Even though 36 wide receivers were selected in the 2021 NFL Draft, there are still undrafted prospects worth monitoring for fantasy football purposes. Things need to break almost perfectly for an undrafted free agent. It requires a combination of skill and a path to opportunity for these players to carve out playing time early in their careers. Even though the deck can seem stacked against them, we see players emerge every year after going undrafted and shocking fantasy players everywhere.
Sage Surratt, Wide Receiver, Detroit Lions
The Lions spent a fourth-round draft selection on USC wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown but the cupboard has been nearly bare for the team at the wide receiver position as of late. In recent years Detroit has lost Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones and Golden Tate to free agency. The Lions made short-term additions with Breshad Perriman and Tyrell Williams but neither player has been a pillar of consistency throughout their careers. The skillset Surratt will give him a chance to be a red zone contributor early on in his career if he can crack the final roster. However, the big-bodied, contested-catch machine could easily find himself latching on with a group that lacks long-term contributors at the position.
Cade Johnson, Wide Receiver, Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks have not been shy about their desire to run the football consistency but with a future Hall of Fame quarterback on the roster, Cade Johnson provides some intrigue. Seattle has their top two options locked in with DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett and the Seahawks used a second-round selection on D’Wayne Eskridge but from there, things open up. Johnson's top-notch route running and elite quickness could be a lethal combination out of the slot for Russell Wilson. In addition, his ability as a kick returner can certainly help land him a spot on the 53 man roster.
Josh Imatorbhebhe, Wide Receiver, Jacksonville Jaguars
Athletic upside alone makes Imatorbhebhe worth the gamble as an undrafted free agent. He certainly needs to develop as a player at the next level to find consistent success and a spot on the final roster but the traits are all there. There are some players ahead of him currently on the depth chart. Still, DJ Chark will be an unrestricted free agent in 2022, Marvin Jones Jr. has a potential out in his contract after 2021 and there are few other players on the Jaguars roster who have the type of upside Imatorbhebhe has. He’s an explosive athlete with the ability to jump through the roof and could find himself catching passes from newly drafted signal-caller Trevor Lawrence in the not-so-distant future.