Fantasy Football Rankings Week 16: Wide Receiver

Fantasy football owners are used to surprise inactives toward the end of the season as teams fall out of playoff contention, so no one will be caught off guard if Julio Jones (hamstring) or Kenny Golladay (hip) remain out this week. However, Michael Thomas (ankle) landing on the IR late last week seemingly came out of nowhere, and he obviously won’t be included in our Week 16 fantasy WR rankings. Chances are, he’ll be joined by at least a few more notable wide receivers as we get closer to the weekend.

As always, there are plenty of viable WR options this week, but some big names are facing tough matchups. DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett are facing the Rams, and after both were limited last time these teams faced each other (especially Metcalf), fantasy owners might be at least a little worried about both lineup staples. Calvin Ridley (@ Chiefs), D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson, and Curtis Samuel (@ Washington), Stefon Diggs, Cole Beasley, and John Brown (@ Patriots), and A.J. Brown and Corey Davis (@ Packers) also have tough matchups on paper, but with the possible exception of some of the Panthers receivers and John Brown, all have been so consistent that they’re still must-starts. It’s also worth noting that with Stephon Gilmore (knee) likely out, the matchups for all Bills receivers become much more favorable.

WEEK 16 PPR RANKINGS: Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

Going a little deeper, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Chase Claypool, and Diontae Johnson (vs. Colts), Marquise Brown (vs. Giants), Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton (@ Ravens), Jakobi Meyers (vs. Bills), and DJ Chark (vs. Bears) also have tough matchups. It will be tough to sit the Steelers’ trio given the amount of targets they usually get, but they’ve all had consistency issues, so explore your options.

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WEEK 16 STANDARD RANKINGS: Quarterback | Running back | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

If you’re looking for sleepers, Rashard Higgins (@ Jets), Marquez Callaway (vs. Vikings), Jalen Reagor (@ Cowboys), Sammy Watkins (vs. Falcons), and Darnell Mooney (@ Jaguars), stand out. Going a bit deeper, Donovan Peoples-Jones (@ Jets), Denzel Mims and Breshad Perriman, (vs. Browns), Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson (vs. Falcons), Josh Reynolds (@ Seahawks), Allen Lazard and Marquez Valdes-Scantling (vs. Titans), and Chad Hansen (vs. Bengals) have boom-or-bust upside, but you probably don’t want to take a chance with any of the latter group with your season on the line. (Update: Marvin Hall will be Cleveland’s No. 1 receiver after the rest of the Browns’ receiving corps was placed on the COVID list.)

Ultimately, more potential sleepers will emerge based on who’s active and who isn’t. If Julio Jones (hamstring) is out again, Russell Gage (@ Chiefs) will have value despite a tough matchup. If DeVante Parker (hamstring) is out again, Lynn Bowden (@ Raiders) will be a solid starter, especially in PPR leagues. If Keenan Allen (knee) or Mike Williams (back) miss time for the Chargers, Tyron Johnson (vs. Broncos) would be in play. There will be more situations like this as inactives are announced, so pay attention and be ready to pounce on the waiver wire.

Note: Check back all week leading up to kickoff, as we’ll continue to update our WR rankings based on the latest news and injuries.

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These rankings are for standard, non-PPR leagues.

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