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2023 Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings And Analysis

Seahawks fantasy insider Scott Engel’s receiver rankings and analysis.

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Scott Engel is in his 12th year as the official Fantasy Football writer and analyst for He is an inaugural member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association's Hall of Fame. Scott is a four-time FSWA award winner and a 13-time nominee.You can find more of his fantasy football analysis at The Game Day and on

Heading into the 2023 season, the Seahawks may have the best wide receiver trio in the NFC and possibly all of the NFL. Highly promising first-round rookie Jaxon Smith-Njigba joins established standouts DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett to give the team an outstanding triplet of pass-catching playmakers.

Fantasy football players are also targeting premier wide receivers when building their 2023 squads. Average Draft Position reports from indicate that 10 of the top 20 overall picks in Point Per Reception (PPR formats) are at the wide receiver position. While there is no specific rigid recommended roster build for any draft, landing one of the top 10 WRs gives you a comfortable start at the position.

Every draft is different, and you must go with the flow as the draft progresses. Yet most fantasy leaguers should have a good chance to pick an ideal fantasy WR1 in the first two rounds. Those who take a WR in the first round can choose to start their team builds with two top-shelf WRs and gain an apparent advantage at the position. Some savvy fantasy leaguers even elect to employ a "Zero RB strategy", where they often load up on early WR picks and wait to take players at running back until the middle rounds.

This season, I am aiming to get one of the WRs in my top 20 range of ranks as two of my projected starters, and one of the top 35 or so as a third starter. How quickly you choose to attack the position depends on your league's starting requirements. Many leagues require three starting WRs, but others still require just two. Most leagues will let you start third or fourth wide receivers at flex positions.

The most frequent league setup seems to be three starting WRs and the option to use one as a flex. Generally, fantasy players should be able to grab top 40 WRs in the first eight rounds or so to have rather comfortable options to start the season with. Of course, your roster will change frequently throughout the season because of waiver moves, trades, and injuries.

I feature my top 40 WR rankings for the 2023 fantasy football season here, and even deeper ranks from me are available at

2023 Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings And Positional Outlook

Minnesota superstar Justin Jefferson is the consensus No. 1 overall pick in 2023 fantasy football drafts. Last season, he was the only regular starting fantasy WR to average over 21 PPR points per game (21.7) and finish with over 350 points (368.7). The 2022 NFL Offensive Player of the Year is only 24 years old and is the perceived safest high-production pick in fantasy football, as there are no apparent reasons for any sort of significant fall-off heading into his third pro season.

Cincinnati's Ja'Marr Chase has caught 22 TD passes in his first two seasons and he will be a top 5 overall pick in most drafts, coming off the board right after Jefferson. I have Tyreek Hill ranked third. He averaged 20.1 points per game last season and scored 341.2 points, finishing second only to Jefferson in both departments among regular starters. If Tua Tagovailoa plays a full season or close to it, Hill, as the No. 1 WR in a speed-based offense, could certainly challenge to finish as the No. 1 WR in fantasy football this year.

CeeDee Lamb finished as a top 5 fantasy WR last season and he will be taken in the top 5 at the position and in the late first round of many drafts. Stefon Diggs will also be a later first-round pick. He has finished as a top 7 fantasy WR in each of the past three seasons, placing in the top 4 twice, including last year. He is a comfortable high-floor pick as the featured target in a top-level Buffalo passing attack.

A.J. Brown has caught 11 TD passes in two of the past three seasons. Amon-Ra St. Brown finished as fantasy WR7 last year and can potentially finish inside the top 5 in 2023. Garrett Wilson, who had 1,103 receiving yards as a rookie, may take a leap forward in his second season as he works with Aaron Rodgers. Davante Adams finished as fantasy WR3 in 2022 and was fourth in points per game at 18.9. The Raiders have made a change at QB but Adams still rounds out my list of the top 10 WR targets you should attempt to land as a WR1 pick in the first two rounds.

Jaylen Waddle, the other top option in the explosive Miami passing game, and Chris Olave, the surefire No. 1 WR for the Saints with Derek Carr now at QB for New Orleans, are premier picks just outside the top 10. DeVonta Smith was a top 10 fantasy WR in his second NFL season, and Amari Cooper has high-end fantasy WR2 appeal with Deshaun Watson projected to start at QB for Cleveland from the beginning of the season. Keenan Allen remains a solid fantasy WR2 target, as his 16.4 points per game ranked in the top 12 at the position in 2022.

