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An early look at possible breakout WR's for 2012/13


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#1 TS Garp

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 08:20 PM

For the purposes of this thread, a breakout will be considered a Top 25 finish in 2012/13. Also, a player only qualifies as a possible breakout candidate if he's never finished as a Top 25 WR before (so Torrey Smith doesn't count; nor does Mario Manningham, who was WR17 in 2010). The popular choices: * Demaryius Thomas (WR56 in 2011) -- Strong finish, huge playoff performance, and upgrade from Tebow to Manning makes him a popular breakout pick. * Darrius Heyward-Bey (WR28 in 2011) -- 26/433/2 over last 4 games and showed real chemistry with Palmer. * Robert Meachem (WR44 in 2011) -- Deep threat gets chance to be go-to WR in San Diego. Showed flashes in 2011: * Denarius Moore (WR39 in 2011) -- Had 3 games over 100 yards and 7/195/1 in final 2 games. Great big-play ability. * Eric Decker (WR35 in 2011) -- Good nose for end zone but faded as Thomas emerged and only went over 100 yards once. * Malcom Floyd (WR32 in 2011) -- Very quietly had his best season and put up 24/455/4 in his last 5 games. Health is always the issue but could be a sneaky pick w/everyone focused on Meachem. * Michael Crabtree (WR33 in 2011) -- Will depend on how Manningham/Moss are worked into offense and whether that frees up Crabtree or limits him. Will come cheap as most have soured on him. * Doug Baldwin (WR40 in 2011) -- Came out of nowhere to turn some heads. Gets a big upgrade at QB but has some competition from Tate and Rice. * Titus Young (WR46 in 2011) -- Lots of competition here but fortunately also a lot of balls to go around. Could easily surpass Burleson as the #2 WR in Detroit and could take a step forward this season. * Damian Williams (WR51 in 2011) -- Was inconsistent but looked very good at times filling in for Britt (who should be back for the beginning of the season). * Greg Little (WR53 in 2011) -- Disappointed fantasy owners and dropped way too many passes but did get better as the season went on and should see more targets this season. * David Nelson (WR48 in 2011) -- Started strong and then faded, like his team. Looks to be more valuable in PPR leagues. Dark horses: * Brandon LaFell (WR57 in 2011) -- Great sleeper candidate as he develops more chemistry w/Newton. Smith will be a year older and LaFell should surpass Naanee. * Brian Hartline/Davone Bess (WR72/WR64 in 2011) -- Hard to get too excited about the situation but they're #1A & #1B as of today. * Golden Tate (WR74 in 2011) -- Became more productive as the season went on and Flynn will help. * Harry Douglas (WR77 in 2011) -- Has some big play ability but a very crowded situation with two elite WR's and HOF tight end on the same team. * Danario Alexander (WR78 in 2011) -- Departure of Lloyd opens the door and Bradford should get back on track this season. A situation to watch. * Vincent Brown (WR91 in 2011) -- Showed amazing ability at times. Meachem signing holds him back a little but will still see more targets, especially as Floyd & Gates are often injured. * Emmanuel Sanders (WR98 in 2011) -- Became the forgotten man in offense w/the emergence of Brown but looked good in Denver playoff game and retirement of Ward opens the door just a little for him. * Chaz Schillens (WR99 in 2011) -- He's always had talent. In a potentially great situation with the Jets but needs to stay on the field. * Jonathan Baldwin (WR109 in 2011) -- Physically gifted and should get a lot more looks this season. Could surprise. * Donald Jones (WR113 in 2011) -- Season ended early because of injury. Bills have been trying to bring in another WR, but, if they can't, Jones will likely get another opportunity. * Leonard Hankerson (WR129 in 2011) -- Was showing real promise right before going down for the year. Addition of Garcon and Morgan clouds picture, but it's worth monitoring Hankerson's return from injury. * Donnie Avery (WR139 in 2011) -- Speed demon gets a chance to play more in Indianapolis. Can make big plays when healthy. Notes on a few omissions: * James Jones/Randall Cobb -- very clim chance of any real breakout barring injury to Jennings or Nelson. * Steve Breaston -- regression more likely. * Early Doucet/Andre Roberts -- can't see a 2nd WR breaking out here with return of Kolb and dominance of Fitzgerald. * Arrelious Benn/Preston Parker/Dezmon Briscoe -- addition of Jackson and questions of Freeman make a breakout highly unlikely.



#2 kutta

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 08:25 PM

Decker and Floyd will be two guys I will be targeting next year. Both can probably be had in the mid-rounds, and they could both put up great years. Very nice analysis and a good thread topic.

#3 Black

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 08:37 PM

Nice work here...not sure if you have some guys who lost alot of last year due to injury. I am interested in Jacoby Ford and wonder if Kyle Williams can redeem himself this year (or if he'll get a chance).

#4 loose circuits

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:13 PM

Nice work here...not sure if you have some guys who lost alot of last year due to injury. I am interested in Jacoby Ford and wonder if Kyle Williams can redeem himself this year (or if he'll get a chance).

doubt Williams will get a chance since SanFran signed 2 WR's in free agency and brought back Ginn

Edited by loose circuits, 24 March 2012 - 09:14 PM.

