Fantasy Fox: 'PPR Spectacular' for the 2014 fantasy season
AUG 22, 2014 5:37a ET
Here's our annual, highly specialized guide to draft domination in Points Per Reception leagues, with 10 -, 12- and 14-teamers in mind.
PPR RULES TO LIVE BY
1. Always Think Receiver!
Obviously, you'll need quarterbacks, running backs, defenses/special teams to complement receivers and tight ends on PPR-based rosters.
But no matter the round, you should always be pondering the next receiver move, or at least factoring in how every draft pick adds value to the PPR format.
As such, here are some internal questions to pose when chasing certain PPR assets:
a) Do my running backs have the minimum capacity for five or more catches per game?
b) Do I want to start a wide receiver in the 'flex' position every time?
c) Are my QBs likely to attempt 40 or more passes in at least six games? (This is extremely relevant with West Coast offenses.)
2. Never Look A Targets-Driven Golden Goose In The Mouth
In standard-scoring leagues, versatile guys like Andre Johnson, Mike Wallace, Wes Welker, Reggie Wayne, T.Y. Hilton, Julian Edelman, Cecil Shorts, Emmanuel Sanders, Darren Sproles and Danny Woodhead might get passed over for red-zone magnets, at least in the early rounds.
But to effectively win a PPR championship, you'll need a handful of the above names carrying the freight.
Take the case of Titans wideout Kendall Wright:
He'll probably lose a touchdown battle to the Panthers' Jerricho Cotchery (10 TDs with the Jets last year) or the Raiders' James Jones ... but the Grand Canyon-size disparity in targets and receptions puts Wright (94 catches, 139 targets, 1,079 yards last season) in the PPR clear.
3. Let The Quarterback Market Fall To Unprecedented Depths
Quarterbacks have the same value in standard-scoring and Points Per Reception leagues; but for various reasons, they are routinely drafted lower in PPRs, as owners devote their first seven or eight picks to pass-friendly receivers, tailbacks and tight ends.
As Exhibit A, I landed Aaron Rodgers in Round 3 (27th overall) of a 12-team, 20-round experts' PPR draft last year. At the time, a healthy Rodgers had amassed 8,938 passing yards and 89 total touchdowns for 2011-12 -- with only 14 interceptions in that two-year span.
The rule of thumb: The typical quarterback in a PPR draft -- with the exceptions of Peyton Manning or Drew Brees -- tumbles about 8-11 spots from their prescribed ADP slot in standard-scoring leagues.
In other words, DON'T be the guy (or gal) in your league who splurges for the first quarterback after Manning, Brees and Rodgers, as well.
4. Embrace The Default 4-2-1 Strategy
For PPR drafts of 10, 12 or 14 teams, I always bow to the 4-2-1 code (first seven picks) of four targets-driven receivers, two pass-friendly running backs and either a top-notch quarterback or top-four tight end (drafter's choice).
After that, think value, value, value at every turn.
UPDATED TOP 75 PPR WIDEOUTS
1. Calvin Johnson, Lions
2. Demaryius Thomas, Broncos
3. Brandon Marshall, Bears
4. A.J. Green, Bengals
5. Dez Bryant, Cowboys
6. Antonio Brown, Steelers
7. Randall Cobb, Packers
8. Alshon Jeffery, Bears
9. Pierre Garcon, Redskins
10. Julio Jones, Falcons
11. Keenan Allen, Chargers
12. Jordy Nelson, Packers
13. T.Y. Hilton, Colts
14. Wes Welker, Broncos
15. Vincent Jackson, Buccaneers
16. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
17. Andre Johnson, Texans
18. DeSean Jackson, Redskins
19. Kendall Wright, Titans
20. Julian Edelman, Patriots
21. Mike Wallace, Dolphins
22. Roddy White, Falcons
23. Percy Harvin, Seahawks
24. Michael Floyd, Cardinals
25. Victor Cruz, Giants
26. Eric Decker, Jets
27. Marques Colston, Saints
28. Jeremy Maclin, Eagles
29. Anquan Boldin, 49ers
30. Torrey Smith, Ravens
31. Reggie Wayne, Colts
32. Cecil Shorts, Jaguars
33. Cordarrelle Patterson, Vikings
34. Michael Crabtree, 49ers
35. Emmanuel Sanders, Broncos
36. Sammy Watkins, Bills
37. Riley Cooper, Eagles
38. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs
39. Golden Tate, Lions
40. Greg Jennings, Vikings
41. DeAndre Hopkins, Texans
42. Miles Austin, Browns
43. Danny Amendola, Patriots
44. Terrance Williams, Cowboys
45. James Jones, Raiders
46. Justin Hunter, Titans
47. Brian Hartline, Dolphins
48. Brandin Cooks, Saints
49. Marqise Lee, Jaguars
50. Malcom Floyd, Chargers
51. Markus Wheaton, Steelers
52. Tavon Austin, Rams
53. Rueben Randle, Giants
54. Marlon Brown, Ravens
55. Kelvin Benjamin, Panthers
56. Jordan Matthews, Eagles
57. Brandon LaFell, Patriots
58. Kenny Britt, Rams
59. Mike Evans, Buccaneers
60. Doug Baldwin, Seahawks
61. Andre Holmes, Raiders
62. Harry Douglas, Falcons
63. Rod Streater, Raiders
64. Aaron Dobson, Patriots
65. Steve Johnson, 49ers
66. Jerricho Cotchery, Panthers
67. Jarrett Boykin, Packers
68. Kenny Stills, Saints
69. Jerrel Jernigan, Giants
70. Mohamed Sanu, Bengals
71. Hakeem Nicks, Colts
72. Steve Smith, Ravens
73. Andrew Hawkins, Browns
74. Robert Woods, Bills
75. Nate Washington, Titans
75b. Andre Roberts, Redskins
75c. Mike Williams, Bills
75d. Jermaine Kearse, Seahawks
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Here are seven of the best sites for round-the-clock mock drafting -- covering standard-scoring and keeper leagues.
