2013 Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings by Tier: The Second Wave

Ryan LesterSenior Writer IAugust 6, 2013

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 20:  Wide receiver Julio Jones #11 and wide receiver Roddy White #84 of the Atlanta Falcons celebrate after Jones catches a 20-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game at the Georgia Dome on January 20, 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

We broke down the elite quartet of fantasy football wide receiver options. This next wave may have a little less upside than the top four receivers, but they are still top-10 for their position. Draft them with high expectations.

Victor Cruz, New York Giants

Cruz had 86 receptions for 1,092 yards and 10 touchdowns last year. While it did not match 2011′s 82 receptions for 1,536 yards and nine touchdowns, it was enough to get him paid and lock him in as one of the top fantasy options for years to come.

He only had five 100-yard games last year. He had 67 or fewer yards in the other 11 games. I expect a more consistent performance this year.

Vincent Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

V-Jax finished his first year with the Bucs with 72 receptions for 1,384 yards and eight touchdowns. Though he only had one touchdown in the final six games, his size (6′5″, 230 lbs) gives him an advantage over the opposing secondary.

He also has a tendency to disappear at times, as evidenced by six games without a score and less than 60 yards. That leaves 10 games with 81 yards and/or a touchdown.

Andre Johnson, Houston Texans

Johnson stormed back from a disappointing 2011 season with 112 catches for a career-high 1,598 yards. It’s a little disappointing that he only scored four touchdowns, but that’s easy to forgive when you finish with that many yards.

Plus, he finished with a bang for his fantasy owners, averaging 147 yards over the last seven games. He falls out of the first tier because he has never scored double-digit touchdowns, and he missed 12 games in 2010 and 2011. He’s still a force that finished with 1,200 or more yards in four of the last five years.

Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons

Julio finished with 1,198 yards and 10 touchdowns, giving him averages of 1,078.5 yards and nine touchdowns in his two seasons. He finished the season with a flurry, scoring five touchdowns in the final six games and posting a monster game (182 yards, two touchdowns) in the playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

He had six games without a touchdown and fewer than 65 yards. Sharing the load with Roddy White, Tony Gonzalez and Steven Jackson could keep him from putting up the monster numbers of the elite crowd, but he should be close.

Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos

Thomas is a beast. He’s 6’3″ and 235 pounds with 4.38 speed. He finished with 1,434 yards and 10 touchdowns. Thomas scored six touchdowns in the final seven games and had 77 yards and/or a touchdown in 14 games last year.

I would put Thomas in the elite company if Wes Welker didn’t join Eric Decker in the Broncos’ wide receiver corps.

Roddy White, Atlanta Falcons

White has averaged 1,295.5 yards and 8.2 touchdowns over the past six seasons. He is consistently a force, but those aren’t quite elite numbers. He finished with six games without a touchdown and less than 60 yards. 

Given his track record, expect another stellar season. Just don’t expect monster numbers because of Julio, Gonzo and S-Jax.

Also check out the third tierfourth tier and fifth tier of fantasy football wide receiver rankings.

Also, check out LestersLegends.com to help prepare you for fantasy football season.