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#5 Cookiemonster

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:44 PM

* Demaryius Thomas (WR56 in 2011) -- Strong finish, huge playoff performance, and upgrade from Tebow to Manning makes him a popular breakout pick. :thumbup:

* Darrius Heyward-Bey (WR28 in 2011) -- 26/433/2 over last 4 games and showed real chemistry with Palmer.
Love this learning curve. Started his career a dunce, but is on the right track, just a year later than the 3 year mark and was concidered raw when drafted.

Season	Rec	Yds	TD	Tgt	Att	Yds	TD	Fum Lost2011	64	975	4	111				12010	26	366	1	65	4	48		12009	9	124	1	40	2	19
* Denarius Moore (WR39 in 2011) -- Had 3 games over 100 yards and 7/195/1 in final 2 games. Great big-play ability. Want to talk about chemistry w/ Palmer? When healthy, his numbers were outstanding for a rookie. He left a bad taste in some owners' mouths after putting up a couple stinkers after huge games, but for a rookie... I'll take it.
Week	Pts	Opponent	Rec	Yds	TD	Tgt	Att	Yds	TD	Fum Lost2	28.10	at Bills	5	146	1	8	1	25		03	15.70	vs Jets	        4	34		6	1	23	1	04	10.90	vs Patriots	3	19	1	5				05	0.00	at Texans							6				6	1.90	vs Browns	1	9		4	1	-3		07	1.40	vs Chiefs	1	4		5				08		Bye											9	10.10	vs Broncos	4	61		12				010	29.30	at Chargers	5	123	2	7				015	4.60	vs Lions	2	13		5	1	13		016	19.40	at Chiefs	4	94	1	9				017	13.40	vs Chargers	3	101		6	1	3		0Total:	137.20	 	      33	618	5	76	5	61	1	0
* Eric Decker (WR35 in 2011) -- Good nose for end zone but faded as Thomas emerged and only went over 100 yards once.
Like him a lot with Manning. Good routes, good separation and now, a good passing QB.

* Greg Little (WR53 in 2011) -- Disappointed fantasy owners and dropped way too many passes but did get better as the season went on and should see more targets this season. Would be thought of as a good rookie season. Could stand to up the TD total. A few drops cost him some very big games and pissed off a lot of owners. Be patient with the rook.
 	Receiving	RushingSeason	Rec	Yds	TD	Tgt	Att	Yds	TD	Fum Lost2011	61	709	2	120	3	15
* Emmanuel Sanders (WR98 in 2011) -- Became the forgotten man in offense w/the emergence of Brown but looked good in Denver playoff game and retirement of Ward opens the door just a little for him. If (as I expect) Wallace leaves this year or next, he could be 1A or 1B to Antonio Brown and was talked up as a better WR their rookie year.

*Andre Roberts -- can't see a 2nd WR breaking out here with return of Kolb and dominance of Fitzgerald. Damned good finish to last season.
13	17.10	vs Cowboys				6	111		6				014	8.80	vs 49ers				2	8	1	5				015	18.70	vs Browns				6	60	1	10	1	7		016	13.50	at Bengals				6	75		10				017	7.20	vs Seahawks				4	24		8	1	8		0Total:	124.30	 	 	        	 	51	586	2	98	3	27	0	0


Edited by Cookiemonster, 24 March 2012 - 09:46 PM.

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#6 Abraham

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 07:11 AM

I like Andre Roberts to continue progressing. He Gould be really cheap.

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#7 loose circuits

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 07:25 AM

I like Andre Roberts to continue progressing. He Gould be really cheap.

I agree, he seemed to be catching on at the end of the year although I expect Housler to get involved as well which could take away targets

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#8 TS Garp

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 08:37 AM

My concern with Roberts is the guy throwing him the ball. I was so unimpressed with Kolb when he played last season and just can't see him being productive enough to support two Top 25 WR's. I can definitely see Roberts outperforming his ADP but a breakout seems unlikely unless Fitzgerald gets injured.

#9 Just Win Baby

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 10:17 AM

Very nice analysis and a good thread topic.

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#10 jkvudores

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 11:08 AM

David Gettis? Good rookie year with poor qb play. On IR for the whole season last year. Could be worth taking a shot.

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#11 cstu

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 11:10 AM

My concern with Roberts is the guy throwing him the ball. I was so unimpressed with Kolb when he played last season and just can't see him being productive enough to support two Top 25 WR's. I can definitely see Roberts outperforming his ADP but a breakout seems unlikely unless Fitzgerald gets injured.

I was high on Roberts as rookie but the QB situation is a big problem. I also don't think he's going to break out anytime soon with what they have. Worth holding onto in case they ever upgrade at QB though.

