Figuring out the top-end guys (click here) is relatively easy. The low-end wideouts are much harder — and more valuable. Each week, I’ll discuss five wide receivers under $5,000 who I project for at least five targets.
1. Auden Tate, CIN vs. JAX, $4,500With A.J. Green and John Ross out, Tyler Eifert ($3,000) a non-factor and the offensive line crippling the run game, the Bengals are scraping. One thing Andy Dalton ($5,400) has leaned on is the massive catch radius and contested-catch ability of Kelvin Benjamin-esque Auden Tate. He’s seen at least six targets in four straight games, averaging 8.2 during that span. The Jalen Ramsey-less Jaguars are just 19th in PFF’s pass rush grades and 23rd in coverage.
Projection: 7 targets
2. DK Metcalf, SEA vs. BAL, $4,800Metcalf continues to operate as the no-doubt No. 2 wideout for Seattle’s hyper-efficient pass game. He also has an average depth of target of 16.2 yards, 7th-most in the league. We combine that with the Ravens’ leaky secondary, which has already allowed 24 pass plays of 20+ yards – tied for fourth-most in the league. So we can argue it’s actually a better matchup for Metcalf than Tyler Lockett ($6,600), who will likely see a good bit of Marlon Humphrey. The Ravens’ top CB is currently PFF’s No. 17 coverage CB among 117 qualifiers.
Projection: 6 targets
3. Allen Lazard, GB vs. OAK, $3,000Davante Adams ($7,600; toe) and Geronimo Allison ($4,900; concussion) are in major doubt for Sunday’s home game against the Raiders. Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($5,200; ankle, knee) appears banged up and Jimmy Graham ($4,200; old) has turned to dust. We can expect a conservative gameplan from the Packers, but when they do throw, it’s time to turn the page to youth. If all three veteran WRs sit, they’re down to Jake Kumerow ($3,600), Allen Lazard, Darrius Shepherd ($3,500) and newly signed Ryan Grant. Kumerow has shown an inability to gain separation and Shepherd has been extremely mistake-prone. Lazard was the guy Aaron Rodgers asked for and Lazard responded with a fistful of big catches late in Week 6.
Projection: 6 targets if Adams, Allison and Valdes-Scantling all sit
4. Mike Williams, LAC at TEN, $4,600
Since getting healthy two weeks ago, Williams’ opportunity has been massive. He’s seen 23 targets during that span for a 25% share. Always a major red-zone threat, Williams is benefitting from teams paying extra attention to Keenan Allen ($6,700). Hunter Henry’s ($4,000) return coupled with a slow-paced matchup at Tennessee and the pendulum swinging back toward Allen are all negatives for Williams. But it’s clear Rivers has no problem peppering him.
Projection: 6 targets
5. Darius Slayton, NYG vs. ARZ, $4,100Sterling Shepard ($5,700; concussion) is reportedly a longshot to play in Week 7. That would leave Slayton as the No. 2 pass-game option against an Arizona defense ranked 28th in yards per play allowed and 1st in situation neutral pace. The concerns on Slayton are two-fold. First, the return of Patrick Peterson projects to significantly improve the Cardinals secondary. And second, Slayton will slide in as the No. 4 pass-game option behind Evan Engram ($6,500), Saquon Barkley ($8,900) and Golden Tate ($5,800). Still, Slayton has show game-breaking ability with a 35-yard catch and a 46-yard catch on limited snaps already.
Projection: 5 targets if Shepard sits
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is adamlevitan) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.