After reviewing running backs last time, to continue this trend, I will review the wide receiver position. Wide receiver is a crucial position in fantasy, especially in points-per-receptions leagues. This year produced lots of phenomenal fantasy wide receivers. Some of them met expectations, while others exceeded them. There was a handful of positives at the wide receiver position, with every positive comes a negative, which is where the duds come in. Surprisingly, many people might not know who the studs and duds were. Well, here I am to share their names. Here are the fantasy wide receiver studs and duds of the 2020 season.
Fantasy Wide Receiver Studs and Duds
The first stud of wide receiver studs and duds is Davante Adams who is regarded by many as the best at his position. Davante Adams has always been recognized as one of the best fantasy wide receivers, but he exceeded preseason expectations greatly. Not only did he lead all wide receivers in fantasy points with 358.4, but he also missed two games.
Receiving yards are crucial for fantasy scoring and Davante Adams had 1,374 yards, but what separated him in scoring from others is that he had 115 receptions and an impressive 18 touchdowns. Adams was virtually uncoverable as he averaged a stellar 25.6 points per game while scoring over 15 points in 10 out of 13 games.
Adams was a beast this year, and there is no reason that he won’t be one next year.
The second stud of wide receiver studs and duds is Stefon Diggs. During the offseason, Diggs was traded to the Buffalo Bills. That trade lowered Diggs’ fantasy expectations in the eyes of many people. There were concerns about how he would share receptions with the two other talented receivers on the Bills.
Additionally, at that time Josh Allen hadn’t yet played his MVP-caliber season, therefore people believed that poor quarterback play, would lead to a lesser production. All those statements turned out to be false.
Stefon Diggs immediately formed a connection with Josh Allen who had greatly developed, leading to Diggs being a stud. This season Stefon Diggs led the league in not one but two categories. He had the most receptions with 127 and he had a league-leading 1,535 receiving yards.
Fantasy-wise, Diggs had 328.6 points which were the third-highest among wide receivers. His best fantasy performance this year turned out to be the most important for fantasy. Many people had their fantasy championship in Week 16 and they relied on Diggs to get them a win. He came up big with 145 receiving yards, three touchdowns, and a mind-blowing 41.5 fantasy points.
With his fantastic season, there is a slim chance that Stefon Diggs doesn’t make it out of the first round next year.
Talk about a player smashing expectations. Justin Jefferson did exactly that. He was the fifth wide receiver taken in this past draft with the 22nd selection. Since Jefferson was a rookie and he was playing opposite of the talented Adam Thielen, the expectations weren’t that high for him.
He was expected to get anywhere from 600-900 yards while being a low-end wide receiver two or a flex player for fantasy. He proved all these people wrong as he had a record-breaking season that earned him a pro bowl.
The most impressive achievement of his very young career is that he broke the rookie receiving record with 1,400 receiving yards. This a record that is not broken very often and it might be 15 more years until it is broken.
Justin Jefferson was a steal in the fantasy draft. He scored a total of 274.2 points which ranked sixth among receivers and he averaged 17.6 points a game. Jefferson scored over 10 points in nine out of his 16 games played. That stat might be poorly considered to other wide receivers, but let’s remember, he was a rookie.
1,400 plus receiving yards is hard to get in two consecutive seasons, but that doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t be drafted in the first four rounds.
The last stud of fantasy wide receiver studs and duds is Calvin Ridley. There was no question Ridley is talented, but he was in the shadow of Julio Jones. He was drafted around the third and fourth round making him be a low-end wide receiver one, high-end wide receiver two. Now, after the season, Ridley is considered to be a trustworthy wide receiver one for fantasy, but most importantly he has asserted himself as a future star for not only the Atlanta Falcons but the league too.
Going into a review, Ridley had 90 catches for 1,374 receiving yards along with nine touchdowns. In fantasy, Ridley recorded 281.5 fantasy points which were the fifth-highest among wide receivers along with averaging 18.8 fantasy points a game. Lastly, some more evidence to exemplify how outstanding Ridley’s season was, is that in eight of his 15 games played, he recorded over 100 receiving yards.
Calvin Ridley has proven himself, and will most definitely be a player drafted in the early rounds. That concludes the studs section of wide receiver studs and duds.
The first dud of fantasy wide receiver studs and duds is a future Hall of Famer Julio Jones. Julio Jones is still a great player, but his production this season wasn’t worthy of him being drafted in the first round of many fantasy drafts. Injuries forced him to miss seven games this season.
With his limited action, he had 771 receiving yards and 146.1 fantasy points which is very low for a first-round pick. It is not Julio’s fault that he was injured, but as a first-round pick in fantasy, there are high standards and he didn’t live up to them. There is a positive to pull away from this season. In his nine games, Julio averaged 16.2 fantasy points which were very solid.
It remains a question if Julio Jones will be drafted in the first round next year, not only due to injuries but his fellow teammate, Calvin Ridley is an emerging star that might take away some of his targets.
The final dud of fantasy wide receiver studs and duds is Michael Thomas. After a historical 2019 season, Michael Thomas had lots of hype surrounding him.
Not only was he drafted in the first round of fantasy drafts, but he was drafted in the top five in many leagues. Thomas most certainly disappointed those who drafted him. Injuries and disciplinary issues caused him to miss nine games. In his short season, Thomas only had 83.9 fantasy points and zero touchdowns.
The more concerning thing is that Thomas did very little with the opportunities he was given. He only averaged 12 points a game, while in four out of his seven games he scored less than 15 points. As a top-five and first-round pick, he has to be averaging a minimum of 15 fantasy points almost every game.
Michael Thomas is still a very skillful player, but his fantasy stock has dropped heavily. It might drop more, depending on what the New Orleans Saints do at the quarterback position after Drew Brees‘ retirement. For now, Michael Thomas is not a trustworthy first-round pick, but there is still lots of time until the next fantasy season.