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#12 az_prof

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 11:22 AM

For the purposes of this thread, a breakout will be considered a Top 25 finish in 2012/13. Also, a player only qualifies as a possible breakout candidate if he's never finished as a Top 25 WR before (so Torrey Smith doesn't count; nor does Mario Manningham, who was WR17 in 2010). The popular choices: * Demaryius Thomas (WR56 in 2011) -- Strong finish, huge playoff performance, and upgrade from Tebow to Manning makes him a popular breakout pick. * Darrius Heyward-Bey (WR28 in 2011) -- 26/433/2 over last 4 games and showed real chemistry with Palmer. * Robert Meachem (WR44 in 2011) -- Deep threat gets chance to be go-to WR in San Diego. Showed flashes in 2011: * Denarius Moore (WR39 in 2011) -- Had 3 games over 100 yards and 7/195/1 in final 2 games. Great big-play ability. * Eric Decker (WR35 in 2011) -- Good nose for end zone but faded as Thomas emerged and only went over 100 yards once. * Malcom Floyd (WR32 in 2011) -- Very quietly had his best season and put up 24/455/4 in his last 5 games. Health is always the issue but could be a sneaky pick w/everyone focused on Meachem. * Michael Crabtree (WR33 in 2011) -- Will depend on how Manningham/Moss are worked into offense and whether that frees up Crabtree or limits him. Will come cheap as most have soured on him. * Doug Baldwin (WR40 in 2011) -- Came out of nowhere to turn some heads. Gets a big upgrade at QB but has some competition from Tate and Rice. * Titus Young (WR46 in 2011) -- Lots of competition here but fortunately also a lot of balls to go around. Could easily surpass Burleson as the #2 WR in Detroit and could take a step forward this season. * Damian Williams (WR51 in 2011) -- Was inconsistent but looked very good at times filling in for Britt (who should be back for the beginning of the season). * Greg Little (WR53 in 2011) -- Disappointed fantasy owners and dropped way too many passes but did get better as the season went on and should see more targets this season. * David Nelson (WR48 in 2011) -- Started strong and then faded, like his team. Looks to be more valuable in PPR leagues. Dark horses: * Brandon LaFell (WR57 in 2011) -- Great sleeper candidate as he develops more chemistry w/Newton. Smith will be a year older and LaFell should surpass Naanee. * Brian Hartline/Davone Bess (WR72/WR64 in 2011) -- Hard to get too excited about the situation but they're #1A & #1B as of today. * Golden Tate (WR74 in 2011) -- Became more productive as the season went on and Flynn will help. * Harry Douglas (WR77 in 2011) -- Has some big play ability but a very crowded situation with two elite WR's and HOF tight end on the same team. * Danario Alexander (WR78 in 2011) -- Departure of Lloyd opens the door and Bradford should get back on track this season. A situation to watch. * Vincent Brown (WR91 in 2011) -- Showed amazing ability at times. Meachem signing holds him back a little but will still see more targets, especially as Floyd & Gates are often injured. * Emmanuel Sanders (WR98 in 2011) -- Became the forgotten man in offense w/the emergence of Brown but looked good in Denver playoff game and retirement of Ward opens the door just a little for him. * Chaz Schillens (WR99 in 2011) -- He's always had talent. In a potentially great situation with the Jets but needs to stay on the field. * Jonathan Baldwin (WR109 in 2011) -- Physically gifted and should get a lot more looks this season. Could surprise. * Donald Jones (WR113 in 2011) -- Season ended early because of injury. Bills have been trying to bring in another WR, but, if they can't, Jones will likely get another opportunity. * Leonard Hankerson (WR129 in 2011) -- Was showing real promise right before going down for the year. Addition of Garcon and Morgan clouds picture, but it's worth monitoring Hankerson's return from injury. * Donnie Avery (WR139 in 2011) -- Speed demon gets a chance to play more in Indianapolis. Can make big plays when healthy. Notes on a few omissions: * James Jones/Randall Cobb -- very clim chance of any real breakout barring injury to Jennings or Nelson. * Steve Breaston -- regression more likely. * Early Doucet/Andre Roberts -- can't see a 2nd WR breaking out here with return of Kolb and dominance of Fitzgerald. * Arrelious Benn/Preston Parker/Dezmon Briscoe -- addition of Jackson and questions of Freeman make a breakout highly unlikely.

I like Thomas to improve a lot but he had a great rapport with Tebow. Will Manning prefer him or Decker? How much will Fox, who LOVES to run, run the offense through the pass? I think it will be different than IND where Manning ran the show and where the first impulse was pass--running was an after thought. I don't think Fox will want his 36 year old QB with a bum neck to be passing 40 times a game. So, while I like Thomas AND Decker, I don't know which one will have the rapport with Manning and I don't know how much the team will prioritize passing. DHB? Meh. I like Denarious Moore better. Palmer is not good enough to make either of them great IMO. Meachem: He is in line for a huge up tick in looks and has a very good QB throwing the ball. It looks like he will be the WR1 and having Gates to draw some attention helps whomever is WR1 in SD. He should be a WR2 in fantasy. Floyd: Do people realize how old he is? He is what he is and I don't expect he will do any more than he did last year. LaFell has promise although I am not sure how good he can be yet. I like Emmanuel Sanders especially if Mike Wallace leaves Pitt. Cobb flashed DeSean Jackson potential but I doubt he will get enough looks in 2012 to break out yet. Still too many WRs there. Early Doucet was resigned and so I see him and Andre Roberts really limiting each other. Agree that Vincent Jackson signing limits the value of the young WRs in Tampa.
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#13 loose circuits

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 01:55 PM



DHB? Meh. I like Denarious Moore better. Palmer is not good enough to make either of them great IMO.