DK Metcalf has finished as a consistent fantasy WR2 in each of the past three seasons. He has placed in the top 16 in every campaign, and he is an upside target for the 2023 season with Lockett and Smith-Njigba commanding additional defensive attention. Metcalf scored 16-plus PPR points in six of his first eight games in 2022. As noted by, he finished second to Jefferson in red zone targets last season with 27 and Metcalf has caught 28 TD passes over the past three seasons. Combining Metcalf with any of the top 10 WRs I listed along with a quality RB1 pick will have you off to a strong start in any fantasy draft.

Tee Higgins, Drake London, Calvin Ridley, and D.J. Moore are other preferred WR2 targets. Higgins is the clear No. 2 WR in the obviously potent Bengals' passing game, London could be headed for a breakthrough season as a heavy volume No. 1 WR for Atlanta and Ridley has the upside to outperform my initial rank in his first season with the Jaguars. Moore gives the Bears a needed and true No. 1 WR for the ascending Justin Fields.

Michael Pittman Jr. caught 99 balls last season and the Colts' passing game may improve. Brandon Aiyuk is a very good fantasy WR3 target, as he surpassed 1,000 yards for the first time last season and caught eight TD passes. Brandin Cooks slides in as an ideal No. 2 WR for the Cowboys and he will be paired with his most potent QB since he worked with Tom Brady in 2017.

Tyler Lockett will remain a valued fantasy WR3 in 2023. He has finished as a top 16 fantasy WR in each of the past five seasons, with eight-plus TD receptions in every campaign, the only active NFL player to pull off such a feat. He will remain a prime target for Geno Smith in his age-31 season, and fantasy players should not expect a sizable fantasy drop-off at this point of his career. Lockett may actually prove to be a value play this season, as he can still outperform where I have him ranked, as No. 34, which is still viable No. 3 fantasy WR territory.

Minnesota rookie Jordan Addison can be an instant impact performer, and Kansas City's Skyy Moore, who may play a bigger role for the Chiefs in his second season, are other tempting WR3/4 types. Elijah Moore is a breakout candidate as he moves to Cleveland, and Chargers rookie Quentin Johnson might get an opportunity to play a featured role in the Los Angeles passing game at some point.

Seahawks rookie Jaxon Smith-Njigba rounds out my top 40 at WR, marking him as a strongly recommended fantasy WR4 pick. He will be worthy of streaming consideration right away. Smith-Njigba should be a frequent target for Smith on key passing downs, and he has the potential to challenge defenses at all levels, much as Doug Baldwin used to. Smith-Njigba has a very bright future as at least a fantasy WR2, and he can be a viable flex type in his first NFL season.

Some sleeper and value plays include Baltimore's Zay Flowers, Kansas City's Skyy Moore. Houston's Nico Collins, and Giants rookie Jalin Hyatt. Flowers and Hyatt are upside rookies, while Moore and Collins can emerge as the top WR targets on their respective teams.

Scott Engel's Top 40 Fantasy Wide Receivers For The 2023 Season

  1. Justin Jefferson
  2. Ja'Marr Chase
  3. Tyreek Hill
  4. Stefon Diggs
  5. CeeDee Lamb
  6. A.J. Brown
  7. Amon-Ra St. Brown
  8. Garrett Wilson
  9. Davante Adams
  10. Chris Olave
  11. Cooper Kupp
  12. DeVonta Smith
  13. Jaylen Waddle
  14. Amari Cooper
  15. Calvin Ridley
  16. Tee Higgins
  17. Keenan Allen
  18. DK Metcalf
  19. Drake London
  20. D.J. Moore
  21. DeAndre Hopkins
  22. Deebo Samuel
  23. Brandon Aiyuk
  24. Christian Watson
  25. Diontae Johnson
  26. Terry McLaurin
  27. Chris Godwin
  28. Michael Pittman Jr.
  29. Christian Kirk
  30. Courtland Sutton
  31. Brandin Cooks
  32. Tyler Lockett
  33. Mike Evans
  34. Jahan Dotson
  35. George Pickens
  36. Mike Williams
  37. Jerry Jeudy
  38. Marquise Brown'
  39. Elijah Moore
  40. Jaxon Smith-Njigba

For more fantasy football analysis from Scott Engel, visit The Game Day during the fantasy football preseason.

Top 15 Tight Ends

1. Travis Kelce

2. Mark Andrews

3. T.J. Hockenson

4. Darren Waller

5. Kyle Pitts

6. George Kittle

7. Dallas Goedert

8. Evan Engram

9. Pat Freiermuth

10. Juwan Johnson

11. Dalton Schultz

12. David Njoku

13. Tyler Higbee

14. Dalton Kincaid

15. Sam LaPorta

Fans enjoy the weather and day two of Training Camp at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center on July 28, 2023.

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