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The Premier Value Top-End Wide Receiver

Is there a receiver that is undervalued and being overlooked? Now may be the time to buy into the Ravens wide receiver.

What if I told you that on any number of your fantasy teams, you were lucky enough to be rostering the sixth-best wide receiver in PPR formats through five weeks? How about if that same receiver was playing on an offense that through five weeks is sixth in the entire NFL in passing yards per game? Most importantly, what if I told you that this very same player was coming off the board as the 52nd wide receiver drafted in startup drafts back in June of 2021? 

I'm sure you'd be thinking to yourself what a massive steal you have on your hands, and you'd unquestionably be correct. The question that comes to the forefront afterward is simple. Is this sort of success and production sustainable? 

Marquise "Hollywood" Brown has stepped up massively this season, and today we're going to dive a bit deeper into why he is the perfect target to go and acquire for your dynasty teams now. That's right - it's not too late for you to make a move for Brown despite his scorching hot start to the 2021 season.

The pace that Brown is on currently would shatter his career-high marks from one season ago, even if this were still a 16 game season. Add in the fact that there's one extra game now, and Brown is on pace for 129 targets, 95 receptions, 1,533 yards and 17 touchdowns. Of course, there is bound to be some regression in some of those numbers, especially the touchdowns, but there's no reason to believe that Brown cannot continue as the Ravens' top pass catcher for the remainder of the season and beyond. He's currently tied with tight end Mark Andrews to lead the team in targets with 38. 

Common talking points against Brown as of late have been that he will lose work to rookie wide receiver Rashod Bateman with his return from injury looming, but there is no reason both players can't coexist with one another.

It seems far more likely that Bateman can come in and assume some of the work Sammy Watkins has seen, especially if Watkins does miss time with his current hamstring injury.

From the Ravens' perspective, the ideal scenario is that both of their young wide receivers complement one another, with Brown continuing to thrive in a downfield role while Bateman takes on some of the intermediate and underneath work. 

When looking at the numbers on Brown's productivity to date, it's hard to find a place where he suffers, even with Bateman eventually eating into the target share. Per Player Profiler, he is ninth in completed air yards, ninth in deep targets and eighth in receiving yards across the entire NFL. 

His usage in the deep passing game is encouraging enough on its own but when combined with his usage in the red zone is where it's very easy to get excited about him both in the short and long term. He's number 12 in the NFL in red-zone targets despite mostly being known for being a deep threat.

The most attractive part of all? The cost to acquire Brown is likely significantly less than other young ascending wide receivers. Per Dynasty Trade Calculator, the value is nearly comparable between Brown and a 2022 late first-round rookie pick. Trade calculators, of course, are not the be-all-end-all, but the fact of the matter is that plenty of your league mates are likely looking at them for some point of reference. 

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If you have a roster ready to contend for a championship but still need a bit more youth on your roster, Brown is the perfect target. He is a young, still ascending wide receiver who looks to have settled into his role as the lead receiver on an offense with an exceptional young quarterback whom himself looks to have taken the next step as a passer. 

Trade for Marquise Brown before it's too late. There is still a window before some other managers realize exactly whom they're rostering and begin asking for the moon a season from now. He just turned 24 years old in June of 2021 and looks to be just entering his prime. Trading a late first-round pick in 2022 for Brown now or constructing a package built around a second-round pick in 2022 and an aging veteran such as Adam Thielen will look like a steal in the future. 

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