Fantasy Football: Smartphone-Friendly Primer for Points-Per-Reception Leagues

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Fantasy Football: Smartphone-Friendly Primer for Points-Per-Reception Leagues
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Vikings receiver Percy Harvin (87 catches, 1,312 total yards, 8 TD) tallied 56 catches, 77 targets and six touchdowns in his final eight games last season.

As we approach Draft Week in fantasy football, here is a Points Per Reception-league primer that's also smartphone-friendly.

For starters, here's a listing of the 60 most viable assets with PPR leagues—where the rankings sometimes bear little resemblance to ones from standard-scoring leagues.

Draft strategies are different, as well. In standard leagues, I usually adhere to the principle of taking four running backs in the first seven rounds—and perhaps five by Round 9.

But for PPR drafts, I never deviate from the 4-2-1 methodology (first seven picks) of four targets-driven receivers, two pass-friendly running backs and either a top-notch quarterback or top-four tight end.

After that, it's all about value, value, value at every turn.

Part I—1-30

1. RB Ray Rice, Ravens
2. RB Arian Foster, Texans
3. RB LeSean McCoy, Eagles
4. WR Calvin Johnson, Lions
5. QB Aaron Rodgers, Packers
6. WR Wes Welker, Patriots
7. RB Chris Johnson, Titans
8. RB Matt Forte, Bears
9. QB Drew Brees, Saints
10. RB Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars
11. QB Matthew Stafford, Lions
12. QB Tom Brady, Patriots
13. TE Rob Gronkowski, Patriots
14. WR Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
15. WR Roddy White, Falcons
16. TE Jimmy Graham, Saints
17. RB Fred Jackson, Bills
18. WR Andre Johnson, Texans
19. RB Darren McFadden, Raiders
20. WR Victor Cruz, Giants
21. RB Jamaal Charles, Chiefs
22. WR Greg Jennings, Packers
23. QB Cam Newton, Panthers
24. WR Mike Wallace, Steelers
25. RB Steven Jackson, Rams
26. RB Darren Sproles, Saints
27. WR Percy Harvin, Vikings
28. WR Brandon Marsahll, Bears
29. WR Julio Jones, Falcons
30. QB Eli Manning, Giants


Part II—31-60

31. WR Steve Smith, Panthers
32. RB Ahmad Bradshaw, Giants
33. RB Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks
34. WR Jordy Nelson, Packers
35. RB Frank Gore, 49ers
36. WR A.J. Green, Bengals
37. RB DeMarco Murray, Cowboys
38. WR Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs
39. WR Marques Colston, Saints
40. RB Ryan Mathews, Chargers
41. RB Reggie Bush, Dolphins
42. WR Hakeem Nicks, Giants
43. RB Adrian Peterson, Vikings
44. TE Antonio Gates, Chargers
45. WR Steve Johnson, Bills
46. TE Aaron Hernandez, Patriots
47. WR Reggie Wayne, Colts
48. RB Shonn Greene, Jets
49. RB Michael Turner, Falcons
50. WR Miles Austin, Cowboys
51. QB Michael Vick, Eagles
52. TE Brandon Pettigrew, Lions
53. RB C.J. Spiller, Bills
54. TE Vernon Davis, 49ers
55. QB Matt Ryan, Falcons
56. WR Antonio Brown, Steelers
57. WR Vincent Jackson, Buccaneers
58. QB Philip Rivers, Chargers
59. QB Tony Romo, Cowboys
60. QB Peyton Manning, Broncos


Seven Questions To Ponder On PPR Draft Day

1. Do my four main receivers have the capacity for seven-plus targets at least eight times?

2. Do they have the potential to cross the PPR-elite threshold of six catches, 85 total yards and/or one TD in seven games?

3. Do three of my running backs have the capacity for four-plus catches per game?

4. Do they have the potential to cross the PPR-elite threshold of five catches, 80 total yards and/or one TD in seven games?

5. Do I intend to start a wide receiver in the RB/WR flex position every time?

6. In QB-WR handcuff situations, is my QB1 likely to attempt 37 or more passes in at least five games?

7. Should I move heaven and earth to handcuff my quarterback (Matt Ryan) to a receiver who catches 85-plus balls in his sleep (Roddy White and/or Julio Jones)?


