Fantasy Football Rankings for Championship Game Round: Wide Receivers

Kevin Hanson@EDSFootballAnalyst IIIJanuary 17, 2012

GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 15:  Hakeem Nicks #88 of the New York Giants makes a 37 yard touchdown catch with time running out in the second quarter against  Charles Woodson #21 of the Green Bay Packers during their NFC Divisional playoff game at Lambeau Field on January 15, 2012 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

If the Giants and Patriots don't win this weekend to advance to the Super Bowl in a rematch of Super Bowl XLII, the alternative would be a rematch of the Harbaugh Bowl.

From an offensive standpoint, there was little to be thankful for on that Thanksgiving evening. After all, Baltimore's Joe Flacco and San Francisco's Alex Smith combined for only 301 passing yards in that game.

A Ravens-49ers Super Bowl would mean that the best receiver in the Super Bowl would then be either Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boldin or Torrey Smith, depending on your opinion.

Here are our wide receiver rankings for the championship-game round of the playoffs:

1. Hakeem Nicks, Giants (at SF): In two postseason games, Nicks has a total of 13 receptions for 280 yards and four touchdowns including an amazing Hail Mary catch at the end of the first half against the Packers.

2. Wes Welker, Patriots (vs BAL): In his past two games, Welker has six receptions for 50-something yards in each game. While he caught one of Tom Brady's six touchdown passes last week, the Ravens have allowed only 11 passing touchdowns in 17 games.

3. Victor Cruz, Giants (at SF): Cruz had a remarkable regular season: 82 receptions for a franchise-record 1,536 yards and nine touchdowns. That said, he's had a salsa-free postseason so far: seven receptions for 102 yards and no touchdowns.

4. Michael Crabtree, 49ers (vs NYG): Crabtree finished with four receptions (on 10 targets) for 25 yards and a touchdown last week, but he should have had more. Crabtree, who is normally a sure-handed receiver, had numerous drops last week.

5. Anquan Boldin, Ravens (at NE): Boldin returned from his knee injury and posted a solid performance last week against the Texans. Boldin finished with 73 yards and a touchdown as the Texans focused on slowing down the speedy Torrey Smith.

6. Torrey Smith, Ravens (at NE): Smith now has a 10-game streak of games with either double-digit fantasy points (four games) or three points or less (six games). He finished with one reception for nine yards (zero points in leagues that don't award fractional points) last week.

7. Mario Manningham, Giants (at SF): While Manningham has only seven receptions for 99 yards combined in New York's two playoff games, he has scored in both games. Of the Giants three receivers on this list, it was Manningham that had the best performance in their first matchup against the Niners with six receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown.

8. Deion Branch, Patriots (vs BAL): Branch, a former Super Bowl MVP, earned fantasy owners 14 points last week largely due to a 61-yard touchdown, but he's been too inconsistent to rely on for that kind of production every week.

9. Kyle Williams, 49ers (vs NYG): Williams had only two receptions on his six targets for 12 yards last week. While I don't expect a huge game from Williams (if that's not obvious from his spot in my rankings), I can see a game with three or four receptions for 40-50 yards.

Other Positions: Quarterbacks - Running Backs - Tight Ends

Related: Super Bowl Matchup Poll - Historical Championship Game Results: AFC - NFC

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