People keep saying this, but Palmer was the 12 best fantasy scorer from the time he started till the end of the week 17. This is coming off the street with no camp with any of his WR's. Not to mention a time where the top 3 WR's were hurt and an ancient TJ Houz and gimpy Chaz Schilens were the starting WR's. I just don't see how people can conclude that. From what I saw, his arm looked alive and i think he will be dangerous with those 3 young WR's (counting Jacoby Ford in that mix)...

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#14 jurb26

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 02:19 PM




DHB? Meh. I like Denarious Moore better. Palmer is not good enough to make either of them great IMO.

People keep saying this, but Palmer was the 12 best fantasy scorer from the time he started till the end of the week 17. This is coming off the street with no camp with any of his WR's. Not to mention a time where the top 3 WR's were hurt and an ancient TJ Houz and gimpy Chaz Schilens were the starting WR's. I just don't see how people can conclude that. From what I saw, his arm looked alive and i think he will be dangerous with those 3 young WR's (counting Jacoby Ford in that mix)...

I bashed Palmer as much as any one last year but I agree, there is reason for some optimism going into this year. Of all the things you mentioned, a healthy DMAC is trumps them all.

#15 az_prof

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 05:32 PM





DHB? Meh. I like Denarious Moore better. Palmer is not good enough to make either of them great IMO.

People keep saying this, but Palmer was the 12 best fantasy scorer from the time he started till the end of the week 17. This is coming off the street with no camp with any of his WR's. Not to mention a time where the top 3 WR's were hurt and an ancient TJ Houz and gimpy Chaz Schilens were the starting WR's. I just don't see how people can conclude that. From what I saw, his arm looked alive and i think he will be dangerous with those 3 young WR's (counting Jacoby Ford in that mix)...

I bashed Palmer as much as any one last year but I agree, there is reason for some optimism going into this year. Of all the things you mentioned, a healthy DMAC is trumps them all.

But a healthy DMAC means more of the offense will be run through DMac and less through the receivers. I watched, sadly, ever Raider's game because unfortunately they are in my viewing area. Statistics can lie. Palmer is an average to less than average QB. He is not elite. In fact,
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#16 EBF

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 07:08 PM

Not sold on DHB. He still seems to lack instincts out there. I like Floyd, J Baldwin, Thomas, and Sanders. Crab is solid, but nothing special. In terms of some deep sleepers I'm intrigued by David Gettis and Clyde Gates. Steve Smith isn't going to play forever and Gettis has #1 WR tools. Gates had an awful rookie year, but that's not a death sentence for a rookie WR from a small school. I doubt he'll pan out, but his rare speed makes him an interesting candidate. The upside is there. I also like Jeremy Kerley as a football player. He's only 5'9" with 4.6 speed, so he might not have a huge FF ceiling, but he made a big impact as a rookie and is a natural football player.

#17 QuizGuy66

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 07:39 AM

If the Bengals don't draft a #2 receiver it's quite possible that Brandon Tate or Armon Binns could get that job for deep sleeper/large league fans. -QG

#18 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 08:40 AM

Breakouts: Torrey Smith: I know many don't claim he is under the radar, having finished top 25. But, his per target stats show that he helps win games at a close to elite level. They also show that he is one of the more successful deep targets in the NFL. Most owners haven't picked up on this yet, as he is still being valued outside of the top 25. We are looking at a player that has a chance to be Mike Wallace, with a floor of DeSean Jackson. Eric Decker: He was a breakout candidate with anyone other than Tebow at QB. Manning gives him Jordy Nelson, potential WR1 upside. Decker was consistently open deep during the season. Tebow couldn't hit him in stride; Manning should be able to. Jon Baldwin: We saw glimpses of what he can be: Vincent Jackson. KC has a chance to be a very good offense. A potentially elite deep/GL threat like Baldwin would benefit greatly from that. Not so fast: Greg Little will not be getting more targets. He had 120 targets and did very little with them. Caught 50, only a 40% success rate, and an embarrassingly bad 5.9 yards per target. Regardless of QB play, good WRs make plays. Greg Little didn't make plays. He was as much of a hindrance to McCoy as McCoy was to him. Sell high. Not a breakout candidate. Michael Crabtree: Like Little, he benefited from a high number of targets. Like Little, he didn't' make many plays. We are looking at a career average NFL WR2. That doesn't often translate to fantasy relevance. Demaryius Thomas: Thomas will be relevant, and very well could break out, from a season long numbers perspective. But he is being valued as a dynasty WR1 prematurely. DT benefited from a lot of safe (Tebow/zone) coverage and broken plays. Manning doesn't work that way. DT will have to be able to beat man coverage and - if he ends up being the WR1 - even double coverage. We will see. I think we are looking at a top 20 WR; not top 12.

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#19 icehacka

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 10:53 AM

I like Emmanuel Sanders especially if Mike Wallace leaves Pitt.

I would bet that Wallace is still a Steeler come week 1. Also, Antonio Brown is the strong WR2 in Pitt IMO. I don't think that Big Ben can support 3 WR for fantasy purposes, which would mean Sanders would need to do something to either pass Brown or an injury occur. I don't see the former happening.

Edited by icehacka, 26 March 2012 - 10:54 AM.