Target Practice: Wide Receivers

A receiver is only as good as his quarterback—and the opportunities he gets to make a catch (known as targets). Here are last season's target leaders:

1. Roddy White, Falcons—179 Targets
2. Wes Welker, Patriots—173 Targets
3. Calvin Johnson, Lions—158 Targets
4. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals—154 Targets
5. Brandon Lloyd, Broncos/Rams (now Patriots)—150
6. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs—142
7. Brandon Marshall, Dolphins (now Bears)—141
8. Pierre Garcon, Colts (now Redskins) —134
9. Steve Johnson, Bills—134
10. Hakeem Nicks, Giants—133
11. Reggie Wayne, Colts—132
12. Victor Cruz, Giants—131
13. Steve Smith, Panthers—129
14. Antonio Brown, Steelers—124
15. Mike Williams, Buccaneers—124
16. Nate Washington, Titans—121
17. Percy Harvin, Vikings—120
18. Greg Little, Browns—120
19. Jabar Gaffney, Redskins (now Patriots)—115
20. A.J. Green, Bengals—115
21. Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders—115
22. Vincent Jackson, Chargers (now Buccaneers)—115
23. Michael Crabtree, 49ers—114
24. Mike Wallace, Steelers—114
25. Nate Burleson, Lions—110
26. Marques Colston, Saints—107
27. Anquan Boldin, Ravens—106
28. Jerome Simpson, Bengals (now Vikings)—105
29. DeSean Jackson, Eagles—104
30. Dez Bryant, Cowboys—103
31. Santonio Holmes, Jets—101
32. Greg Jennings, Packers—101
33. Steve Breaston, Chiefs—98
34. Andre Roberts, Cardinals—98
35. Early Doucet, Cardinals—97
36. David Nelson, Bills—97
37. Plaxico Burress, Jets (free agent)—96
38. Austin Collie, Colts—96
39. Jeremy Maclin, Eagles—96
40. Jordy Nelson, Packers—96


Target Practice: Tight Ends

Regarding tight ends, here are last season's 20 targets leaders. As an aside, I still can't fathom a tight end almost hitting the magical 150 mark.

1. Jimmy Graham, Saints—149 Targets
2. Brandon Pettigrew, Lions—126 Targets
3. Rob Gronkowski, Patriots—124 Targets
4. Kellen Winslow Jr., Bucs (now Seahawks) —121 Targets
5. Jason Witten, Cowboys—117
6. Tony Gonzalez, Falcons—116
7. Dustin Keller, Jets—115
8. Aaron Hernandez, Patriots—113
9. Brent Celek, Eagles—97
10. Vernon Davis, 49ers—95
11. Jermichael Finley, Packers—92
12. Jermaine Gresham, Bengals—92
13. Ed Dickson, Ravens—89
14. Greg Olsen, Panthers—89
15. Fred Davis, Redskins—88
16. Antonio Gates, Chargers—88
17. Marcedes Lewis, Jaguars—85
18. Owen Daniels, Texans—84
19. Jared Cook, Titans—81
20. Heath Miller, Steelers—74


Target Practice: Running Backs

Last but not least, these 17 active running backs tallied 50 or more targets in 2011:

1. Darren Sproles, Saints—111 Targets
2. Ray Rice, Ravens—104 Targets
3. Chris Johnson, Titans—79 Targets
4. Mike Tolbert, Chargers (now Panthers)—79 Targets
5. Matt Forte, Bears—76
6. Arian Foster, Texans—72
7. LeSean McCoy, Eagles—69
8. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars—64
9. Jonathan Stewart, Panthers—61
10. Roy Helu, Redskins—60
11. Ryan Mathews, Chargers—59
12. Pierre Thomas, Saints—59
13. Steven Jackson, Rams—58
14. Kregg Lumpkin, Buccaneers—53
15. C.J. Spiller, Bills—53
16. Reggie Bush, Dolphins—52
17. Fred Jackson, Bills—50


Sleeper Cells


I've been inundated with "super-sleeper" queries on Twitter. Here are my favorite under-28 wideout sleepers (Round 13 or later) who could be major contributors by season's end:

1. Greg Little, Browns
2. Jonathan Baldwin, Chiefs
3. Donald Jones, Bills
4. Golden Tate, Seahawks
5. Jerome Simpson, Vikings
6. Leonard Hankerson, Redskins
7. Kendall Wright, Titans
8. James Jones, Packers
9. Devin Aromashodu, Vikings
10. Donnie Avery, Colts
11. Michael Floyd, Cardinals
12. Brandon LaFell, Panthers
13. Alshon Jeffery, Bears
14. Danario Alexander, Rams
15. Josh Gordon, Browns
16. Brian Quick, Rams
17. Legedu Naanee, Dolphins
18. Randall Cobb, Packers
19. Damian Williams, Titans
20. Nick Toon, Saints


Practice Makes Perfect

The Fantasy Blog should always be your primary source for voluminous information leading up to fantasy drafts, but if you're in the mood to participate in a LIVE mock draft on the Web—while learning not to reach for Joe McKnight before Round 14—here are the best destinations for real-time mocking:


Rankings


Draft Tiers


Draft Strategies


Jay Clemons
can be reached on Twitter, day or night, at @ATL_JayClemons.

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