Fantasy 2011 WR rankings
It is the position of divas, grace and excitement. Wide receivers capture everyone's attention when watching what the NFL game has become: an acrobatic aerial display.
Easy and entertaining to watch, it is still one difficult to nail down in fantasy. It is by far the most volatile position in terms of value, year-to-year and week-to-week.
Sure, Michael Vick and Arian Foster were huge surprises atop the fantasy charts at quarterback and running back, despite not being drafted in many leagues. But the year-to-year shuffle of rankings is far more pronounced and widespread at the wide receiver spot.
The best quarterbacks are near the top every year for five-to-10 years. Running backs can have three-to-five year runs with the elite. Wide receivers tend to be one and done, like the Broncos' Brandon Lloyd is sure to be after leading the position a year ago.
These factors make it the position you should spend the most time scouting and agonizing over, even if you prioritize it third for your fantasy team behind running backs and quarterbacks.
Different fantasy formats also make the position variable in its importance. Two-receiver leagues minimize the position on draft day, because of the depths of the position after the top two tiers.
Then there are the three-receiver formats -- some even with the flex position -- where teams could have as many as four wideouts active on a weekly basis. Yes, the position is deep, but you have to take your pass-catchers a lot sooner there to avoid having to start some of the questionable options in the latter tiers. The position gets real thin after top 25-to-35.
And none of that changes drafts more than whether your league gives a point per reception (PPR). Those formats add 70-100 points to the totals of the elite options, making them as important to your teams as those RBs drafted early and often.
Yeah, everyone can love a showy receiver, but bad scouting and misguided drafting of the position will leave you loathing yours by midseason.
It might be the most-drafted position -- especially in bunches in the middle rounds. Here's how we split the tiers: