The season may be over, but your future in fantasy sports doesn't have to be. I'm already making notes for next year's draft...and these guys are the WRs you're going to want—or want to hate—in 2007.
Newcomers with Value
I don't care what Yahoo says—this guy is no tight end. If they don't fix that glitch in the system before next season, look for Colston's value to go even higher. Just how good is he? 70 receptions, 1000+ yards, and 8 TDs in only 14 games. That makes him a 4th-rounder at the latest.
Mr. Furrey made me a very happy man in 2006: His whopping 98 receptions were second only to Andre Johnson on my team. I expect the Lions to turn Furrey into a Torry Holt-type receiver to complement Roy Williams' size in the end zone. Does that mean he won't have as many touchdowns as Williams? Yes. Will you care? Not a chance. Cross your fingers and hope Furrey slips to the 4th or 5th round.
Where the hell did this guy come from? 82 receptions, almost 1000 yards, and 6 TDs? AND HE'S ON THE JETS!? In New York's perpetually pass-happy offense (and don't look for Cedric Houston to be the answer anytime soon), Cotchery and Laveranues Coles are always going to get the majority of the touches. Look for Jerricho to get the ball even more in 2007...but unless the rest of the team gets its act together, he won't top 6 scores.
I know it's unusual to recommend anyone on the Bears at an offensive fantasy position, but as long as Rex "It Feels Good To Throw The Ball As Hard As I Can" Grossman is under center, Berrian will continue to outrun most of his competition. He probably won't be better than a WR3 on your squad (if he stays healthy)...but he'd be a nice pickup in later rounds.
Forgotten Names/Fantasy Steals
Wait for the trade...and then call yourself a genius. As late as he's likely to go next year (5th round? Maybe?), you can't get bigger upside. 2006 wasn't his fault. 2007 won't be either.
I doubt anyone truly forgot about him...but neither is anyone likely to forget this little tidbit: Stallworth is injury-prone. Big time. So why do you want him? Because when he's on the field, he is THE guy in Philly. If that means you draft him late next year and trade him after his dominant Week 1 performance, so be it. He's just too damned fast to pass up on the cheap.
Again: If you get away with this, you're a genius. Or maybe just lucky. Johnson had an absurd 103 receptions last year...but only 5 touchdowns. Look closer: In Weeks 15, 16, and 17, the guy was barely targeted. Does that mean he's not going to be your messiah in the 2007 playoffs after the Texans have been eliminated? Probably. Do you want to have him until then? Absolutely. If you can grab him in the 4th round, consider it a steal.
Probably not going to slip too far, but his 91 receptions and 1000+ yards make him a nice 4th-round discount. I'd know I'd take it—especially given the fact that the Jets can only get better on offense next year.
Guys to Avoid
In Horn's own words: "Joe Horn doesn't understand why Joe Horn is placed so low on this list." The reason, Joe, is that you're injury-prone. And your reception numbers have gone down every year. And you're getting slower (especially relative to the much faster and more able Devery Henderson). And this Marques Colston fellow is taking the ball from you on a regular basis. AVOID!
If you're going after Brown, you're making a mistake—he won't produce as long as Stallworth is healthy. Granted, if you see the first sign of trouble in Philly, you trade for him ASAP...but I don't think Stallworth is going to sit much next year, which means limited touches for Reggie (who thrives on the red zone catches).
I don't know what happened here, but Smith has no hope of a rebound. He had Javon Walker eating up the double coverage all year, and he still didn't get the ball. There's a slight chance that having Jay Cutler under center will boost Smith's numbers...but with old age setting in, I really don't think he'll see the ball enough to make him worth your time.
Next time: TE Roundup