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#20 TS Garp

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:08 AM

Breakouts: Torrey Smith: I know many don't claim he is under the radar, having finished top 25. But, his per target stats show that he helps win games at a close to elite level. They also show that he is one of the more successful deep targets in the NFL. Most owners haven't picked up on this yet, as he is still being valued outside of the top 25. We are looking at a player that has a chance to be Mike Wallace, with a floor of DeSean Jackson. Eric Decker: He was a breakout candidate with anyone other than Tebow at QB. Manning gives him Jordy Nelson, potential WR1 upside. Decker was consistently open deep during the season. Tebow couldn't hit him in stride; Manning should be able to. Jon Baldwin: We saw glimpses of what he can be: Vincent Jackson. KC has a chance to be a very good offense. A potentially elite deep/GL threat like Baldwin would benefit greatly from that. Not so fast: Greg Little will not be getting more targets. He had 120 targets and did very little with them. Caught 50, only a 40% success rate, and an embarrassingly bad 5.9 yards per target. Regardless of QB play, good WRs make plays. Greg Little didn't make plays. He was as much of a hindrance to McCoy as McCoy was to him. Sell high. Not a breakout candidate. Michael Crabtree: Like Little, he benefited from a high number of targets. Like Little, he didn't' make many plays. We are looking at a career average NFL WR2. That doesn't often translate to fantasy relevance. Demaryius Thomas: Thomas will be relevant, and very well could break out, from a season long numbers perspective. But he is being valued as a dynasty WR1 prematurely. DT benefited from a lot of safe (Tebow/zone) coverage and broken plays. Manning doesn't work that way. DT will have to be able to beat man coverage and - if he ends up being the WR1 - even double coverage. We will see. I think we are looking at a top 20 WR; not top 12.

:thumbup: Good stuff -- thanks. I agree with you on Baldwin and absolutely agree that Torrey Smith's prospects are very bright. I think you're likely right that Crabtree never takes the next step and remains on the borderline of fantasy relevance for most of his career. Not sure that I agree with you on Little. If the Browns end up with Richardson and he's able to be the game-changer at the NFL level that most people are predicting, it should create more opportunities for the passing game. It certainly can't be worse than it was last year. Not convinced he'll breakout but don't see him as a sell high.

#21 Dr. Octopus

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:11 AM

Greg Little will not be getting more targets. He had 120 targets and did very little with them. Caught 50, only a 40% success rate, and an embarrassingly bad 5.9 yards per target. Regardless of QB play, good WRs make plays. Greg Little didn't make plays. He was as much of a hindrance to McCoy as McCoy was to him. Sell high. Not a breakout candidate.

Little caught 61 balls last season which puts him over 50% - which still isn't great but not as bad as you are reporting.

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#22 Sabertooth

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:13 AM

Kids I like: Denarious Moore Jacoby Ford Doug Baldwin Jonathan Baldwin actually basically any Baldwin or Raider.

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#23 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:40 AM


Greg Little will not be getting more targets. He had 120 targets and did very little with them. Caught 50, only a 40% success rate, and an embarrassingly bad 5.9 yards per target. Regardless of QB play, good WRs make plays. Greg Little didn't make plays. He was as much of a hindrance to McCoy as McCoy was to him. Sell high. Not a breakout candidate.

Little caught 61 balls last season which puts him over 50% - which still isn't great but not as bad as you are reporting.

I'm confused. I said 50%. 120 targets/61 catches. I guess we could round up to 51% if you wanted to.

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#24 finito

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:48 AM

Little is still learning how to play WR. His long term prospects are very good imo.

#25 JohnnyRobinsonForCanton

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:51 AM

My very first initial instinct was Darrius Heyward-Bey. He nearly broke 1,000 yards in 2011 and I believe 2012 will be the year he passes it.

#26 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:54 AM

Not sure that I agree with you on Little. If the Browns end up with Richardson and he's able to be the game-changer at the NFL level that most people are predicting, it should create more opportunities for the passing game. It certainly can't be worse than it was last year. Not convinced he'll breakout but don't see him as a sell high.

To be honest, I don't have much of a feel on Little's potential. I didn't catch much of his very short stint at UNC. His highlights looked great, mostly becuase of his size/speed/power ratio. But, he doesn't seem to be a natural WR and I don't place much stock in hoping someone can learn to be a WR, at this level, with on the job training. My stance on Little is based primarily on how unproductive he was. He got a lot of targets and simply did next to nothing with them. That is one very important thing I look for in a young WR: Did he make plays? Here is why Little's situation can be a lot worse next year: The Browns get a better WR. And it wouldn't take much; it wouldn't require them drafting Blackmon. They could get an average NFL WR and have a better option than Little. As exaggerated as that sounds, he was that unproductive.

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#27 Dr. Octopus

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 11:55 AM



Greg Little will not be getting more targets. He had 120 targets and did very little with them. Caught 50, only a 40% success rate, and an embarrassingly bad 5.9 yards per target. Regardless of QB play, good WRs make plays. Greg Little didn't make plays. He was as much of a hindrance to McCoy as McCoy was to him. Sell high. Not a breakout candidate.

Little caught 61 balls last season which puts him over 50% - which still isn't great but not as bad as you are reporting.

I'm confused. I said 50%. 120 targets/61 catches. I guess we could round up to 51% if you wanted to.

Maybe I'm confused. You said "caught 50, only a 40% success rate".

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#28 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:01 PM

Little is still learning how to play WR. His long term prospects are very good imo.

