2021 Top Wide Receivers

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Targets and TDs Fantasy Football Wide Receivers

The 2022 NFL Draft is complete, the 2022 NFL Schedule (thoughts on the 2022 NFL Schedule) has been released! The fantasy football community is eager to start the upcoming 2022 Fantasy Football Season! Before that happens, I want to give a look at the Wide Receivers and some key stats for the position from the 2021 Fantasy Football Season. I think it may be helpful as we look forward towards our Wide Receivers of preference in 2022. Especially if we can compare previous years to see any trends.

Keep in mind a players Ability, Availability, Opportunity, Consistency, Advantage/Upside and Matchup. Feel free to review our position leaders in Targets and Touchdowns for the 2021 Fantasy Football Season as they are players that were most likely a top player at their position last year. I believe both statistics are helpful in finding opportunity for Fantasy Football production!

2021 Top Wide Receiver – Targets

PlayerTeamReceptionsYardsTotal TDsTargetsGames PlayedTargets/Game
Cooper KuppLA1451,947161911711.24
Davante AdamsGB1231,553111691610.56
Diontae JohnsonPIT1071,16181691610.56
Justin JeffersonMIN1081,61610167179.82
Stefon DiggsBUF1031,22510164179.65
D.J. MooreCAR931,1574163179.59
Tyreek HillKC1111,2399159179.35
Keenan AllenLAC1061,1386157169.81
Marquise BrownBAL911,0086145169.06
Darnell MooneyCHI811,0554140178.24
Jaylen WaddleMIA1041,0156140168.75
Brandin CooksHOU901,0376134168.38
Terry McLaurinWAS771,0535130177.65
D.K. MetcalfSEA7596712129177.59
Michael PittmanIND881,0826129177.59
Mike WilliamsLAC761,1469129168.06
Ja'Marr ChaseCIN811,45513128177.53
Hunter RenfrowLV1031,0389128177.53
Chris GodwinTB981,1035127149.07
Jakobi MeyersNE838662126177.41
Deebo SamuelSF771,4056121167.56
Marvin JonesJAX738324120177.06
CeeDee LambDAL791,1026120167.50
Amon-Ra St. BrownDET909125119177.00
Mike EvansTB741,03514114167.13

Above are your Top 25 Wide Receivers in Targets for the 2021 NFL Season. If you can find a Wide Receiver that has some rushing yards along with their receiving yards, it just feels like sneaky additional yardage. At the very least it gives that player a slight edge with opportunity! Referencing some history with this Targets category Targets WR – 2019 Regular Season and 2021 Wide Receivers give an idea of what we anticipated going into previous seasons.

2021 Top Wide Receiver – Touchdowns

Using the above yearly Touchdowns rankings I was looking from one year to the next to see how many of the previous years wide receivers made the following year list. As you follow the colors (Grey – 2015, Green – 2016, Red – 2017, Blue – 2018, Grey – 2019 and Electric Blue 2020) it helps to pick out who stayed on the list from the previous year. In 2016, 5 wide receivers from 2015 made it. In 2017, 6 wide receivers from 2016 made the Top 20 list. While in 2018, 7 wide receivers from 2017 made it. For 2019, 10 wide receivers from 2018 made the Top 20 list. In 2020, 10 wide receivers from 2019 made the list and they were joined by 5 rookie Wide Receivers (noted with the yellow block beside their name)! In 2021, 12 wide receivers from 2020 made the list.

Referencing some history with the Touchdowns category Wide Receiver TDs – 2020 Outlook and 2021 Wide Receivers gives you some look at what we anticipated going into previous seasons.

2021 Top Wide Receiver – Receiving

PlayerTargetsReceptionsReceiving YardsRushing YardsTotal Yards
Cooper Kupp1911451,947181,965
Justin Jefferson1671081,616141,630
Davante Adams1691231,55301,553
Ja'Marr Chase128811,455211,476
Deebo Samuel121771,4053651,770
Tyreek Hill1591111,239961,335
Stefon Diggs1641031,22501,225
Tyler Lockett107731,17591,184
Diontae Johnson1691071,161531,214
D.J. Moore163931,157481,205
Mike Williams129761,14601,146
Keenan Allen1571061,13801,138
Chris Godwin127981,103211,124
CeeDee Lamb120791,102761,178
Tee Higgins110741,09101,091
Michael Pittman129881,082441,126
Darnell Mooney140811,055321,087
Terry McLaurin130771,053121,065
Hunter Renfrow1281031,03831,041
Brandin Cooks134901,037211,058
Mike Evans114741,035101,045
Jaylen Waddle140104101531,018
Marquise Brown14591100851,013
Christian Kirk1037798211993
D.K. Metcalf129759676973

The chart above is nice because so often we hear about the Receiving Leaders at the Wide Receiver position. Since over the years more often than not, the Wide Receivers just caught the football. That is certainly something to keep in mind but not the only thing. Depending on the type of league you have, carries and rushing yards could be very beneficial. Deebo Samuel and Tyreek Hill both added over 95 yards rushing to their yearly totals last year. These stats may not always be seen looking at Receiving Leaders each year at the Wide Receiver position.

The chart can be re-sorted by category to help you see of the Top 25 Receiving Leaders in 2021, who had other opportunities in the rushing game as well. Those Wide Receivers may turn out to be a little more helpful for you depending on your league and settings. I am certainly a fan of players at positions that do a little bit more (ie. Running Backs that get a few more Receptions, Wide Receivers who get a few more Rushing Yards and Quarterbacks who can get a few more Rushing Yards) throughout the year as they may be valued more in your league. They are not as obvious, but areas to be aware of when going into your 2022 Drafts. Referencing some history with Rushing Yards, 2021 Wide Receivers gives an idea of what we anticipated going into last season.

2021 Top Wide Receivers Final Thoughts

The 2022 Fantasy Football Season is getting closer as the summer goes along. Much will happen from now until the start of the season. Be flexible and look for the value when drafting your Wide Receivers this year. Most value will come from Targets, Touchdowns and Yards that a Wide Receiver can accumulate through the course of the season. If you have the opportunity to draft a Wide Receiver that has a receiving floor with some rushing upside, I think you would be smart to make that selection.

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Targets and TDs Fantasy Football

Find players that will have: Ability – Availability – Opportunity – Consistency – Advantage/Upside – Matchup

If your players are on an offensive team that can get many Targets and Touchdowns, you know I would be interested in them! Statistics courtesy of The Football Database, a great resource for your NFL players statistics. If you enjoyed the article, please share it with others (via the social media links).

Missed any recent posts?!, check them out below as you get your mind focused on fantasy football opportunities!

I hope everyone continues to stay safe and healthy! Enjoy the journey throughout the 2022 Fantasy Football Season!

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