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I am a mixed bag of emotions because of the end of the 2017 season. I am excited for the NFL playoffs and a chance for the my hometown team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, to win their third Super Bowl in my lifetime. I am sad because the regular season is at an end and with it goes the 2017 fantasy football season. I am happy for those of you out there who brought home the fantasy championship in your leagues, but also mad because Mike Evans cost me one of mine. I am hopeful for the 2018 offseason and all the joys that come with free agency, draft season, training camp, and the weeks before the 2018 season.

However, since the 2017 season has come to a close, we now have a full season's worth of fantasy data to compile, analyze, and interpret to get ready for next year. To start, we have the final consistency numbers for each player at each position. To breakdown these numbers fully, I will be devoting a single article to each position (QB, RB, WR, TE) to analyze the final consistency numbers from 2017.

The players are sorted by COR and filtered by playing at least six games and having at least one top-12 performance. This gives us a large enough tally of players at each position to get a clear grasp on how well our studs performed and how bad the busts failed to deliver. Be sure to catch up on the previous articles on quarterbacks and running backs as we now dive into the wide receiver position.

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Wide Receivers - 2017 Consistency Report

 

Studs

DeAndre Hopkins - 2017's WR1 overall, Hopkins made a strong case for fantasy MVP this season, given his offseason ADP. Nuk was very consistent this year, with a 7.39 standard deviation around a 20.65 average, giving him the highest floor among wide receivers. This was even more impressive considering his continued success after Deshaun Watson's injury. From Week 9 on, Hopkins never scored less than 16 points per game and posted one 35 point performance. After a disappointing 2016 campaign, Hopkins proved he has always been an elite wide receiver and that 2016 was an outlier season. He will be a high first round pick in 2018 drafts.

Antonio Brown - If it was not for an injury in Week 15, Brown would have finished as the WR1 for the FOURTH season in a row. Even though he finished with the highest standard deviation among running backs (11.97), Brown still finished third in COR thanks to a weekly ceiling of 34.13. In fact, Brown scored over 45% of his yearly points in Weeks 11-14, with two games over 40 points and another over 30. Brown has been, and will continue to be, an elite fantasy receiver (until Ben Roethlisberger retires), and I have no doubts that he will be in the conversation for 1.01 in 2018 drafts yet again.

Jarvis Landry - Landry was a nice surprise from 2017, finishing as the WR4 in PPR leagues. 112 receptions and nine touchdowns certainly helped propel him to fantasy stardom. I had my doubts about his volume this season after his production declined with the rise of Jay Ajayi in 2016, but Jay Cutler made it a point to target his best receiver, especially in the red zone, all season long. Landry finished with a career high in receptions and touchdowns, despite the dip in yardage, and was the most consistent top-12 receiver in fantasy. Whether or not he or Jay Cutler return to Miami in 2018 is a big question mark for Landry's value, but he has always been an underrated fantasy receiver. I would expect him to see an increase in ADP in 2018, but nothing as drastic as other elite receivers from 2017.

 

Duds

Amari Cooper - If you know me, you know that I do not like the hype that has surrounded Cooper his entire career. As down as I was on him coming into 2017, even I did not expect the type of season Cooper had. Fantasy-wise, Cooper finished as the WR35 on year, though that was inflated by only a couple games out of the year. Cooper only posted six games over 10 fantasy points, one of which was his 44-point performance in Week 7 and a 20-point performance in Week 17. His standard deviation of 10.80 was second highest among wide receivers, which is even worse when you see Cooper averaged 11.31 points per game. He was a headache to decide whether to start or not weekly and only delivered in a handful of weeks. His 2018 season should be vastly improved, especially with the rumor that the Raiders may move on from Michael Crabtree. His fantasy value will be intriguing to watch throughout the offseason.

Sammy Watkins - For being a part of the explosive LA Rams offense, Watkins did not live up to many expectations in 2017. Watkins finished slightly worse than Amari Cooper as the WR40 on the season. Watkins did finish with eight games over 10 fantasy points, but he was almost as unpredictable as Cooper. His 9.75 average was in the bottom-20 among receivers, which really hurt his ceiling and floor on a weekly basis. Watkins is a free agent this year, so he may be able to sign with a team that will give him a better opportunity. Until that is resolved, Watkins fantasy value for 2018 is a giant question mark.

Martavis Bryant - Completing the trifecta of hyped boom/bust receivers from 2017, Martavis Bryant did not have the season many analysts and truthers believed he would. Bryant only produced four games over 10 fantasy points, two of which were over 15. Bryant was not targeted often enough to be a relevant fantasy producer by Big Ben and when he was they rarely connected. The rise of Juju Smith-Schuster seemed to be Bryant's biggest downfall in 2017, one that not many people expected given the Steeler's history with rookie wide receivers. Bryant is now the WR3 on the Steelers offense, who could look to move him potentially on draft day or during the summer. If Bryant is a Steeler next year, his fantasy value is no higher than a late-round flyer or waiver wire fodder.

 

Honorable Mentions

Keenan Allen - In dramatic comeback fashion, Allen had the best season of his career, living up to the potential and expectations many believed he was capable of. Playing a full 16 game slate, Allen caught 102 receptions for 1,393 yards and six touchdowns, finishing as the WR3 in fantasy. His season was everything Allen truthers believed it could be, averaging 17.76 points per game and, despite a high standard deviation, finished sixth among receivers in COR. When healthy, Allen proved he is an elite NFL and fantasy receiver and should be treated as such. He will be a second round pick as a mid-WR1 in 2018 drafts.

Michael Thomas - Perhaps the most underrated stud receiver coming into 2017, Thomas silenced his doubters by nearly replicating his rookie season. Thomas finished as the fantasy WR6 on the season and is now the only Drew Brees receiver to catch over 100 receptions in a single season. Consistency-wise, Thomas was the third most consistent top-24 receiver and second most consistent top-12 receiver with a 5.96 standard deviation. Similar to Jarvis Landry, Thomas averaged just over 16 points per game, making Thomas a high floor/low ceiling receiver in 2017. Finishing as the fourth highest receiver in COR, Thomas should be a late first or early second round pick in 2018 drafts.

Julio Jones - Fun fact: Julio finished 2017 as the WR7. That's right, in his terrible season, Julio is still a top-7 fantasy receiver who finished second in the league in receiving yards, despite only catching three touchdowns. From a weekly standpoint, Julio was still not as bad as he was made out to be. He averaged 15.74 points per game and even though he had the third highest standard deviation among WRs, Julio was actually more consistent than some believe. Eliminating his 50-point performance in Week 12, Julio's standard deviation drops to 5.29 (albeit his average drops to just above 13 ppg). This is why Julio is still a top-15 wide receiver in COR, despite a lack of explosive fantasy games that owners are used to from him. His value may have taken a slight hit, but he will still be a first round pick in 2018.

Dez Bryant - If you are looking for a true fantasy WR1 pretender, look no further than Dez Bryant. Many people believed 2017 was the bounce back year for Dez's fantasy stardom. However, Dez finished as the WR24 on the year with a very lackluster stat line (69/839/6). Bryant only posted eight games over 10 fantasy points, none of which eclipsed 20 points. Despite being the most consistent top-24 receiver, Bryant's 11.65 average points per game left much to be desired. Heading into 2018, Bryant still holds significant name value, but his production does not match his price.

 

That's all for wide receivers! Make sure to watch for tomorrow's last Consistency Report on the tight end position and be sure to read the previous two articles on quarterbacks and running backs!

 

More 2017 Consistency Reports