What examples do we have of this working? Patrick Crayton comes to mind, the kid from Wash that never panned out, Matt Jones, Devin Hester, Brad Smith...

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#29 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:05 PM

Maybe I'm confused. You said "caught 50, only a 40% success rate".

Sorry - success rate being the advanced stat that shows what % of a players plays were a success. Mostly measured by a plays relation to a first down, depending on down and distance. Little's was one of the worst in the NFL.

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#30 EBF

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:11 PM

Little is still learning how to play WR. His long term prospects are very good imo.

What examples do we have of this working? Patrick Crayton comes to mind, the kid from Wash that never panned out, Matt Jones, Devin Hester, Brad Smith...

That Hines Ward guy was okay. Never been a big Little fan, but wasn't he out football last year because of his suspension? A bit unfair to get too attached to his rookie numbers. Thrusting a rookie into a WR1 role on a horrible team with a poor QB is not exactly priming him for success. I think the 2012 season will give a much better indication of who Greg Little is, for better or worse.

#31 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:19 PM

Little is still learning how to play WR. His long term prospects are very good imo.

What examples do we have of this working? Patrick Crayton comes to mind, the kid from Wash that never panned out, Matt Jones, Devin Hester, Brad Smith...

That Hines Ward guy was okay. Never been a big Little fan, but wasn't he out football last year because of his suspension? A bit unfair to get too attached to his rookie numbers. Thrusting a rookie into a WR1 role on a horrible team with a poor QB is not exactly priming him for success. I think the 2012 season will give a much better indication of who Greg Little is, for better or worse.

I thought about Ward, but after double checking, he is 2nd in UGA history in receptions and yards. He was a polished WR coming out of school. Little was one of the worst starting WRs in the NFL last season. I think he gets better, but I also think his targets drop. It would be one thing if he was overwhelmed, but showed flashes. But, he didn't really do that; he didn't make plays. I am not suggesting that you cut him. I am just pointing out that expecting him to "breakout" next season is a mistake, IMO. He is a project that is further behind than most seem to think.

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#32 FreeBaGeL

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:33 PM

Greg Little certainly isn't the first rookie WR to struggle on a bad team. Larry Fitzgerald 58rec for 780yds on 115 targets 50% catch rate, 6.7ypt Roddy White 29rec for 446yds on 67 targets 43% catch rate, 6.6 ypt Calvin Johnson 48 catches for 756yds on 95 targets 50% catch rate, 7.9ypt It's actually pretty remarkable how similar Fitzgerald's numbers were as a rookie to Little's. I would guess that his 50% catch rate is actually pretty common for a rookie on a bad team and his ypt is only slightly lower than what appears to be the mean. This idea that a low catch rate for a rookie WR1 on a bad team being indicative of their future doesn't really appear to have any clout.

Edited by FreeBaGeL, 26 March 2012 - 12:36 PM.


#33 TS Garp

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:40 PM

Little is still learning how to play WR. His long term prospects are very good imo.

What examples do we have of this working? Patrick Crayton comes to mind, the kid from Wash that never panned out, Matt Jones, Devin Hester, Brad Smith...

That Hines Ward guy was okay. Never been a big Little fan, but wasn't he out football last year because of his suspension? A bit unfair to get too attached to his rookie numbers. Thrusting a rookie into a WR1 role on a horrible team with a poor QB is not exactly priming him for success. I think the 2012 season will give a much better indication of who Greg Little is, for better or worse.

I thought about Ward, but after double checking, he is 2nd in UGA history in receptions and yards. He was a polished WR coming out of school. Little was one of the worst starting WRs in the NFL last season. I think he gets better, but I also think his targets drop. It would be one thing if he was overwhelmed, but showed flashes. But, he didn't really do that; he didn't make plays. I am not suggesting that you cut him. I am just pointing out that expecting him to "breakout" next season is a mistake, IMO. He is a project that is further behind than most seem to think.

You make some fair points and I'm not really a huge Little fan, but I think you need to consider that some of the blame has to lay at McCoy's feet, too. In fact, Little's best game of the year came when Seneca Wallace took over, and he held his own against Baltimore in Wallace's second start. This is all just to say that I wouldn't write Little off just yet -- I don't think the numbers tell the whole story in this case.

#34 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:56 PM

Greg Little certainly isn't the first rookie WR to struggle on a bad team. Larry Fitzgerald 58rec for 780yds on 115 targets 50% catch rate, 6.7ypt Roddy White 29rec for 446yds on 67 targets 43% catch rate, 6.6 ypt Calvin Johnson 48 catches for 756yds on 95 targets 50% catch rate, 7.9ypt It's actually pretty remarkable how similar Fitzgerald's numbers were as a rookie to Little's. I would guess that his 50% catch rate is actually pretty common for a rookie on a bad team and his ypt is only slightly lower than what appears to be the mean. This idea that a low catch rate for a rookie WR1 on a bad team being indicative of their future doesn't really appear to have any clout.

