s important to understand that this year’s class might be a bit different than prior years. The NFL’s offseason is almost certainly going to be contracted, and many teams will probably follow the New Orleans Saints in canceling all offseason activities. What does this mean for the new rookies? Less work, less practice, and uphill battle to learn the new offensive system. I wouldn’t be surprised if we all have to wait at least eight weeks for the rookies to start performing. Keep that in mind before your dynasty rookie drafts or making trades.
- Henry Ruggs III – Not only was Ruggs the first WR off the board in the NFL draft, but he also has one of the best landing spots. The Las Vegas Raiders have a major need for another offensive weapon. In 2019 Derek Carr’s best receiving weapon was TE D. Waller. The Raiders’ top fantasy WR was T. Williams at WR47, not good. With the lack of receiving options in Las Vegas, Gruden will design all sorts of plays to get the speedster the ball quickly with slants, close to the line of scrimmage with screens, and of course, the deep stuff. Ruggs has the potential to start for your team in the first month of the season.
2. Jerry Jeudy – At first glance, you might not like the landing spot or offense with the Denver Broncos, but if Jeudy is the player everyone thinks he is none of this is going to be an issue. Jerry pairs well with C. Sutton as well, allowing Sutton to be the bigger receiving option and Jeudy the crisp, underneath route runner – who can also play outside. Even if Drew Lock isn’t a franchise QB, we’ve seen plenty of WR be fantasy studs without a great QB (Hopkins, Green). Like the Raiders with Ruggs, they need more playmakers on their offense. Jerry might not be written into the gameplan as much as Ruggs will be from day one, but he has a great shot at being a WR 2 within the first 4-6 weeks of the NFL season.
3. CeeDee Lamb – Lamb still lands into the number three spot because he’s the next best WR by a big margin, and we’re not going to be cute with selecting a WR with a better landing spot than Lamb. This is precisely why the Dallas Cowboys drafted him in the first round, he was too good to pass up. With all the being said, this is a dynasty list. If it were a redraft list, this order might be different. We think in the long run, Lamb will excel at the next level, and it’s important to be on good offenses, who score more and stay on the field more. Offenses in the NFL nowadays can support up to 2-3 WR, shouldn’t be any different from the Cowboys.
4. Justin Jefferson – Minnesota didn’t waste time replacing Stefon Diggs on their team. Jefferson was a great move type WR for the champion LSU Tigers. For Minnesota, he will be able to step in day one to catch passes, both from the slot and outside. He’s great in space and should have plays designed for him. The item that worries be a little is the dedication to the run the Vikings have; this can cause major inconsistency issues for Jefferson. The Vikings will have games where Cousins only completes 20 passes, and there is only so much to go around in those games. He might be a day one starter for the NFL, but it might take a little bit before he is consistent enough to start for your fantasy team. Also, don’t underestimate the age and beginning to break down of A. Theilen, giving Jefferson another plus for the longterm.
5. Tee Higgins – A potential first-rounder, Higgins fell into a great spot. Zac Taylor, who is an offensive mind coach, gets his own trio in Burrow, Mixon, and Green (future to be Higgins). I think we can see more action from Higgins a lot earlier than most people think, the 2020 season. For that to happen, all we need is AJ Green not to be the same player and/or get injured again. Green missed an entire season of the NFL, and I don’t think he’s the WR he was even three years ago. Higgins will be the great opposite player to Boyd, who can play the underneath. Higgins will play more on the boundary, he’s a rangy, rebounding type of receiver, also great for the red zone and we know that’s great for scoring points in fantasy. If Burrow is the real deal, watch out for Higgins.
Conclusion – This class of wide receivers is great. There were six receivers off the board in the first round of the NFL draft, and a total 13 receivers within the first two rounds, wow. It can often take time for some receivers to get acclimated to a new offense, and that will likely be even more the case in 2020 with the uncertainty of the offseason programs.