Fantasy Football: Dr. Roto’s NFL Draft Wide Receivers Preview

Dr. Roto examines the top NFL Draft wide receivers in this prospect preview! Are any of the players making up 2018's wide receiver worthy of a first-round selection?

Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Daily Dr. Roto—April 25, 2018

NFL Draft Preview –Wide Receivers

Unlike the previous few drafts, there only seems to be one or two receivers who are making noise as potential first round picks. There are lots of players here who look to be potential WR3 and WR4 in Fantasy but only a handful of difference makers in this draft class.

Calvin Ridley — Ridley appears to be the best of the receivers in this year’s draft class. He is tall (6’ 3”), fast (4.43), and has great hands. He also can run a full route tree which is rare for a player his age. Even more importantly, he can get separation off the line and has terrific deep speed. The biggest knock on him is his weight. At 189 pounds, he might take a pounding over the course of the season. Ridley looks the most “pro ready” out of all the receivers available and it would not be shocking to see him catch 50-60 passes this season.

Prediction: Ridley makes a lot of sense for either the Cowboys or Cardinals as a mid-first round pick.

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D.J. Moore — Moore draws comps to Vikings WR Stefon Diggs, but I think that is mainly because they both played at the University of Maryland. Moore is a bit slimmer than Diggs and there are some scouts who think he might be a better fit in the slot than on the outside. It’s especially hard to judge Moore because he never played with a quality QB at Maryland. It’s hard to blame a receiver for not coming down with 50-50 balls when his QB just throws it up and hopes for the best. Moore has shown that he can be a target monster and in the right system should be quite productive at the next level.

Prediction: Late first round pick

Courtland Sutton — Sutton has the ideal size (6’ 3”, 220) that NFL scouts drool about for receivers. Moreover, he is a solid route runner and has excellent hands which should allow him to excel as a possession receiver. The biggest concern with Sutton is his ability to separate at the line of scrimmage. No separation means no targets, which means no production. There might be a learning curve with him which will make him more of a dynasty pick than a Fantasy player who can help teams in 2018.

Courtland Sutton
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Prediction: Early Day 2 Selection

Antonio Callaway — Callaway’s stock is plummeting on draft boards and it’s looking like he is going to be a day three selection because of a failed drug test at the Combine. This failed test is on top if the fact that he was suspended from the University of Florida’s team for his entire Junior season. Even though he is blessed with great natural ability his knucklehead reputation is going to hurt his chances at the next level.

Prediction: Day 3 Selection

Christian Kirk — Kirk could be a sneaky Day three selection based on his willingness to go over the middle to make difficult catches. Moreover, he is a special teams whiz who could start as a rookie as a punt/kick returner. Kirk’s biggest problem is his lack of size (5’ 10’) and catching radius. I would keep a close eye on the team who drafts him—if he ends up in the right system he could have a Cooper Kupp-type impact as a rookie.

Prediction: Day 3 Selection

James Washington — Washington is perhaps my second favorite receiver in the draft. He is only 5’ 11 and has 4.55 speed but plays much quicker than that. He always seems to find a way to get open downfield and was extremely productive catching deep balls while at Oklahoma State. What I love most about Washington is his ability to track and get the football. He consistently wins 50-50 plays which is incredibly important when competing at the next level. Washington will benefit from QB who likes to take risks down field, so his future Fantasy value will be very dependent on where he is selected.

Prediction: Day 3 Selection. I would love to see him end up as the WR3 on the Chiefs with gun slinging Pat Mahomes as his QB.

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