Little YPT is not close to the mean. It is awful. Fitzgerald caught 9 TDs, with McCown throwing the football. His YPT was much higher. I don't have depp% stats - I don't know if they were kept at that time. But, with a higher YPT, I think it is safe to assume Fitz went deep more often and dropped fewer passes. Roddy White went deep on 43% of his targets - more than twice what Little did. Looking at the advanced stats would have suggested Roddy was a candidate to breakout; they don't say the same thing about Little. Calvin Johnson went deep on 43% of his targets. Like White, advanced stats would have shown that he was making plays. Little didn't make plays. There really isn't much to your comparisons. The Fitz stats are eyebrow raising, if we were to assume that his deep % was 20, like Little. I would think it was much closer to 35%. Plus, we would also need to ignore the fact that Fitz scored 9 TDs in an offense that wasn't scoring many. The other 2 are completely off. Calvin and Roddy were used as deep threats. 50% is a very good catch % for a player that goes deep on 40% of their targets.

Edited by Concept Coop, 26 March 2012 - 01:03 PM.

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#35 Concept Coop

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 01:10 PM

You make some fair points and I'm not really a huge Little fan, but I think you need to consider that some of the blame has to lay at McCoy's feet, too. In fact, Little's best game of the year came when Seneca Wallace took over, and he held his own against Baltimore in Wallace's second start. This is all just to say that I wouldn't write Little off just yet -- I don't think the numbers tell the whole story in this case.

You make some good points. But, I think Little is a WR version of Colt McCoy. I think McCoy would have preformed better with some better WRs and more explosive running game. And, as I said, I don't think anyone should cut Little. He is a very good physical specimen. He just has a ways to go, and I don't think he will get the benefit of 120 targets again, any time soon.

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#36 cstu

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 01:16 PM

My very first initial instinct was Darrius Heyward-Bey. He nearly broke 1,000 yards in 2011 and I believe 2012 will be the year he passes it.

DHB made a huge jump from 2010 to 2011 in his play (hands have come a long way) and is on the verge of becoming a bona fide #1 WR. It looks like the Raiders are paying him $5.8M this year even though it would cost them nothing to cut him. That's quite a bit of money for a WR when they've got talent at the position. I like his chances of getting traded next year (he's due $8.2M in the final year of his contract) if he plays well again.

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#37 ctrlaltdefeat

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 07:16 PM

Decker and Floyd will be two guys I will be targeting next year. Both can probably be had in the mid-rounds, and they could both put up great years. Very nice analysis and a good thread topic.

Decker has been going very early in startups since the Manning acquisition so grab him early if you want him because he doesn't seem to be sticking too long.

#38 az_prof

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 08:03 PM

* Demaryius Thomas: I really like him. I would like to own him but the price is too high. * Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got. I would be selling him like yesterday's newspaper. * Robert Meachem: I think he is a great buy and have commented in his thread enough already. * Denarius Moore:He is the one Oakland WR I would want. * Eric Decker: I like him with Manning signing. If you can get cheap, he is a guy I would target. * Michael Crabtree: I don't see him doing any better than he did. * Titus Young: he will always be second fiddle in that offense. Small guy. I am not buying. * Damian Williams: he had a shot as a second year starter and did ok but not great. He's a keep but I think Britt will eclipse him and make it hard for him to improve any more. * Greg Little: I would sell if you can get a good offer. The team is likely to go after another rookie, maybe Blackmon? And that will kill his targets. * David Nelson: Meh. Second fiddle on a team with an average QB. If the D improves they won't be tossing the ball as much. Dark horses: There were only two listed that I think really are worth that much attention. * Emmanuel Sanders: If Wallace goes, he will be in a very good position with a great QB. * Jonathan Baldwin: He has great size and was a first round pick. I never give up on first round picks unless they have a devastating injury because they are usually given a lot of opportunities to succeed. Notes on a few omissions: Randall Cobb: I love this guy. While I doubt the opportunity will be there in 2012, I have no doubt that they will work him into the offense more because he is such a game breaker. * Early Doucet/Andre Roberts:Not a believer in either of these guys anymore and I have owned both at one time or another. * Arrelious Benn: The VJax signing is another big obstacle for this guy. I would trade him for a second round rookie pick if you could get it.

Edited by az_prof, 02 April 2012 - 08:05 PM.

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#39 King of the Jungle

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:27 AM

Steve Smith (Rams). If healthy he will outproduce his ADP by a mile.

#40 Pictus Cat

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 05:11 AM

Marcus Easley - could be a dark horse

#41 Dr. Octopus

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 05:27 AM

* Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got.

In his third season in the league and with shaky QB play during those 3 years?

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#42 benson_will_lead_the_way

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 06:24 AM

* Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got. I would be selling him like yesterday's newspaper. * Jonathan Baldwin: He has great size and was a first round pick. I never give up on first round picks unless they have a devastating injury because they are usually given a lot of opportunities to succeed.

You're not consistent with your reasoning DHB had almost 1,000 yards last year and had a good connection with Palmer to end the year. But you give up on him?
When debating keep this in mind: Do you want to be right or rather find the correct answer?

#43 solorca

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 06:31 AM

Decker and Floyd will be two guys I will be targeting next year. Both can probably be had in the mid-rounds, and they could both put up great years. Very nice analysis and a good thread topic.

Decker has been going very early in startups since the Manning acquisition so grab him early if you want him because he doesn't seem to be sticking too long.

I haven't been able to find any start-ups after the Manning signing. Do you know where some are?