**Fox Sports Draft Lobby
**ESPN Mock Draft Lobby
**Yahoo Sports Mock Draft Lobby
**Mock Draft Central
**CBS Sports Fantasy Lobby
**Fantasy Football Calculator
Here's one way of quantifying consistency with Points Per Reception leagues. The following 46 wideouts notched at least five games of eight-plus targets last season:
15 -- Brandon Marshall
14 -- Pierre Garcon
13 -- Andre Johnson, A.J. Green, Antonio Brown
12 -- Vincent Jackson, Dez Bryant, Calvin Johnson, Alshon Jeffery
11 -- Josh Gordon, Torrey Smith
10 -- Demaryius Thomas, Julian Edelman, T.Y. Hilton, Mike Wallace
9 -- Kendall Wright, Larry Fitzgerald, Brian Hartline, Jordy Nelson, Cecil Shorts
8 -- Anquan Boldin, Victor Cruz
7 -- Eric Decker, Harry Douglas, Emmanuel Sanders, Marques Colston, Steve Smith, Steve Johnson
6 -- Reggie Wayne (only played seven games), DeSean Jackson, Greg Jennings, Nate Washington, Keenan Allen, Hakeem Nicks, Jerome Simpson, Rod Streater, Roddy White
5 -- Michael Floyd, Dwayne Bowe, Greg Little, Golden Tate, Ace Sanders, Davone Bess, Denarius Moore, Jarrett Boykin, Julio Jones (all five games for 2013)
Here's another way of arbitrarily quantifying PPR assets. These 34 wideouts crossed the PPR-elite threshold of seven catches, 95 yards and/or one touchdown at least seven times last year.
(Note: Before he went down with a season-ending foot injury, Julio Jones was 5 for 5 within this realm.)
13 -- A.J. Green
12 -- Antonio Brown, Demaryius Thomas, Brandon Marshall, Dez Bryant
11 -- Josh Gordon, Pierre Garcon
10 -- Calvin Johnson, Alshon Jeffery, Julian Edelman, Wes Welker
9 -- Andre Johnson, DeSean Jackson, Jordy Nelson, Larry Fitzgerald, Cecil Shorts
8 -- Eric Decker, Torrey Smith, Keenan Allen, Emmanuel Sanders, Jerricho Cotchery
7 -- Vincent Jackson, Anquan Boldin, Marvin Jones
6 -- T.Y. Hilton, Kendall Wright, Harry Douglas, Mike Wallace, James Jones, Doug Baldwin, Terrance Williams, Dwayne Bowe, Rueben Randle, Marlon Brown
REAL-LIFE TIERS OF A CLOWN
On Saturday, I participated in my first LIVE draft of the fantasy season, a 12-team, 16-round, PPR-driven exercise comprised of noted fantasy gurus from other media sites. (And yes, there was beer ... and maybe a shot or two.)
Here are the actual tiers of selection -- involving wide receivers -- from the experts' PPR draft:
Calvin Johnson, A.J. Green, Demaryius Thomas, Dez Bryant
Brandon Marshall, Julio Jones, Alshon Jeffery, Antonio Brown, Randall Cobb, Jordy Nelson, Pierre Garcon, Keenan Allen, Vincent Jackson, Victor Cruz, Roddy White, Larry Fitzgerald, Wes Welker, Andre Johnson
T.Y. Hilton, Percy Harvin, Torrey Smith, Cordarrelle Patterson, Michael Crabtree, Brandin Cooks, Kendall Wright, Julian Edelman, Mike Wallace, DeSean Jackson
Emmanuel Sanders, Marques Colston, Eric Decker, Golden Tate, Terrance Williams, Sammy Watkins, Jeremy Maclin, Rueben Randle, Justin Hunter, Reggie Wayne, Kelvin Benjamin, Josh Gordon, Riley Cooper, Mike Evans, DeAndre Hopkins, Jordan Matthews, Greg Jennings
Hakeem Nicks, Markus Wheaton, Cecil Shorts, Kenny Britt, Kenny Stills, Danny Amendola, Doug Baldwin, Aaron Dobson, Anquan Boldin, Marqise Lee, Tavon Austin, Andre Holmes, Brian Hartline, Andrew Hawkins, Odell Beckham, Jarrett Boykin, Malcom Floyd, Dwayne Bowe, Marvin Jones, Harry Douglas, Steve Smith, Miles Austin
Rod Streater, Jerricho Cotchery, Robert Woods, Kenbrell Thompkins, James Jones, Jermaine Kearse, Junior Hemingway
Jay Clemons, the 2008 Fantasy Football Writer of the Year (Fantasy Sports Writers Assoication), can be reached via Twitter, day or night, at @FOX_JayClemons.