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#44 koreansteve

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 06:53 AM

Decker and Floyd will be two guys I will be targeting next year. Both can probably be had in the mid-rounds, and they could both put up great years. Very nice analysis and a good thread topic.

Decker has been going very early in startups since the Manning acquisition so grab him early if you want him because he doesn't seem to be sticking too long.

I haven't been able to find any start-ups after the Manning signing. Do you know where some are?

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#45 az_prof

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 07:30 AM


* Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got. I would be selling him like yesterday's newspaper.

* Jonathan Baldwin: He has great size and was a first round pick. I never give up on first round picks unless they have a devastating injury because they are usually given a lot of opportunities to succeed.


You're not consistent with your reasoning

DHB had almost 1,000 yards last year and had a good connection with Palmer to end the year. But you give up on him?

Thank you! I love when people look at the structure of the argument instead of just offering opinions. I see your point, and so I should qualify. I could be wrong about DHB, and i certainly wouldn't dump him. He is HOLD. but I wouldn't want to count on him to improve dramatically either.

The difference is that he is entering his FOURTH year. Baldwin is entering his SECOND.

While I wouldn't give up on DHB because he IS an elite pick and he does have physical talent and opportunity, I have watched him play enough to believe that he won't improve in his fourth season. I think we have seen his ceiling.
Baldwin's ceiling is yet to be determined. And there is much more room for him to rise after his rookie season.

Edited by az_prof, 03 April 2012 - 07:33 AM.

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#46 benson_will_lead_the_way

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 07:44 AM



* Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got. I would be selling him like yesterday's newspaper.

* Jonathan Baldwin: He has great size and was a first round pick. I never give up on first round picks unless they have a devastating injury because they are usually given a lot of opportunities to succeed.


You're not consistent with your reasoning

DHB had almost 1,000 yards last year and had a good connection with Palmer to end the year. But you give up on him?

Thank you! I love when people look at the structure of the argument instead of just offering opinions. I see your point, and so I should qualify. I could be wrong about DHB, and i certainly wouldn't dump him. He is HOLD. but I wouldn't want to count on him to improve dramatically either.

The difference is that he is entering his FOURTH year. Baldwin is entering his SECOND.

While I wouldn't give up on DHB because he IS an elite pick and he does have physical talent and opportunity, I have watched him play enough to believe that he won't improve in his fourth season. I think we have seen his ceiling.
Baldwin's ceiling is yet to be determined. And there is much more room for him to rise after his rookie season.

I know what you're saying...but in theory it would mean the same for DHB. Moving on to the players.

I own both of them in leagues.

DHB- 25 years old 6'2 210, 40=4.25, vert=38.5, 3 cone=6.8, broad jump=10'6
He had two disappointing seasons with lots of drops.
Last year however= 64 receptions 975 yards 4 TD on 111 targets
He had 2 really good 4 game stretches.
1) Weeks 3-6
4 for 115 0 TD
7 for 99 1 TD
6 for 82 0 TD
5 for 89 0 TD

2) Weeks 14-17
5 for 78 0 TD
8 for 155 1 TD
4 for 70 0 TD
9 for 130 1 TD

Both of those 4 game stretches were with two different QBs. Given that DHB was unpolished coming out of Maryland, he was successful last year, is very athletic, establish rapport with Carson Palmer, and is only 25 next season...I think his future is bright.
When debating keep this in mind: Do you want to be right or rather find the correct answer?

#47 squistion

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 08:59 AM



* Darrius Heyward-Bey: You've seen the best he's got. I would be selling him like yesterday's newspaper.

* Jonathan Baldwin: He has great size and was a first round pick. I never give up on first round picks unless they have a devastating injury because they are usually given a lot of opportunities to succeed.


You're not consistent with your reasoning

DHB had almost 1,000 yards last year and had a good connection with Palmer to end the year. But you give up on him?

Thank you! I love when people look at the structure of the argument instead of just offering opinions. I see your point, and so I should qualify. I could be wrong about DHB, and i certainly wouldn't dump him. He is HOLD. but I wouldn't want to count on him to improve dramatically either.

The difference is that he is entering his FOURTH year. Baldwin is entering his SECOND.

While I wouldn't give up on DHB because he IS an elite pick and he does have physical talent and opportunity, I have watched him play enough to believe that he won't improve in his fourth season. I think we have seen his ceiling.
Baldwin's ceiling is yet to be determined. And there is much more room for him to rise after his rookie season.

Note to self for future reference: When az_prof says "sell like yesterday's newspaper" he really means "hold". :hophead:

QUOTE (Marvin @ Apr 25, 2012 12:45 AM)

squistion is going to come in here and start reporting people. Then you'll really be sorry.

QUOTE (JerseyToughGuys @ Apr 20, 2012 03:45 PM)
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#48 Bronx Bomber

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:30 AM

Marcus Easley - could be a dark horse

I like this one. Not much competition outside Johnson. Hope he can stay healthy.

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#49 DesmondBishop

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:41 AM

Personally I like Jacoby Ford, had the ankle injury at the end of the year, but I think he comes back healthy and with his speed and athletic ability can produce well for the Raiders.

#50 Faust

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:19 PM

From twitter: @gregcosell

A young WR who I believe has a chance to be a very good slot receiver is 2nd yr Brown of SD. Liked him coming of SDSU. Fits well in slot.






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